If a law firm wants to compete in the world while converting clients and building relationships, it needs a digital marketing strategy. Having a game plan for your online presence is crucial, but also overwhelming if you’re just getting started. Where do you start?
In this article, we’re diving into:
- What law firm digital marketing is
- The essentials of law firm digital marketing
- How a digital marketing plan helps your practice grow
What is law firm digital marketing?
Law firm digital marketing is a series of strategies that help law firms grow their practices online. They utilize social media, search engine optimization, email marketing, and other online strategies to reach new audiences and stay top-of-mind with current audiences.
It’s incredibly important for law firms to prioritize digital marketing and come up with effective strategies that build awareness and convert clients.
Read on to learn how to create a comprehensive digital marketing plan that will build awareness and get results.
Step 1: Ensure your branding is cohesive
Before you start promoting your law firm, it’s important to look at your branding and ensure it’s cohesive and on-point. Statistics show that it takes 5 to 7 impressions for people to remember a brand. That means the brand needs to be recognizable on all fronts and channels.
Here’s how to ensure your brand is established and cohesive:
- Check that you have an updated version of your logo available for distribution
- Make sure your color palette is established
- Have your law firm’s voice figured out and ensure it’s properly channeled in your messaging
- Have your brand position figured out—how is your law firm different from the others?
- Collect the right images for your content
Step 2: Optimize Your Website
Law firms need optimized websites if they want to rank well online and be found by more people faster. Optimizing your website properly will help it show up higher on Google and give it more authority online. Plus, a well-designed and optimized website can add legitimacy to your law firm’s reputation.
Here are some tips for optimizing your website:
- Add alt text to your images
- Make sure your pages have titles and descriptions
- Use anchor text (backed up by keyword research) to link your pages
- Have a clear call-to-action on every page
- Find and use high-volume and low competition keywords
- Ensure your website is mobile friendly
Optimizing your website will help with your overall search engine optimization (SEO) strategy, which will be discussed later on.
Step 3: Create a Content Marketing Plan
Content marketing is an essential part in any digital marketing strategy. Content marketing focuses on the creation and distribution of online content, including blogs, videos, and other forms of digital content. This content is distributed on multiple channels, including social media and email.
Content marketing gets your relevant and engaging content in front of your audience. The right content can increase your law firm’s authority, brand awareness, and client conversion. Long story short: it helps your brand gain recognition and build trust while simultaneously providing solutions for your audience.
If you’re new to content marketing, here are some tips to get started:
- Define who your target audience is
- Set realistic content marketing goals
- Assess your current content production and determine what you need to meet your goals
- Set up a blog if you don’t have one already
- Evaluate your social media accounts and ensure they’re ready to distribute content
When done right, content marketing can elevate your law firm’s reputation and make clients come to you organically.
Step 4: Invest in Pay-Per-Click Marketing
While content marketing is a vital pillar in digital marketing, it will take time to see growth. If you’re looking for faster results, try investing in pay-per-click (PPC) marketing. Pay-per-click marketing is a strategy where companies put an ad online and they pay when someone clicks on the ad. Statistics show that paid advertising returns $2 for every $1 spent, which is a 200% ROI rate. Coming up with a great pay-per-click marketing strategy can bring more people to your website faster.
Here are some tips for pay-per-click marketing:
- Do your research before you dive in—the last thing you want to do is blow your money because you didn’t know how to do PPC correctly
- Customize your target audience as much as possible and target your messaging as much as you can
- Continuously track and compare your budget to profit to ensure you’re in the green
- Be aware of how competitive your space is when it comes to PPC
PPC can be a valuable digital marketing strategy that generates great results, but it’s crucial to track your success and do your research before heavily investing in it.
Step 5: Create a Social Media Marketing Plan
Something law firms pride themselves on is helping their clients and getting them results. Law firms have a community surrounding them, and it’s important they stay top-of-mind to that community. A key way to do that is to have a social media marketing plan.
A social media marketing plan is a series of strategies that help you cater your content to your social audience. Ideally, these strategies will help your social media channels grow and reach new audiences. They’ll also help you build a community that people want to be part of.
Here are some tips for starting your social media marketing plan:
- Establish your goals and define your target audience
- Research different social media platforms and get a sense of what their algorithm is like
- Evaluate your own social media content to see what’s working versus what isn’t
- Inventory your current social media content and see what content gaps you have. How many more blog posts, videos, etc. do you need to keep up with your social media schedule?
The more you focus on your social media strategy, the greater your chances are of getting your law firm’s name out to more people online. Plus, a good social media strategy helps you build loyalty and trust within your social community, which are two essential pillars for law firms.
Step 6: Double Down on Search Engine Optimization
One of the key elements for your digital marketing strategy should be capitalizing on your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. SEO is important because it helps drive more traffic to your website. The better you optimize your website and content for search, the better your chances are of ranking higher on Google. This is essential, as Google has more than 3.5 billion searches per day. Properly utilizing SEO can help you get a slice of that traffic.
Here are some key things to do when creating your SEO strategy:
- Look at your current website’s structure and evaluate if it’s optimized properly
- Do keyword research and map out content topics you’d like to rank for
- Create high-value content that helps solve your audience’s problems
By doing this, you’ll show Google that you create valuable content. This will increase your chances of ranking highly for searches and getting found by more people faster. Another part of your SEO strategy should be capitalizing on your law firm’s web design.
Step 7: Capitalize on Email Marketing
Law firms can (and should) utilize email marketing to capitalize on their digital marketing efforts. Email marketing is when you use email to acquire and nurture leads by sending them targeted and relevant messages and content. The goal is to have these leads convert into clients.
Email marketing helps you build relationships with your email list in an authentic and helpful way. Plus, statistics show that email is 40% better at converting in comparison to Facebook and Twitter. Sending meaningful messages to your email list at a good frequency can really boost your client list.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when working on your email marketing strategy:
- Create good content for email lead generation. Think of newsletters, webinars, free resources, etc. that you can create.
- Segment your audience as much as possible. How you talk to a new subscriber is going to be different from how you talk to a previous client. Segmenting them in your system will help you send more targeted messages that are relevant to their needs.
- Don’t email your leads too often. The last thing you want to do is fill their inboxes and have them unsubscribe or mark your emails as spam.
The key with email marketing is to look at the data. Look at open rates, click rates, conversions, and other important email marketing benchmarks. This data will tell you what’s working and what isn’t with your email marketing strategy.
Step 8: List Your Law Firm in a Business Directory
Before the internet, we had phone books. Think of a business directory as an online version of a phone book. It’s a place where you can list your law firm’s information such as its name, phone number, address, and hours of operation. Having your law firm on an online directory can make it incredibly easy for people to find your information and, therefore, contact your law firm for services.
Here are some tips for setting up your law firm on a business listing:
- Start a Google My Business page and put all the relevant information in
- Ensure your law firm’s Facebook listing is up-to-date
- Research if there are any law-specific directories to put your information on
The more directories you’re on, the greater your reach. Make sure you’re on relevant directories and listings, though.
Step 9: Manage Your Law Firm’s Reputation
You can have a solid digital marketing strategy, but it won’t do you any good if you don’t properly manage your law firm’s reputation. People may write negative online reviews on Google and social media, and it’s your team’s job to respond to those reviews and manage any bad publicity that comes your way.
This is essential because trust and honesty is crucial for law firms to project. If they get bad reviews or press and don’t respond to it, it looks bad and clients could lose trust.
Here’s what you can do to help manage your law firm’s reputation:
- Check online and social media reviews often and respond to any that are less than favorable (don’t be afraid to respond to some positive ones, either)
- Use a social mentions tool to track your law firm’s mentions on social media
- Come up with a public relations strategy that not only tackles what to do with negative press but has a proactive approach to sharing positive press
The better you manage your law firm’s reputation, the more you set up your digital marketing strategy for success.
Step 10: Research Your Competitors
Study your competition’s digital marketing strategy and take note of what they do. What’s working for them, and what isn’t? See what they’re getting engagement with, what they aren’t, and if any ads, in particular, are converting.
It’s helpful to see what your competitors are doing so you can keep up and come up with a digital plan that edges them out. If you don’t, you could lose valuable clients and watch the success go to your competitors.
Bonus Tip: Throw in Some Offline Marketing
While digital marketing is vital for your law firm, don’t be afraid to explore law firm marketing through traditional mediums, too. These traditional mediums include television, radio, newspapers, and billboards. Do some research and see if it would be worth investing in advertising through these mediums, as it can expand your marketing reach offline.
Digital marketing for law firms is crucial for brand awareness, client acquisition, and client relationship management. Doubling down on digital marketing and coming up with smart and insightful strategies can literally make clients come to you. The key is to do your research and come up with a manageable plan that’ll get results. Set realistic goals, follow the data, and don’t be afraid to get creative where you can.