Internet marketing has recently become a widespread field with a high impact on every industry and yet it is still unfamiliar to a majority of the attorney’s. Even then, clients are gaining a lot of preference towards researching online and reaching an attorney through their personal websites or other directory websites. In fact, recent changes in Googles algorithm often place directories above website listings. And like directories, videos rank high on Google and tend to stick to their high ranking for a long time, unlike the wavering rankings of web pages. This is the leading cause as to why it has become so important to develop an online marketing strategy for your law firm, as well. This article is specifically catered to all those who need some basic guidelines and simple internet marketing techniques which will help them market their law firm online.
Marketing a Law Firm Online
The world of internet marketing is huge and we have carefully broken down all the different elements you will need to understand this world and develop a suitable marketing strategy for your website or blog. This will help you gain the maximum number of clients and visitors because of all the technological advances.
Here are some of the most basic tips you will need that will provide you with knowledge on the primary areas of internet marketing so you can develop your strategy accordingly.
This is the one, most important, element of showing your presence online. And it is probably even quite obvious as to why having a website is the key to your online marketing strategy. It acts as a door between your law firm and the World Wide Web.
However, when you develop a website for your law firm, you need to keep a few things in mind. Simple, yet well designed is going to be the best choice to get a professional and appealing look for your website. This is also the best opportunity to capture clients quickly as compared to a website that looks outdated or is not user-friendly. You can even check out some of our law firm website tips to get a better idea on this specific topic.
A WordPress website platform is probably going to be a much more suitable option so you don’t have to continuously run to IT support for minor fixes or updates. They are also much less costly as compared to outsourcing your web development.
Content Marketing and Blogging
A blog will definitely be a great addition, and also a helpful one, to all your marketing efforts. You can either incorporate it into your main website or make it a separate site, altogether. Blogging gives you the opportunity of turning your visitors into clients with minimal efforts and costs. Blogging also increases traffic to your site and this is your main goal.
Nowadays, before committing to any professional and giving them a token payment, people prefer doing some research on their own and their first source is the internet. You need to improve your visibility online, provide helpful links, posts and other content that reflects your knowledge and professionalism. Make sure to provide some testimonials of your previous clients as well because third person reviews are extremely influential on new clients. This way all the potential clients build up a level of trust even before they get to visit you. And a really good reputation online can help the people to remember your firm’s name even if they do not require any services immediately.
A directory is a platform which aggregates the other businesses, service providers and people which mostly have a niche of specific focus but can also be of the comprehensive type. Directories are available in almost all shapes and sizes. There are quite a lot of directories aimed for the legal industry, as well.
When you join an online industry, you get access to multiple benefits. The first being simply another digital property available for occupation by you. The more places you pop-up on the internet, the more awareness you are creating of your presence and hence, attracting more clients. When you put up your website’s link up on an online directory, it will help even more visitors to come to your website and acknowledge your presence along with improving your SEO ranking.
Some of the popular directories with a focus on law firms include Avvo, Yelp, LegalMatch, lawyers.com, and many others worth considering.
A marketplace can be defined as a newer form of online directories with some extra added benefits through which they can actually benefit from facilitated transactions. Over the past few years, there have been many newly developed marketplaces including UpCounsel, Priori, and LawKick amongst many others.
Marketplaces basically do all the advertising to get you more clients and helps in matching each client to the appropriate attorney, helps in payment and other “behind the scenes” operations for a portion of their fees. These are mostly catered to smaller legal service firms and other related areas including immigration and personal injuries.
If you become a part of one of these marketplaces, it will prove to be a really beneficial way to get even more clients but do not depend on it as being the only source of your clients. Because of the amount of competition present in marketplaces and physical law firms, the amount of clients you receive is still quite limited.
Many people believe that email has become “dead”. But in fact it’s quite the opposite, it is still one of the most “turned to” communication methods online. An email sends a much more professional outlook of your firm as compared to a tweet or a Facebook post. If you get someone’s email address, you get access to direct communication with them and you will be able to share your message quicker and more personally.
To effectively do email marketing, you need to follow three basic steps. Firstly, get a place from where you can collect all emails from. A link can be provided next to each piece of content you publish. Secondly, you need to collect all those emails and buildup a strong list. You can use email marketing tools like MailChimp to help make the process easier. Finally, you have to send out emails regularly, but not overloading their inbox. Updates about your law firm, details about cases you have won or even a new hire can be informed through emails. Have a friendly yet professional tone.
Your followers will soon develop a trusting relationship with you and will make you their choice if ever they come across any such situation.
This is not just for being in touch with friends or looking at some famous memes. It can be a very powerful tool for the marketing of your business. It basically just connects all marketing channels into one platform so you won’t have to focus your energy on all those different channels.
Each account you create on social media is just another addition to your online presence. Social media is a step ahead of the other previously discussed platforms. It gives the client a sense of “updated-ness” of your firm and it shows that you are moving along with the world. It also helps you to engage with your audience on a more personal, yet professional, level. What’s more, you can also share links and content on your social media accounts for building up a reputation.
Every firm should consider social media in their internet marketing strategies as it has a huge effect on your firm. Creating pages on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram and Google+ will definitely prove to be beneficial for you.
Even if you don’t see the effects immediately, soon, when you build up a heavy number of followers, you will begin to see an increase in clients as well.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization in layman terminology simply means showing up on Google. SEO itself is a huge part of the internet and a vast topic to discuss. There are just so many things that play an incredible role in the rankings of your website on Google, that by the end of it, your head will probably be spinning. If you do decide on incorporating SEO for your marketing strategy, it will be better if you hire a professional. But, so that you get a hang of the basics, here are a few tips which might help you in understanding the world of SEO much better.
Backlinks – one of the biggest contributors to your SEO ranking, you would want to build up as many backlinks as possible which use other highly ranked and similarly relevant websites.
Keywords – the search engine rank checking tools are trained to scan all your documents on the website to find out what your website is about. So putting in the maximum amount of keywords in all your content is important. However, you need to make sure not to overdo it. Keyword stuffing will just rank your website much lower.
Content – make sure whatever content you upload is nothing less than high quality, engaging and most importantly unique. Try to answer the questions people are most likely to get when they hear about your services or firm.
User Interactions – the way in which people use your website has an impact on your SEO ranking as well. This includes page views, the time on your site, bounce rate, page loading speed, etc. so you need to make sure once visitors open your site, they are immediately engaged.
Social Sharing – the amount of shares is also a major contributing factor to your ranking on search engines. Encourage people to share your website and blogs in order to improve rankings.
Online advertising can be done in a number of ways and on a number of platforms. This is why you might have to test some strategies first and see which one works best for you. When deciding your strategy, there need to be 3 main points you need to take into consideration:
- Where do you want to advertise?
- Where will you be sending click-throughs?
- How will you track your spending and your return on investment?
Some primary channels that you might look into in the beginning will be social advertising including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc., display ads, Google Ads and even direct ads which are targeted on websites like Avvo, Nolo and Lawyers.com. The main goal is to advertise in those place where your clients may visit.
The positive thing about advertising on Google and display ads is that they are mostly targeted according to the search terms and browsing history of users.
With social media ads, you will be able to target people specifically according to the people’s demographics and interests. As for click-throughs, you might not want visitors to directly jump onto your primary website so you can have landing pages instead for when visitors come to your websites through other ad links.
It is also important that you track all your spending and your return on investment. It’s useless spending money on advertising if you do not even know how profitable or how much affect the advertising has on your investment.
For this purpose, you can use a tool called Lexicata. It can be used in order to track the sources of every single lead and then associates them with a referral source or an ad campaign so that you can properly analyze how well your campaigns are doing and what ratio are they providing you with profits.
This was a complete basic guide on the ways in which you can market your law firm online and develop your internet marketing strategies online. We hope this post was as helpful to you as we meant it to be. We also look forward to you using this information to help establish your firm’s marketing strategies and grow your legal services! Feel free to contact us with any questions you might have.
Edward Kundahl, Ph.D., M.B.A.
Ed can be reached at (or visit his websites)