Many industries have been upended by digital marketing, from the Yellow Pages to real estate and car advertising. For professional services firms like yours, and especially for small and medium-sized law firms, digital marketing represents a golden opportunity to get in front of more potential clients and win more work.
In this article, we’ll break down 4 digital marketing strategies your law firm can implement to increase new clients.
What is digital marketing?
The first principle of marketing for small and medium sized law firms is to reach your potential clients where they are. Increasingly, this is digital – through their phones, tablets, and laptops. So very simply, digital marketing is about taking proven marketing approaches and adapting them for the online world.
A firm that concentrates solely on traditional or ‘offline’ marketing strategies is unlikely to reach a very large segment of potential clients. Especially in a pandemic and post-pandemic world, more and more clients will be found using digital marketing strategies.
Digital marketing strategies law firms can use
There are many digital marketing channels, these are the ones most likely to give any law firm marketing the best return on investment.
1. Content marketing
This is knowledge-based marketing for a law firm that isn’t ‘sales-driven’ in nature. Instead, it showcases the knowledge and experience of the firm and its lawyers by putting together clear, concise articles about topics that are relevant for the target client base of the firm. Importantly though, such articles have the ability to attract people who are searching online for specific, relevant topics. Regular blogs produce 67% more leads per month for law firms.
2. Social media marketing
The vast majority of Australians are on social media, whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, X (formerly known as Twitter) or LinkedIn. Establishing and maintaining a strong social media presence lets you reach these potential clients where they spend their time online. Social media is an excellent strategy to raise brand awareness, share new content and drive new leads to your firm. We’ve done all the hard work for you and developed the Ultimate Guide to Social Media Marketing for law firms. 70% of law firms use social media as part of their overall marketing strategy, if you’re not on Social Media, you may be missing out on your share of the pie.
3. Search engine optimisation (SEO)
This is the ‘under the hood’ changes to your website and its content to ensure that search engines find it and, more importantly, put it high on any search results page. High rankings are valuable, coveted and can be targeted through smart SEO. Ideally, SEO strategies should be incorporated into your marketing plan, including your static web pages, articles, social media, white pages, and case studies. We recently took a deep dive into SEO for law firms and uncovered the science behind this strategy
4. Email marketing
This is a helpful way to maintain an ongoing relationship with clients and referrers. It’s also a useful way of flagging things to review (e.g. wills, estate planning, trust deeds) to re-engage clients who might have need of your services. A regular newsletter sent to your clients is also a great opportunity to build brand awareness and allow your firm to be ‘top of mind’ when they do require your services.
Digital marketing for law firms done well: practical results
Ultimately each of the digital marketing channels we mentioned above and the strategies involved is geared towards one goal: increased website traffic, increased leads, phone calls and inbound inquiries through your website.
Once this action takes place, you can begin the work of converting an enquiry into a long-term, repeating client.
Digital marketing: quick wins
Digital marketing isn’t a short-term process. It’s more akin to building a house with strong foundations than just doing some short-term ‘window dressing’. But there are some ways to start building those foundations to get the benefits of digital marketing (if you haven’t done so already). They include:
• Have a professional review your website – this is your ‘digital office or shopfront’ that people regularly ‘drive by’ (browse online). How does it look? Does it effectively signal that you’re a professional, experienced, contemporary law firm with a client focus?
• Establish a social media presence – if you are not on Facebook (as a page for your business) and LinkedIn, it’s time to get on. You aren’t under any pressure to begin posting and trying to gather followers, but getting started will help see how the platforms work and how they can work for marketing your law firm.
• Survey your clients – ask how they found you. Ask what their impressions are of your current digital offerings. Ask if there is anything that you can provide (e.g. emails with tips about local planning law or developments) that they would find useful. Use that insight to guide how you prioritise your digital marketing plans.
Effective digital marketing for law firms
Has something you’ve read here caught your interest? Are you interested in finding out how any of these techniques can be applied to your business? If so, please feel free to contact Peter to discuss any aspect of digital marketing for your law firm, from workshopping initial ideas to implementation. Contact: [email protected]
About the author
Peter Heazlewood is a management and marketing consultant, he specialises in helping law firms develop their practices using business planning marketing and performance reporting techniques refined in his own successful law firm. Peter lives in Sydney with his wife and is the father of five adult children.