In our ‘virtual travels’ we have been speaking to lots of law firms across the region, country and internationally about their marketing strategy and pipeline of work during Covid-19.
It is important everyone stays safe, but we shouldn’t shy away from talking about marketing during this time, after all the successful nature of your firm ensures your staff are paid and families are provided for going forward.
Marketing at this time is critical, especially when there is some uncertainty in the market. Yes, there may be some areas and traditional sources of work that may slow down e.g. referrals, networking and the high street.
It’s at this very time when digital marketing is more important than ever to keep your pipeline full, even if there is a slow down for an area of service you provide there will still be people searching for advice for what work is continuing and by marketing online you’ll maximise those people finding your firm.
We’ve put together a range of ideas and feedback from what firms are focussing on and I thought it would be useful to share them with everyone.
Insight: Law Firm Marketing Strategy Changes & Actionable Tasks
• Range of online content – Keeping a constant stream of search volume targeted content is essential, in order to try and show up for exactly what questions potential clients are searching for on Google.
• Mystery shopping – Have you checked your process, phone lines and enquiry handling strategy is actually working. How are you monitoring what is coming in and converting on a daily or weekly basis? Start with a spreadsheet.
• Outsourcing telephone lines – 24 hours – If you do not already do this you should as you are potentially missing out on lots of work that could be captured by this simple service. We are receiving lots of calls after 6pm from law firm owners, partners and directors.
• Who is dealing with your new enquiries? – Are your front-line staff trained on what areas of law you can take on, who has been furloughed and where to send new enquiries? Make sure you know what is being said as work could be accidentally turned away.
• Online meeting bookings & payments – Can clients book a video meeting and pay online? This will be the new norm as lay clients have been forced into adopting video as the standard communication tool, in both their personal and professional lives.
• Digital marketing on Google (PPC- Pay Per Click) – There will be an increasing amount of people searching from home and so search volume will be on the rise. Even if you think an area of service will slow down, there are lots of opportunities. If you aren’t advertising on Google for your services, now is the time to start. PPC (Pay-Per-Click) allows you to keep the flow of leads coming in and you only spend when someone searches for advice and then clicks on your advert. There is no wasted budget from having your advertising on. We know of many firms increasing their spend and adding campaigns to help keep their firm busy during this period.
• Good chance to update your website pages – Think about using any downtime to analyse your web pages, content and edit/remove irrelevant ones. Do you have content on every area of service that you offer and do you have the SRA digital badge.
• Too much ‘Covid 19’ content – Everyone’s pumping out content, but are you actually receiving enquiries? Are you tracking? – Tracking your marketing efforts shouldn’t be painful. Modern tracking now enables you to know exactly where your marketing spend is producing a return on investment (ROI). Some firms are better off putting time and effort into generating calls and enquiries rather than content. Content is only useful is people are finding it on Google, seeing it via an email marketing strategy or if current clients are finding it insightful. If it is not generating any return, there are other options to consider.
• Diversification – Some firms are expanding their areas of work and diversifying into other complementary areas they have experience in. Ask your staff if they have experience in other types of cases that you could market.
• Future tenders – Some firms are starting to think about future Legal Aid or other tenders
• Firms are thinking about reducing office sizes – This will be on many firms mind for when lockdown ends.
• Financial billing – Cash collection and lock-up are being tested across the board. New policies and procedures are being installed in many firms.
• Firms putting recruiting on hold but re-vamping their employer branding – In today’s increasingly competitive job market, a positive employer brand is critical. Without one, hiring and retaining the best employees becomes challenging and costly. Firms will want the best, high quality employees when the time comes and attracting them directly is part of their strategy.
• There is a drive into videos/ vlogs – Now is the best time to create a library of short and snappy videos that answer client questions, but you must ensure that they are of a certain quality. Vlogging is now more important than ever as people often want to watch a video rather than reading a page of content. Videos can them be embedded in your website and put on YouTube, which can boost your SEO along with providing great content for social platforms.
• Award submissions & reviews – Whilst fewer people are submitting to the traditional directory submissions, more firms are rightly concerned about testimonials and reviews from clients being featured prominently on their website. The collection and response to reviews has been a focus for a few firms, especially public facing Google My Business reviews.
• Outsourcing legal secretarial work and paralegal work – firms are looking to reduce overheads but keep work ticking over.
• Adding key messages to their email footer – for clients, alongside cross selling messages
• Reducing staff working hours – to reduce overheads
• Adding trust signals to their website – e.g. logos from clients (with approval) & media mentions
• Payment gateways on their website – so clients can pay invoices online digitally
I hope this insight into what some firms are doing across the country and internationally helps in some way and provides food for thought for firms.
Stay safe and healthy
Ben Trott – MD at Marketing Lawyers