How much more profit would you make if your firm could generate 50% more leads who are ready to hire you, for 33% less than you’re spending to generate those same leads now?
What Is Lead Nurturing For Attorneys?
Lead nurturing is taking someone who has already shown interest in your services, and advancing that interest by providing them with the answers and information they need.
The Most Effective Way To Nurture Your Leads
An email follow-up sequence.
The Benefits Of Lead Nurturing Email Campaigns
By sharing your knowledge and expertise, you build your credibility and authority in the minds of potential clients, and establish yourself as the expert that is best suited to help them with their legal problem.
A well-crafted lead nurturing campaign also makes it clear to your prospects that you understand what they are going through.
The Goal Of Your Lead Nurturing Campaign
To develop a relationship with potential clients that eventually leads to a decision to hire your firm.
#1 Tip For Nurturing Leads With Email
Speed. Most lawyers would guess a lead starts to go from warm to cool after one day. The truth is that leads start to cool within 5 minutes after they submit a contact form. Have someone in your office who gets a notification immediately when a potential client submits a contact form, and have them follow-up with prospects as quickly as possible.
The Erosion Of Your Lead Pipeline
The success of any law firm depends on keeping your clients happy and having a solid stream of new clients rolling in every month.
To keep your pipeline full, you work with your marketing team to get your firm in front of more eyes and compel people to give you a call.
Unfortunately, you often see leads drop off after the initial consultation. This could be due to lack of budget, it not being a good fit, or because you aren’t following up effectively.
Are Your Email Follow Ups Being Left on ‘Read’?
If you follow up with lead calls and contact form fills via email, then you know how it feels to see tumbleweeds in your inbox. Low open rates, zero clicks, and zero responses are all indications that your follow up emails just aren’t doing the job.
You’re not alone in your struggles – most law firms and businesses in general see poor results from their email campaigns due to a few harsh facts.
A Few Facts About Email Marketing
- The majority of email campaigns are deleted or ignored. Only 16% of follow up emails ever see a response.
- Monthly newsletters are dead. “Cold” emails, list random newsletters, have an even lower response rate – 8.5%.
- Most business owners forget to segment their lists. Most businesses have a single email list composed of contacts from lead magnets, contact form fills, newsletter subscriptions, etc. This makes the email campaigns less specific and therefore less effective.
- Time of day does matter. Sending email during times of the day when users are most likely to be distracted – like early in the morning or on the weekends – results in lower open and response rates.
- You can’t just “publish and pray”. It often takes following up several times before your list is “warm” and primed for your sales pitch.
These facts make it hard for businesses to know how to generate great results from email marketing.
Fortunately, there is a way to combat all of these harsh realities by going about nurturing your law firm leads the right way – with effective email sequences.
Follow Up, Nurture, Convert with Effective Email Sequences
The best way to increase open rates, responses, and conversions through your email campaigns is by effectively nurturing your list.
By “nurturing” we mean sending subscribers information that is of interest to them and then priming them for your offer. That way, you aren’t preaching to a cold audience; they will know who you are, be familiar with your content, and be more receptive to your final pitch.
Get More Legal Clients from Your Email List
What better way to get new clients than to build relationships with people who have already reached out to you? It’s much easier to continue a conversation than it is to start a new one.
With email sequences, you move the conversation along naturally until they are ready to say, “Yes, let’s get started!”
7 Steps for Creating the Ultimate Lead Nurturing Email Sequence
Throw out the idea that you should send some generic “Thank you for subscribing!” or “Check out our website for more information” follow up emails. While you should be following up with everyone that contacts you, there’s a way to do it artfully and in a way that’s tailored to your list’s needs.
In this guide, we teach you how to build, nurture, and convert a strong email list from start to finish.
From creating the right lead magnet to writing email copy to testing results, you’ll have everything you need to start generating more clients for your law firm.
1. Conduct “Ideal Client” Market Research
Your primary goal in building your list is to attract the types of people that are most likely to eventually work with you. There’s no good reason to build your lists just for the numbers if it’s comprised of subscribers that aren’t really interested in your services.
This is one of the issues with only having a monthly newsletter – which we don’t recommend in most cases anyway. These types of subscribers may only want free tips or office updates, but have no real intention of working with you.
Create Client Profiles First
Not all clients will have the same needs, even within the same practice area. For example, if you’re a divorce attorney, you’ll want to create separate client profiles for people who need help with:
- child custody
- child support
If you’re a criminal defense attorney, you’ll want to create separate client profiles for the different types of criminal cases you handle:
- 2nd DUI
- drug crimes
- theft crimes
Steps for Conducting Market Research
To find the right kind of users, you should conduct market research around what your “ideal client” is like, what they want, and what they need.
Here’s how to do it:
- Determine who your target audience is. If you are a family law attorney, this could be parents with children or married couples. If you do employment law, it could be people between 25-45 who work in a corporate office. Try to be specific. If you cover several areas of law, you will have several target audiences.
- Create a survey. You can do this using Google Forms. On the survey, ask these questions:
- What are your top 3 struggles with [ legal problem ]?
- What solutions have you tried already to overcome these struggles?
- What have your issues been with these solutions?
- What is your #1 fear when it comes to [ legal problem ]?
- What is your #1 goal when it comes to overcoming [ legal problem ]?
- Send the survey. Send the survey to people in your target audience who have never worked with you before. Your goal is to get at least 10 responses.
- Analyze results. Identify any common responses and tally up the results. The most common responses are the ones you want to focus on.
Bringing it All Together
Once you have your top responses, you will have a solid idea of what your target audience(s) struggles with, wants, and needs.
With this information, you can move on to creating content and lead magnets (below) that draw in the right kind of subscribers.
2. Craft the Perfect Lead Magnet
The perfect lead magnet is a piece of content that speaks directly to your target audience’s top struggle and presents them with a solution for free. The catch is that in order to get this piece of content, they have to give you their email address.
This step is easy-peasy if your content is irresistible. What makes it irresistible is making it so value-packed that they think “I would be dumb to NOT download this”.
Some law firm lead magnet ideas are:
- Free video interview: “25 Things These Couples Wish They Knew Before Filing for a Divorce”
- Free ebook: “Ultimate Guide to Combatting Sexual Harassment in the Workplace”
- Free webinar: “Finding a Fair Parenting Plan – Q&A with Family Law Attorney”
You should have 1 lead magnet per audience that addresses the primary struggle of that audience (as identified in the survey). You are giving them a *limited* solution for free so that they become interested in reaching the full solution (your services) later on.
Not only does this increase your chances of getting new subscribers, but then you also know exactly where these subscribers came from and what they are interested in. This will help you segment your lists and create stronger email sequences.
How to Add the Lead Magnet to Your Website
Work with a developer or your marketing team to add the downloadable lead magnet to your website. The free content should only be accessible after a user has entered their email address. They can then be directed to a page with the content or have the content delivered to their inbox.
3. Segment Your Lists According To Their Legal Needs
Each lead magnet should correspond to its own list within your email management system. You should name each list according to where the subscribers came from (i.e. “Divorce ebook” or “Free parenting plan guide”) so that you can see at a glance what that list is interested in.
This allows you to then follow up with these lists with content that is relevant to them.
There’s no point in sending information about DUI to a user that downloaded your ebook about child custody laws. At the same time, if you send a bunch of different information to a single list, your main message will get lost in the noise.
In Step 5 we’ll cover what kind of content you should include in your email sequences.
4. Automate the Follow Up
Keep your name fresh in their mind by following up via email as soon as they submit their information. The quickest way to do this is to set up email automation.
Most email management systems (like MailChimp or HubSpot) allow you to set up email automation. This will send new subscribers a follow-up email as soon as they join your list. You can also automate your entire email sequence this way and schedule out your emails in advance.
5. Outline Your Email Sequence “Conversation”
One of the biggest mistakes you can make with your email sequences is just writing your emails “off the cuff”. If you don’t have a plan, your campaigns won’t be effective at nurturing your list.
Instead, you should map out every email you plan on sending to each list, from the first confirmation email to the final pitch.
Most email sequences will include 3-8 emails in total. Here is what that generally looks like:
- Confirmation/Welcome email. The first email that includes their free content OR confirmation that they received their free content through some other method.
- Follow-up email. Remind them of what they learned in the free content. Ex “Remember the [ topic ] ebook? In there you learned x, y, z. Here’s why that matters…” plus an intro into what to expect in the next email
- Address a false belief. Ex. “You may think that x is the way to solve [ legal problem ] but here’s why that doesn’t work… Next, I’ll show you a better solution…”. You can then prompt users to hit “Reply” and send you questions.
- Present a solution. Ex. “Last time we addressed why x hasn’t helped you with [ legal problem]. Here’s what to do instead…”. This is where you introduce your method/solution without pitching them yet.
- Social proof email. Describe a real story about someone who overcame that struggle using your solution, plus the results they got. Ex, “Here’s how one client, Jane, overcame here [ legal problem ] with [ solution you presented in last email ]”. You can link to your Testimonials page here as well.
- Call-to-action. This is where you urge them to contact you in order to overcome their problem. Ex. “Tired of doing x and not seeing results? You’ve seen how [ solution ] helped our clients overcome this struggle. Come see it for yourself. Schedule a consultation today”
This won’t be the exact sequence you use but it is a great place to start. The idea here is to have a plan and nurture subscribers through a natural conversation.
This way, you can move them from simply being aware of their problem → seeing the flaws in other solutions→ recognizing a better solution→ seeing the results for your other clients→ considering working with you to get results for themselves.
6. Write Conversion-Friendly Email Copy
It’s one thing to have an email sequence plan, it’s another to write the emails and put it into action.
Writing it Yourself
If you consider yourself to be a strong writer, this may not be an issue for you. You will simply stick to your sequence and craft emails that tell a story that is in line with what you would cover in a regular conversation with potential clients.
That conversation usually involves addressing their concerns, understanding what they have tried already, showing them that there’s a better way, supporting your position with proof, and them urging them to work with you to see results for themselves.
Some Best Practices for writing high-converting emails are:
- Write engaging subject lines to increase open rates
- Write as if you are speaking to an audience of 1, with language like “you/your” instead of “people/them”
- Always include a call-to-action to visit a blog post, respond with a question, or schedule a consultation. Be specific about what action they should take rather than saying “visit our Contact page”. There should ideally only be one call-to-action per email.
- Don’t worry about length. Write it as long as it needs to be in order to say what you want to say effectively.
Hiring a Professional Email Copywriter
On the other hand, if writing is not your strong suit, it may be worth it to invest in a professional email copywriter. This will be someone who knows how to write in a way that converts readers into clients.
An email copywriter can charge anywhere from $150 – $1500 per email. But, imagine if you get even 1 new client from a single email campaign. For a single paid consultation, you will have already made that $150 back. For the whole case, you could earn several thousand dollars (or more). This shows a very clear return on your investment.
If you choose to work with a copywriter, ask to hear about what tangible results they have gotten for their clients in terms of sales or new clients. Then, expect to pay them per email or per project, not by the word.
7. Test, Tweak, and Convert!
The final step is to track the success of your email sequences to confirm that they are paying off.
If you see in your email management analytics that users are not engaging with a certain email, then it may require a revision. If users are making it all the way through your campaign and are getting cold feet at the end, you may want to test a different offer or call to action.
Do What Works, Ditch What Doesn’t
The goal here is to do what works and ditch what doesn’t. Test different subject lines and continue using those with the best open rates. Also, see which calls to action users are responding to the most. If something isn’t working, try something else.
If you are new to email analytics, your marketing team should be able to help you. Really, if your email campaigns are paying off, you will notice an influx of new clients. The proof is in the pudding as well as the numbers!
Jump Into Email Marketing and Get More Clients for Your Law Firm
Creating an email sequence can be an exciting process once you know what works and start to see the results pouring in. While it can take some effort and time to get it right, it will surely pay off in terms of new clients.
What could you do with more clients for your law firm this month? Get started with lead nurturing email sequences today.
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