With email marketing, you must use email marketing software.
Why Use Software vs. Sending From My Regular Email?
You might be thinking, “I can save $ per month by just sending out emails from my regular email account, so why should I use software that just sends out emails for me?” I’ve gotten this question a lot, so I feel compelled to address it. If you send marketing emails from your regular email account, you are making a huge mistake.
If people report your emails as spam (which some inevitably will), your regular work email account can get blacklisted. Then, your regular everyday emails – from client communications to invoices to messages to opposing parties – will automatically go to spam folders. I’ve seen it happen, and the fallout is terrible. People don’t receive important emails. Deadlines can be missed. And, your firm must then figure out how to get a new email account and change addresses on filings, business cards, websites, etc.
Also, beyond that, from a logistical perspective, regular email accounts are not built for mass emailing. Many email clients limit the amount of emails you can send at once as well as in a 24-hour period. Some limit the amount of people you can message simultaneously.
Growing your email list is also a challenge with a regular email account. Adding new subscribers or removing people who don’t want to get your emails is going to be a challenge without software.
Let’s not forget about tracking and reporting. In using your regular email account, you’ll have no idea if your campaigns are successful. With regular email accounts you cannot:
- Get reports like open rates and reply rates
- Schedule email blasts
- Easily style good-looking newsletters
- Create automated email sequences
And from a legal perspective, using your regular email account is majorly problematic. Under the CAN-SPAM Act, there has to be a way for your recipients to unsubscribe from your email messages. Every email marketing platform has an unsubscribe button on each email. With a regular email blast from your work email account, that’s not really possible.
Moreover, email software does not have to be expensive. Entry-level options can be free for some services to as little as $9 per month.
So, there really is no justifiable reason to not use email marketing software.
Types of Email Marketing Software for Lawyers
Some email marketing software can simply send out emails to your list, and that may be all you need. Other email marketing apps have built-in CRM software, track your website visitors, have landing page templates, and essentially be a dashboard for the entirety of your law firm’s online presence. That can be overkill if you don’t need it though.
To simplify things, I like to break down email software into three categories: standard, advanced, and marketing automation.
Standard Email Marketing Software
At the core of it, email marketing software needs to:
- Maintain lists of contacts
- Have an email builder with templates you can work with
- Send emails to your audience
- Send basic automated emails
- Track the results
The standard category of email marketing software does just that. And for most law firms, that can be all you need.
Commonly used apps that I would put in this category include software like Mailchimp, AWeber, Constant Contact, and Campaign Monitor. Each of these apps has an easy-to-use interface to help you create emails, schedule them to send to your subscribers, and show you the opens and clicks on the emails.