As the managing partner, owner, or director of marketing for a law firm you’re tackling a pretty steep task. Finding a way to stand out amongst the noise of a competitive industry is challenging, especially in 2019. Depending on where you live, you may be competing with some pretty strong firms for dominance in both the court as well as online.

But, having a solidified digital marketing presence online helps! Any good marketing plan is made up of multiple components. It should include both paid and organic elements, strong branding plays and extremely clear messaging. Not only will this help you stand out amongst the competition, but it will help you dominate your local market. Now, the question is how.

In this blog post, you’ll find the basic steps and principles necessary to create a solid marketing plan for your firm. If you’ve ever wondered, “Where do I start?” or “What’s the most important”, then this blog post is for you.

Tip #1Go Back To Basics

Figuring out what makes your firm unique and effectively communicating it.

Any good marketing campaign starts with the messaging. If you have no idea what makes you: different, unique or special, why would your clients? In order to do so, you’ll have to go back to the drawing board. Right now, get out a sheet of paper and jot down three reasons why your firm is unique. For some, it may be the fact that your firm doesn’t charge for the first consultation. For others, it could be a specialized niche such as paternity rights.

The reason why this is so important is because messaging is everything! Before you go and waste precious marketing budget on ads, you need to know your firm’s differentiating factors. If your firm specializes in paternity rights, communicate it! If you don’t have that listed anywhere online, how will anyone know?

As you can see, your messaging hierarchy is vital to your overall marketing plan. The legal space is flooded with both established and new attorneys. Each one with their own unique skillsets and tactics.

Tip #2: SEO vs. SEM

What’s the difference and which to choose first.

As a digital marketing agency, we get asked this question all of the time. But the fact of the matter is that it varies based on many factors.

Let’s say that you’re looking to become a nationally recognized firm. In this scenario, your firm is a relatively new (about 5 years old), but you’ve just won a huge settlement for personal injury. Now, you’re looking to capitalize on your recent success. An ideal strategy would be to build your on-page and off-page SEO, utilizing backlinks to ranker higher in the search engines. As you can see, gaining brand / domain authority doesn’t cost anything. However, it can become time consuming.

If you’re a smaller firm who’s only looking to dominate your local market, then SEM is your answer. SEM is defined as search engine marketing. It is your typical, “pay to play” strategy. This includes everything from Facebook & YouTube Ads to PPC (pay-per-click) and Google Ads. PPC allows you to get in-front of your ideal clients, right when they’re searching. This can lead to immediate results as opposed to longer-term results such as SEO.

Tip #3: Start With Your Website

After all, it is your online storefront.

When was the last time that you updated your website. Does it still contain information that was relevant three years ago? In the online world, that’s equivalent to three decades!

You don’t have to completely revamp your website. But the information should be current and to-date. It should include all of the pertinent information such as: areas of practice, office locations, office hours, etc.

What if you got a phone call from an SEO lead that said, “Hi yes, I was looking for a family law attorney in Chicago”. However, you closed your office in Chicago and no longer practice family law. That’s a wasted lead that is now going to go elsewhere for her legal needs.

You must keep your website current and up to date!

If you’re looking for additional information, or would like to speak with us regarding how to market your law firm online, give us a call!