6 Essential Emails Your Law Firm Should Be Sending
Email communications are a cornerstone of running a modern law firm. According to the American Bar Association, 41% of law firms use email marketing. As one of the most commonly used law firm marketing tools, emails are expected by clients as part of their legal experience.
If you’re competing against other firms for clients, your firm’s email strategy needs to stand out. Here are six emails your law firm should be sending, and why they matter.
Why do law firms need email marketing?
Email campaigns should be one component of a broader marketing strategy that employs varied channels and outlets. The more people who see and interact with your marketing content, the more leads you’ll have. Your law firm might have access to hundreds or even thousands of email addresses from current, former, and prospective clients. Don’t let them gather dust.
Building a comprehensive email campaign is often a process of trial and error. While every firm has unique needs, a legal marketing email campaign generally has the following goals in mind:
Attract new clients by showcasing your firm’s legal services
Improve your law firm’s visibility by building brand awareness
Stay top-of-mind with current, former, and prospective clients.
81% of legal consumers seek referrals before retaining an attorney or firm. Consistent, targeted emails will keep your firm top-of-mind for potential referral sources.
Who should my law firm email?
The ‘who’ will inform the ‘what’ and ‘when’ of your email strategy. Before deciding what emails your law firm should send, identify the audiences your law firm wants to reach. For example, if your firm handles both family law and bankruptcy law, you might want to segment your family law and bankruptcy leads so that you can send targeted content based on subject matter.
What emails should my law firm send?
No matter the size or practice area of your law firm, these five legal marketing emails will immediately elevate your email marketing and communications strategy:
Law Firm Welcome Email
Keep your firm top of mind for longer by automatically sending a welcome email immediately after contact information is captured. This welcome email will be the first communication a prospective client receives from your firm after, say, submitting an inquiry form on your website. First impressions are incredibly important in attorney-client relationships because legal business requires a major element of trust. If you fail to make a strong impression out of the gate, you’ll lose viable clients at this step. Set your client’s expectations about your firm’s personality and the type of communications they’ll receive in the future as their matter progresses. Leave clear instructions for any action a lead may want to take after receiving this email.
After a potential client schedules a consultation, send appointment reminder emails in the days preceding their appointment. These proactive reminders will reduce the number of no-shows, especially if your firm schedules appointments far in advance. Improving the attendance rate of your appointment will also reduce the administrative burden on your firm because fewer appointments will need to be rescheduled.
Reminders are a small but effective way to create a positive client experience. These emails demonstrate your organization and attentiveness to client needs. Consider including information clients will need before their appointment, like parking directions for an in-person consultation. Reminders will also improve peace-of-mind by providing a convenient way for clients to confirm, cancel, or reschedule before their appointment.
Law Firm Newsletter
Create a templated newsletter to circulate at predetermined intervals (e.g. once a month). The goal of this newsletter is to keep your law firm top-of-mind for prospective and former clients. Your newsletter can feature firm updates, like if you launch a new practice area or open a new office location. It is also a good place to showcase your bona fides. Provide case studies, blogs, or news clippings that demonstrate your firm’s effectiveness in delivering for your clients.
Newsletters are a powerful and versatile vehicle to deliver a consistent message and grow your firm profile. Strengthen your authority and trustworthiness by showing how you deliver results. Encourage subscribers to follow your firm’s social media accounts (81% of lawyers say their firms are on social networks, according to the ABA). Direct traffic to your website by sharing links and resources hosted on your domain.
Legal Subject Expertise Email
Blogs and case studies are also part of a strategy to establish your subject matter expertise. Dedicated emails for these topics allow you to dive deeper than short newsletter blurbs allow. Do you have an anecdote that exemplifies how you like to work with clients? Do you have five rules you tell every client who hires your family law firm to handle their divorce? If so, you have what you need to demonstrate your firm’s authority in your practice area.
Client Engagement Emails
The engagement email asks your audience to take some kind of action. Rather than speaking from the top down, you get to listen from the bottom up. Show your clients that their opinion matters. Solicit input or feedback from your audience to keep them engaged with your firm. Share a satisfaction survey after a matter has concluded. Ask clients to share personal stories relevant to your practice area. This input can feed into blogs or newsletter topics, like “Things I Wish I Knew Before Filing for Bankruptcy.”
A lot of holiday greetings from law firms are simple necessities. They’re often just a notification that your office will be closed on a certain date. This achieves a practical goal and keeps your firm front-of-mind for your mailing list throughout the year. However, most law firms omit the single most powerful holiday greeting: the happy birthday message. If you have a CRM that stores client information like birthdays, you can automate a personalized greeting to send to a client on their special day. This email is different from the other holiday greetings because, by definition, you can’t send this email to your entire list at once. It shows that you think about your clients as individuals, and see them as people. If you can delight a former client by remembering their birthday, you can dramatically increase the likelihood of that client recommending your firm to people they know.
Tips for Law Firm Marketing Emails
As with any aspect of law firm marketing, keep yourself updated on the latest ethical rules and best practices for email marketing. Having an easily visible ‘Unsubscribe’ button in your marketing emails may seem like a small thing, but it makes a huge difference.
Also, make sure the content of your email marketing is client-centered. Although these emails provide ample opportunity to brag about yourself or your firm, law firm marketing ultimately tells the story of how attorneys deliver for their clients.