One of the biggest challenges of marketing estate planning services is breaking through the routines of people's daily lives with relevant, compelling messages. No one likes to talk about death, disability or taxes. So, how do you reach people with important messages that motivate them to take action?
Here are some ideas you can use right now:
- Use news headlines to spark a conversation. You'll find lots of interesting articles in major news outlets like The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg's Financial, Kiplinger's etc.. The great thing about this strategy is you are actually tapping into someone else's (sophisticated, expensive) market research. You see, major media like these know which topics most interest their readers. Chances are good your clients are interested, too.
- What's happening in your neighborhood?
GRADUATIONS. You may be attending a few graduation ceremonies this month. Do you suppose, amid all the congratulations, families have thought about what new legal documents they might need now that their previously minor child has reached the age of majority? This is a good time to focus on the need for parents and their newly-minted "adult children" to consider durable powers of attorney and health care proxies. Most parents don't realize that they can no longer "automatically" make decisions for their adult children, including medical decisions should that child become incapacitated by serious illness or injury.
- Think outside the box about special events. We're always thinking about ways to meet prospective clients, and I'm sure you've done the traditional ones from senior fairs to financial fairs. Why not break the mold and consider hosting a booth at some of these seasonal events (and, if not a booth, how about a workshop? or at least a blog?):
BRIDAL FAIRS. Yes, it's wedding-season. First weddings, second weddings, third ... you get the drift! Young couples frequently receive pre-marital counseling, and perhaps part of that counseling should include a primer on basic legal self-defense for the newly married. From beneficiary designations to new health care proxies to pre-nuptial agreements, weddings require a plethora of estate planning adjustments.
BOAT, SPORTS & TRAVEL SHOWS. You know that summer time is "travel time" for many families. Consider providing a packet outlining the legal protections every family should have in place before heading out for all of that fun.
Buiilding campaigns around these themes makes your message relevant to prospective clients. Remember, a most of estate planning is about successfully navigating life's transitions. Your estate planning messages become compelling when they relate to these transitions.
At the same time, try not to over-think it. A "campaign" could be as simple as a blog post and some timely comments on social media. Or, gear up for workshops, special events and direct-mail. Whatever you do, remember to relate to your clients on their terms.