The Most Important Thing You Can Do Today to Grow Your Law Firm: List Building

Do you know why building a list is so important? People are wired to respond to relationships. As an individual attorney or collectively as a legal team, you can only maintain so many of those relationships on your own. But the more relationships you can maintain, the more clients you’ll inevitably have.

This is where building and marketing to a list comes in. Emailing your list regularly with interesting educational content created for their benefit helps you maintain relationships with a much larger circle. It gives you the ability to leverage your personality or that of your firm to an exponentially larger group.

This larger group will consider you to be the attorney that they know. When they have a need or someone asks them who they should hire, your name will be the first to come to mind. And if you’ve been sending them information that’s actually useful, they’ll feel confident about hiring or recommending you.

Don’t put list building off another day! Here’s an easy way to start: 

  1. Export your email contacts. Outlook and other e-mail providers give you the ability to export your contacts into a Comma Separated Values file, or CSV file, which you can open up in Excel.
  2. Next, export your past clients from your case management software. How you do this is going to be dependent on what software you use for case management, but nearly all of them allow you to export your data, again, into a CSV file.
  3. Then, open up both files in Excel and rearrange the columns until they line up with each other. You will likely have to add or remove columns that were present in one platform but not the other. Ideally, you want to sort through the list carefully at the beginning so you only reach out to people whom you have worked with or been in contact with over the past 12 months.

There are a few things to keep in mind as you build your list. Best practices for email dictate that new contacts opt-in or even double-opt in to receive e-mails, but there’s an exception to that rule if you’re mailing people you’ve worked with directly or had a business interaction with in the past 12 months.

Once you’ve gone through your list, removed old contacts, and kept only those who you would potentially want to reach out to, you can save your file, again as a CSV. This format allows you to then import your list into any number of systems that you can use to reach out to your list with regular email communications.

If regularly managing your contacts list and writing e-mails to separate groups of people every week sounds like a lot of work, we have a solution for you.

LaFleur Legal Marketing has already created hundreds of emails for lawyers – emails that contain great content, that have been tested, and that people have found informative and helpful (we know, because we ask and track responses). We have outstanding open and click-through rates as well as minimal unsubscribes.

We have also built systems that allow you to import and send e-mails to your list immediately or on a schedule and then track exactly who opens your emails, who clicks through, and who unsubscribes – on an individual basis. You can learn the number of opens, click-throughs, unsubscribes, etc. as well as which users are most engaged, what their interests are, or if they want to hear from you less often.

And that’s just the beginning.

You can have us manage everything: lead generation, content creation, list management, and list building – or you can manage as much of it as you like and just get some help from us along the way. Either way, the content we create for you remains yours to use, even if you choose to stop working with us. The list also remains yours, whether we manage it or you do.

To learn more about what we have to offer, call us at 888-222-1512 or email us at [email protected] – we’ll respond right away.


Chip Lafleur

Chip is an entrepreneur, organizational leader, and marketing expert who combines experience in web development, marketing tactics, strategy, and team leadership with a strong ability to harness talent and hone complex concepts into concrete deliverables.