Smart Money, Dumb Money and Law Firm Marketing

If you only remember one piece of advice about law firm marketing, let it be this:

All good marketing is measurable.

When it comes to marketing, there are two types of investments you can make:

Smart Money Investments

These are marketing activities that are broken into steps that can easily be measured and adjusted. 

For example:

  • You are a Florida Intellectual Property Attorney who focuses on technology.
  • You receive a significant amount of referral business from corporate transactional attorneys. 
  • You purchase a list of all members of the business law section of the Florida Bar. 
  • You match that list of subscribers to Technology today magazine. 
  • You develop and execute a seven-step direct mail sequence to the attorneys who appear on both lists. Each step has a different message. 
  •  You measure the response rate at each step in the process, and you measure the ultimate return on investment from your mailing. (This helps you identify and refine your message). 
  • You can invest smart money in direct mail, email, events, internet marketing, some forms of print advertising, and many forms of electronic media.

Dumb Money

Most law firm marketing consists of spending dumb money.

This means money invested where a return is not precisely measurable.

Dave Lorenzo Legal Marketing for LawyersFor example:

  • Billboards
  • Bus stop benches
  • Car wraps
  • Brochures
  • Trade show booths
  • “Image or Brand” Advertising

These forms of marketing do not work for Law Firms because they require repetition and market saturation. But they are specifically “dumb” because you cannot measure the target audience, activity, and results with any specificity, and you cannot make any adjustments while your marketing campaign is in progress.

Why do lawyers invest dumb money in marketing?

There is no way to know for sure since it varies from law firm to law firm. But just guessing I’d have to say it is because they don’t know any other way.

That’s one of the reasons we are here. To help lawyers make smart decisions with their marketing.