If you’re at WealthCounsel Symposium this week, join us on Wednesday, October 19th at 12:45 pm for today’s Lunch & Learn program where Jennifer Goddard will be presenting “Transforming Digital Leads into New Clients.”
In case you still think that having a great website is all you need for your estate planning and elder law practice, we need to share some of our experience with you. Your website is just the beginning of a marketing strategy that starts when people begin to look for help with an estate or elder law problem and doesn’t end until… well, if everything is being done right, it never ends.
Your relationship with clients is different than a transactional law firm, like the one that handles a residential real estate purchase. Let’s look at the process.
Prospects search for an estate planning or elder law firm online. They find yours (because your SEO is good!) and spend some time reading about your firm, watching your videos and clicking on your social feeds to get a sense of who you are. Do they like you? Trust that you’ll do the right thing for them? Don’t underestimate the power of a video to help them engage with you on a personal level.
They fill out a form or call your office. That’s the first big part of bringing new clients to your practice. How you respond to their initial outreach will make a big difference as to whether or not they retain your firm. That’s the topic of Jennifer’s presentation, so we’re not going to dig into it here.
Once they have become clients, are you finished marketing to them? Not at all!
You know that estate plans are not “set it and forget it” documents, and you know that reminding your clients that their plans may be ready for a review is a mark of good service as well as good marketing. But that’s not where it ends either!
In addition to reviewing and revising estate plans, you should also be staying in touch with clients throughout the year in a way that is informative and helpful to them. It’s far easier if you have an automated system in place, like our E2-CRM.
Your marketing messages should be value-driven: informing clients about changes in state or federal laws that will impact their estate plan or their plan for long term care, news about speaking engagements or the practice’s involvement with local not-for-profits, client appreciation events and the like. Communication should be on-going.
Some offices send birthday cards to clients at milestone birthdays. We think it’s a warm and friendly thing. Who doesn’t like to get a birthday card?
A successful, profitable estate planning and elder law practice is like a garden that needs tending, but over time, with the right nutrients, sunlight and enough water, the garden will produce a bountiful harvest for many years to come.