5 Ways Law Firm Owners Can Get Better Sleep aka. Legal Marketing

Where is the work going to come from? Anyone else lay awake at night wondering? For anyone running a Law Firm, Legal Technology Startup or Legal Services business this is a fundamental question and the reason for many a restless night. We know, we've been there ourselves.

So when we speak about legal marketing we're not doing it because you need to tick another box. We're doing it because it's fundamentally important to help you resolve the questions that keep you up at night. At the heart of your legal marketing and branding efforts is a desire to have these questions answered, so you can get on with being the lawyer or business person you want to be.

Have a read of the following 5 ways and then join us in the comments for some good old fashioned discussion!

Which brings us to...

Drumroll please!  The 5 Legal Marketing Tips for growing firms (sorry, the 5 Ways You Can Get a Better Night's Sleep!!). Each of these 5 go together to help you attract more of the type of clients you want and grow your business.

  • Be “the expert” with great content

  • Use social media to build trust

  • Know your numbers to know what works

  • Grow referrals through better relationships

  • Don't be forgotten by being consistent

Be the expert with great content

Why create content? What is the purpose of it all?

Primarily, it's to be seen as an expert. It's to be known as “the person” to go to when the proverbial hits the fan or the big deal needs to be done. And ultimately it's to enable that person to want to engage your services.

Writing blogs, making podcasts, writing Instagram posts, doing videos... whatever content you're making for your business, the primary goal has to be to communicate your competence and give value.

 legal marketing

legal marketing

How do you do that?

By making things that your client wants to consume, that is of the highest possible quality, and leaves them viewing you as the expert.

Everyone approaches content differently, but for us it's:

Value + Quality + Consistency + Uniqueness = Expertise.

If you're not making things that give the end user value, if it's not of the highest quality, if it's not consistent and if you don't have a unique voice... you can't be an expert. You can't stand out and be remembered.

Drop any one of these things, and the impact of your content diminishes.

On the flip side, nail these things and you're known as having value and being valuable. You become the "go to person" in your niche, which is where you want to be if you want to attract more work.

Use social media to build trust

A big part of the equation when developing your client relationships is trust. We all talk about it, but what does it mean practically and how can I nurture it?

One great way is through content, however you still need people to find it, and that's where social media comes in.

Using the different social media channels appropriately for your business and targeting those that work for you is absolutely critical. There's no point in “just being on” Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter if you have no specific strategy for each platform. Each is different, the audience engages differently, the content itself needs to be different, and you can target a different outcome.

 legal marketing

legal marketing

For instance, we use Instagram to talk about how we help firms move beyond billables with their content, marketing and strategy. We find that is the best place to engage with our potential partners, the small to medium size firms who are doing something great that we want to help grow. On the other hand, we use Facebook to talk about our brand more generally, and engage with “employed” lawyers who might be interested in our online programs and courses. Quoting Ghost Busters “Don't Cross the Streams!!!”, we can't be everything for everyone on every platform, so we focus.

For your legal marketing efforts that could mean making one platform a focus around your people, another a focus around your services, and another a focus on your general brand. It's different for everyone, that's why getting some help is so important because it isn't easy, but it is necessary.

Whatever you decide to do, each platform gives you the opportunity to build trust and break down the barriers for clients to engage with your business.

 legal marketing

legal marketing

Know your numbers to know what works

We see a lot of firms start up and they think ok I need to go drop $20,000 on a perfect website. Classically then they do it but have no idea 6 months later who goes to the site, how people use the site, and if it is ROI positive. Whatever your branding and marketing efforts it is important that you stay on top of the numbers. That could simply mean checking Google Analytics, or it could mean actually taking the time to understand what return your Ad Words campaign is giving you.

Knowing the numbers doesn't mean having to do everything, but if you don't know what is going on with your business, how can you possibly make decisions that are good for it? Understanding the ways clients engage with your firm, where they come from, in what numbers and how it works together is critical so you can keep improving and spending money where it works.

If you're using a marketing agency, or have anyone helping you internally, it's important that you get your head around what the numbers mean and are regularly kept up to date. If you don't know how many clients are converting off your Ad word spend, why are you spending the money?

Grow referrals through better relationships

For the vast majority of small to medium size firms referrals are the life blood of their business. But do you have a set strategy for getting more or building more relationships that lead to them?

Building mutually beneficial relationships is absolutely critical if you're going to grow your referral business. That could just mean giving the other side great content so they value you, or it could mean referring people their way as well.

This won't happen by accident. There are very few people who naturally attract work without having to do the hard yards building one on one relationships of trust.

There are lots of ways to start:

  • Go to industry events (both legal and the industry of the referees)

  • Grow your relationships with other law firms and lawyers

  • Put on events or webinars to give value back

  • Create other content that your potential referee finds valuable.

We strongly believe that some of the lowest “hanging fruit” with getting more referrals is simply having more relationships within the legal industry itself. That is what we are trying to achieve with Beyond Billables- to create a means over time by which our partners can all connect to each other, and facilitate collaboration and referrals.

Whatever your approach, make sure you have one. Make sure you are spending the evenings “in the room”. It takes work, but it is a great way to ultimately build your referral business.

Be consistent to be remembered

The last tip today is one of the most powerful whatever your legal marketing strategy. Be consistent.

If you want to be seen as the expert, you need to be putting out enough content consistently enough for people to never forget.

Sadly, as much as we may hope it was different, we all forget. We all tend to make decisions based around what is in front of us at a certain point in time. The old adage “out of site out of mind” is a real thing. It's why you need to be consistent and always in the front of mind. That little burst of blog writing activity 3 months ago might be fresh in your mind, but if your client hasn't heard from you since do you think it's front of theirs?

Being consistent could just mean getting your own client email newsletter going.

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Once or twice a month just sending your clients some content that they will value can make a huge difference in staying relevant.

We have seen this first hand. With EA International we published random posts every 4-6 weeks... barely put anything on social and were just plain inconsistent. Since moving to a much broader social strategy putting out multiple pieces of content we've gone from unknown, to over 30,000 interactions with our brand each month. Most of you didn't even know us a year ago, and now we're known throughout the profession. That might be one extreme, but the big thing for us was becoming consistent, and that is a lesson anyone can learn no matter your intentions.

What's next?

Maybe you read that and are now thinking, wow that sounds like a lot of work. Well it is. But that is what we're hear to help you with. Tailored legal marketing solutions to help you be seen as a trusted expert. If you wake up at 3am worrying about where your work is going to come from, or how you take your firm to the next level, book in a time to chat about how we can help.