Categories: Law Firm Management - Tags: business analysis, Marketing, referrals
By: Andrea Rothamel
With each passing day, the business environment becomes increasingly competitive. We are working longer and harder to complete services and products for clients, consumers and customers. If we put 100% of our time and effort into the business as it is, failing to recognize the importance of growing it through marketing and advertising, it will fail. There is no future for a business without growth and a constant flow of incoming clients, consumers and customers.
No matter the company, there is a limited pool of people to target and multiple businesses all vying for them. A medical malpractice attorney has to engage a client before another one retains the victim. A pharmaceutical company needs to sell a particular medication to a patient before another one does (indirectly, yes.) A supermarket needs to get a customer into its floor before he or she stops into a competitors instead. Without being proactive and directly contacting your targets, someone else will steal your future.
# 1 – Keep in touch after you’ve done a great job!
Know that referrals are an integral part of any business and must be watered just like a plant. Treat your clients, consumers or customers right, ethically and professionally, then they will return and pass on their good experiences to others. This goes for both product and service based businesses. Unfortunately, this is not enough. If you don’t remind them of your existence, they will forget you amidst crazy daily life. Give them a wonderful experience while interacting, then keep in touch over the years. Some businesses send holiday or birthday cards or gifts. Some make simple phone calls to say hello. Handing a business card to someone ten years ago is not sufficient marketing.
#2 – Stay fresh with changing marketing tools
Update, update, update. The world turns fast and your business must stay abreast of change. Keep your look and marketing tools fresh and spicy. Just because it worked years ago, doesn’t mean it will work today. If you have no web presence, you are unfortunately quite low on the food chain these days. If you have no photos or logo, or references readily available, you are limping behind too many companies. Get on it!
I witnessed an organization who, as a marketing tool, sent an antiquated, boring, lifeless gift to clients every year. It seemed as if it was a staple for decades, lacking flavor or pop, one which my grandmother would’ve tossed into the trash and I promise you, she never tossed anything. Updating this annual gift generated leads exponentially. If the recipients were the same, why? Read on…
#3 – Re-evaluate your business and focus
Do a quick business analysis with respect to your target market. Are you looking for children, adults, males, females, video gamers, trucking companies, physicians or aliens? Your marketing tools need be useful and memorable for that specific target. Do not mail a piece of paper with a ballerina on it to an adventurist. Send a utility knife with your name and number on it! If you are marketing for foodies, send a utensil or measuring table for the fridge. This will keep your name in front of clients and those around them. This is how pens became such a staple. People will throw them in a bag or on a desk and actually use them. Oftentimes they are shared or inadvertently taken and your business has just picked up another potential client. Even if you think you are targeting the whole world, find something updated and useful. Think: Would I keep this if I received it?
Keep your name in their faces, keep your interaction positive and helpful, keep up to date and refresh your marketing. If you bury your head in a desk and ignore the marketing world, your business will be a ghost.