By Adam Warren of The Sentinel Group®, Temecula, CA.
On the heels of the recent AAJ conference, as I reflect back on many of the conversations we had related to this topic, I thought it made sense to share.
If you are deep into mass tort marketing or other forms of legal marketing such as single-event cases, there is no doubt that you have either tried or have been pitched on performance-driven media. There is a special attraction for law firms to this type of business that creates potential plaintiffs from phone calls on a fixed rate per call basis.
Yet, in this instance, you are not paying for the media spots that clear, but rather the phone calls you receive that reach the billable formula. Performance exists within some of these familiar metrics ranging from cost per call, cost per acquisition, cost per lead and so on.
Law firms and marketing firms are typically speaking two different languages when it comes to performance marketing techniques and law firm case acquisition ambitions. Why does a law firm care about the cost per call? Well, truth is they don’t! Further clarifying, they do not care about the cost per call as long as their cost per packet goals are met.
However, it is a conversation that the marketing firm must have in order to find an agreeable financial arrangement with media to secure ad inventory across various media inclusive of TV, radio, print or digital. What do the law firms care about? They care about their cost per packet out!
How do we make sense of these conversations when they collide? It is important that the marketing firm you choose understands the divide between packet- and call-based economics and how the come together when using the right firm. Whether you are talking about IVC, Xarelto, talcum powder, Nexium or single event catastrophic injury, the conversation that needs to take place is how you get to the packet cost while satisfying the media with the cost per call or other common media metrics. Sounds simple? Well, it can be.
An experienced marketing firm should have the technology to monitor call occurrences and tracking by 800 number. Information that can be derived from call occurrences includes but is not limited to the caller ANI (auto number identifier), zip code, media origin, intake quality control, listening features and so on. If technology is not at the core of the campaign, this marriage is close to impossible to achieve.
Firms should also understand how pricing can fluctuate and ways in which campaign ROI can be maximized to the media and the law firm client. If you wish to have an ongoing and scalable campaign, you must understand how to create wins on both sides of this coin. Data is an ever-moving target and it is imperative that data drives decisions.
If your marketing firm is not data-centric, how will they know what media bolsters the packet cost objectives vs. plummeting it? Does your marketing firm offer quality control? How will the marketing firm identify poor performing media or 800 numbers or protect you from spam and wrong dials? Not knowing how to spot potentially damaging campaign data that can quickly tank your packet costs makes it impossible for the law firm and marketing firm to come together on the mutual objective of marrying the performance economics with the packet economics.
Buyer beware! There are a lot of false guarantees and impossible promises out there in case acquisition. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! Make sure your firm of choice not only understands the case and your objectives but also has the means to execute from data to distribution to achieve your objectives and merge the economics of different languages to proceed in a decisive and informed manner.