At Postali, our roots are in attorney direct mail marketing. Even as the importance of digital marketing increases, direct mail continues to be an effective way to bring new cases to law firms. For many attorneys, direct mail campaigns are a crucial piece of new client acquisition.
We also talk to many lawyers who are skeptical of direct mail, and rightfully so. We often hear the following, “I’ve tried direct mail before and it didn’t work.” Some have even tried it multiple times, with each campaign failing to generate new business.
The truth is that the difference between a direct mail campaign that delivers results and one that doesn’t is often in the details. Attorney direct mail is equal parts art and science. While it’s important to have a compelling message, the logistics of your campaign are just as important.
If you’ve tried direct mail marketing for your law firm and are still waiting for your phone to ring, it’s likely because you’re making one of the following mistakes:
With direct mail, timing is everything. This is especially true for traffic offenses and DUI letters, as people are often trying to deal with those legal matters quickly. People also have instant access to online research, so it’s important that your letters are in mailboxes very quickly after the offense occurs, so that your law firm can be part of the consideration set.
Maybe your letters are timely, but you could be sacrificing accuracy for speed. Without accurate address verification, you’re likely cutting into your campaign’s ROI by creating more return mail. Even if your letter makes it into the mailbox, if the name is incorrect or the offense isn’t accurate, your letter will end up in the trash can just as quickly as it was delivered.
Many attorneys believe that creating a more general letter will lessen the chances of having inaccurate information. If you simply leave out the first name and don’t include details about the offense, then you don’t risk being inaccurate.
While this is true, it also will make your letter less effective. If a direct mail letter feels personalized, it sends a message that your law firm is detail-oriented, which is a quality that many defendants will find appealing. A general letter that could be for anybody will fail to impress your mail recipients.
When attorneys tell us that their direct mail efforts aren’t working, we’ll often ask what data they have on their campaigns. How do they know it’s not working? How many calls have they received? We’re always surprised at how often the answer is, “I don’t know.”
If done correctly, direct mail is one of the easiest attorney advertising tactics to measure. At Postali, we set up detailed call-tracking so that the attorneys we work with always know exactly how many calls are resulting from their mailings.
Not to mention – if you aren’t measuring your direct mail, you don’t have any data to help you optimize and continuously improve your strategy.
Direct Mail has some inherent limitations, and we have to be honest when assessing the efficacy of a campaign. Specifically, mail can only be delivered so fast, and you have no control over how many other attorneys are sending letters. It may be the case that your mailings are timely and accurate, but your potential for success depends largely on how competitive your target markets are. If you are mailing for DUI in an area where access to data is very easy, it may be the case that your mailings are arriving in mailboxes along with dozens of other attorneys’ letters.
Many attorneys will continue with direct mail campaigns that receive a very low response rate and break-even ROI because it keeps the firm capacity full. But there are more cost-effective ways to market your law practice. Sometimes seeking a less-competitive geographic market can make a big difference in your campaign’s success. Other times, direct mail may not be the best investment for your firm.
Are you frustrated with your law firm’s lack of results from direct mail? Perhaps you’ve never tried it and are unsure where to start. For questions and concerns regarding your direct mail campaign, call Postali today at (800) 667-3612. We’d love to talk.