Attracting legal clients to your firm’s services might be a challenge if you do not understand nor acknowledge the pain points in their industry.
According to several sources, such as Thomson Reuters, The American Lawyer, and Forbes, there have been several trends thwarting law firms from achieving their desired success, including the lack of time management skills, challenges with billing and collections, managing costs, a continued shortage of financial growth, and advances in technology / data support.
Also, take into consideration the rise of freelance lawyers and its impact on firms. According to Legal Business World, “Some more progressive law firm managing partners estimate that between 20% to 40% of their entire legal workforce will be freelance within 5 years.”
What can your firm do to turn these challenges into opportunities? You can deploy effective marketing strategies that are laser-focused to your target market.
Identity the Target
Family law and criminal law practices are very different types of law firms. To be effective, you need to truly understand the client’s needs, goals, pain points, and action triggers to be successful. Your end goal in this activity is to clearly define what type of law firm you are interested in working with; to identify their growth goals and current needs; and to provide solutions they need now and in the future.
Determine your marketing message and vehicles.
If you are marketing the same services to the same audience as your competition, the differentiator will be in the message creativity and its delivery vehicle. For example, if your firm offers software services that easily tracks income and expenses, that could be purchased from dozens of vendors. Your goals are to stand out among the competition and to reach your audience where they are most likely to pay attention, e.g., mobile.
In the past, Xero has had some creative ad campaigns that nail it on the head.
They used a mobile and desktop campaign focused on the client’s pain points and used it in a clever way to grab attention. In the “Fancy whipping up something more rewarding than a spreadsheet?” campaign, they used a cupcake graphic and fun headline to grab attention. A short form was used to capture information where the visitor could “grab a deal,” as in a 30-day free trial. View the campaign creative here.
At this phase,
- Conduct research to discover the best ways to reach your target market (based on age, gender, industry, geography, device, and more).
- Identify a combination of at least two vehicles to reach your target market, such as mobile and desktop, print and desktop, mobile and email, print and email, desktop and phone, social media and paid ads, etc.
- Create a landing page on your website dedicated to this ad campaign, including a short form to capture leads, and two to three benefits of the product or service you’re selling.
- Craft a multi-part story line featuring several ads to reduce ad fatigue (people seeing the same ad multiple times). Creative headlines and a consistent tag line will be important here. For example, this headline, “Get rid of payroll headaches once and for all.” With this tagline, “[Fim’s name] relieving payroll headaches through software solutions.” Plus, a graphic of a person holding his/her head, a pinched paycheck, or bottle with migraine solution written on it.
- Design and test the campaign in your chosen advertising vehicles. Remember to keep your branding colors, images, and logo in the ad design.
- For social media and online ad campaigns, target look-alike audiences you already have or create a new audience based on interests, such as software names like QuickBooks, Xero, Intuit Payroll, etc.; combined with demographic information, including job titles, such as payroll manager, payroll administrator, etc.
Case Studies and Testimonials
Providing case studies on billing software and technology that helps to make law firms more productive is a great place to start. Research studies to help you identify the right case studies that will resonate with your target audience. If you have clients like your target market, ask them for testimonials as well. Then, develop your own case study based on research for website posting, social media sharing, and email marketing. Remember to add a lead-generation form to the web page to capture prospect’s information. Finally, follow-up within days to close a 30-minute consultation.
Seminars, Webinars, and Events
Creating informative content lawyers can view online or attend in person that offers CLE credits is very valuable. It helps you to begin the relationship-building process needed to gain and keep new clients. To most effectively market this, know when CLE’s are renewed and know the optimal time commitment, e.g., are 50-minute sessions better than two-hour sessions for registration purposes.
Now that you have these tips, maintaining continuity and attacking the market through effective actions will increase leads from professional services companies. Where will you begin?
Becky Livingston has more than twenty-five years’ experience in marketing and technology in financial services and engineering firms. She is the President and CEO of Penheel Marketing, a boutique marketing firm specializing in social media and digital marketing for CPAs. In addition to being a marketing practitioner, Becky is also an adjunct professor, author, and speaker. With a graduate degree from Pace University in Information Systems, Becky also holds undergraduate degrees from two other colleges and also has a Certificate in Corporate Training from NYU. She is also an active member of the Association for Accounting Marketing (AAM). Connect with Becky’s firm on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Pinterest, and YouTube.