Does your law firm have a marketing plan? If you are a law firm or an attorney who is looking to develop or increase your legal advertising & campaign efforts, there are key things to avoid in order to decrease your margin of error and financial loss. Knowing what to do when it comes to marketing your law firm can help you alleviate random acts of advertising that leave an unjustifiable ROI, and unsuccessful time and financial resources spent on guess work. Legal advertising and business development were not covered in law school, so the disconnect is understandable. However, it can easily be avoided with some cautionary insight.
Define Your Marketing Efforts
Many attorneys get excited about advertising or recognize a dire need to increase their firm’s marketing efforts so they jump into advertisement campaigns or expend efforts without a plan or focus. If you don’t begin marketing your law firm with a clear and concise plan, your efforts will most likely fail. Of course, doing something to build your presence is more beneficial than doing nothing at all, but starting impulsively may not be what is best for your firm’s budget, resources or your time. When starting a legal marketing campaign, it is important to define the goal of the campaign. Whether you are simply building brand awareness, promoting an event, asking potential clients to contact you or educating on an important issue; your goal must be determined at the outset. Advertising is only as effective as the strategy that is built behind it. Without a strategic marketing plan creating a solid foundation, your firm’s advertising campaigns will falter in strength and affect.
Your Law Firm’s Brand Message
An integral part of creating a successful marketing plan is to envelope a brand message that is specific to your law firm. It is vital to know who you are trying to reach and what message you wish to portray. Law firms must keep their branding consistent and their message clear across all media and print campaigns. A long-winded or confusing message can be off-putting and ineffective to potential clients. Keep your brand message simple and concise so people walk away knowing exactly what you are trying to say and exactly the point you were trying to make. Inform and educate yourself as to the needs, likes and dislikes of your target client audience to ensure you are speaking to them and relating in a more effective way.
Measure Your Marketing Campaign
Measurable tracking is necessary in order to assess what efforts are successful and what is failing when it comes to advertising your law firm. Without quantifiable variables, it is almost impossible to analyze progress and create growth. Many attorneys invest thousands of dollars in legal advertising efforts however, if asked, they have could not tell you if they were effective or how many clients it produced. If law firms are running multiple campaigns at once, oftentimes they cannot differentiate between which campaign provided which leads and which to focus on or to eliminate. Within your marketing plan, it is important to ensure each campaign has a dashboard to track metrics if online, or a unique phone number if you are creating print advertising. Also, landing pages can be very effective when it comes to tracking your efforts since you can monitor how many people came to that page and if they took any action while they were visiting.
As with most things in life, good things come to those who are patient. Advertising your law firm is not a science, but rather an ongoing investment strategy. The more articulate your marketing plan is, the more efficiently you are tracking your efforts and the clearer your message is, the more likely you are to create success. However, it is important not to lose patience or motivation. Marketing your law firm is a process, and it does not happen over night. The point to remember is to always keep moving and ensure you are advertising the smart way.