Attorneys obviously practice the law and play a hugely important role in the world at large. But a law firm is also a business. As with any business, it’s hard for a firm to function successfully without attracting clients. The issue is that newer firms, and even firms that have been around for some time, now have to operate within an increasingly competitive landscape. Some firms even take to commercials online and on network television in order to get the word out about their services. But the reality is that in today’s world, even that may not be enough due to the advent and boom of digital marketing.
Right now, a potential client can move online and have access to a wide variety of different law firms, all competing for their business. Therefore, it’s important that your firm not only stands out but excels in terms of marketing. All too easily, a marketing strategy can become stale and outdated due to the leaps and bounds being taken in terms of technology and advertising every day. Below are some of the marketing strategies that are currently successful, and how they can be applied to your law firm.
1. Develop a Target Audience
Not every law firm is going to pursue the same potential client, of course. The first question that lawyers should ask themselves when developing a marketing strategy is whose business they are trying to obtain. For example, your law firm may target personal injury clients; or you may specialize in criminal defense. From there, however, your firm will specialize further in certain cases. Some firms that focus on personal injury law may target clients that need help with high-settlement medical malpractice lawsuits; right now, about 20,000 medical malpractice lawsuit claims are filed every year, after all. Others may work with lower-income clients.
Once your target audience is identified, it will be easier for you to design an ideal marketing strategy. The focus should be not on casting a wide net, which will yield more rejections, but on hitting a smaller audience that is more likely to convert to paying clientele. Not only does this mean that you will spend less time on marketing to the wrong people; you will also be able to spend less money on bad marketing strategies. The content that you publish on your law firm’s website should be made with the target audience in mind. What will they engage with? What kinds of headlines will make them want to click? Is your target audience made up of older clientele, who might not necessarily engage with social media very much? Then a blog on your website may be where most of your focus should go. Are you targeting millennials more? They may prefer videos and images as opposed to long-form written content.
2. Have an FAQ
People turn to lawyers with plenty of questions, and they want answers. Therefore, a lot of your target audience will likely find your website in part because they are looking for the answers to their questions. You should be ready to answer those questions, and the clearest and most concise way to answer them is to have a clear FAQ section on your website.
FAQ sections should really be laid out in a way that they literally answer the most common questions that your clients may have, even if they aren’t very unique or seem rather obvious. Yes, you may even need to tell your clients about the rather simple fact that one divorce occurs about every 36 seconds. You can delve into more unique and individualized questions when you’ve been hired. On your FAQ question, you want to lay out the basics, without giving away too much information or advice for free. It’s a good idea for any lawyer to ask for input from other lawyers as well as legal receptionists. While you may have your own ideas of the types of questions that clients will ask, others might be able to offer additional insight.
3. Utilize SEO
Ah, search engine optimization. This is the practice of using keywords, links, and other components to increase your website’s relevance in terms of search engine results. SEO should be a priority for law firms in general, as they will be competing with so many other legal websites. You should work with an SEO marketing firm to devise an SEO strategy that will make your website stand out. The goal should be to provide high-quality information, not simply a jumble of keywords and facts. Make sure that your contact details are consistent across the board; if you capture a potential client on your blog, you want to make sure that they can easily find your current information there.
SEO comes in many different forms. But in general, you should be prepared to have a blog on your website that you can optimize, as well as social media pages and even perhaps a Youtube page. The more opportunities that you have to incorporate SEO into your marketing strategy, the easier it will be for you to convert your audience.
4. Be Present on Social Media
Let’s expand on the concept of social media. How does this work for law firms? Generally, lawyers are expected to be serious and professional, while social media doesn’t always correspond with that perception. This simply means that you need to be careful about the social media that you use and how you use it. These social media pages won’t be anything like your personal pages. They will act as marketing opportunities. Social media should be used as a way for you to brand your law firm, especially on websites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
But one thing to keep in mind too is that you need to be careful when logging into these platforms. The more present you are on social media, the more you’ll have to use different passwords. Weak passwords offer serious opportunities for hacking, and hacking attacks already occur roughly every 39 seconds. Don’t open yourself up for those opportunities.
Marketing your law firm is sure to be challenging. But you can do it successfully. You’ll just need to work with the professionals, dig deep, and develop a voice for your law firm.