Private Investigator Marketing: 13 Innovative Tips
- October 21, 2012
- by PInow Staff
Innovative marketing tactics can go a long way in creating new business opportunities, and as private investigators look for ways to rejuvenate their marketing strategies considering new ideas is a great start.
Whether you are a professional with years of experience or an industry newcomer looking for ways to snag your first clients, combine a well-written introduction letter with these creative marketing strategies to help you get your business name out there.
Here are 13 innovative marketing tips for private investigators:
- Give away logoed goods
Everyone loves free stuff, whether it’s t-shirts, mugs, coasters, water, stickers, pens, keychains, mousepads, calculators, food, you name it! To help get your name and services out there, print your logo and contact information on a variety of products and drop them off at local businesses. Try to target businesses that are most likely to utilize your services as well as other unconventional places like local bars and restaurants.
- Drop off bi-monthly treats
Think freebies. Drop off cases of water, chocolates or donuts stickered with your logo on a bi-monthly basis. Stopping by with complimentary gifts on a regular basis is a great way to become a familiar face and build rapport with a company, but don’t forget to include your contact information! Process Server LinkedIn group member Kelly Townsend has found success in giving candy dishes printed with his company’s logo and contact information to paralegals. With the dish on the paralegal’s desk comes the excuse to drop by and fill it. Try this tactic and not only will you become a familiar face, but with your contact information always in front of the paralegal you may get a call the next time they’re instructed to hire an investigator.
- Sponsor a local criminal attorney or paralegal event
Consider covering the cost of catering or offering monetary sponsorship for a local association event. As a sponsor you can request a few minutes to talk, hang a company banner or supply pens and notepads printed with your contact information to attending members. Sponsoring events is a great way to present your company to several attentive attorneys at once, which can have a huge impact on your business.
- Get involved in or host a community event
Donating a prize for a contest, drawing or raffle or hosting a local race can help you reach out to potential clients at a community event. Being an active member of your community can create goodwill and help your firm gain exposure through word-of-mouth advertising. You may also consider utilizing your expertise to teach a public safety, self defense or basics of home surveillance course to community members.
- Volunteer during search and rescue missions
Communities often rally in the case of a missing person. Volunteering as a private investigator can help a search and rescue team stay organized and get your firm noticed as a leader and caring member of the community. If the search turns nothing up, explain that some of your more advanced services might help locate the individual.
- Offer to take on a client’s toughest case at no charge
We took this cue from Investigator Marketing group member Tom “Maverick” Gorgone. He once requested to work a locate case that none of the hired investigators had success with. Gorgone made the offer contingent upon using him in future cases at his normal rate, and with his success came repeat business.
- Do favors--once in a while
If a friend or acquaintance approaches you with a problem, consider the future benefit of doing a quick favor. Member Kenn Harton landed repeat work with a big local attorney after doing a favor for a friend. In line with Gorgone’s strategy of accomplishing something other professionals have not, Harton conducted an investigation for a friend after the attorney’s investigator came up empty handed. A favor for a friend turned into repeat business from a major client when Harton’s findings revealed case-turning evidence.
- Keep in touch with past clients
Whether it’s an attorney who utilizes your services for research or an individual that you helped during a surveillance investigation, make sure you are reinforcing your brand by keeping in touch. Reach out to past clients and ask them for testimonials or to fill out a feedback questionnaire for insight on how you can improve your business. This establishes trust and shows past clients that you care about their experiences.
- Offer to work as an independent consultant for a local television or radio network
Team up with a local news or radio network to gain positive publicity. Consider reaching out to local news stations and offering your services as a consultant on local cases. Though you will likely be donating your time, with the opportunity to offer your expertise on missing persons investigations, fraud, surveillance, security issues and a score of other topics you will automatically be viewed as an expert in your field.
- Start a private investigator blog
Take a cue from our Top Investigator Bloggers and start your own private investigator blog. Whether you focus on technology, highlight specific services and cases or offer your thoughts on breaking industry news, keeping a blog can help you gain exposure among potential clients and peers. As an added bonus, opportunities for guest blogging on other sites will expand your readership and client base.
- Write an informative article about private investigation
It’s no secret that many people are fascinated with the mystique of being a private eye. Whether it’s a human interest piece about your experiences, debunking some major myths or a professional piece offering tips to your peers, having an article published is a great way to get your name out there. It’s also a less-daunting alternative to keeping up with your own blog. If you’re not sure how to get started as a guest writer, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Connect on social media
Hosting fun activities on your firm’s Facebook Fanpage and interacting with your peers on LinkedIn and Yahoo is a great way to get connected, stay up-to-date on industry news and learn about the latest products. If there’s a firm or attorney’s office you would like to contract for, interact with them through your firm’s social media channels. Become an integral part of the conversation and when you send your introduction letter or bring their paralegal flowers you’re already a familiar face.
- Promote process serving as a gateway to future investigative work
A great way to get in the door with local attorneys and paralegals is to first promote your experience in process serving. If you can become the go-to professional for serving legal documents you’re already a trusted option when the need for a private investigator presents itself.
With a well-planned and innovative marketing strategy many investigators experience growth using creative tactics. There are an unlimited number of ways to get your business name out there, so take some time to brainstorm which introduction strategies work best for you. Ask new clients how they found your services to determine where you are experiencing marketing success, and don't be afraid to try something new. Have creative marketing tips? Join the conversation on LinkedIn.
Looking to grow your investigation firm? Get in front of potential customers by joining PInow’s trusted network of local, pre-screened private investigators.