Marketing in 2018 evolved at a breakneck pace. Marketers in today’s world have more tools and mediums at their disposal than even before. While commercials, billboards, and other traditional mediums are still viable, companies are looking at unique ways to increase the number of consumers they get their message in front of every year.
As a law firm trying to gain name recognition in your community, there are a number of lessons that can be gleaned from some of today’s wildest marketing endeavors. Below are the three that standout.
1. The King Asks Wendy to Prom
In May of 2018 a Burger King in Lynn, Massachusetts reached across the proverbial fast food aisle to extend an offer to its neighbor, Wendy’s. This local Burger King posted on its storefront sign a message reading “@Wendys Prom?”
Burger King’s twitter account posted a picture of the offer and Wendy’s account quickly replied accepting the offer. Outlets such as People magazine picked up this story nationally. The best part: this stunt cost Burger King almost nothing to create!
Law firms of all sizes need to think about advertising, but smaller operations need to do so with dollars and cents in mind. Hanging signage in front of your office with attention-grabbing messages is an easy way to use the office you own to standout. Even if you work in an office park that doesn’t allow you to display custom messages, break out that social media account and get your digital signage in front of your local community.
One of the countries most recognizable breakfast chains, IHOP, rolled out a new menu item in 2018: burgers. Realizing that they might struggle to attract foodies to their new burger line, IHOP made the bold decision to change their name to IHOb (International House of Burgers). USA Today, citing YouGov, a market research and data analytics firm, reported that IHOb did in fact increase their “word of mouth” score, but that consumers were not more likely to eat at IHOb as a result of the increased publicity.
The important lesson here is that marketing simply to generate conversation is not effective if it does not produce an increase in business. Any sort of promotional campaign that your law firm deploys should to be quantifiable. Tracking metrics like cost per lead, cost per case, etc., is vital to ensuring that the case leads your campaigns generate are cases at a cost effective rate.
3. Milka Chocolate
Stepping back to 2013, European chocolate maker Milka played a devious trick on French consumers with their “Last Bar” marketing campaign. This campaign sought to motivate Milka’s patrons to “Dare to Be Tender.” Milka took one square of chocolate out of every bar sold in France. The wrapper contained a code that the consumer could enter online in order to have the missing piece delivered to a friend of their choosing, or have the missing piece delivered to the original purchaser.
The idea of sharing chocolate is indeed thoughtful, but it’s also a great way to have your current consumers solicit new customers who might be unaware or indifferent towards a product. Similarly, your law firm is currently housing its best marketing tools – your current clients. Referrals are a cost effective way to turn current clients in to spokespeople for your firm. While the current client is most important, consider subtle ways to solicit referrals, such as including the age old “the greatest complement we can receive is a referral” in documents such as mass emails, mailers, and other materials that are sent out to your current or past clients.
January is a perfect time to reflect on how your firm did in the past year. If you find that business was slow, or you’re looking to take things up a notch, consider something outside of the box. It’s important to remember that not all marketing efforts have to be costly, so don’t let a limited budget stop your firm from trying something new in 2019.