Marketing 101 – The Sales Funnel

Law firm marketing is the process of educating clients about why they should choose your firm over your competitors. In order to successfully grow your legal practice, you’ll need to attract and then work to retain a base of satisfied clients through marketing efforts.

When putting together a marketing plan for the first time, your team should prioritize the creation of a sales funnel – the process in which your firm will turn individuals into clients. Each aspect of your marketing efforts should fall within one of the following stages of the funnel for maximum success:

The Sales Funnel Depicts the stages of the sales funnel such as awareness, interest, decision, and action

  • Awareness – Prospective clients learn about your legal services, becoming aware of a possible solution to a legal problem they currently have. They will visit your website for the first time during this stage through one of your marketing channels – whether a newspaper ad, a Google search, a post shared on social media, or another traffic source.
  • Interest – Prospects are actively looking for solutions to their problems and ways to achieve their desired outcome. As they explore solutions, the appeal of your marketing content encourages them to express interest in some way. This may include following you on social media or subscribing to your email list.
  • Decision – Prospects are deciding that they want to use your services. As such, they may be looking at your website for areas of expertise, reading attorney bios, researching your client list, or emailing you to set up a call – all in an effort to make their final decision to utilize your services.
  • Action – Prospects become clients by signing a contract for you to represent their interests. Based on your payment policy, money may even be transferred to your business account at this stage.

As a small and growing business, it’s also important to understand the type of person you are dealing with at each stage of the funnel in order to adjust your strategies to satisfy their needs.

Auto Accident InjuryMan injured after an auto accident

These are the five main profiles you can expect to deal with throughout the sales funnel:

  1. Lead – Someone you have not had interaction with. If these individuals fit the profile of your target client, you may decide they are worth pursuing. As a small firm, you should keep track of your best sources of leads that become paying customers.
  2. Prospect – A person who has confirmed interest in your services. You have provided them with details about what you can offer. At this point, their goals align with your services and you have both agreed to the next step in the sales process.
  3. Qualified prospect – Qualification means you have verified that the person:
    • Needs your services
    • Sees value in your services
    • Has the budget
    • There is an agreed-upon timeline to engage your services.
  4. Committed – When the client agrees to proceed with your services, they have committed. Both sides must now agree to the details of the contract, delivery of services, payment terms, etc.
  5. Transacted – The contract is signed by both parties, money has been exchanged (depending on the terms of your payment requirements), and services can begin.

While these stages and profiles may seems daunting, there are more marketing tools to help connect with potential clients today than ever before.

These days, a prospect has likely done more than 70% of the research on their own before making contact with your firm, allowing marketing professionals to play a bigger role in the sales process by engaging customers during the middle stages of the funnel.

This allows your legal team to work with prospects that have passed through the initial stages of the funnel and are serious about enlisting your services.

The Fundamentals of Lead Generation

Lead generation is the process of attracting and converting prospects into  clients of your firm’s services in some way, shape, or form.

There are two types of lead generation marketing methods:

  • Outbound – When you message prospects directly. It is you, not your prospects that determine the type and timing of each interaction. Outbound tools include email marketing, display ads, pay-per-click ads, and more traditional methods like calls to prospects, direct mail campaigns, networking events, etc.

Outbound Marketing: Networking events Networking events are a great example of outbound marketing

  • Inbound – Instead of reaching out to prospects, you develop a trail of interesting information and incentives (usually content) that attract people to your firm and get them organically interested in what you have to offer. It is the prospect that chooses the type and timing of the interaction. Content, SEO, websites, blogs, and social media channels are all inbound tools.

While both methods are important when it comes to earning and retaining business, inbound marketing is especially critical because it is the prospect that has gone out of their way to find you. The opportunity of converting them into a paying client is greater.

Leads are generated through information collection of potential clients. There are numerous ways to get access to prospect information, including landing pages, forms, offers, and call-to-action messages.

Lead generation may sound promising and exciting, but you won’t reap the benefits until you put it to use in a way that works for your firm.

According to Nick Araco, Senior Director of Growth Strategies and Business Development for Drink, Biddle & Reath and Mo Bunnell, President of Bunnell Idea Group, research shows that people – especially attorneys, tend to do what is familiar to them.

This can backfire when it comes to lead generation because what is comfortable is not always the best way to turn new business into long-term clients.

Mr. Araco and Mr. Bunnell propose four strategies they believe will help attorneys generate leads effectively:

Turn your friends into clients A lawyer doing business with one of his friends

  1. Turn your friends into clients. Many attorneys are wary of jeopardizing friendships but it’s as simple as pivoting friendly conversations into business conversations.
  2. Develop “value groups”, a group of influential professionals who meet several times a year and share a common interest. You’ll first need to identify individuals who fall within the firm’s “target client”, and then find a common theme that keeps the entire group interested and engaged.
  3. Uncover strategic partnerships that involve individuals who can help the firm in a big way and vice versa. You’ll need to measure the success of the partnership, to make sure you are not giving more than you get.
  4. Use speaking engagements to connect with prospects in a personal manner.As a small firm, you’ll need to experiment with a mix of lead generation efforts to see what works and what doesn’t when it comes to your ultimate goal.  

How to Determine A Marketing Budget

A study by the Legal Marketing Association found that, on average, 2.6 percent of a firm’s gross receipts were used on marketing efforts. Law firms calculate the amount of their marketing spend in various ways.

Ideally, a budget would be based on the marketing plan, which would include specifics in terms of marketing channels to be used and the cost associated with each item.

This approach tends to be more effective because it is based on an ultimate goal – whether that means signing five new clients per month, branding your firm as the “go-to” place for a particular specialization, or highlighting a new hire.

 What is your Marketing Budget?

Additional factors that can impact a law firm’s marketing budget are its current success, its current online presence, the size of the market, and the amount of competition in the market.

A startup firm may need to spend significantly more on marketing efforts than a mid-sized firm. Similarly, the size of your market will help determine how much to spend on display ads, pay-per-click campaigns, and other online solutions.

Law Firm Marketing Budget Sheet

Law Firm Marketing Budget Sheet Example

Monitor the performance of your marketing efforts to determine if you are getting the returns you expected on a regular basis – daily if possible, but plan to give any strategy several weeks to gauge its effectiveness.

The best approach is to be flexible in changing strategies that don’t work, while building upon the tools that do work.

Traditional vs. Digital Marketing

Traditional marketing refers to promotions, advertising, or campaigns that have been in use by companies for years and  have a proven success rate.

Traditional marketing includes: newspaper ads, magazine ads, newsletters, brochures, billboards, TV ads, radio ads, fliers, postcards, catalogs and telemarketing.

Digital vs. Traditional Marketing

Digital vs. Traditional Marketing

Digital marketing revolves around the Internet as companies use websites, blogs, and social media ad campaigns to expand their audience.

Digital forms of marketing provide up-to-date information on your products and services. Other digital tools include pay-per-click advertising, email marketing, and mobile marketing.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Traditional Marketing

Advantages and Disadvantages of Traditional Marketing

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Traditional Marketing

Advantages 

  • Reach: You can reach groups of consumers that do not use, nor trust the internet
  • Face to Face Experiences: People still yearn for personal connections, especially when it comes to business matters
  • Targeting: With a well-defined customer and a healthy marketing budget, traditional methods like billboards, TV, radio, trade shows, and magazines are effective
  • Awareness: People can’t help seeing billboards or ads if they happen to be walking down the street, or sitting on a bus, thus leading to increased brand awareness
  • Tangibility offers: Readers come in contact with Ads or products during their spare time, leading to organic exposure

Disadvantages

  • Cost: Purchasing TV, radio, and print ads are costly for small and mid-sized businesses
  • Inefficient: It’s hard to measure conversion rates quickly, making it difficult to understand how effective the ads are
  • Forced strategy: Considered a forced method of selling because consumers are not necessarily seeking out your service in the first place.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Digital Marketing

Advantages and Disadvantages of Digital Marketing

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Digital Marketing

Advantages 

  • Competition: Small and medium firms have the ability to complete with large corporations on an even playing field
  • Cost: Online campaigns usually cost significantly less than traditional campaigns
  • Quick Results: Online campaign results may be measured in real time, giving companies insight regarding leads, subscribers, and sales
  • Niche Targeting: Choose exactly the type of client you want to do business with by targeting individuals of a certain gender, education level, age range, etc.
  • Call-to-Action: Your firm can prompt a prospect to take an action immediately in the form of signing up, liking a page, downloading information, making a call, or buying a product

Disadvantages

  • 24/7: Digital marketing never stops working which may be a negative when your firm is small and unable to track real-time reactions and inquiries
  • Ever-Changing: When you think you’ve finally gotten a grasp of how things work, a new online platform/solution emerges and suddenly businesses have to play catch up
  • Time consuming: Online campaigns and marketing efforts can be complex and consume your billable hours. If you do not have a dedicated marketing team, you may find yourself struggling to manage your efforts
  • Trust: Consumers are bombarded by ads online and have built up a healthy dose of skepticism about what is actually legitimate. It may take you more time than traditional marketing to increase brand awareness.

Why You Need Both Traditional and Digital Marketing

Traditional and digital marketing have distinct advantages and disadvantages, and it will be up to your law firm to formulate the best mix of both elements to achieve continued growth. Traditional marketing has tried and true features, while technology and digital media is constantly developing and changing.

Be wary of completely replacing traditional marketing with the latest digital marketing trend because there is no guarantee that one method alone can provide the growth your firm is looking for.

The diversification of marketing efforts tends to yield the best results. If one strategy does not work after a few months, your overall marketing efforts will still be protected as the other methods kick in to cover the lackluster results.

And if one strategy works really well, you can continue to adjust the others for optimal client growth and retention.

Referrals – What It Means, and How to Get Them

Referrals happen when individuals in your network recommend the firm to people in their network. It is one of the easiest and most valuable methods used by small businesses to generate new leads because referrals reduce the cost of your sales process and the length of your ‘sales cycle’.

Referrals from someone they trust means your new client will be more trusting of you right from the start. Referrals who become clients are likely, in turn, to generate additional referrals for you in the future because they understand the process.

Lawyer Referrals

A Lawyer introducing himself to a referral he received from a previous client

Depending on your practice, your network of referrers can include existing and past clients, alumni of the firm, law school friends, attorneys in the firm, bankers, accountants, investigators, consultants, and other professionals.

The best time to ask for a referral is when a customer or contact gives you a compliment on your services or expresses gratitude toward you or your business. Explain that your purpose in asking is to grow your firm and don’t be afraid to identify the type of referrals that are best for your firm.

Make digital referrals easy by adding links to your website on review sites such as Yelp and Angie’s List. Put the links for these review sites in all your communications – from emails and your Facebook page to direct mail materials.

Media Buying

If your commercial airs but no one sees or hears it, does it result in a positive return for your firm? Doubtful. Creating great content isn’t enough. People need to see it, and not just any people, specifically – your target audience.

Media buying is the purchasing of media “real estate” for the most advantageous spaces and timeslots for your business. Based on your marketing plan, opt for traditional formats like TV, radio, outdoor spaces, and newspapers, or digital media options like Mobile, Web Online Display, SEO/SEM, and Social.

Target your audience through Media Buying

Media Buying can be a great way to target your audience and inform them about your business.

Media buying requirements:

  • Identifying target audiences for specific media campaigns
  • Deciding the best mode to communicate with this audience
  • Knowing industry figures when it comes to distribution numbers for print publications or viewership numbers on TV
  • Monitoring competitor strategy
  • Negotiating discounts for the best rate and optimal media placements
  • Ensuring efficient delivery of the campaign
  • Collecting and analyzing results

Negotiation and targeting a specific audience are two of the most crucial elements of this process.  An experienced media buying vendor will handle the entire process for you from start to finish, and help you achieve the highest possible reach in terms of relevant target audience at the lowest possible cost.

Business Cards – Why You Need Them, and Best Practices

As a new firm looking to obtain and grow business, a significant portion of your time (and that of your employees) will involve scheduling meetings and attending networking events.

Business cards provide a roadmap to opportunity because they may lead to new clients, business partnerships, referrals, and even new hires. Business cards are always working for you!

Lawyer Business Cards Best Practice

Lawyer business card best practice

When connecting with professionals and potential clients, genuine connections occur through meaningful conversations and body language that shows you are engaged and interested.

Pulling out a smartphone (or pen and paper) to exchange contact information interrupts the connection and can feel impersonal. The business card thus becomes one of the most valuable marketing tools to promote your brand and remind people how you can fit into their network.

Outside of networking events and planned meetings, you can encounter a potential lead at any time – tradeshows, happy hours, airport lounges, a baseball game, etc.

Arming yourself with business cards at all times will ensure that you never miss an opportunity to make a valuable business connection. And even if others don’t contact you first, the exchanging of cards means you have the ability to reach out and cultivate new relationships over time to widen your network.

 What is Direct Mail – And Can It Grow Your Business?

Direct mail marketing uses the postal service to deliver a promotional printed piece to your target audience. These pieces may include brochures, catalogs, postcards, newsletters, and sales letters.

Direct mail advertising is an effective and profitable way to reach out to new and existing clients. It is highly personalized because it allows your firm to address prospects by name, choose a specific demographic of receivers, and decide on the optimal time to send it.

Lawyer Direct Mail Flyer

Grow your business by adding your existing landing page URL to direct mail so that individuals who are interested in knowing more about your firm can browse online. Provide a unique vanity URL like www.XYZLaw.com/JaneDoe to impress recipients.  

Personalized written letters also makes recipients feel special, especially because they likely haven’t received one in a long time.

To recognize that your company took the time out of busy operations to write a letter enhances your brand reputation. And it doesn’t actually cost you time, as there are many letter mailers you can use.

According to the USPS Household Diary Study, 42 percent of people read or scan direct mail pieces. That means that almost half of your target clients will take a few seconds to read your message.

An appealing design with a strong and relevant call-to-action may get you a substantial response rate – even 1-2% is significant.

The Power of Networking

Networking involves interacting with people to exchange information and develop contacts, especially to further your career or business. It is valuable to your firm because meeting people and building relationships provides opportunities for client leads, partnerships, speaking gigs, and referrals.

 

The Power of Networking

Lawyers at a networking event

Networking leads to your firm’s growth because it:

  • Increases your visibility and gets your face, services, and brand messaging in front of the right people
  • Allows you to stay on top of industry trends, which may give you an advantage over your competition
  • Positions you as a key influencer within your area of law, making you the “go-to” firm
  • Gives you insight into challenges your target client is facing, and allows you to present solutions for those problems
  • Allows you to recruit talent you would otherwise not be exposed to

One of the best things about networking is its affordability, which is ideal for any startup business. There are dozens of ways to network on a budget – and for free.

Schedule coffee instead of lunch; join legal and alumni association groups on Facebook and LinkedIn and attend their events; volunteer at conferences and events; host a meet and greet session at your office and allow attendees to bring a guest; practice hobbies you enjoy to meet other like-minded professionals, etc. Increase your results by requiring your employees to network on a regular basis.

Creating a Website

Your business needs a website. If you are not online, there’s a good chance you are losing clients to your competition. Informing prospects about your services should be a priority. Your clients are already browsing and searching for a firm to help solve their problems and a website allows them to find you 24/7.

Creating a Website

Lawyer Website Example

Investing in a high-quality website enhances your brand image and gives your firm an easy way to communicate with customers. Share all your up-to-date services, events, photos, and legal content with the click of a mouse.

Many factors play a role in determining the cost of a website. You may decide to use a free or cheap template and insert some basic content, or hire professionals to manage it all – from the domain purchase to website design and development.

It is best to compare at least three quotes if you plan to hire an outside vendor. If you do not currently have a website, put it at the top of your to-do list.

Search Engine Optimization (aka SEO)

SEO is a marketing discipline focused on growing visibility in organic (non-paid) search engine results. When people search for anything on Google, Bing, or Yahoo, web pages and other content (such as images and videos) are shown and ranked based on what the engine considers most relevant.

SEO matters because it allows people who are searching specifically for your services, to find you! Search engines are the highways that lead targeted traffic from the start of a search to the final destination – your website.

If search engines cannot find your site, you are missing out on opportunities to grow your business.

Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization is a great way to drive free traffic to your website

The most important SEO ranking factors include:

  • Content – A website’s content, more so than its products, is what attracts visitors. Quantity and quality is key to producing SEO-friendly content. The content should be well written, informative, interesting, and “new” – meaning new concepts and ideas, not generic information that can be found on hundreds of other sites.
  • Backlinks – The higher the number of links that lead back to your site, the higher it will rank in search engine results. Through links, engines can analyze factors such as the popularity of your site and pages, trustworthiness, authority, and spam. Backlinks are like the online version of referrals – the more other sites like what you have to offer, the more they will recommend you to their readers.
  • Optimizing for Mobile – In 2015, Google Search added mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. Visitors who view your website on their mobile devices should experience content and layout that fits their screen size, looks good, and loads quickly. If your website is already optimized for search engines, there are only a few additional factors you need to think about when optimizing for mobile.
  • Keyword Relevancy – Keywords and phrases in your content is what makes it possible for people to find your site through search engines, making it one of the most important elements of a successful SEO strategy.
  • Page Speed – Google factors in page load time to rank pages. The faster a page loads on your website, the more people you will convert into interested prospects. Pages with longer load times make visitors impatient, which can lead to them leaving your site for a competitor.

Local SEO

Local SEO is the practice of optimizing your website to rank high for users in a specific location. Results are displayed based on geographically related keywords used in the search query.

Organic SEO focuses on optimizing your website to rank high whenever someone searches for particular keywords you are targeting, and may or may not include a local element.  

Local SEO- Local 3 pack

Example of a “local 3-pack” search result on google which pops up for local search results

Local SEO results are usually labeled with customer ratings, reviews, and other information about the business including hours of operation, directions, a phone number, and address etc.

According to WordStream, 72% of consumers who did a local search visited a business within five miles of their location.

Content Marketing

Content marketing is the technique of creating and distributing valuable, relevant and consistent content to attract and acquire a defined audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action. Your law firm needs content marketing for the simple fact that it works!

Content Marketing

Content Marketing Overview

The benefits of content marketing include trust and brand awareness, higher visibility in search engines, more social media traffic from potential clients, increased conversion potential, and decreased marketing costs over time.

According to HubSpot, B2C companies that blogged 11+ times per month got more than 4X as many leads than those that blog only 4-5 times per month.

Companies that are able to evaluate the response to various pieces of content can then produce more of what customers want to read, watch, or hear.

If your budget allows, hire content professionals and freelancers to create content on a regular basis. The advantage of using content marketing for startup law firms is that it can be produced in-house without additional resources if money is tight.

Create “evergreen” content that is unlikely to change anytime soon to boost the quantity and quality of your website, while using SEO-rich keywords to improve your ranking.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising is a way of buying visits to your site, rather than attempting to “earn” those visits organically.

Advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. It takes smart and savvy effort to build a winning PPC campaign – from researching and selecting the right keywords, to organizing those keywords into campaigns and ad groups, to setting up PPC landing pages that are optimized for conversions.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Pay-Per-Click Advertising can help drive immediate traffic and relevant business to your site.

Search engines reward advertisers who create highly targeted campaigns by charging them less for ad clicks. If your ads and landing pages are useful and satisfying to users, Google charges you less per click, leading to higher profits for your business.

Using PPC offers some key advantages. If your firm is also using organic search strategies, supplementing those efforts with PPC campaigns increases your brand and presence online.

According to WordStream, 64.6% of people click on Google ads when they are looking to buy an item. Showing them what you have to offer, whether through organic or paid campaigns, presents opportunities for signing more clients.  

One of the best things about PPC is that you only pay when an interested consumer clicks your ad. You can set your budget according to your needs by capping it at a daily rate, and changing it whenever you need.

Location targeting is highly specific, and device-specific preferences let you reach your ideal client at the right time with the right ad.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising Ad Example

Pay-Per-Click Advertising Ad Example

PPC also provides immediate results and analytics. Things not going as well as you hoped? Take a look at real-time data and change any of the factors that could be the root cause – from the targeting to the campaign itself.

SEO can benefit from PPC campaigns because you’ll know which keywords are performing well, and which ones should not be used.

While PPC advertising helps with your ultimate goal of growing your firm, it is not always cheap – especially in the legal industry.

The bids on certain law-related keywords can cost you hundreds of dollars – per click!  Of course you want effective keywords and campaigns, but you also want to make sure you are investing your money wisely.

Hiring professionals with excellent PPC skills, strategies, and a thorough understanding of ad platforms may be the best solution. Play around with the system yourself, and you may lose your entire PPC budget in a few hours.

Which is Better – Organic or PPC?

It is natural to put one against the other, but the bottom line is that both organic and PPC strategies come down to search. Instead of favoring just one, the best approach may be to embrace the idea that they benefit each other.

The primary advantage of combining SEO and PPC is increased visibility on the search engine results pages (SERPs). Dominating both sets of results increases traffic tremendously and gives the impression that your practice is the dominant firm in your location or area of specialization.

Running organic and PPC campaigns also gives you more keyword data to analyze in order to optimize your overall strategy. Test out new keywords with one method and use it on the other (or get rid of it) based on its performance.

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is the process of creating content that is tailored to the setting of individual social media platforms in order to drive user engagement and sharing.

Social media marketing allows lawyers to connect directly with prospects on platforms where they are actively seeking solutions for their legal troubles. Popular social media sites include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Snapchat.

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is becoming popular within the law industry

Social media breaks down barriers and allows two parties to connect on a personal level, in as little as one interaction. It has become increasingly relevant, not only to identify and convert ideal clients but to amplify a firm’s professional reputation as a leader in its field.

According to a recent ABA Legal Technology Survey Report, 76% of law firms maintain an online presence compared to 55% in 2012.  The same survey reported that lawyers interact online for a variety of reasons including career development and networking (71%), client development (48%), keeping up with legal news (45%), and investigation for cases (24%).

There are certain platforms that work better than others for law firms.

  • Facebook is a must.  
    • According to Pew Research Center, Facebook continues to have the most engaged users – 70% log in on a daily basis, including 43% who log in multiple times per day. When marketing on Facebook, create a new page for the business. Set up the page with details such as address, numbers, hours, and provide details about your service offerings. Do not overtly “sell” – instead participate thoughtfully in relevant groups, post useful tips and legal information, and upload professional images.
  • LinkedIn is a great networking platform.
    • It allows professionals in your network to refer you to their contacts. The platform has 450 million users and lets you map your networks, organize them, grow them, nurture them, and ultimately use them for the mutual benefit of you and your connections. Create a profile that is professional and tells what you can offer. Make new connections through current connections, and participate in Groups and discussions. LinkedIn is the only major social media platform for which usage is higher among 30-49 year olds than 18-29 year olds.
  • Twitter content consumption has increased 25% in the past two years.
    • Twitter allows lawyers to reach out and connect with prospects in a way that is unique. Firms can stay visible and relevant by answering questions, posting article links that lead back to their site, and creating connections with other professionals – both inside and outside the legal profession.

Organic vs. Paid Social Media

Organic social media efforts allow companies to use free tools provided by each platform to build a social community and interact through sharing posts, responding to comments, etc.

Paid social lets businesses pay to display ads or sponsored messages for more visibility to a specific set of users. Generally, a cost is incurred each time a user clicks on the ad.

Attorneys have a higher chance of achieving KPIs by boosting posts to increase impressions and brand awareness, and the costs are much lower than PPC. Hoping that prospects find you in the confusing maze of social media may yield disappointing results.

Images are an effective way to inject color and visual appeal to an otherwise boring social media post. Users are bombarded by text, and the inclusion of images has a higher probability of catching their attention, boosting conversion rates, and increasing shares.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is a strategy of reaching out to consumers directly via electronic mail. Unlike spam, direct email marketing reaches those interested in your business’ area of expertise. No matter what you’re selling, it is a way to reach thousands of potential clients directly at a relatively low cost.

Email Marketing

Email Marketing is one of the best ways to nurture and keep you top of mind amongst your leads.

Lawyers and firms should use email marketing because it showcases your business’ message through an attractive mix of graphics, text and links directly to people who may have never heard of your business or considered your services, but are familiar and interested in your area of expertise.

When combined with other marketing channels such as direct mail, the probability of successfully filtering prospects through your sales funnel increases. According to The Direct Marketing Association, segmented and targeted emails generated 58% of all revenue.

Yelp – How Much Does it Really Help?

If you need to attract local clients to grow your firm, you need Yelp. It is a dominant online force when it comes to reviews of products and services. Yelp helps law firms market their services and makes it easier to convert clients.

You can see how your competitors are doing to decide whether you need to alter the way you market or run your business. Grow your practice by connecting with current and prospective clients on the platform.

Marketing on Yelp

Yelp is a great way to show off your client reviews

Best practices when using Yelp include:

  • Setting up your Yelp profile to include consistent details about your name, category, address, phone number, website URL, photos, important information, and the story of your business.
  • Monitoring the site on a daily basis for both positive and negative reviews. Sort the reviews by “newest to oldest” as new posts are not always visible immediately. Respond to reviews within 24 hours.
  • Managing negative reviews by remaining professional and genuine to minimize negative impressions from potential customers.
  • Responding to positive reviews only when your reply will add significant value for the reviewer or other Yelp users. Alternatively, if you want to say thanks for a good review, consider doing so privately.

Online reviews are an important decision-making tool for potential clients. The best way to get them is to ask for them in a personal manner – no mass emails, no cold calls. Consider integrating reviews into your service process to remove any awkward feelings.

It is against Yelp’s policy for businesses to explicitly ask clients for reviews. To get around this restriction, let clients know your business in on Yelp, or place a Yelp sticker at your reception desk.

The best way to get good reviews is to provide excellent service throughout your interactions with a client. As hard as you try, you may get some negative reviews.

In these instances, maintain a professional tone and respond quickly to show you are committed to addressing the problem. Instead of making excuses, create solutions to make the client feel valuable. As your firm grows, you may consider hiring an outside company to handle reputation management.

Video Marketing

Video marketing involves using video to promote your service and brand. It has become a popular part of the marketing mix and uses tools like customer testimonials, videos from live events, how-to videos, training videos, and explainer videos.

Video Marketing

An increasing number of users on the internet look for videos of your services as opposed to written content

According to Google, almost 50% of Internet users look for videos related to a product or service before making contact. Video marketing is useful for lawyers because it gives prospects a powerful first impression of your firm. It also signals that your practice is innovative and tech-savvy.  

Include videos on your webpages and upload them to sites like YouTube and Vimeo to increase your online visibility. You can even post them to your social media pages like Facebook and Twitter.

Use videos on your site to introduce yourself and the firm to potential clients and to describe how you can help them with your services.

Successful Marketing Leads to a Successful Firm

There are dozens of ways to turn your small practice into a bustling firm. A strong plan, smart budget, and the willingness to combine various techniques to find the right formula are all key factors to getting there. Hire professionals to fill in the gaps and to do things right the first time around.

Plan, execute, analyze, and measure against your KPIs to keep doing the things that work, and change what doesn’t. Doing so will also help your firm to find the best balance at different stages of its growth.