For quite some time, things like link building, SEO (search engine optimization) and legal marketing have gone through some changes. Incorporating these shifts and new trends when brainstorming and strategizing should help attorneys and law firms see an increased return on their online investments.
Important Trends in Legal Marketing
For several reasons, marketing is more challenging for law firms than for other industries and businesses. Here’s why:
- Stiff competition – In the legal field, the amount of competition is overwhelming. For small law firms, it is very difficult to compete with large firms that spend $100,000 per month on advertising. The smaller firms must learn to shine brightly on a fairly limited budget.
- Regulations and restrictions – For decades, it was illegal for law firms and attorneys to advertise and promote their services. The case that changed all of this in 1977 was Bates vs. State Bar of Arizona. However, regulations and restrictions still abound, dictating what law firms may say and do in their advertising and marketing.
- Subject matter – Without question, it is much easier to market the newest video game than to market legal services. Legal assistance is only needed when certain situations surface. Thus, it requires more strategy on the part of law firms to effectively target their audience.
Even in the face of such constraints and challenges, though, successful law firms pinpoint marketing as a major key to their overall success. Additionally, they will also point out the importance of keeping current with the latest marketing trends.
Of course, trends can change with the wind in the digital marketing world. For this reason, the following list of suggestions will not focus on questionable hacks or quick tricks. Instead, it will go to the bedrock of the year’s most sustainable and effective marketing trends.
Content is number one on the list of fuel that powers a law firm’s marketing engine. But, instead of concentrating on the quantity of online content, today’s trend puts the focus on quality. It has become evident to successful firms that a few high-quality articles or pieces of content carry more weight with viewers than several shallow ones that bore them to death.
Wisdom dictates that legal firms should provide resourceful content for readers, aka prospective clients. Gone are the days when it only mattered if a website had the proper keywords in the right places on the page to generate good search engine rankings. Now, the site’s content must feed the hunger of human beings as well as search crawlers.
There is a marriage, of sorts, between the quality of online content and link building. Each one needs the other to produce success. For a law firm’s online visibility to increase, its content must be conducive to backlinks.
Relationships with other website owners, bloggers, industry insiders and journalists give a law firm access to numerous publishing platforms. So, if a firm’s online content is high quality, people outside the immediate reach of the firm will naturally want to link back to the firm’s site and increase the “SEO juice.”
Semantic Search and SEO
Even though SEO has changed dramatically during the last five years, many legal firms haven’t budged. However, the law firms that are very successful, have shifted focus and now concentrate on semantic search.
Semantic search works differently than the old basic algorithm that simply applied a cut-and-dry approach to deliver results based on keywords. Instead, semantic search scours website content based on a searching user’s intent, in addition to relationships between words. In this way, Google is trying to understand a user’s request like another human being would.
Look at it this way: With AI assistants like Alexa, Siri and Cortana on the scene, people are using voice searches increasingly more and more. It is estimated that 33 percent of households considered to be high-income are now using voice searches quite often. When a law firm optimizes its content marketing by making it conversational, the firm stands to tap into the benefit of such semantic searches.
According to Bloomberg Law and the Legal Marketing Association, a study shows that time spent face-to-face with clients is the most effective marketing tool available. Attorneys, as well as legal marketing professionals, agree that firm-hosted events, in addition to client meetings, are indisputably among the most effective means of generating new business.
In conjunction with concentrating on digital content and social media, attorneys must remember the value of meeting with prospective clients in person and having direct communication with them. A good practice would be to arrange an in-person event once each quarter.
The popularity of podcasts should not be surprising, because they are an excellent resource for prospective clients to find answers to their questions. This marketing medium provides an excellent avenue for law firms to communicate with people.
If a law firm took time to discover the most popular podcasts among its target audience, the firm could then advertise on the podcast. Greater still, though, would be for the attorney to offer to be interviewed on the show or to become a show resource. While being interviewed, the attorney could potentially reach thousands of individuals directly. In addition, the opportunity provides a way to get backlinks to the firm’s website from the promotion of the particular podcast episode.
Keeping a Fresh Marketing Strategy
What could be more fruitless than a stale marketing strategy that is both ineffective and wasteful! For success, law firms must embrace an innovative approach to marketing. Otherwise, their efforts simply waste resources and limit their ability to get new leads. It is imperative that law firms investigate and incorporate the latest trends to avoid becoming obsolete.
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Ideally, successful law firms only want qualified clients sent their way – clients who meet certain requirements and specifications. Broughton Partners has the solution. We don’t waste resources on claimants who don’t fit your firm’s criteria.
Our qualification process involves in-depth interviews, examining pertinent documents, and analyzing case details. Additionally, we prepare the necessary case documents that an attorney needs to start work on a case immediately.
Spend your time and financial resources wisely. We can find the qualified claimants you want, not just leads. Your success is our success, and it’s a two-way street. Call (800) 949-8904 today for a free consultation.