As technology continues to develop and change the way we do business, law firms are moving more of their marketing dollars online. A robust and functional website, electronic announcements, social media, client alerts, and even the right mix of banner advertising can be highly effective for many firms.
The migration to these “non-traditional” strategies has resulted in lower overall costs, improved targeting, and real-time analytics of exactly who is seeing a law firm’s message. The shift has become so pronounced that these electronic strategies are now the norm for many businesses, and print has become the true “non-traditional” means of marketing professional services.
It’s not difficult to find prognostications of doom for any medium in the face of a new and disruptive force. The advent of television was hailed as the demise of the motion picture industry, whose total domestic box office gross in 2013 set a new record of $13 billion. While Internet advertising continues to experience double-digit annual increases, total TV advertising revenue is still far ahead, totaling $66 billion in 2013. Last year even saw an uptick in print ad revenue for magazines.
It’s clear that consumers are consuming and marketers are marketing across more channels than ever before. So what are the advantages of using the “non-traditional” direct mail and print media to connect with existing and potential clients?
We see several reasons that print remains a viable strategy. Done well, there is something about print that offers a sense of legitimacy, both to the message and its sender. Print also provides tangibility and the tactile sensation of holding something. Recipients recognize that an additional level of time, effort and expense went into a well-designed printed communication.
But more importantly, print can cut through the clutter that has overtaken the email inbox. And with less and less traditional printed mail being sent, a printed brochure that hits your desk stands out as unique and worth reading. Multiple studies have shown that people who receive direct mail actually pay attention to what was sent. Research also shows that recipients spend more time reviewing printed materials when compared to other marketing tactics.
We see a similar dynamic when working with attorneys and journalists. People perceive that an article or interview appearing in print is somehow more desirable than media coverage that exists solely online. That perception exists despite the potentially broader reach, longer life, and greater ease of use provided by digital content. Again the tangibility of the printed word continues to add value.
That’s not to say that online marketing isn’t essential to any successful marketing plan because it certainly is. However, there will still be a sizable and important audience segment that responds to the printed page, brochures and direct mail pieces. It’s clear that the best way to market your firm will include a thoughtful and strategic mix of channels in order to ensure that the right message is delivered via the appropriate medium to promote your brand and develop new business.
If you’d like to learn more about creating distinctive printed materials for marketing your practice, we’re happy to discuss a range of effective options that will get you noticed. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.