4Ws for law firm marketing 1014W – Who, what, when and where. In our previous chapter about planning in Law Firm Marketing 101, we introduced the 4 “W”s and explained briefly what these stood for in the planning stage. Now we will focus on each of these aspects in their marketing role.

The “who” in this case is your target market. And to stop you in your tracks, anybody and everybody is not going to cut it here. We want to narrow our marketing efforts to a very focused or niche market, not only because it is easier to control, but more importantly, it allows us to market a solid definite cause or service to a known market segment.

When looking to find your target market, keep drilling further down – if you find you have gone too far and the market is too small to get results, back a level up. Also you can use the other market segments you find in future campaigns.

To zoom in on your “who”, ask the qualifying questions:

  • Age group?
  • Gender – Male or Female or Both?
  • Family Status – married, single, engaged, divorced, widow?
  • Location?
  • Occupation group?
  • Education level?
  • Income bracket?

For example – let us say we are looking at Trademarks and Patents and we wanted to start marketing to future clients, basically staying top of mind through awareness and staying in contact with them through newsletters, social media and blogs.
Who would be a good match for our market? Let’s use our qualifying questions to narrow it down:

  • Age Group – 21 to 26
  • Gender – Both
  • Family Status – N/A
  • Location – Durban
  • Occupation – Engineering Students
  • Education level – Final year
  • Income bracket – N/A

Right so in our scenario, we would be targeting final year students studying engineering at the universities in the Durban area. The idea behind this is that the engineers are more lightly to design something that they would want to patent at some stage.
You get the idea, use the qualifying questions above to narrow down your target market, so that you can focus your marketing message to this specific segment of the market.

What service or product are you going to market to these people? In our example we looked at Trademarks and Patents – what are we looking at offering these students? We would look at the registering of Patents, both South African and International if needed.

How long are we going to run this campaign? Even though you may want this to be an ever-green campaign, it is important to give each campaign a start and end date – also a major factor here will be the performance of the campaign – if it is not bringing you the desired result, you need to cut it. Don’t keep the campaign running on and on just because you think it has good awareness factors, measure the response, get into the market and ask people if they notice the marketing. On the contrary to this, don’t think you will get an accurate result if you don’t run a campaign for three months – the minimum campaign length is 3 months.

And this is not physical locations as in suburbs or towns, but which medium, which publication, which radio station – you want to make sure you get to these people.

In our example again, we would not publish an advert in the newspaper, as these guys don’t look at the newspaper – online maybe, but this marketing would have to be more instantaneous – social media, blogs, WhatsApp if you can use it. We would write articles on our Patent blog and invite the market to read it via social media. Or initiate a design competition for the final year students and sponsor the event, throw in a free Patent of the winning creation. Campus radio would also be a good place to market the campaign.

For our example, as I said we would blog and then pull people in via social media. To start we may advertise on Facebook to start the ball rolling – on the Facebook page we would offer a clothing voucher of R500 a week for the best question about the blog, that way encouraging interaction on the page. Through all of this we would be collecting Facebook likes which would make it easy to repeat market to this segment or simply stay in touch. The reason for using the blog and not just Facebook, is that the blog will be part of the website pulling in traffic and producing good backlink credibility for search engines.

There you have it, the way to target your marketing to a certain segment, which will dictate where and what you market.


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