Growing at your own pace: How targeted digital marketing can keep your firm competitive
Solo and small law firms understand that marketing is a part of the business of law. Marketing helps you attract and retain clients, and build your brand as a trusted legal resource — so how do you build a plan that’s right for you? As with any business strategy, your marketing plan starts with goals.
|Where’s my roadmap?
|Where does digital marketing come in?
|How do I create a digital marketing strategy for my law firm?
|Get started on your strategic marketing plan
Where’s my roadmap?
As the old saying goes, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.” To get where you want to go, make goals your roadmap. By strategically reflecting on how you want to grow your firm, you can set a course to follow. Possible law firm goals include:
- Increase billable hours
- Attract new clients
- Improve repeat business
- Enhance your professional reputation
- Add additional attorneys to your staff
- Reduce administrative costs
Consider these (and other goals) before you set your strategy. Make sure your goals are S-M-A-R-T (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based). These criteria have been around for over 40 years and have been widely used in business settings, including law firms.
Where does digital marketing come in?
With integrated digital marketing and advertising, your firm can speak directly to prospective and current clients where they are — online. Digital marketing (and increasingly, artificial intelligence) is a great equalizer in the legal profession. You may be a small law firm, but your digital presence can show your full-service abilities in a professional way that lets clients know they can trust you to handle their needs.
An integrated plan means harnessing the power of multiple digital tactics to connect with potential clients. It also ensures your message is consistent across all those channels so there’s no confusion about what your brand stands for. For instance, the tone and style of your website should be the same as that of your social media presence. When consumers recognize your brand in your messaging, it creates a connection.
Your digital marketing plan may include some or all of these tactics:
- Social media
- Content and blogs
- Search engine optimization
- Online directories
- Pay-per-click advertising
- Email campaigns
- Online chat or call-answering services
The beauty of digital legal marketing is that it can be targeted and scalable. Are you focused solely on a single practice area? Your plan can reflect that. Do you want to attract clients that are in your local metro area? Geo-targeting can make that happen. Do you have the capacity to add 10 to 50% more clients? You can scale your digital efforts to match your availability. This handy law firm growth calculator can help.
How do I create a digital marketing strategy for my firm?
Your ideal marketing strategy allows you to show a targeted audience who you are and what it’s like to work with you. Start with these steps:
- Determine your target audience
- Select which digital marketing tool(s) will help you find that audience
- Decide on your budget
- Build your brand’s key messages
- Test, test, test
Because you may need to adjust your strategy based on changing needs, like your budget or any technology tools, think of it as a dynamic document that should be reviewed regularly.
Get started on your strategic marketing plan
Executing a strong, integrated digital marketing plan requires some effort — and too often, solo or small law attorneys who are busy managing cases and handling administrative tasks are left with little time and energy to devote to marketing. Fortunately, this is where FindLaw’s free marketing resources or consultant can help. Together, you can set a plan to grow at a pace you feel comfortable with and at a budget that works for you.
The FindLaw team can also deliver detailed analytics reports so you can track the success of your plan in real time while helping you assure your firm’s brand message remains consistent — ultimately keeping all your digital marketing tactics under one roof.
To learn more about optimizing your firm’s legal marketing strategy, download our complimentary guide on research, ROI, and refinement and start making informed decisions today.