The success of a law firm, like any other for-profit organization, is hinged on the success of your marketing efforts. There’s no denying that cash flow is the lifeblood of any business. Therefore, your job as a legal practitioner doesn’t end with acquiring the knowledge and skill needed to represent a defendant successfully. It goes beyond having the wisdom to offer advice on the pros and cons of certain critical life decisions.
Unattractive as it may sound, you need to learn marketing too!
What is marketing?
If you’re typical, then you believe marketing is just another word for advertisement. You couldn’t be more wrong. While the ad is incontestably an essential part of marketing, it is not all there is to marketing.
Consider your automobile. Your car’s engine (the heart of the automobile) is a critically important element in your vehicle. But it’s all that your vehicle needs to function. Just one deflated tire, and you’re grounded.
Do you think this illustration is so much of a stretch? Think again! Because in marketing, advertisement isn’t even the engine. It’s not the heart of marketing efforts. It’s more like the tires or the axles; shocked?
Marketing cuts through the entire business process. This process includes concepts like developing, communicating, and delivering value to customers.
There are several tactics involved in marketing and it is why you need to consult with a law firm marketing agency before undergoing a fruitless investment of your resources in ill-marketing efforts.
The Challenge of Intangibility
The challenge of intangibility is perhaps the most significant challenge that makes the sales of services such as attorney marketing difficult. The nature of attorney services makes it difficult for a purchaser to access its value and quality. The worth of service offered isn’t fully appreciated until the services have been delivered. This is one place where commodity sellers have it easier.
Whenever a client needs a service provider, he assumes a high level of risk and therefore tends (and need) to be more critical in their hiring decisions. It would be too late for a client to change his solicitor after he has lost the case. The ideal client wants to make sure that they are getting the best service their money can buy.
This challenge; however, isn’t impossible. As part of your marketing endeavors, you must ensure that you focus excessively on building trust with your potential clients.
What can you do to build confidence with your audience?
Below we share 9 law firm marketing strategies that you can use to increase trust with your audience and grow your firm. Shall we?
1. Start With Clarity
You must be crystal clear and what your firm seeks to offer your clients and how this service is unique compared to what they’d find in other law firms. In marketing terminologies, this is called the Unique Selling Proposition (USP). Defining your USP is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever make for your firm.
It sets the tone for just about every other thing you’ll do, especially in marketing. It defines who your target customer is, where they can be found, what age group they fall into. By clarifying your value proposition, you’ve laid a strong foundation for your marketing success.
2. Look Good – Brand Your Firm Excellently
We’ve already discussed that the problem of intangibility that invariably makes the marketing of attorney services more difficult. This situation makes branding all the more important. Excellent branding is a valuable tool in earning the trust of a potential client.
Why should any right-thinking client choose a firm that presents itself as mediocre?
A meticulously selected brand name and superbly designed company logo, letter-head, etc. are perceived by clients as intelligence, ingenuity, credibility, and superiority. When a brand has an outstanding look, it already has an edge in today’s increasingly competitive market. It’s safe to say, if your firm doesn’t communicate excellence in this regard, you don’t stand a chance.
Maybe your firm looked good in the past, take a close look now and be sure it isn’t due for a rebranding. Pay attention to your company’s corporate identity.
3. Become a Subject Matter Expert
This point is similar to the first. The emphasis here is that you focus on offering specialized services.
Which one are you? Injury law, impaired driving, intellectual property law, or a women’s divorce specialist?
The fundamental belief is that when you specialize, you amass the knowledge that enables you to render more outstanding services relative to a competitor who is more of a jack-of-all-trades.
Since clients want the best representation possible, they often pay closer attention to organizations that have positioned themselves as experts.
Becoming a thought leader in a field makes you more attractive to clients. Use your skillset as a lead generation tool.
4. Word-of-Mouth Marketing
If you’ve focused excessively on delighting your clients and building close and valuable relationships with them, word-of-mouth marketing becomes almost automatic. Clients would be glad to refer you to friends and family who may need your services.
The beauty of this is that their testimonial of a wonderful experience with you makes lead conversion a lot easier. There’s arguably no tool more cost-effective in getting new customers than word-of-mouth marketing.
It’s important though you don’t shy away from asking your clients to refer you to their friends. It helps if you refer them to others also.
5. Get A Quality Website
A website helps with building brand awareness and trust with potential customers. A quality website is one that convinces visitors to choose you. Useful components of a website include information about your USP, awards you won in the past, client feedbacks, critical people in your firm, an about us section, and the firm’s contact information.
To stay offline would be lethal not just to the growth of your firm but to its very existence, so don’t underplay the value of being online.
Your website should have a blog section that offers appealing, valuable free legal assistance in the form of short articles or videos. You could also share these so-called freemiums as gated content.
You exchange relevant content for your visitor’s contact information- name, email, and so on, which are invaluable for email marketing targeted at converting potential clients.
If you are willing to offer valuable information for free, it’s only a matter of time before you have a large clientele.
6. Invest in Search Engine Optimization
More often than not, the first place people look for anything these days is online. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a continuous series of processes that help your website rank higher in search engines.
When was the last time that you went past the first page of Google?
You’re not alone. Research reveals that more than 70% of people don’t go past the first page of Google.
Using specific keywords in your website’s blog content instead of loose generic words would ensure that you rank higher in a Google search. Similarly, signing up for Google My Business also helps increase your online visibility to potential clients.
Online, visibility is crucial, and so your goal is to rank high so you can increase traffic to your website. Digital marketing is a technical activity. As such, we recommend that you consult with an attorney marketing agency.
7. Social Media & Email Usage
Social media is an excellent place for lead generation. In most countries around the world, more than 70% of the eligible population is already on social media. And for emails, the percentage has risen to over 90%. It’s vital that you carefully consider which of the platforms you want to join. Keep in mind that the deciding factor should be where your target customer would be found.
But beyond the lead generation, social media helps you keep your firm at the forefront of the mind of existing clients. It also keeps them updated on new developments and milestone achievements of your firm. It could be cases won, awards received, or even links that redirect to your blog posts.
Social media allows you to be a little less formal in your communication. It’s not a bad idea to communicate with a bit of humor once in a while. While the tone of your content must reveal professionalism and expertise, keep in mind that you’re not in court.
8. Targeted Ad Campaigns
One of the many benefits that the online world and social media offer businesses is the ability to do advertisement that is targeted with a laser-like focus on your ideal customer.
You can run ads that are optimized to be seen by customers that fit your precise customer profile.
With Google Ads, for instance, your firm will be shown to users searching for specific queries that are related to your expertise.
9. Participate in Community Development
Companies are embracing the triple bottom line of social, environmental, and financial profit. Empirical studies have shown that clients are more willing to do business with organizations that are concerned about the well-being of everyone.
It pays to be kind. Make sure to share your efforts in community development on your blog and social media handles.
As a service provider, your marketing focus should be on how you gain the awareness of clients and trust so that they can choose to do business with you. The internet offers many different options for achieving your sales and marketing goals. Most importantly though is that it takes a skilled law firm marketing agency for you to make the most of your law firm’s success.