3 Marketing Trends for Firms to Leave Behind in 2014

Feel like making a major shift in your law firm marketing philosophy? Over the past year I’ve worked with attorneys across the country on improving their online marketing. I’m convinced that a few outdated ideas and practices are limiting the success of some firms. It’s time for a change.

To help you adjust, I’ve listed some concrete tasks that should help you shift your perspective and put you in position to gain more clients next year. So do yourself a favor before you close the books on 2014 and leave these notions behind:

  1. Thinking your website is all you need
    People don’t have to visit your site to learn about your firm. Today’s web users can get your phone number right from a search engine results page. They’re picking through a salad bar of social media posts, crowd-sourced reviews, mobile apps and more. Your website still provides the core information, but you need to recognize that many of the places your clients gather information about you are not owned by you. Think bigger in 2015 and stop confusing an ingredient for a meal.

    Task:
    Make a map of your online footprint. Search for your firm name, your name and contact information. Make a note of how many information sources exist beyond your own law firm website. Also, download Legal Marketing 101 to read up on integrated marketing for law firms.
  2. Selling all the time
    ABC – Always Be Closing. We’ve all heard this little gem before but earning new clients requires a lot of trust, not sales pitches. Unfortunately, most law firms are afraid to have a conversation that doesn’t drive straight towards the end zone. Put that fear behind you and trust me, you’ll gain more clients in the long run if you stop selling all the time and focus on building relationships.

    Task:
    Identify three traits that define your brand beyond legal services. Then write one blog post about each, but don’t include a sales pitch. By focusing on something other than selling, you’re likely to write something that sounds more honest and approachable.
  3. Googling yourself (and sweating the results)
    “Personal Injury Lawyer Manhattan” is a simple, clear, specific search query. It’s also nothing like the typical searches that users run these days. Modern users are using far more natural language and detail in their searches. Leave your rank fixation in 2014 and stop worrying about where you place on unrealistic searches.

    Task:
    Read our white paper on search Then document the questions your own clients ask throughout the year. Use their specific situations and words to tailor your content and SEO accordingly.

If any of these notions apply to you, it’s time to make a plan to move on in 2015. It’s difficult and nerve-wracking to shift your perspective on things that used to be fundamental, but flexibility is a long-established business skill – and one your firm should exercise in the New Year. And if you need some help developing a plan, download Legal Marketing 101, the free playbook from FindLaw.

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