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Email Marketing for Law Firms: 15 Tips for Writing Compelling Email Copy

by Noreen Fishman • August 31st, 2022 • Content Marketing | Blog

email marketing for law firmsEmail marketing technology has expanded significantly over the past few years. Between enhanced marketing automation and segmentation functionalities, there are plenty of ways to ramp up email marketing for law firms. 

This is great, but sometimes you need to get back to the basics. Thoughtful, well-written copy can go just as far toward helping your email efforts and growing your database. 

Here, we’ll cover ten copywriting tips to help legal marketers write more compelling email copy for better open and click-through rates.

The Importance of Email Marketing for Law Firms

Many legal marketers think email is a thing of the past. After all, don’t we now have things like social media and PPC ads to help us target our audience? But, despite being an older tactic, email remains one of the top tactics, because…

  • There are 4 billion daily email users
  • 77% of email marketers have seen an increase in engagement in the last 12 months
  • 37% of brands are increasing their email budget

Tips for Writing Compelling Email Subject Lines

Your email’s very first impression, you can’t expect to entice people into opening your email with a bland subject line

1. Use Actionable Language

Aim for verbiage that gives the reader something to do. Some good examples are “Take”, “Download”, “Complete”, etc. You can also convey the same urgency even without such direct verbs – consider something like “Don’t miss your year-end paperwork deadlines”. 

2. Personalize

According to the DMA (Direct Marketing Association), segmented and targeted emails generated 58% of all revenue for the marketers surveyed, while 36% of revenues were driven by emails sent to specific targets. Before you send an email, consider how you might make the subject line more personal (aside from just inserting a [Name] which people are no longer impressed by). Break down your emails – and their corresponding subject lines – into specific practice and interest areas, and send the right emails to the interested contacts. 

3. Prioritize Clarity Over Cleverness

First and foremost, all of your law firm’s marketing email subject lines should be clear. It won’t matter how witty it is if no one really grasps the point. Only when you’ve developed a clear and concise subject line should you go back and try to insert humor or other “catchy” components. 

4. Make Sure Your Subject Line and Email Copy Align

Just like a CTA and the corresponding landing page need to align, so do your email and subject lines. If you’ve created a very clear subject line as we suggested above, people will have a strong idea about what they’re getting when they open the email. Make sure the email provides what was promised in your subject line or you will quickly increase your unsubscribes.

5. Make It Short and Sweet

Most subject lines cut off around 55 characters. So, if your message isn’t clearly conveyed before that cut-off, then most people won’t understand what your email is about and be compelled to open it. Try writing clearly and concisely, but never delete punctuation or shorten important words for the sake of meeting the limit. 

email marketing for law firms

Tips for Writing the Email Itself

The goal of your email is to get people clicking. Fortunately, there are several components in the body copy that you can tweak in order to get more click-throughs. 

6. Prove Relevancy in the First Line

Just like with your subject line, you want to immediately establish why someone should be interested in the topic and hearing about it from you. Many users won’t keep reading unless you grab their attention in the first line. Try piquing their interest with a question they’ve probably already asked themselves, a staggering statistic, or a bold claim.

7. Follow Proper Copywriting Structure

Your emails should go as follows,

  1. Pique their interest on the topic you’re discussing (see #6 for tips)
  2. Identify your audience’s pain points in relation to this topic
  3. Offer a solution to their problem 
  4. Follow up with a clear CTA that leads them to take the action you want

email marketing for law firms

8. Use Second Person

That means speaking directly to someone, by using pronouns such as “you” and “yours”. This orients the email toward the recipient, and not the sender. Naturally, sometimes you will need to use language like “we” and “ours” while referring to the firm – but perform a count of such pronouns before sending your email. You should see several more instances of referring to the receiver (“you”) than you do to your firm (“we”).

9. Write Naturally

Email copy doesn’t necessitate a super formal tone. And actually, users really prefer hearing from someone who thinks and talks like them. Try reading your copy out loud and see if the words naturally roll off the tongue. Are there any awkward pauses? Do any of the words feel out of place for a casual conversation? Avoid using legalise or confusing language and just stick to the basics.

10. People Care About Benefits, Not Just Features

It’s not enough to explain what you’re offering or why you are worth working with. You need to show them the benefits that they might experience. For example, don’t just explain the aspects of family law that you work in – offer tangible examples to illustrate how your firm has helped families or positive outcomes in cases involving a family law attorney.

11. Keep it Short and Sweet

You’ll likely see this point on most lists of copywriting tips. Don’t try to share the whole story via email – just focus on enticing people to learn more or take a certain action. Summarize your main points and what the reader will get in the most compelling (and brief) way that you can, and then share clear next steps about what readers should do to learn more. Remember to focus on one primary call to action rather than dividing the reader’s attention. 

12. Share Some Personality

Think about the emails you remember: they probably delighted you in some way, right? Showing that there’s a person behind the email is a good way to build relationships. Use language that humanizes your brand – in other words, don’t be afraid to speak in the way that humans actually talk to each other. 

13. Optimize Your Call to Action (CTA)

First of all, it shouldn’t be hard to find. Compelling CTAs have a great design as well as great copy. Make sure your CTA is easy to identify by using components like a button. Secondly, the language should be clear, succinct, and action-oriented. In one study, HubSpot found that plain text emails actually performed better than HTML emails – but it’s important to include a CTA within the text. We recommend using hyperlinked text directly in the copy. 

Related: A 15-Point Email Marketing Checklist for Law Firms

14. Use Bullet Points When Necessary

Nowadays, online readers want everything to be skimmable. If you’re trying to quickly and clearly convey the value in your offer, try listing the added benefits in bullet points for users to easily skim.

15. Include a Personal Conclusion

People don’t want to think that they’re receiving an email from a bot or someone who doesn’t care about their time. Always end your emails with a brief message, salutation, and the contact info and name of the sender. Think about the best practices you use when ending emails in your personal life and apply those here. Something as simple as a sign-off reading ‘Have a great summer! All the Best, {Sender’s Name}’ can go a long way.

Takeaway:

Email is still a very powerful tool for law firms, but not everyone is comfortable writing them. Hopefully, these tactics will give you the confidence to create emails that people will actually read. If you need help developing an integrated email marketing strategy that generates leads and acquires new clients, we are here to help! Contact us today.

This post has been edited and republished from Jan. 7, 2021.

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