As you seek to grow your law practice, it’s helpful to take stock of how law firm marketing has changed within the last few years. Strategies that were once considered “best practices” may now be ineffective—or even hindering your marketing efforts. The digital marketing landscape is evolving at a breathtaking pace, so it’s essential to understand these shifts to ensure that the marketing strategy you’re designing and implementing will deliver the results you want. Whether your goal is to attract more clients or advertise a specific legal service or practice area, you’ll need to take steps to ensure that your efforts are mindful and impactful. Let’s take a look at just a few ways that law firm marketing has changed in recent years and what steps you can take to maximize your digital marketing efforts in the upcoming months to account for the ever-shifting online marketing landscape.
Clients Are Warier of Overt Advertising Attempts
During the past few decades, consumers have become increasingly bombarded by traditional advertising campaigns. Commercials on the radio and television tend to follow a familiar script: Hook the viewer with a question, point out an issue or need they have, then propose your product or service as the solution. Law firms followed this tired format, attempting to connect with potential clients through billboards or TV ads that looked a lot like this: “Were you injured in a car accident? You may be able to collect compensation from the at-fault driver. Call our law firm today to discuss your case.” This advertising model worked well, but customers have become increasingly bored by these rote commercials. Most people simply tune out when they hear or see an obvious advertisement.
Think Beyond Traditional Legal Marketing
Using your law firm’s website to engage more potential clients became an effective marketing strategy. At first, search engine algorithms relied heavily on keywords to determine search results rankings, leading to a marketing phenomenon known as “keyword stuffing.” Years ago, creating a website filled with obvious keywords—even at the risk of coming off as robotic or unnatural—made the site visible to search engines like Google and led to higher rankings. Over time, both site visitors and search engine algorithms grew weary of these stilted websites and started expressing their preference for more organic, natural-sounding content. Additionally, potential clients and search engine algorithms alike favor law firm websites that prioritize the user experience. This means that a website focusing more on how the client feels and what needs they have tends to have a much more meaningful impact than a website that spotlights only the attorneys and their accomplishments.
How to “Unmarket” Your Law Firm
Now that every law firm in your area has an active website, how can you set your law practice apart? First, you can start with the big picture. In such a saturated marketing landscape, why not consider “unmarketing” your law firm? By stepping back from traditional marketing efforts (i.e., firm-centric content, dense paragraphs listing the attorney’s accomplishments and accolades) and focusing more on what your clients need, you can build your reputation as a law practice that is deeply and authentically invested in serving your clients. Below are a few strategies for how to “unmarket” your law firm to connect more meaningfully and impactfully with potential clients.
Understand What Your Clients Value
Your marketing efforts will not go anywhere without identifying what your clients value. Take some time to picture your typical client. Figure out what concerns they have and what they want most out of their experience with your law firm. It often helps to speak with a few of your former clients to hear them articulate these important details. For instance, you may find that most people want to feel reassured and heard by their attorneys. While they want to know that you have the tools and knowledge to handle their legal matters, they are often more concerned with how they feel when working with you. Once you know what qualities your clients value most in an attorney, you can design your marketing strategy to address them directly.
Prioritize Personal Connection
When clients are looking for an attorney, they want to trust that this person has the authority and professionalism to help them resolve their issues. However, they also want to know about the person behind the professional title. Potential clients are interested in who you are as a person and as an attorney—what motivates you to practice law? What are you passionate about? How involved are you in the local community? Take advantage of the “About” page on your website to showcase who you are and to connect on a personal level with potential clients. You’re likely to see an increase in new client calls when you incorporate more personal and human touches into your web content and social media posts.
If you’re ready to take your law firm marketing strategy to the next level, give LegalRev a call today at (800) 893-2590.
EXCERPT: Law firm marketing has changed in recent years. By understanding what your clients value and prioritizing personal connections with potential clients, your marketing efforts will become more meaningful and impactful.