It’s time to start thinking about marketing your law firm in 2020 (insert bad pun about ‘20/20 vision’ here). Okay, it’s past time.
As a legal marketing company, it’s our job to be on top of the latest trends and explore new avenues of marketing when there is a lot of saturation in the prior years’ methods.
Here’s what we’re doing in 2020.
Local SEO and Google My Business
Google My Business (GMB) continues to be a massive lead generator for law firms across all practice areas. The data is clear: when people are looking to hire an attorney, they want someone local.
Google My Business displays your business information on Google Maps results when people are doing a search for your practice areas. Here are some quick tips for setting up your GMB account:
- Verify your account. Google will send a pin number to your business address which will get your account verified.
- Add some high quality photos of your location, staff, and offices.
- Utilize the Google website builder on the backend of GMB, and make sure you have a landing page for each practice area.
- Use the Services section to explain each of your practice areas.
- Make sure you have updated name, address, and phone number.
- If you’re running Google Ads, be sure to enable the ‘location extension’ so your ads will show up as the top GMB listing.
- Actively reach out to clients for Google reviews. People are looking for expertise, and the more reviews you have, the better (even 1 and 2 star reviews—they humanize you).
Direct Mail for Law Firms
As an attorney, you’re limited in the ways you can market to potential clients. Our proprietary direct mail service is one of the best ways our clients get new leads. Here’s how it works:
- We access publicly sourced data on criminal and civil dockets.
- We verify addresses using the U.S. Postal Service National Change of Address database.
- We design an effective mailer which goes out the same day.
- Using call tracking and analytics, our campaigns get better over time.
By the time a potential client gets home and checks the mail, there you are. Right when they need them.
(We provide a killer direct mail marketing service, by the way — get in touch for a free trial with 200 mailers. That’s right, free leads!)
Publish High Quality Content
Google’s latest search engine algorithm update — nicknamed “BERT” — is an incredibly technical update which will understand a searcher’s intent by understanding language better than ever before.
This means that quality content will become the key to ranking your website in search results.
Marketers used to just churn out content with targeted keywords and that activity would signal the search engines to rank your website. But now, answering a potential client’s questions and concerns is what Google looks at when determining which website to rank above their competitors.
Here are some tips to writing content that will drive clients to your website:
- Focus on education. You should have the drive of building your website as the ultimate one-stop resource for your top revenue generating practice areas.
- Use Google to discover the questions people are asking about your practice area. Search: DUI Law in Florida, then scroll down to ‘people also ask’ and copy all those questions down. Write the best answers that you can, and do it better than your competition (examine their content to see what you can improve upon).
- Length of content is important, but it’s not the most important thing. Our studies show that when answering a question, 600 words is the sweet spot.
- Write the ultimate guide to your practice area. Explain what happens at each point during the case, what people should expect, what they should bring to the table. If you become the one place they need to learn about bankruptcy, for example, they’re more likely to choose you over your competitors. (these posts can be multiple thousands of words)
- When you’re done writing quality content, optimize it for SEO. This means ensuring your title keyword is in the title and H1 heading, and your subheadings should follow a natural structure with long-tail keywords related to your main keyword. Don’t forget to use bullet point lists, pull-quotes, and other features!
Check out our post about blog writing tips for attorneys.
Pay Per Click Ads and Retargeting
Paid search has a TON of competition. Some law firms spend $100,000 a MONTH on PPC ads. So how do you penetrate the market if you’re a new law firm?
Narrow Your Focus
Discover where you’re getting the most business, like a certain zip code or city. Then, target only that city using high quality intent-based keywords, for example: +dui +attorney.
Notice that we’re using modified broad match, meaning that a user query must contain both “dui” and “attorney” in order to show our ad.
Each week, check your negative keyword list to narrow your search. You should always begin with negative keywords like “cheap,” “free,” and “pro bono” in order to filter those keywords from getting clicks.
Use Targeted Bid Adjustments
Many of our clients get the majority of their traffic on mobile devices, but you may find that different practice areas work better on desktop. Someone searching for a DUI attorney is more likely to be on their mobile phone, but someone more likely to convert for a bankruptcy client may be on their desktop at home (doing their bills, perhaps).
Check out our post on using analytics to optimize your website and content in order to figure out which device is more effective for you.
Then add a bid adjustment to bid higher for these devices (start with 20% and see where that gets you).
Use Retargeting to Lower CPC
One of the best ways to use pay-per-click ads if you’re tight on a budget is to use retargeting. You’ve got to have a good number of visitors to your website in order to retarget them (at least 1,000 users per month), then use Google Display Advertising and YouTube ads to reach them on websites across the Internet .
Need more visits? Generate more high quality content for your website, syndicate it across social media platforms and submit them to news organizations.
You can also share your content with your email list and other attorneys. Then, enjoy the boost in traffic and use it to build your retargeting campaigns.
You can also build a custom audience based on your competitor’s websites. Develop a list of 5-10 of your top competitors, add them to your custom audience, and away you go!
Law Firm Video Marketing
Video marketing is going to be one of the biggest trends in Law Firm Marketing for 2020. If you’re not finding that you’re attracting enough attention on pay-per-click ads, or $2000 a month is too expensive to start, video marketing is one of the best ways to use your ad budget.
Start with a video that explains who you are, your practice areas, and why you’re passionate about what you do. Upload it to Facebook and YouTube, and then (this is important) run ads with your video to your local area.
Don’t go for the sale right away, just introduce yourself to your town or city, and run a broad campaign explaining your practice areas. This is especially helpful for personal injury attorneys.
This will help get your name in the minds of potential clients. This is branding, so focus tightly on your hometown or main office area. The idea is to be top of mind when a potential client has to deal with an injury or DUI charge.
Local Event Outreach
Becoming a part of your local community is a big piece of winning business. People have to know who you are and what you do, in order to call you at the right time.
You never know when someone will need to declare bankruptcy, or be injured in a car accident. The best way to earn their business when this happens is to be the first person they think of when it happens. If someone is familiar with you as a personal injury attorney who sponsors local events, they’re more likely to turn to you when needed.
Here’s a quick list of local events you can sponsor:
These include pumpkin patches, Christmas parades, anything centered around your local area and focused on the holidays. Many of them have sponsorships, a simple way to get your face and brand recognition on a flyer or board at the event.
You could sponsor the local high school’s performing arts center or events. There are typically local concert series, plays, and other events that come through an area’s performing art’s center. Become a sponsor and you’ll be thanked on the brochures, websites, and possibly even through the event organizers when announcing the event.
We don’t mean buying the naming rights to a professional football stadium (although the XFL might be a cost-effective choice), but sponsoring local sporting events like runs, especially if you’re a runner. Many cities have running series that are done every month, and getting your name in front of these people can mean a lot.
Above all, promote your brand — which is you! Become a local sponsor and you’ll be the first attorney that comes to mind when they run into bankruptcy, or a loved one gets a DUI, or they need a personal injury attorney.
Bonus points: hire a local videographer to document your engagement with these events, then run it as a Facebook ad or YouTube ad based on Google search terms.
Do you have any marketing methods that killed it in 2019? We’d love to hear about what’s working for you. Leave a comment here or on our Facebook page and let us know about a tactic that’s working (or not working).
And if you find yourself in the courtroom too often to focus on your marketing campaigns (or you want to be there and have a marketing budget) — get in touch. We’ll make a free video breaking down your online presence and give you a free digital marketing strategy.
Happy 2020, let’s grow your law firm!