Marketing is a critical part of the success of any business, including a law firm. Unfortunately, smaller law firms often have smaller budgets that they have to manage carefully. Because of the cost, these firms find it difficult to focus resources on marketing. However, with time and creativity, a small legal firm can have great marketing that results. Here is a list of some great marketing ideas that will not break the budget. Consider these ideas when you need help with law firm marketing.
Creativity is Key
A law firm has to protect the privacy and rights of its clients. You are not able to have references in the same way other businesses can. Your clients may not want to have their names or faces known. You have to be creative when marketing and creating content. Clients may not be attracted to your firm because of the work you do or the areas you cover. They may be attracted because of the value you provide or the integrity with which you do the work. You also want to focus on gaining the attention of clients in the areas in which you practice. If you are a business attorney, focus on your clients’ business. Work with them to show them how you can provide value that may not be related to legal needs. This provides the potential for clients to realize you may be able to provide more than legal advice.
Google My Business Account
Google My Business (GMB) provides a free listing to law firms. When you are considering a marketing strategy for your law firm, one of the first steps you want to take is a GMB listing. This tool allows you to optimize your Google business profile. You also can manage your profile. This can help to improve your visibility, especially with local search results. You will need to verify your business and show proof that you own the business. If your profile does not exist, you can create one.
If you or someone else in your law firm enjoys writing, becoming a blogger is a great way to market the firm. Not only write your own blogs but also consider being a guest blogger. When you post on a third-party website or other publication, it will typically carry your byline. In addition, you can add backlinks to your website, which gets you in front of a larger audience. You want to find a way to post guest blogs on websites that already have strong domain authority, especially in areas where your law firm practices. For example, if you are an estate planning attorney, you can write guest blogs for retirement companies or websites.
Focus on Relevant Content
You can focus heavily on your own blog content. Creating relevant content is an effective way to market your law firm. You want to create content that is relevant to your specific industry. When you have high-quality material that is valuable to your target audience, you will attract and keep their attention. You want to make your law firm attractive to leads that are interested in your law firm and what it offers. It is critical that you share your blog content across all social media platforms. You want to distribute it in a podcast or video format.
Create a Business Newsletter
While you are in writing mode, consider creating a newsletter for your business. This does not mean a newsletter that you will send in the mail. This newsletter will be in an electronic format that you can send to the email addresses in your database. When it works, you have a great way to provide a constant stream of information to your audience. This goes directly to the inboxes of your customer base. You do not have to compete with all the other social media updates, trying to grab the attention of someone as they are swiping through their social media. It is essential to create content that people want or need. It must be meaningful. You can also offer exclusive sales and knowledge.
Create and Optimize Your Website
If you do not have a website, you must create one immediately. Most people are going to search for information about a business before they even contact them. The information they receive on your website will lead them to contact you or not. Your website is a critical point for converting leads to customers. This is the best way to tell the world what your firm does, the value it provides, and what sets you apart. Your website should look professional, and you want content that aligns with your company’s values and mission. This helps to form your brand identity. You want your website to be easy to navigate and viewable on various devices. As with all of your content, you want it to be relevant, informative, and valuable.
You want to invest in search engine optimization (SEO) when thinking about your website. While this is a cost, it is a worthwhile investment. SEO increases your ranking on Google and makes your business easier to find when searching. However, being optimized for search engines is technical, and this may be an area where you want to find a professional to assist you.
Do Not Forget About Social Media
Marketing on social media is a great way to get your information out to a large group of people quickly. Social media is ideal for lead generation. You can create your own content for social media, which is a cost-effective way to approach your marketing strategy. You can also team up with brand influencers to recommend your business across social media channels. This is among the fastest ways to drive potential customers to you. It will increase the awareness of your business. Many people are easily distracted today, and your post will not hold their attention for long. You need short posts with exciting images. You want your information to be accessible and relevant. This can give you a competitive edge over your competition. As long as your post is not deleted, it can continue to drive leads to you.
A Branding Strategy with Purpose
Before you begin putting your information out on social media, a website, blogs, etc., you want to ensure you have a distinct brand. You want a brand that resonates. You do not want to start putting information out and then try to determine your brand. You want your brand to speak to who your business is and your why. You want your branding to speak for your business even when you are not there.
Do Not Forget About LinkedIn
LinkedIn is often overlooked as a social media platform option. This is the place for professionals. There is no glitter or famous people promoting you, but leads, ideas, and thought processes are happening on LinkedIn. This is the place where professionals share. You can write an occasional blog about legally-based issues, such as estate planning, adoption, or real estate.
Consider QR Codes
Law firms are using QR codes more regularly because it is a great way for clients to scan them with their phones, and information immediately pops up about the firm. A QR code is a barcode that can be scanned by the camera on a smartphone. You can use QR as a method for online payment. This allows you to collect payments securely. You can place a barcode anywhere. This allows anyone to scan it and find out information about your firm. You can even place one on your business card to enable clients to find out information about the specific areas in which you practice.
Word-of-Mouth Still Has Its Place
There was a time when word of mouth was the only way customers would find out about your business. Now, there are many different avenues for a customer to find you. However, Word-of-mouth is still a great way to get your name out there. There is no greater praise than someone telling someone else about you because they were so pleased with your services. It also does not cost any money for you when people talk about you to friends, family, and acquaintances. If you have good relationships with other business owners, you can recommend them, and they can recommend you. This is a great way to build your brand and get your name out into the market.
Involvement in the Community
The community is always looking for help with their prospective groups. Think of the local Little League team or some other team that is looking for donations of time and money. There are other organizations and groups in your community that need help. You can volunteer with the Humane Society or the Food Bank. When you are volunteering at these places, you can take pictures of yourself and your staff working. You can post them on your website. You can sponsor a 5k, collect donations for a local hospital, or collect turkeys around the holidays. There are countless ways you can get involved in the community. People want to work with people that care about them and the community.
People rarely send handwritten notes anymore. This is a personal touch that goes a long way with customers. Even in this age of tweets, hashtags, and social media posts, people appreciate it when you take the time to write out a sincere note. It takes time to sit down and think about what you want to say. You can spend a little money on thick stationery with a classy look. You can address the person by their name and personally thank them for whatever action they took. It could be for referring someone to you or something else for which you want to thank them.
A Chatbot Can Be Helpful
When you are working on your website, consider a chatbot. Most customers want answers to their questions any time they have them, even if it is the middle of the night. With a chatbot, you can provide service to customers and potential customers 24 hours a day. Chatbots are computer programs that mimic more human conversation. It can be written or spoken. A chatbot is intended to be the first response. It is not intended to take the place of you helping your customers. It uses artificial intelligence to interact with customers via messages, text, or voice. They can greet your customers and interact with them friendly and engagingly. They are often linked behind the scenes to FAQs or a help center. You most likely have seen them on other websites. A box pops up that asks, “How can I help you?” While this does have a cost associated with it, it is more affordable than you think.
Consider Short Videos
Consider creating short videos to be a commercial for your law firm. More businesses, especially law firms, are embedding video into their website as a way to market themselves. It could be a video of you introducing yourself and your law firm. You could create a video that highlights a burning topping. It could even be a video of a satisfied customer giving positive feedback about your service. You want these videos to be short but contain pertinent and valuable information. You also want to ensure they are the highest quality you can get. You may want to find a professional to create them for you.
Be the Leader of Seminars
It does not matter if you host your own seminar during lunch at a local club or you serve as an instructor at the local community college; you want to get yourself out there. You can lead workshops that are educational to broaden your authority in the market. You might be surprised at how many people are interested in hearing about legal topics. You can discuss current and relevant topics, especially in the local area. Not only will leading seminars help to promote your services, but it shows people you are interested in helping them learn. You can also show how knowledgeable you are in a specific area.
Even though we are living in the digital age, in-person networking still leads the way for meeting people. You can attend legal conferences and meet other lawyers and marketers for legal firms. With a quick Google search, you can find a wide variety of workshops and conferences in your area. This can help you stay in the know about new technology in the legal field and new trends.
Create a Referral Program
A great way to create a passive stream of income is by creating an attorney referral program. This is a great way for customers to come to you instead of you searching for them. This works because you create working partnerships with lawyers that practice law in fields other than yours. Customers can refer them to you when they contact them about your field. You also do the same for them. In addition to passing clients to each other, you can set up a fee or another arrangement you give each other when you have a referral. Once you secure the client as a customer, then you can pay the fee to the other attorney. They can do the same for you. This strengthens your relationship with other attorneys as well as brings in more customers.
Scholarships for Students
There are many struggling students out there. You can help them and market yourself by creating a scholarship in your law firm’s name. This creates favorable publicity for your firm while helping someone else. As part of the application for your scholarship, you could have the student write an essay on a topic related to law. A scholarship of even $500 to $1,000 can help a student offset the cost of tuition. When you select a recipient, you can promote the student and your award through local TV or newspapers.
While you work hard to protect your customer’s privacy, you want to share it when they give you positive feedback and testimonials. You can ask your customers if they are willing, and they can post reviews on a third-party site. These sites include Facebook, Google, Yelp!, and other sites that are willing to post reviews. This is an affordable way to get information out about your law firm. However, it does mean that you will consistently have to ask your customers to rate your law firm. Most people read reviews before contacting a new company or organization. You will find that it is not a wasted effort.
Consider these tips when you are looking for ways to market your legal firm. Some may take a little more of your time, but all of these suggestions have a high return on your investment. You must make the most of your budget when you have a small firm. These affordable tips will help bring customers in without spending a large amount of money.