As a bail bondsman in Jefferson County, Arapahoe County, or Denver County, you belong to a small brotherhood of professionals in a unique industry. How do we find new clients? Normal marketing does not work the way it does for other businesses. The industry is in flux with the movement to end cash bail, and COVID-19 has further endangered our livelihoods. Regular marketing options like TV, radio, and print do not draw in enough clients to pay our normal bills.
So, we all look elsewhere to uptalk our business, support our families, and continue to be positive contributors to society. Marketing opportunities still exist, just not where you may have thought they did. Both Google AdWords and Facebook Ads no longer allow placement of bail bonds advertisements because they are deemed exploitive, thanks to a few bad actors. This means we have to get creative, looking into the possibility of non-traditional marketing and social media.
When thinking of non-traditional marketing, we are not talking about cheap pens or USB thumb drives with your company name and phone number on them. Rather, consider Organic SEO, Social Media Marketing, and Traditional Outbound Marketing. Organic SEO looks at ways to earn higher search engine rankings; Social Media Marketing is getting your name out through positive mentions on Twitter and the like; Traditional Outbound Marketing means appearances at seminars and trade shows and, ugh, making cold calls to potential clients.
A perhaps not-so-obvious solution is to embrace localized, offline promotional opportunities. These are sometimes taken for granted, often because they are considered old school and are not “sexy” enough. What are we talking about? Import local groups like the county bail board, local lawyers, bail bonds associations, jail or county resources, and local religious groups or advocates. Sometimes, marketing that worked in the past may work again for you – if it ever stopped working in the first place.
According to some reports, the bail bonds industry grew into a $2 billion juggernaut, but considering what has happened the last few years with efforts to kill cash bail and the spread of COVID-19, those days may be far behind. In fact, some are predicting that bail reforms could end the industry altogether. To say the very livelihood of thousands of dedicated, law-abiding men and women is threatened would be an understatement.
As tough as it seems, we need to stay positive. When our brothers and sisters succumb to depression, bad things can happen. Yes, instances of depression among American adults has tripled since the pandemic began, but that does not mean to give up without a fight. Here are some things to remember:
Finally, working with clients is hard. You will need to foster a productive relationship built on trust and respect, and deal with the highs and lows of your industry.