wooden gavel and books on wooden table,on brown backgroundWhen done well, your law firm’s newsletter can be a valuable resource for clients and potential clients. However, proper planning is necessary to ensure that the newsletter is truly serving its purpose. If you’re a lawyer looking to stay in touch with clients more consistently, here’s what you should know about your newsletter:

Focus on the visuals

Content matters, but the visuals are also important when you’re sending out a newsletter. If recipients are getting e-mails with strange characters thrown in, pixelated graphics, or text that’s almost too tiny to read, don’t be surprised when the newsletter ends up going right to their trash folder. To prevent this from happening, spend some time on the aesthetics of the document. If this isn’t something you’re comfortable doing, seek out the help of a graphic designer who can give the e-mail a professional look.

Know how often you want to communicate

While you don’t want to send too many e-mail newsletters and overwhelm your clients, you do want to make sure that your correspondence is consistent. If you send out a great e-mail, then do nothing for another four months, your clients never know what to expect from you. Start by sending a newsletter monthly or every other month, depending on what feels manageable. Regardless of frequency, make sure that each e-mail has strong content and a reason why someone would want to open it.

Avoid long paragraphs

A reader should be able to open your newsletter, skim it, and quickly get information. This means you want short paragraphs, bulleted lists, and other content that’s easy to read. No one wants to sit and sort through paragraph after paragraph.

Tell your clients how to connect

Ideally your newsletter will leave the reader looking to get in touch with your law firm. Make it easy for them to do so by including links to your social media and website directly in the e-mail. You should also include your office’s telephone number and hours. Providing many different options for a person hoping to connect increases the chances that they will.

Remind people who you are

Each newsletter should include a short reminder about what your law firm is all about. This can come directly from the “About” page of your site, but should be abbreviated. Remind readers what services you offer, where your specialty lies, and where you’re located.

Lastly, add in some incentive to each newsletter that encourages the reader to make contact. Will they get a free consultation if they mention the newsletter? If they submit a question, could they see it answered in a future e-mail? You want to give someone reason to continue reading, and encourage them to share your materials with friends, family members, and co-workers. The best way to do this is by offering a free service, even a small one, in addition to real, valuable content.