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Social Media Marketing

The Difference Between Marketing to Probate Clients and Estate Planning Clients for Your Firm

When you start marketing, you want to be sure you're targeting the right clients for your firm. Understanding the critical difference between marketing to probate clients and marketing to estate planning clients will ensure that you're able to more easily shape your marketing tactics and the services you're offering in a way that will work effectively for your business. 


When probate clients are ready to come through the door, they do it fast. They may do their research primarily online before jumping in with your firm for one simple reason: they have an immediate need, and they need you to fill it quickly. In many cases, probate clients may bring with them a big up-front workload, leaving you scrambling to take care of everything quickly. In the end, however, that workload can pay off with big rewards. Probate can easily run between 3% and 7% of the total estate value. Costs are heavy and may include items like appraisal costs, personal representative fees, court costs, surety bonds, legal fees, accounting fees, and more. 

Marketing to probate clients means being prepared to make your firm easy to find. This might include several strategies:

Local keyword optimization

When probate customers go looking for a law firm that specializes in estate planning in your area, will they be able to find you? Make sure to target surrounding areas as well as your immediate geographic area. 

Quality blogs and other content

This information will establish you as an expert in your field and ensure that clients are eager to bring their probate problems to your door.

Social media

Great reviews on social media or regular advice to your clients can help get your name in front of potential clients before they even realize that they need you. 

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Estate planning clients have the time to take their time as they consider whether or not they want to work with your firm. They don't come in as quickly, and they'll require more personal attention than many of your probate clients. Marketing for estate planning clients should include:

Personal contacts

You may need to connect with potential clients through phone or email several times throughout the lead nurturing process to make sure they have the information they need to choose your firm. As you develop a relationship with potential clients, you'll increase the odds that they'll choose your firm.

Quality content

Just like your probate clients want to be able to tell at a glance that you're a great source of information, your estate planning clients want to see content that is geared toward them. Ideally, this content should help walk them through the stages of the buyers' journey so that by the time they choose your firm to handle their estate planning needs, they're already satisfied customers.

Social media marketing

Create campaigns that are geared toward your estate planning clients. Provide regular snippets of information that will encourage them to call in for a longer conversation with you if needed. 

Local SEO

Estate planning clients are looking for local law firms to take care of their needs. If you want yours to show up at the top of their list, it's important to be optimized for SEO.

If you want to have a successful law firm that is invested in estate planning, you need to have both types of clients. Both probate clients and estate planning clients will help to grow your business--and no one understands the need for estate planning services quite as fully as someone who has just dealt with the headache of probate and everything it means. By effectively nurturing both types of clients, you can improve your business and make it easier to meet your long-term financial and business goals. Need help with your marketing tactics? Contact us today to learn how we can help.

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About the Author

Jake Fisher

Jake Fisher is partner at Bridges Strategies. He specializes in inbound marketing, B2B sales and multicultural communication. He enjoys good food and bad golf. You can follow him on Twitter at @jakefisher