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MARKETING TO ATTORNEYS

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P.Johnson

Thread Starter
Sophomore Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2002
I'm considering sending out a marketing letter to all area attorneys that says I do estate and divorce appraisals. Any suggestions? Does it do any good to market to accountants or bank trust departments? I'm done working with LO's that need someone to hit their number no matter what.
 
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Unfortunately many attorneys are no different than the lenders. If you lucky to find a few honest ones, good for it. I have had them refuse to pay because specific number wasn't hit (now all are CODs), and they have also wanted structural problems covered up etc. They are also in bed with the local big shot realtors and lenders (feeding them estates and handling REO and foreclosures). I have a handful that are honest, but not enough to replace LO's. It's six of one and half a dozen of another. Good luck.
 

Doug in NC

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
Good luck! I have done a couple of marketing mailings to attorneys. I also followed up by phone on many of them, with zero return (out of over 100 letters and pamphlets). Apparently, they went right in the trash.

The attorneys in my area doing this type of work appear to have a corner on the market, so the number of estate and divorce attorneys getting the volume of the work is very limited. Try to find out who the largest firms are. A few of them admitted that they occasionally ordered appraisals, but they didn't send any my way. Maybe it's the old boy network, or just that the lawyers use someone with whom they are familiar. I don't know, but this is a hard nut to crack.

On the other hand, one local appraiser told me all his company does is attorney and estate work. He also mentioned that they get top dollar for these types of appraisals, so there is a market there; but getting into it is another story. :?
 

Leon Stewart

Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002

I'm considering sending out a marketing letter to all area attorneys that says I do estate and divorce appraisals. Any suggestions? Does it do any good to market to accountants or bank trust departments? I'm done working with LO's that need someone to hit their number no matter what.
Those Legal Journals and Legal News call me about once a week trying to sell ad space for marketing to Attornies. So taking an ad out in one of these Legal Publications is a consideration if you are interested in doing work for Lawyers. I don't do that type of work, you can spend more time trying to get paid than what's it worth. There is generally no profit in that type of work, or any other work where there might be a collection problem. It's difficult to get paid at the door on a divorce case where the woman is a housewife that dosen't have any money.

leart3
 

John Kilpatrick

Freshman Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2002
Fully 90% of our business comes from attorneys -- probably 75% of our work is litigation, and the remainder (from attorneys) occurs because the attorney is representing their client in some other matter requiring our assistance (preservation/conservation easements being the biggie, but also restructurings, workouts, etc.)

Marketing to them is a slow, painstaking process. They work from referrals (often inside their own firm), reading journal articles (we publish a lot), and such and so-forth.

A few quick tips:

-- Offer to speak or teach a course to your local bar associatioin
-- Develop a regular newsletter on items of interest to them
-- Meet the senior partner (or practice area chair) at a particular firm and have a copy of your professional qualifications ready to hand him.
-- Do you have a web site?
 

Doug in NC

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
I also tried advertising in the State Bar directory with a larger than average ad. Zero return again. Cost was in the $300-400 range. They called again this year and asked me to renew, I told them no thanks. They then told me I might need to advertise for awhile before I would see some return. Maybe they are right, but I'm not going to spend $1,000 to figure out if they are right or not.
 

TEL2002

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Louisiana
Nice discussion. We just finished printing 225 letters to lawyers, they are not even all signed yet. Sure hope we have some luck.

We plan to try the same approach with insurance adjusters.

Our hope is to get one job...do a good job...thus leading to another. Who knows - all things in life are just a gamble. If you want a copy of my letter I'll be glad to email it to you. My brother is a retired attorney and he thought the letter said everything that needed to be said.
 

Kathy in FL

Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Florida
One caveat :

I have a big print out poster on my wall. It says:


ATTORNEYS PAY UP FRONT. NO EXCEPTIONS!!!

(Except 3 local exceptions. ..who are as good as gold. The rest are as a rule, lawless, weasely scum with no sense of honor who will stiff you in a heartbeat.)


Kathy
 
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