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Diversity is critically important to law firm marketing. You must match your message to your target audience and your target audience may not necessarily be all of one race, gender or ethnicity (in fact it isn’t).
Your law firm marketing message must be delivered so it resonates with each audience member. Each of us has our own filter that we use to receive and disseminate the information. These filters develop as a result of our upbringing, our environment and the experiences each of us have faced, and continue to face on a day-to-day basis.
Let’s say you grew up in a single parent household and your mother was the guiding influence in your life. She made all the decisions related to household finance, your personal wellbeing and she provided you with nurturing, discipline and guidance throughout the years. Let’s say she did a great job and you and the rest of your family grew up strong and well adjusted.
It is reasonable to expect that your opinion of women would be that they are strong, capable leaders who can make decisions about anything in life.
If you were marketing to women, you would, most likely, position your message to a strong woman with experience in making difficult financial decisions.
Your law firm marketing messaging would be reflective of this experience.
The disconnect occurs when your message is targeted to a group of women who have not had an experience similar to that in your mother’s background.
If you position your marketing to the woman who has made all decisions, including those about money, for an entire lifetime, to a group of people who have never had to deal with the implications of such decisions, you will not be successful. The audience simply cannot relate to your message.
When we discuss diversity in a law firm marketing context, we are not only focusing on avoiding offending groups of people, we are focusing on the efficacy of the message- to-audience match.
The way to make certain your message resonates with the audience is to test it with a representative sampling of the target audience.
The internet offers an opportunity to test messages because of the ability to segment your audience by both demographic and psychographic qualities.
This research should not be limited to gender and race but also to age, geographic preference and industry experience.
Thinking about your audience is one of the basic tenants of law firm marketing. Understand how they make decisions and appreciating the differences that each of us brings to the decision-making process, will make you more successful in crafting marketing messages.