Mail 9 letters - in 9 weeks - and attract 9 new clients

friday, 18 september of 2009

Mail 9 letters--in 9 weeks--and attract 9 new clients

by Trey Ryder*

(*I don't know if you'll really get nine new clients. You might get even more.)

You may be a terrific lawyer -- but without adequate marketing, you may be the best-kept secret in town. With little more than a word processor and postage stamps, you can go a long way in educating people about who you are and what you do.

Here is a series of nine letters you can send to different audiences that will help attract new clients. I've included suggestions on content:

WEEK #1: Letter to Referral Sources. Send a thank you letter to everyone who has referred a client in the past year. This includes lawyers, professional colleagues, friends and former clients. No "Dear-Friend-Thank-You" form letters. Everyone gets a signed original. In the same letter, bring readers up to date on the type of law you currently practice. List the specific services you offer, in terms your referrers understand. Discuss two or three recent successes. Insert a short one-paragraph bio. Offer to help your readers and their friends and colleagues. Make sure your referrers know that you welcome referrals. Offer to provide references on request. And invite readers to call or e-mail you with questions or comments -- to discuss a legal matter -- or to schedule an appointment.

WEEK #2: Letter to Former Clients. Send a letter to former clients. Explain the type of law you currently practice. List the specific services you offer, in terms your former clients understand. Discuss two or three recent successes. Insert a short one-paragraph bio. Offer to help former clients and their friends and colleagues. Make sure your referrers know that you welcome referrals. Offer to provide references on request. And invite readers to call or e-mail you with questions or comments -- to discuss a legal matter -- or to schedule an appointment.

WEEK #3: Letter to Prospective Clients. Send a letter to prospective clients who are already on your mailing list. Explain the type of law you currently practice. List specific services you offer, in terms your prospects understand. Discuss two or three recent successes Insert a short one-paragraph bio. Offer to help prospects and their friends and colleagues. Offer to provide references on request And invite readers to call or e-mail you with questions or comments -- to discuss a legal matter -- or to schedule an appointment.

WEEK #4: Letter to Prospective Clients. Send a letter to prospective clients you'd like to serve -- often corporations or general counsel -- who are not already on your mailing list. Introduce yourself. Explain the type of law you practice. List specific services you offer. Discuss two or three recent successes for clients like these companies. Insert a short biography. Offer to provide references on request. Offer to present an in-house roundtable for executives. Invite executives to call or e-mail with questions or comments -- or to set up an appointment.

WEEK #5: Letter to Potential Referral Lawyers. Send a letter to prospective referring lawyers. Explain the type of law you currently practice. List the specific services you offer. Discuss two or three recent successes. Give them a short bio. Invite their referrals. Offer to pay a referral fee, if appropriate. Offer to return referrals, if appropriate. Offer to provide references on request. Invite them to call or e-mail with any questions or comments.

WEEK #6: Letter to Professional Colleagues. Send a letter to professional colleagues other than lawyers. Explain the type of law you currently practice. List the specific services you offer. Discuss two or three recent successes. Give them a short one-paragraph bio. Invite their referrals. Offer to return referrals, if appropriate. Offer to provide references on request. Invite them to call or e-mail with any questions or comments.

WEEK #7: Letter to Assignment Editors. Send a letter to assignment editors at local television stations. Suggest a topic that you think would appeal to the station's viewers. Reinforce why you believe your topic would interest many people. Explain the types of information you can offer during your interview. Itemize specific subjects you can discuss. Provide a short bio that reinforces your qualifications to provide this information. Give the assignment editor the name of the educational handout you will send to all viewers who call your office. Invite the assignment editor to call you. And thank the assignment editor for considering your idea.

WEEK #8: Letter to Talk Show Producers. Send a letter to producers of local radio talk shows. Suggest a topic that you think would appeal to the listening audience. Reinforce why you believe your topic would interest many people. Explain the types of information you can offer during your interview. Itemize specific subjects you can discuss. Provide a short bio that reinforces your qualifications to provide this information. Give the producer the name of the educational handout you will send to all listeners who call your office. Invite the producer to call you. And thank the producer for considering your idea.

WEEK #9: Letter to Newspaper Editors. Send a letter to editors who cover the newspaper sections in which you want to appear. Suggest a topic that you think would interest the newspaper's readers. Reinforce why you believe your topic would interest many people. Explain the types of information you can provide during your interview. Itemize specific subjects you can discuss. Provide a short bio that reinforces your qualifications to provide this information. Give the editor the name of the educational handout you will send to all readers who call your office. Invite the editor to call you. And thank the editor for considering your idea.

Don't stop there. I'm sure you can think of others to whom you can send letters that will attract new clients. Best of all, you can do all this without spending one dime on advertising.

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© Trey Ryder

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