5 Effective Practices to Market Your Law Firm Online
With the growing importance of being online, focusing on the physical world is no longer good enough for attorney marketing. Many of your potential clients will now create their first impressions of your firm based on what they see of you online - be that your website or your Google reviews.
Successful online communication is an important element for any business. Professional website design and excellent utilization of social media can help in making your law firm stand out from its competitors. Below, we explain 5 of the most effective practices for marketing your law firm online.
1. Actually be available online
Flexible working is growing more common, and firms need to invest in technology to help with this, including telephony integration and instant messaging tools. For your law firm to realistically be competing with the best attorneys for clients, you need to not only offer your services online but ensure a potential client’s online customer experience is just as helpful as it would be face-to-face.
Every customer will have a preferred method of communication and offering all of these is essential for racking up clientele. Offer an email address, a phone number, and an instant messaging option on your website to keep everybody satisfied.
Live chat with an agent allows communication between your firm and a client in situations where they may not be able to use a phone, such as whilst at work. Furthermore, a customer will likely be approaching your law firm to discuss a serious matter and may want the conversation to be documented - which they would not be able to ensure themselves over the phone.
Video calls are another great option for building trust with a client. It is the most similar alternative to face-to-face interaction and enables quick clarification of any concerns they may have. This makes dealing with clients a lot easier for you, and also helps clients have easy access to you when they need you.
If you invest in the right communication channels you will also have the ability to screen share. With quick screen share, your firm can run efficiently online. During an online video call you can share your screen with a client to better their understanding or show them where to find something.
To keep up the competition, you need to keep with the times. Many law firms have different branches of law that they deal with. Your company may take on bankruptcy issues, alongside family law and criminal defense. Having a cold calling software that enables cloud communication in every office (or every home) ensures each expert is on hand immediately. There is a lot of call center phone software out there to choose from, so make sure you find the right one for your business to excel.
Make sure that your website contains all the information, no matter how small, that a customer would receive if they were to come to your office. The instant gratification that is achieved through live chat and an FAQs page could be what wins you your latest client. If you decide to create your own live chat or FAQ software, make sure that the communication software quality is high-caliber, so don’t skimp on continuous testing in devops!
2. Get those reviews
With good customer service comes good reviews. But not everybody will voluntarily post these. If you’re struggling to gather reviews or you’re a newly started business, ask clients once they have finished doing business with you if they could leave a review on Google, or wherever else your firm is advertised. You can also encourage clients to give you feedback by contacting your firm through a hosted phone system, this way, even international clients can give you a call to let you know what they think about your service.
If you know a previous client had a particularly excellent experience with your company, drop them a friendly email about how important reviews are to you - and ask for consent to highlight this testimonial on your website.
Reviews play a key role in the decisions made by roughly 9 out of 10 consumers. You may not like to think of a client as a consumer and your attorney services as a product - but that is exactly what they are. Just like before buying a new washing machine, a consumer is going to want to know how your law firm works before throwing money at it. Make sure that potential clients can easily find testimonials on your website. This will most likely be one of the first things they look for when they’re deciding whether or not to avail your services. Most website builders will allow you to have a dedicated page for reviews and testimonials, so take advantage of this, and make sure that it’s easily located by your visitors.
Of course, you cannot actually expect good reviews unless your services are consistently good. In modern times, many customers are interacting with businesses not just physically, but virtually too. Imagine you were introduced to someone online who was supposed to represent you in a legal environment and they did not know how to start a conference call - your faith in them would likely diminish fast.
Whilst handling clients, think of how they would tell somebody about their experience. Always put them first and the 5-star reviews will come reeling in.
3. Have an SEO strategy
Having an efficient Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) strategy will help your business appear top of the list for those looking. Think about a time when you have searched online for a product or a service. How often do you go past the first page? Your answer is likely never. That’s why you need to be on the first page of Google. Successful online marketing for attorneys will rely heavily on utilising SEO content.
However, don’t just immediately hire somebody to do the SEO work for you. Research SEO strategies yourself so that if you do hire someone, you can be sure you know what they’re doing is the right step for your business. When you have the basics of SEO down, you can start considering investing in professional content marketing services to really get ahead of your competition.
Make sure you've got the right resources. You wouldn't give away promotional items without knowing how to account for inventory - and you shouldn't offer legal aid without an advanced SEO strategy.
4. Have a well thought through website
Wondering what the perfect website for attorneys is? There are a number of website types that you can create for your firm. You can create a website that acts as your online portfolio, or catalog for your services. You can also create a website that acts as a web-based application, where potential clients can directly avail of your services.
It’s also important to consider website design. The structure and layout of your website plays a great role in how you can capture visitors. Your website needs to be comprehensive and organized. Having everything under one roof - but in different rooms, so to speak. An individual page for every service your firm offers is ideal. Not only does this make the website easier to navigate, but it means you have more room to sell yourself in these specific areas.
You may be worried about how much it will cost to make a great law firm website, and there is no easy answer. It depends on if you would rather do it yourself, or bring someone in to do it for you. A more experienced website designer may seem like the best option, but a DIY website will be a lot cheaper. Check your options, and your wallet.
Give your homepage an attention-grabbing marketing message. It is a popular and proven trick to use straight to the point marketing messages to improve lead generation, so make sure your firm does this. These days, consumers are bombarded with marketing - from unasked for promotional emails to advertisements on buses. Make sure your message doesn’t make them look away.
VoilaNorbert’s marketing message is simple - they can find anyone’s email address. A visitor to their website would need no more explanation of what this site and company can do. Pinpoint your firm’s niche and stick it on the front page.
5. Use social media
A website that is linked to more valuable content is sure to keep up your website’s traffic too. It is worth considering branching out your brand to social media platforms. Marketing on social media is an immensely effective strategy. You can create persuasive and informative video clips and post it on YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter with a link back to your website, you are bound to get more views.
Social media is the best way to promote a brand. And it isn’t just you yourself who can promote the brand. If you have a Twitter or Facebook profile, previous clients can endorse you in a status update. If you’re available to be tagged then it is easy for others to find you.
Many potential clients may also be scared to make the decision to actually contact an attorney. With a Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn profile you can post status updates offering general information for users to read. These little snippets of info could be the push somebody needs to finally get in touch. It lets them know what you’re all about straight away too.
LinkedIn especially is a great platform for lead generation. The site creates specific and specialised targeting based on a user’s industry and job title. The professionalism of the site is a massive pull too for people seeking legal advice.
The way networking works on LinkedIn is another big pro for law firms. Engage online with other attorneys and potential clients to boost your image and make it easier for others to find you.
Brand marketing is pivotal in ensuring your firm gains clientele and reputation. Following even just a couple of the above tips is certain to make your mission that bit easier.
We know that online attorney marketing can be an expensive endeavor - but it is necessary. If you are struggling to figure out how to pay for crucial improvements to your online businessing, consider making some changes. For example, if your business currently subscribes to a paid VoIP service, look for an alternative that offers free VoIP calls - they are out there!
About the author
Grace Lau is the Director of Growth Content at Dialpad, an AI-powered cloud communication platform for better and easier team collaboration. She has over 10 years of experience in content writing and strategy. Currently, she is responsible for leading branded and editorial content strategies, partnering with SEO and Ops teams to build and nurture content. Here is her LinkedIn.