Top 10 Content Marketing Tips for Your Law Firm
Let's be honest: advertising your legal practice can be difficult to afford. Law-related keywords consistently rank among the most expensive to bid on. Placing a Google ad for the word “attorney,” for example, will set you back almost $50 for every single click to your website.
Fortunately, a number of opportunities exist that allow you to spread the word and increase your credibility without blowing through your budget. Among them, content marketing may be the most effective in helping you gain new clients.
Of course, as is the case with any promotional strategy, content marketing needs to be strategic in order to be successful. To join the litany of small businesses who are successfully embracing this philosophy, here are our top 10 content marketing strategies for law firms.
1) Establish Your Thought Leadership
Content marketing is at its best when you can build thought leadership in the eyes of your audience. In fact, almost every piece of content you publish should be written and designed with this outcome in mind.
By using the below tactics, you can distinguish yourself from your competition as potential clients will become more likely to look to you for advice.
Your goal is to become a resource akin to the D&O Diary, a blog established by liability lawyer Kevin LaCroix that has become so popular among managers, it was named one of the best legal blogs around.
2) Start a Blog
The D&O Diary also happens to be an example of perhaps the most fundamental content marketing strategy: business blogging. By establishing and running a regular blog, you build a natural platform for any of the content we discuss in more detail below.
You can also optimize your blog for search engines, ensuring high rankings for relevant blog posts on related search terms. Instead of having to pay almost $50 per click, you can get those same clicks for nothing but the cost of publishing posts on the same keyword.
Business and law blogs, of course, have to be run strategically. That means regular content, along with an understanding of the type of structure that attracts and keeps the attention of your potential clients. Do it right, and you can unlock the many benefits of business blogging.
3) Take Advantage of LinkedIn
If you are like most of your peers, you probably already use LinkedIn personally. In fact, a 2014 study found that 60% of lawyers log into LinkedIn at least once per week, making it the most-used social network in the legal profession.
But what most of them don't yet realize is the marketing power of the most professional social network.
On LinkedIn's thousands of groups, you can find audiences interested in the type of legal advice you have to share.
You can answer questions directly, or seek out potential clients using the network's extensive prospecting tools.
Of course, you can also publish thought leadership posts on LinkedIn's Pulse feature.
4) Answer Questions
When potential clients have a question related to your legal niche, they google it. When Google doesn't return satisfactory results, they go to one of the countless websites available where they can get legal experts to answer to their individual queries.
Quora, for example, has countless legal topics that could be relevant for you.
Monitoring these networks for new questions allows you to chime in and become an authoritative voice in the process.
5) Highlight Case Stories
Social proof works, regardless of industry.
In the legal profession, it can be particularly powerful.
Committing to a lawyer is a big decision, and one your clients won't make lightly. Reading about others like them having successfully gone through the process can ease their decision.
Testimonials on your website are a start. But if you want to really take advantage of social proof, consider publishing extensive case studies for some of your landmark cases.
Of course, you'll have to be mindful of the legal implications and confidentiality agreements. But sharing even the broad outlines of a case you have won for past clients gives their future counterparts one more reason to choose your firm as their legal representation.
6) Introduce Your Team
Sometimes, all it takes for potential clients to choose you is to better understand the faces behind the law firm that will actually do work for them.
From the front desk attendant to the partners, they may get in touch with a number of personnel within your practice. Let them know who they'll be dealing with through content marketing.
These introductions can come in the form of videos or blog posts that highlight the personal sides along with professional expertise of your team members.
You might also want to consider guest blog posts by everyone on your team, raising the thought leadership of not just the practice as a whole but each of the professionals working for it.
7) Cover Industry News
Don't keep your content to your own practice. Instead, consider covering major news and current cases as they relate to your legal expertise.
This strategy requires following the news quickly, and offering your professional opinion on an item while it's in the public discussion.
Don't just rehash the news; instead, offer a unique take about the ways in which it could affect your clients' lives.
8) Explain Legal Intricacies
You might be an expert in your legal niche, but your clients are not.
In fact, that's the precise reason they're looking to work with you. Rather than confusing them with jargon and in-depth law discussions, consider writing articles that seek to explain legal issues and intricacies to individuals without a law degree.
You might, for example, answer frequently asked questions in your profession.
Another option is to publish regular 'legal dictionary' posts that explain common legal teams.
Make law understandable for your audience, and they'll appreciate you for it.
9) Go Visual
Regardless of industry, visuals sell content marketing.
In fact, countless studies now show presenting your content visually can significantly enhance its exposure as well as your audience's attention span.
For your law firm, that means embracing visual media:
- Videos may do a better job at introducing your team
- Infographics can break down complex issues into more simple points
- Photos can break up otherwise dense posts
10) Keep it Fun
To succeed online, you need to be interesting. Our online attention span is now shorter than that of a goldfish, and starting each blog post with a complex legal discussion — even when explained without jargon — will do little to improve that length.
Sometimes, simply writing and publishing about pop culture items can do the trick.
Law and the Multiverse, for example, is an entire website dedicated to discussing the legal implications of superheroes and supervillains.
Ever wonder how immigration law may play into the upcoming Star Wars movie? Write about it as part of your content marketing strategy! Keeping your content fun relates your law firm to your audience, and keeps them coming back for more.
Building a Successful Content Marketing Strategy
Done right, content marketing can do wonders in helping your law firm increase exposure, gain credibility, and attract new clients.
Of course, simply starting to write content without a plan may not lead to that desired success.
And that's where most law firms still lack. A 2014 survey found that while the majority of law firms do use some of the above tactics, only 25% of them actually have a documented content strategy in place.
If you truly want to grow your practice, a strategy that keeps each tactic consistent and working toward the same goal is crucial.
Every tactic should be geared toward building both thought leadership and credibility. It's the only way to ensure your considerable efforts put into content marketing will ultimately pay off.