High Tech, High Touch Via the ASP Model – Sendoutcards.com and Lawyer Marketing

I make no secret of the fact that I’m probably the biggest fan of the ASP (application service provider) model in the world of legal technology. I’ve recently learned of a very cool ASP approach that epitomizes the concept of “high tech, high touch.”
My friend Glenn “The EsqLawTech Weekly” Garnes called me recently to talk to me about Sendoutcards.com. Glenn is an innovator, so I always take notice of anything he finds interesting. He usually has a good new business idea or two for me in the conversation as well.
My first reaction was that Glenn was describing to me an e-card service. I was wrong.
Sendoutcards.com applies the ASP model to the physical world of greeting cards and postcards. Think of “print on demand” cards.
It’s a classic web interface approach. I can upload my contacts and mailing list. I can select among 2,500 card designs. I can add a personal message, of course. Even better, I can edit the standard message. How many times have you found a great card, only to open it and find an inappropriate message? I can even create and use a font based on my own handwriting.
After I get my mailing prepared, I transmit my order. Sendoutcards.com then physically prints out my cards and envelopes, has them stuffed into addressed envelopes, puts a first-class stamp on them, and mails them out.
Your clients and friends will receive a great, personalized card from you in the mail. It’s easy to send cards on a regular basis to clients, friends and relatives. How good a job are you doing to get that done?
The cost: $1.00 per greeting card (including postage). A smaller amount for postcards.
Think of the last time you were at a drugstore or mall looking for cards. It took a long time and you ended up grabbing some sort of a compromise card. You probably paid $3 or more for the privilege.
Think of the costs in supplies, time and labor for your firm or organization to send out holiday cards or do a postcard marketing campaign. Sendoutcards.com is an attractive alternative, isn’t it? Don’t just think small firms or individuals. We all know the hassles in managing the greeting card mailings for a large law firm under your current “beg the attorneys to send out their cards” process. And that season will soon be upon us.
I had Glenn set me up with an account. He’s a distributor. You can simply use the service or you can turn it into an income opportunity for yourself or your firm. Glenn has all the details. Take a look at the detailed info Glenn has put together at http://www.greetingcardwiz.com/. Then get in touch with Glenn by way of the contact link on that site (or contact him directly through his blog). Just tell Glenn you came to him from me or my blog and he’ll take care of getting you set up.
Heck, Glenn can even set you up to use the system to send a card for yourself to experience how it works – a great idea if you have a wedding anniversary or spouse’s birthday coming up soon. I’ll personally vouch for that.
By way of disclosure, there is a little something in it for me if you sign up through Glenn and mention my blog, but it’s better than the alternative of having me set up a little tip jar on this blog and begging for donations because you like my blog, isn’t it? In any event, I wouldn’t recommend the service if I didn’t see a potential value and benefit for my readers. And, I use the service myself.
It’s a great of example of “high tech, high touch” and a great way to save money while staying in better touch with your clients, friends and others. That’s a combination that’s hard to beat.

Client-Centric Marketing: What Clients Want

From the excellent SmartPros newsletter:
Client-Centric Marketing: What Clients Want makes a compelling case for August Aquila and Bruce Marcus’s Client at the Core: Marketing and Managing Today’s Professional Services Firm.
Here are some excerpts from the review’s excerpts from the book:

  • Because clients are more sophisticated in the ways of the law and accounting, they no longer accept the advice of the professional without questioning, challenging, demanding more reasoning and detail.
  • Because of the complexity of business today, clients demand that their professionals know more about the clients’ business and industry than ever before.
  • Professional services always function best when trust is at the heart of the relationship, but the corporate scandals of recent years have eroded that trust. That trust must now be regenerated.
  • Where once the narrow structures of a profession were sufficient to serve clients, clients now demand a broader spectrum of capabilities. The more broadly educated and well-rounded professional is the one with the greater advantage in meeting the needs of today’s clients.

These excerpts are singing one of my songs – note the emphasis I placed on client-driven technology initiatives in the law firm portion of this post. I’ve added the book to my reading list.

LawNet 2004 Redux

Back from LawNet. Great show. Great time. Met lots of great people doing cool stuff, but didn’t get the chance to meet up with everyone that I hoped to. (Sorry about that.)
A big thank you to SydneyPLUS and the audience for my KM talks. I was very pleased with how the presentation turned out and it’s not often I have a Q & A session that lasts two-and-a-half hours and turns out to be such a good time. There was a video made of the presentation, which I will try to make available later this fall.
Not unexpectedly, I returned with a ton of new ideas, which will gradually filter their way through my blog, other outlets and my work for clients.

Electronic Discovery Showcase

Although a free registration is required, it’s a small price to pay for the good collection of articles on electronic discovery (the acronym for which is, somewhat mysteriously, EDD) on LawTechnologyNews this month. Good articles from George Socha, Craig Ball, Donna Payne, Albert Barsocchini, Ross Kodner and others.
Don’t forget the great virtual roundtable discussion on electtronic discovery on Law Practice Today and the great set of articles and resources at DiscoveryResources.org.