Valentine’s Day may be over, but you have to continue to woo your prospects and clients throughout the year to develop long-term relationships for more business. Marketing is a courtship. Some relationships quickly swell to engagement status, while others take a year or two (or three) to blossom. Remain committed with your communications to reach that golden ring stage (the conversion from prospect to client).
Show your leads a little love with these four email marketing tips and help them fall in love with your estate planning practice for future business opportunities.
1. Welcome them with open arms
An email newsletter welcome message is akin to your first date. When prospects subscribe to your communications, they have inherent expectations of what they will receive. A warm welcome letter sets the tone for your future. Elicit that warm fuzzy feeling that tells prospects that your firm is a keeper by following these tips:
- Strive for expressive brevity in your subject line
- Thank them for subscribing to your email newsletter
- Remind them what kinds of content you will be sending them and how often
- Personalize your message with a great photo of yourself and your standard signature line
- Keep your message light, friendly and personable
- Design your welcome letter with style and panache for a great first impression
This is your first date, after all. It’s not the time for pushy sales tactics. You want your prospects to look forward to your next email, not dread it. According to MarketingSherpa, your welcome email is likely to be the most opened and read email you ever send your prospects. Make it spectacular!
2. Show off your stunning personality
When drafting your custom content, infuse a little personality into it. Remember that you are softly pursuing a prospect (and enhancing relationships with existing clients). Make sure that your custom articles ooze personality and life so that your contacts know that they are not just receiving yet another automated computer message. Develop the rapport you will need when the time is right for them to buy services from you with these custom content suggestions:
- Employee spotlights – don’t be afraid to write about your employees’ hobbies, interests, weddings, babies, graduations, charitable activities, etc. Get personal.
- Associate achievements – share announcements about promotions, new certifications, new hires, graduations, and other accomplishments with your readers.
- Activities and events – whether you write about an upcoming webinar or how you helped Habitat for Humanity build a house last weekend, include highlights about all of the events and activities that you and your team members participate in as well as those that your firm hosts, attends, or sponsors.
- Perspectives from the top – give yourself and other key team members the spotlight by writing an editorial piece that offers a fresh perspective on a hot topic.
Remember, your prospects want to learn more about YOU: your firm, your employees, your expertise, and your philosophical approach to life. In addition to reading articles that will help them improve their quality of life, they want to get to know you before they decide whether or not to hire you. Help them get to know you.
3. Give them unexpected gifts
Make your prospects feel special. Surprise new email subscribers with thoughtful gifts linked in your welcome letter. Delight ongoing subscribers with occasional unexpected treats, such as:
- An innovative whitepaper
- A tidbit of helpful advice
- A quick way to submit a question you will promptly answer
- A free seminar or webinar
- An invitation to have breakfast with you
- A “thank you” for no reason other than to say “thanks”
According to HubSpot, thank you emails generate more than twice the click through rates than other nurturing campaign emails. Saying thank you and giving gifts with no strings attached is not only nice, it’s nice for business.
4. Wine and dine them with content
New relationships take effort. There’s no better way to captivate and charm prospects than by reminding them that you are still thinking about them long after your first date. Continue to nurture them with quality content in your newsletter.
- Reinforce your commitment by giving them content they will appreciate and value
- Focus on their needs, not yours
- Offer support and encouragement
- Listen to their needs and modify your messaging accordingly
- Segment your content to each individual’s areas of interest
Of course, you don’t want to smother prospects with emails. The relationship is just beginning to take shape and grow. You don’t want to appear clingy or desperate (no matter how you actually feel). If you stay true in your commitment to provide information that your prospects find helpful, useful and entertaining, you will win over their hearts for more business opportunities when the time is right.
If you haven’t given much thought to your welcome message or email newsletter content, you are likely missing out on taking your prospect relationships to the next level. Review your welcome letter and newsletter content from the dating perspective… the attorney-client relationship is not something that most people jump into willy-nilly. Handle your prospects with care using the above suggestions and watch your relationship with these future clients grow.
Becca Fieler is an Online Marketing Specialist for BizActions | PDI Global Marketing Solutions, a division of Thomson Reuters. She provides strategic planning and oversight for our online marketing and email marketing initiatives. Becca also works with clients, developing comprehensive marketing and lead generation programs for professional service providers, including attorneys, accountants, banks and credit unions, human resource companies and others, through her role at BizActions | PDI Global, Thomson Reuters. She is a prolific writer when she has time. Read more of Becca’s blog posts here.
Academy Guest Blogger
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (800) 846-1555