Get a slice of this! A few years ago a major pizza chain made marketing news. Their idea wasn’t so radical but very, very effective. They sent personalized postcards to customers who had ordered home delivery featuring a photo of the last pizza that customer has ordered. So, vegetarians saw smoking hot veggie pizzas and meat eaters saw sausage and pepperoni slices.
You may not have the budget of a national pizzeria chain, but there are several techniques small law firms, even sole proprietors, can use to customize a direct mail campaign. Here are some personalization ideas.
Last Product Purchased
Like the pizza example above, customize your direct mail showing the last products your customer purchased. Several office supply catalogs use this technique. They wrap their catalogs with a reminder of the products the customer — presumably — is satisfied using. Reminding prospects about earlier purchases reinforces their relationship with your company.
Your client’s’ last “product” was his or her encounter with you. They didn’t hire you solely for your specific legal expertise and past case results. Your product was how your work made your client feel when you solved their problem: Relieved? Vindicated? Protected? Insured? Did you achieve positive results for their case, and did you make the process a positive experience for your client?
Use these feelings as the touchstone for your campaign. Emphasize your specialty and present your postcard or other mailer as something people can pass along. This will ensure the strongest chance for repeat business and word-of-mouth referrals.
What if you’re sending direct mail to a prospective client? Try a campaign that references a local sports team, university, or other element of hometown pride. This builds rapport. It can also subtly demonstrate solidarity if you are a local business.
For example, the Law Offices of Daniel R. Rosen has decades of experience in personal injury law, specifically in motor vehicle accident cases, and the firm operates across Colorado. Their core areas of practice and the locations they serve can be emphasized in a direct mail campaign to prospects.
Digital technology coupled with a flexible design allows you to merge your prospect’s first name into the direct mail image. For example, a prospect’s name could appear as clouds in the sky or sand on a beach.
Clearly, this technique has privacy concerns. However, the marketing lesson for law firms is this: the greater the personalization, the better the response. Consider ways to reference your prospect’s name more than once in the same piece behind the protective barrier of an envelope.
Drive Marketing in Atlanta, Georgia, is one company that will merge your contact database into the design. According to their site, these customizations offer significantly higher response rates (+36%), quicker response times (+34%), and higher overall revenue/profit (+32%).
PURLs (Personalized URLs)
Similarly, campaigns can include personalized webpage addresses, called a “purl.” This purl is customized with the prospect’s name and directs them to a personalized landing page on your website.
The advantages here are twofold. First, you can track exactly who logs into their purl. This helps segment your list further for future marketing efforts. Second, the landing page is an opportunity to immediately deliver enticements to the prospect, whether through video or other multimedia. This promotional page can include “Click here to download your free report” or “Click here to obtain your coupon,” etc. This can be very valuable to prospects who need more information before proceeding, which is often the case with law firm prospects.
Examples of customized direct mail designs combined with purls can be found at CEA Marketing Group, based in Clearwater, Florida.
Implement one or all of these tactics to build a personalized direct mail campaign. There are extra costs associated with personalization. However, personalization is the best bet against the “Dear Current Occupant” mail that ends up in the recycling bin.
Katie McCaskey is a freelance small business journalist for Vistaprint, a leading provider of custom address labels for law firms and other small businesses across the globe.