Call it what you will—a freebie, a trinket, or even a tchotchke—but that calendar, coffee mug, or refrigerator magnet with your law firm's name on it can deliver a big return. Those small items are sometimes forgotten, but depending on the person that small tchotchke can stick around for months or years. If your tchotchke happens to stick around for the long term, it's the equivalent of free advertising.

What is a Good Tchotchke?

Go to any website that supplies promotional item (BenGlassLaw uses GreatPromoItems), and you will find a wealth of options. You can send your customers branded beach balls, flashlights, cell phone wallets, and other. What works best for your law firm? First, think about your ideal clients. Are they affluent? Are they blue-collar workers? What type of jobs do they hold? This can be an easy question for estate planners or maritime lawyers, but it is a little more complex if your firm is personal injury. You want something that is useful and functional for your ideal clients.

Promo items are fairly common, so they should have a high perceived value. If they don't have a high perceived value (let's be honest, how many coffee mugs do you have in your home), then people will probably not want them. The key is finding something that people want. For example, pens may seem like a boring giveaway item, but if it is a quality pen people really like, you can bet potential clients will keep them for a long time (and maybe even ask for more!).

What Makes Promo Items Such an Effective Marketing Tool?

A free gift can 'wow' clients and inspire them to referr you.There are plenty of reasons why novelty companies do good business—a well-designed giveaway is virtually indestructible! Here are the benefits of distributing branded trinkets to both current and potential clients:

  • They're cheap. You can order a thousand customized magnetic memo boards for the equivalent of one dollar each—and just imagine the benefit if that board gets stuck permanently to a potential client's refrigerator.
  • They last a long time. If your trinket is reasonably well-made, it will last for years—and every time its owner (or one of his friends or relatives) catches a glimpse of it, that's free advertising for your firm.
  • They're visible. It's hard not to notice a brightly colored flashlight prominently emblazoned with your law firm's name. A well-designed tchotchke stands out from the clutter in the average person's home.

Getting Your Promo Item in the Hands of Your Clients

There are several ways to get your promo items out there. Great Legal Marketing lawyers have given them away at booths, in direct mail pieces, or shipped them to local groups to hand out. Volunteer your promo items to be bag-fillers at local fairs or other events. If your promo item stands out and people like it, they will remember your name.

Ben Glass
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Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.