This is one in a series of marketing articles that will explain
e-marketing in layman’s terms. This
information is provided to help you modify your online presence to get
your practice noticed.
Keeping Your Practice in the
Front of Everyone's Mind
Studies show that you need to touch people at
least 7 times a year for them to remember you. Given the busy
schedules of most mediators that becomes a very difficult task. If
you were using traditional marketing techniques you'd be trying to
schedule breakfast, lunch or coffee with as many potential clients and
referrers as possible. You'd be on the phone trying to touch base
every time you had a spare moment. However, if you want to find time
to mediate, even the most disciplined marketer can only reach about 200
people each month using these traditional techniques. Assuming you
really do need to touch someone 7 times in order to be remembered, then
that means you can only cycle about 300 people annually, which probably
isn't enough to keep your calendar full.
to recommend using a modern version of an old tool to stay in front of people on a regular
basis and to provide them something of value that they will associate with
you...a monthly or bi-monthly newsletter. In the past many of you
have snail-mailed hard copy newsletters or even glossy magazines to lists
of prospective referrers. However, sending out hard copy material
has become prohibitively expensive and often isn't read because the
recipients are so overwhelmed by the volume of content that they receive.
of sending out hard copy materials, why not start sending an e-newsletter
? You probably get these on a regular basis from other sources such
as alumni groups, your local Bar, or maybe even your neighborhood
association. If crafted correctly, they're easy to read, contain at
least 1 piece of information of value to each reader, offer you feedback
on what interests your readers, and remind people on a regular basis that
you're out there offering mediation services.
What do you need to do in
order to publish a successful newsletter ? Here are some of the
Sign up for a transmittal service such as Constant Contact or iContact.
These services are inexpensive and they are bonded mailers, which means
they will normally get past the SPAM filters. They also offer
newsletter templates so even the novice can create an ongoing
newsletter. If possible try to create a newsletter that mirrors
the look and feel of your website - it's a way to extend your brand
Build a list of
e-mail addresses for prospective clients and referrers. Remember,
people don't like getting unsolicited mail, so you might choose to send
them an introductory e-mail that offers them the opportunity to be
removed from your list.
People won't read your
newsletter more than once if it includes lengthy articles that they
need to scroll through to get to the next article to see if there is
something of interest. Instead of publishing each article in its
entirety in the newsletter, just include an evocative image, 2-3 line
teaser, and a button that will take them to the full article if it is
a topic that interests them. This technique will give you the
added benefit of being able to track what articles interest the
readers so you can adjust your future content.
You may be a wonderful
writer but don't include more than one article written by yourself in
each newsletter. Scour the media for articles of interest and
link to them. Not enough time to scour the media ? Use
this Facebook group that publishes links for 3-6 articles about
mediation every day specifically for mediators to use for this
Georgia Mediators Network
Quantity does not
necessarily equate to quality. Try to put 4-6 articles in each
newsletter. This will keep your newsletter short enough that
people will read all of it yet it will be long enough that it will
give the perception that it is of value to the reader. The
latter will ensure that people read it each month when it comes out.
Once you start publishing
a newsletter make sure you include a signup for it on your website.
If you use Constant Contact they'll give you the computer code to do
that. Also, each time you publish an issue include it in an
archive on your site and publish a link to it in your social media
stream so the most people possible view it each month.
Make sure your name is
at the FRONT of the subject line for your mailer. Even if people
don't take the time to read the newsletter each month, they'll be
reminded that you are out there mediating and that's the real purpose
of this vehicle.
your newsletter go out ? This can be a tricky question because you
want your newsletter to stand out and be read. For that reason you
should avoid sending it on a Monday or a Friday and you should also avoid
times of the month that are particularly busy (1st and 15th typically).
As Wednesdays are the most popular days to send newsletters, try to avoid
those too. That leaves you with Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Once you've selected the day, then you need to select the time. To
stand out you shouldn't be in the pile of early morning mail and you
shouldn't arrive towards the end of the day when readers are trying to
get their work finished so they can go home. The best times of day
for maximum readership currently seem to be 10:30AM and around mid-day so
people will have your mailer in their box when they come back from lunch.
know how and when it's time to publish ! Your newsletter will be the
most successful if you pick a date and stick to it each month. Once
people get used to seeing your newsletter they need to see it at the same
time each month. Remember the aim of this marketing vehicle is to
remind them that you are out there and that you want their mediation
Creating your first newsletter
can be daunting for some of you.
Please don’t hesitate to
e-mail your questions, and we’ll get answers back to you as soon as
Coming next month: Mobile Media...What is it and how does it
affect your marketing efforts ?
Michele Gibson is a Georgia-registered neutral and a certified
emerging media consultant. She is the president of Digital Smart
Tool, LLC – an e-marketing firm offering website design, SEO,
electronic newsletters, social media coaching, and marketing training
Phone: 404-592-3367 E-mail: