What’s your firm’s personality? First impressions matter, so make sure you express your style and individuality clearly and consistently. Don’t be a little bit country on your website, then a little bit rock-n-roll on social media. Show clients who you are, what you represent and sprinkle it throughout everything you do. Your firm has her very own personality. And your firm’s personality certainly isn’t set in stone and beyond your control. In fact, it’s completely up to you how you present your firm personality to your prospects and clients.
Start by defining the exact experience you want to give your client. In other words, what’s the personality behind your firm?
Your firm can be:
- Cutting Edge
For example, Sports Clips does a great job of maintaining their sporty character. When you purchase the MVP experience, the stylists are dressed in referee shirts and customers watch a sports game during their haircut.
Wild Fire restaurants bring you into a different decade. The lighting and music are reminiscent of a 40′s jazz club and each room is renamed after a 40′s celebrity.
Finally, the Apple store is all about sleekness including glass, straight lines, and brushed metal. It’s a bit like stepping into the future.
Although these aren’t small businesses, they’ve each created solid business identities that the small business owner or law firm can replicate.
Once you decide on your firm’s personality, you want to make it painfully obvious to everyone who comes in contact with you.
This is your firm’s identity – the visual elements of your firm that identify your brand.
This includes marketing materials such as your:
- Business cards
- Online newsletter
- Email software
Many firms mistakenly believe that creating a firm identity needs to be an incredibly costly endeavor.
However, it’s entirely possible to create a strong identity for FREE.
Here are a few free shoestring marketing tools and platforms to get you started on building your firm’s identity.
Believe it or not, you don’t need to hire a graphic designer.
However, if you do want to hire, visit Fiverr.com to search for inexpensive, high-quality graphic designers.
Many will create a quality logo for under $5.
But, there are also websites that allow you to design and download a free business logo in exchange for signing up for a free account.
On the homepage choose a category to describe your small business.
Next, select an icon for your logo.
Edit the logo by:
- Adding text
- Adding an outline
- Adding effects to the logo
- Changing the color
Download your logo.
On the homepage, type your logo title and click on Create Logo Now.
Select an icon and adjust the color.
Edit your logo by:
- Adding clipart
- Removing, rotating, or moving parts of the icon
- Changing color
Save your logo.
On the homepage, click on Try It Now.
Choose between a:
- Symbol based icon
- Letter based icon
- Abstract icon
Edit your logo by:
- Changing the color
- Moving the icon
- Adding text
Once you create a free account, you can save your logo for future use.
Business cards are essential for giving your firm a professional presence.
When designing your business cards, make sure to incorporate your firm name, tagline, logo, business colors, and contact information.
Vistaprint allows you to design and print 250 cards for free.
Go to the homepage and place your cursor on All Products.
Next, select Business Cards > Free Business Cards.
Select a design from the top of the screen and fill in your information in the left-hand side bar.
Click Next, skip past all the recommended pages, and place your order.
Business Card Maker
Another option is to choose a design from the templates VistaPrint’s Business Card Maker homepage.
Fill in your information on the virtual card.
Choose Download Files below the virtual card.
If you download the card as a picture, you can share it on social media accounts, your blog, or your website.
If you download the file, you’ll be able to take the PDF to a local printer, or print the cards yourself.
Printing at home
To print professional looking business cards at home, print on high-quality card stock paper.
Card stock paper is available at Staples or Office Depot at inexpensive prices.
Lucid Press is a powerful, online platform that allows you to create professional newsletters for your small business.
Begin by creating a free account to access all of the available features.
Next, create a new document. You can either start from scratch with a blank template, or you can work from an existing template.
Fill your newsletter with as many pages as you like and use the add text buttons to add your own information.
You can also change the color scheme, add images, or videos.
Once you create your newsletter, send it out to your email list, post it to your social media accounts, or post it on your website.
Email marketing software
Email marketing is one of the most cost-effective marketing platforms for small business owners.
A wonderful component of email marketing is that you can personalize it.
Choose the color scheme, font, and graphics to infuse your emails with your small business identity.
MailChimp is an email service that allows you to send 12,000 emails/month to up to 2,000 subscribers completely free.
Here are a few tips on how to use MailChimp effectively for your own small firm.
Don’t leave the details of your firm identity up to chance.
Instead, decide on the overall experience that you want to give your prospects and infuse that personality into your marketing materials.
As you can see, it’s entirely possible to accomplish this on a shoestring marketing budget.
What are other low-cost marketing platforms that you have used to build your firm identity?