Five ways to win business with an email newsletter
Email newsletters have become a central part of many law firms’ marketing strategies.
Sending a regular email keeps your company in your client’s mind and should encourage them to come back to you for their legal matters.
Usually, newsletters will link to articles or news stories hosted on your website.
Depending on what you include, it can show clients you’re up to date with new or emerging legislative developments, giving them the assurance that you provide a modern service.
But sending a good newsletter takes more than simply sending a monthly email.
On average, people will receive around 100 emails each day and may only spend seconds reading the ones they open.
To make a newsletter worthwhile – to engage your client-base in a meaningful way that will result in business – it’s important to have a strategy.
1. Make your email stand out in your client’s inbox
It’s important to differentiate your newsletter from the myriad of emails your client will receive. To do this, you’ll need to get the subject line right.
Saying “Our firm’s newsletter, 2024” won’t cut it.
You don’t need to reiterate who is sending the email in the subject line, and using the word “newsletter” has been shown to decrease open rates by around 19%.
Instead, indicate to your client what sort of information is inside and how it can help them. For example:
- Writing a will can be difficult – let us help
- 10 money-saving legal tips for house-buyers
- How we can help you navigate no-fault divorce
Some email management systems allow you to personalise subject lines to include your recipients’ first or last name. This may make your email seem more personal even if you’re sending it to hundreds of people.
Plus – as most people open their emails on their mobile phones, make sure the subject line appears in its entirety. This means the subject line will need to be under 50 characters including spaces.
2. Decide what you want your clients to do
This will differ from firm to firm, and from email to email: but it’s vital your newsletter has calls to action (CTAs).
In marketing, a CTA is an instruction to the audience designed to provoke an immediate response, usually using an imperative verb such as ”call now”, “find out more” or “visit us today”.
For example, you may want your client to:
- contact you to write a will or draft a power of attorney – something they may have been putting off
- sign up to an event hosted by your firm
- know that your firm is up to speed on a new piece of legislation
You’ll likely have a few items in your newsletter with their own CTAs.
Make sure they’re distinct from one another, concise and adequately spaced apart so that they can be read easily on all devices.
3. Plan your content realistically
It’s important to send your newsletters at regular intervals to keep in touch with your clients.
However, you may have more time to dedicate to business development in some months than in others.
Being realistic about how much content you can include can ensure that you won’t overburden yourself when you need to focus on fee-earning activities rather than marketing.
Planning ahead can also help.
For instance if you’re sending a quarterly newsletter, it’s a good idea to have a rough plan of what the Q2 edition will look like in Q1, allowing for some flexibility to respond to current events.
4. Keep it succinct
As most people read their emails on a mobile phone, it’s important to remember that your audience is digesting your content on a small screen.
Keeping your communication concise will ensure that more of your content is read. On average, people only spend 12 seconds looking at an email.
So, consider limiting your email to four or five items.
5. Measure your results and learn from them
Depending on the size of your mailing list, you may want to use an email management system – like Mailchimp – to send and format newsletters.
Outlook has limited capabilities which can make sending emails to many recipients challenging.
Plus, email management systems can provide you insights into how your email is performing. Typically, they can determine how many recipients opened your email (open rate), and how many clicked a link in your email (click rate).
Don’t be disheartened if you think your figures are low. The average open rate of marketing emails is usually between 20 and 40%, while the typical click rate is around 2.5%.
Over time, analysing the open and click rates of your emails can show what content your audience responds to and what they don’t.
Although this is a trial-and-error exercise, noting these stats allows you to keep providing engaging content and yield better results.
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