Many lawyers don’t get new clients and files because they don’t do enough marketing activities, or they waste time on the wrong activities or services, or they don’t authentically connect with potential clients.
Marketing your law firm these days is hard work. There are more attorneys then ever before, over 1.3 million in the U.S. according to the American Bar Association. So how can you stand out? What can you do to generate more business for your law firm?
Define Your Law Firm’s Marketing Goals
Many law firms do not focus on digital marketing because they’re used to the things “traditional marketing” or print, radio, and billboard advertising can do. These days, digital marketing should be a cornerstone of law firm marketing because of the ability to target and measure your law firm’s marketing efforts.
Spending a large sum of money for some amount of “impressions” or value-added placement is common in this realm. With digital marketing, you can segment your budget into many categories that will reach different audiences with different messages – thereby increasing the effectiveness of your overall marketing strategy. Your attorneys may want to take part in this process so they are able to connect field work with your digital strategy, leading to the most effective results company-wide.
Create a Market-Dominating Law Firm Website
The world of marketing has changed dramatically over the past decade. Your prospects are trusting traditional advertising less and less, meaning it’s costing more and more to achieve a diminishing result.
The overwhelming consensus of expert opinion is to embrace the way of today, and more importantly, the way of tomorrow. That, my friends, is digital marketing.
To play the game, you’ll need a website. Not just any site, but a market-dominating site. You’re law firm marketing should revolve around it, and after you’re done reading this post, I believe it will.
Run a smart Google Adwords campaign
For those law firms who need to generate business right away, there is probably no better solution than marketing your law firm through a smart and efficient Google Adwords campaign. More people than ever before are clicking on paid search ads, especially since Google removed the right side ads and added another ad up top. The first 4 results on a page are now Google ads!
Create valuable content on your site
Law firm websites have a reputation for having incredibly boring content. Be different and create valuable content that is “share worthy” and it can help link building campaigns (important for SEO), as well as potentially provide you with some PR (more on that below). For example, we recently helped one of our clients to conduct a study that analyzed over 2 million accident records in the state of Texas. We identified the most dangerous intersections in the state based on the data and shared that information with local media outlets. This led to a giant spike in traffic to his website after he was featured on multiple media outlets and websites. Many of those outlets linked back to his website to share his study which is good for SEO as well.
Use retargeting campaigns
You know those ads that follow you around after you’ve visited a site? Those are retargeting ads (also called remarketing ads). Most people who search for a lawyer online take multiple days to select the law firm they hire. Most will visit your site and compare you to multiple other law firms they find online. Often this selection process takes multiple days so reminding them of your law firm as they browse the web can help keep you top of mind. If you are spending money on paid search or organic SEO, then using retargeting ads is a must.
Ask clients to review your law firm
Reviews are incredibly important to your business, maybe more than you know. We recently completed a study on “How Consumers Choose Attorneys Online” and one of the parts of that study focused on law firm reviews. Over 80% of participants said a law firm would need to have at least a 4 star review online before they would consider hiring that firm!. So, no matter how great your website is, people will still go to Yelp, Google, Facebook, Avvo, etc. to see what kind of reviews you have online before they hire you. Make it a practice to ask clients to review your law firm, although keep in mind Yelp does not approve of asking for reviews. If you do want to encourage more Yelp reviews without actually asking, consider adding a Yelp badge on your website, add a link to your Yelp account in your email signature, add a “People love us on Yelp” sign/sticker in your office.
Embrace Law Firm Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing for law firms is such a powerful influencer, you simply can’t ignore it if you’re planning to market your practice online. Facebook is probably the most effective social media platform to connect with your potential clients (since everyone is there), and to keep existing clients informed about changes in your law firm or new practice areas being covered.
Consider developing social media marketing content so that your existing clients will want to share it with their network, simply because it’s useful information. If you can tap into this wealth of connectivity online, you’ll find that the rewards are potentially great for your law firm once your social media referral funnel has been established and you’re staying top of mind.