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Ask The MAM — Media Budgets

Dear MAM: How do I determine what percentage of my advertising budget goes to yellow pages, radio, tv, cable, newspaper, billboards, etc? Is there a proven formula that works for attorneys? Can you show me what works? Sincerely, Connie P., Parts Unknown

Dear Connie: First of all, anyone that gives you an answer to this question is as a fortune cookie might say, “one without clue.” While people throw around percentages ranging from 2-5%, the reality is that appropriate budgeting is going to be based on more factors than I’m willing to discuss. You do not tell me how big your firm is, how long you’ve been practicing, what the practice areas are, the types of clients you are looking for…I could go on and on. To give you another example, in the “real business world”, the amounts spent on advertising in the first few years can be more than your total revenue. It is about building buzz, a customer base, name and brand recognition. For my law marketing business, I spent more than I took in during the first year. The goal was not revenue, but establishing the business. In year two, I cut back on marketing spending and focused on revenue. In year three, I now look for a balance. Anyway, my point is that you need to develop a short and long-term plan, and then decide effective ways to spend the allotted budget. Thanks for writing. Sincerely yours, THE MARKETING ATTORNEY