Take your law firm's presence to the next level with content marketing!
History of the Law Blog
Rise of Law Blogging and Legal News on the Internet
Once the "blog" became an entity on the internet, many topic-themed blogs arose. In the early 1990s, some of the first blogs dedicated to legal content were created by lawyers interested in giving written commentary on legal issues they considered newsworthy.
For example, in 2002, Tom Goldstein and Amy Howe founded SCOTUSblog, a husband and wife team who are both lawyer. The blog "covers the U.S. Supreme Court comprehensively, without bias and according to the highest journalistic and legal ethical standards." Anyone interested in U.S. Supreme Court cases can turn to SCOTUSblog for information about writs of certiorari, oral arguments, and decisions. Indeed, as the founders of SCOTUSblog explain, “the blog generally reports on every merits case before the court at least three times: before the argument, after the argument, and after the decision."
A few years later, in 2006, Above the Law was founded and began posting stories about legal news, law schools, and issues of interest to law students and lawyers. Some sources describe Above the Law as a legal website, while others have referred to it as a "legal gossip blog." It has provided many different types of readers, over the last nearly 15 years, with information about newsworthy court cases, law school rankings, and other related information.
Online Marketing for Law Firms and the Blawg
As news blogs grew in popularity through the late 1990s and early 2000s, various companies began creating and using blogs to market their businesses. Law firms, too, started to get in on the action. An article published in DC Bar in 2005, designed for lawyers in the Washington, D.C., area, began with the simple question: "Do you blog?" Then, blogs were not particularly common for law firms, yet some lawyers had begun to recognize their marketing potential. In 2001, Denise Howell, a technology lawyer, was one of the first attorneys to start this legal blog and coined the term "blawg." Get it? It's a blog about the law—a "blawg." Yet four years later, many firms needed a nudge to start blogging.
However, blogging has caught on relatively quickly for lawyers and firms, especially as they learn to market themselves in new ways through social media and internet technologies. As more law firms began creating their blogs and drafting legal content, marketing companies started considering blogging platforms designed specifically for those law firms. While many firms use Hubspot, SmartDesk, WordPress, and other platforms that are not law-specific, several platforms have arisen that are designed particularly for law firm blogs, such as AttorneySyn, JurisPage, and MyCase.
State of the Legal Blogging Industry Up to the Present
Recognizing the industry of the legal blog, Above the Law created a conference designed specifically for legal bloggers, marketers, law firms, and anyone else involved in the industry of the "blawg." The Attorney@Blog Conference started In 2014 and has featured many panels and participants. For example, the conference has provided on-site CLE courses for lawyers and panels of interest to specific groups of attorneys like the LGBT Bar Association. Yet it has also offered panels for businesses, marketing firms, and technology companies that could have a stake in legal blogging.
The American Bar Association (ABA) currently maintains a list of active legal blogs in the U.S., described as the ABA Journal Blawg Directory. To give you a sense of the expansiveness of the legal blogging industry in the U.S. alone, the directory includes more than 4,500 law blogs that are "continually updated." Canadian legal bloggers may know about the "Clawbies," or annual awards given to Canadian legal blogs.
In 2020, legal blogs have become more popular among lawyers, law students, journalists, legal commentators, and public readers. If you've seen any news stories about the relevance of certain U.S. Supreme Court cases, for example, you might have run a quick search for a case only to see a website like SCOTUSblog pop up as the first link in the list to click. Or, if you've looked on the internet for information about a particular legal issue, you may have been directed to a law firm's blog, seeking to interest potential new clients and to establish the firm's expertise in that particular area of the law. In short, legal blogs are extremely prevalent on the internet in 2020, and many different kinds of readers visit them. Some of those "blawgs" are intended to expand public knowledge, while others are designed as marketing tools for a law firm. And those aims, of course, are not the only ones for creators of law blogs.
If you are involved in the legal industry in any capacity, developing a blog can be beneficial in various ways and ultimately may reach thousands of readers. More than ever, legal blogs allow readers to gain information about legal issues and law firms with just a few clicks.
Learn more by reading our comprehensive blog on The History of Legal Blogging.
Why Start a Legal Blog?
Whether you have had a website for your law firm for quite some time and are thinking about overhauling your online presence or are in the early stages of creating a website for your law firm, it's a good time to start thinking about a legal blog. You might think that a legal blog will take up a significant amount of time and might not do much for your business in the long run. However, law firm blogs can be a key element of online marketing. Not only can a legal blog draw in potential clients and provide them with information about your knowledge and experience, but law firm blogs can also demonstrate your ability to stay current in the field and engage in dialogue with other lawyers working on similar cases and complex legal issues. So, why start a legal blog? We have helpful information about online marketing, creating an internet presence, and attracting readers to your law firm.
Blogs Are an Effective Marketing Tool
If you're just learning about online marketing for your law firm, you should know that blogs can be an extremely effective marketing tool. Unlike a hardcopy publication, your firm might put out billboard or television advertisements your firm might pay to have produced. Blogs are incredibly flexible. They can give you great control over how you ultimately market your law firm to the public. To be sure, while print and television advertising materials are, in effect, set once they're printed and released, you'll be able to update your blog as often as you want and make revisions or additions wherever you see fit.
For example, if you post a series of blogs and later learn more about search engine optimization (SEO) and keywords, you can update the blog post accordingly. Similarly, if there is an update to a recent case you blogged about, you can add an update to the page that clarifies the current law on the issue. No matter what kinds of revisions, deletions, or additions you want to make, a blog gives you the flexibility to do so without limiting your internet presence.
Legal Blogs Can Help Your Firm to Develop an Online Presence
Speaking of internet presence, a blog allows you to build an online presence and, thus, build your law firm's business. The more you're "findable" on the internet, the more likely people will recognize your law firm's name and think of your practice when seeking legal representation or are lawyers themselves considering a move to a different firm.
Bring Potential Clients to Your Website
Your blog is a great way to bring potential clients and visitors to your law firm's website. A potential client is looking for legal information or representation in a specific field. In that case, that potential client probably doesn't know how to search for your firm. However, a potential client may search on Google or another search engine for information about their legal issue. The more legal blogs you write based on a specific legal topic or issue, the more likely you will appear in that potential client's search results.
For each legal blog post you create, you will give yourself one more chance to appear in an internet user's search results. While you'll certainly need to learn more about SEO and how to ensure that search engines are crawling and indexing your blog posts, each new piece of content provides another opportunity to get "found" when someone types a keyword or keyphrase into a Google search bar.
Create Shareable Content
The more legal blogs you write, the better your chances of having those individual blog posts shared on social media. And the more you share on social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, the better the chances are that someone will learn about your law firm. The more people learn about your law firm and look into your case record and commitment to your clients, the more business you'll likely get.
To be sure, blogs are perfect for sharing on social media. Whether crafting evergreen blogs that can be useful to readers for some time or writing newsworthy pieces about recent case decisions or legislation, you'll be putting information out there to attract readers who click the link to your blog. When you craft your blogs carefully and include links to your law firm's website, those blog readers may click on the link to reach your law firm's website. From there, that reader can contact you to learn more about seeking advice or representation for a particular legal matter.
Show That Your Law Firm Has Its Finger on the Pulse of Current Legal Issues
Blogs can show potential clients, potential new hires, and other lawyers in the same field that your firm has its finger on current legal issues. While any legal commentary you include in your blog posts won't be peer-reviewed or appear in a law review issue or another legal journal, the blogging format still allows you to show that you're a leader in the field and engage in dialogue with other practitioners. Whether you're writing an analysis of a recent court decision or considering how a new law is likely to be applied, you can show your readers that you stay up-to-date on legal questions and issues in your field and that you're prepared to engage in in-depth analysis when it comes to significant legal matters.
Attract Interest from Potential New Hires
If you're hoping to expand your law firm and hire new associates, your blog can be a great way to attract attention. A law blog can show potential new hires that you stay up-to-date on legal matters relevant to your practice, and it can also demonstrate that you understand what it takes to run a successful law firm in the twenty-first century. While technology and an online presence may not have been necessary even a decade ago, they're almost essential now for all smaller and mid-size law firms.
When considering starting a legal blog for your law firm, you must consider various logistical and technical issues. Indeed, you'll need to choose a platform and consider web design, you'll want to create a blogging calendar with varied topics that are spaced out over time for the most influence and internet traffic, and you will want to learn more about how SEO works, and how to make your blog and your firm's website easily "findable" by potential clients. Yet all these issues will come once you decide to start your legal blog. Once you've realized just how important a legal blog can be for your firm—the "why"—you'll want to begin working on actually getting your law blog up and running.
You can read more about why you should start one in our post titled Why Start a Law Blog?
How to Start a Legal Blog
Register Your Domain Name
A basic and essential first step for any law firm blog is registering a legal blog's domain name. Before you do so, I would like to know why you need a domain name. A domain name is a unique address for your law firm's blog. It's the web address that any user will enter into the browser bar to search for your legal blog, and it's the web address that will show up in that browser address bar when someone clicks on the homepage for your blog. For example, a domain name might be something like: MyLawBlog.com. You might be asking yourself: isn't this my website? Knowing the difference between a domain name and a website is important. The domain name is the internet address for your website, while your website is the content people can read (i.e., your blogs).
Next, you'll need to consider whether you want a separate domain name for your blog or whether you will want a subdomain within your law firm's website. A separate domain name would be something like the example above: MyLawBlog.com. A subdomain or subfolder within your law firm's website is slightly different. If your law firm already has the domain name SmithLawFirm.com, then a subdomain for your blog would be something like blog.SmithLawFirm.com, while a subfolder would have an address such as SmithLawFirm.com/blog.
There are benefits and limitations to both approaches. Both can have backlinks to your other blog posts and can link to your law firm's content. Sometimes, a subdomain or subfolder can be better for search engine optimization (SEO). Still, the American Bar Association (ABA) and local ethics rules for marketing or advertising may place additional limits on blogs as subdomains or subfolders instead of stand-alone domains.
Set Up Web Hosting for Your Law Firm's Blog.
After registering your domain name, you must set up web hosting for your legal blog. If you already have a website for your law firm, you may know a bit about a web host or a web hosting service provider. In brief, a web hosting service provider is a business that houses your website and allows it to be viewable to readers on the internet. A web hosting service provider gives your website a "home" of sorts on the internet. Without a web hosting service, it can be difficult for potential clients to search for your website or to locate any of the blogs you will be posting. Accordingly, your blog may not reach its intended audience without a suitable web hosting service.
In sum, a web hosting service provides the technology that allows the content you create to find the readers you imagine for your blog posts. You can choose from a wide variety of web hosting service providers. Some web hosting services require you to have purchased a domain name in advance, while others allow you to buy a domain name from the web hosting service. As discussed above, you'll want to consider whether a separate domain name is best for your law blog instead of a subdomain or subfolder connected to your law firm's website. For many firms, starting a blog can be a catalyst for overhauling your law firm's website and working with a better web hosting service provider.
Know the ABA, CBA, and Local Rules for Blogging Ethics.
We want to move beyond technical matters for creating a law blog to developing content. The American Bar Association (ABA), the Canadian Bar Association (CBA), and other national organizations for lawyers have ethics rules and requirements for advertising or marketing. Many of these rules apply to law blogs. In addition, the state or province where you are licensed to practice law likely has its own set of ethics rules for marketing and advertising.
You want to avoid running afoul of the ethics rules that limit what you can put in a law blog. Most of these rules relate to promises you might make to potential clients about outcomes, revealing information about past cases without obtaining consent, or advertising expertise in an area of the law without requisite certification.
Develop a Roadmap for Your Posts.
Certainly, you can simply begin writing a legal blog with content for your firm once you have the technical aspects in place, from registering a domain name to setting up web hosting for the blog. Yet the best law firm blogs—as with any business blog—begin with a clear framework. When preparing for a negotiation or a trial, you know how important it is to have an overarching narrative with key points you want to convey to your audience. The same is true for your law firm's blog. As such, you'll want to think through a roadmap for the content you want to create before you develop it. As you assemble a roadmap, remember that nothing on a blog is set in stone. Unlike print publications, you can and should make revisions to improve and update the content as warranted by changing circumstances.
- Know why you are starting a blog for your firm: When you are in the early stages of starting a law blog and are beginning to think about the type of content you want to create, you should keep the “why” in mind—why are you blogging? Your blog topics should speak to that “why” in distinct ways, and you should think about different types of blogs that can help you to reach your goals. For example, some blogs may be “evergreen” posts that are not time-specific or newsworthy, but rather answer potential client questions that your readers may continue to have for many months and years to come. On the flip side, you may consider blogging about newsworthy legal issues that could draw clients interested in joining a new class action claim, for example, to your firm.
- Consider your reader: Always keep your reader in mind. If you are blogging for potential clients, you want to think about the persona of that client and what type of information that potential client is seeking. You can also take advantage of certain “readability” tools, for example, provided by your web hosting service to ensure that your content is suited for your reader.
- Think about your voice and tone: As you consider your reader, make sure your voice and tone have that potential client in mind. Most likely, a potential client without any background in the law does not want to read legalese. Rather, most potential clients will want to know that you have the requisite knowledge to assist them while also being able to explain legal issues and answers to legal inquiries in a straightforward fashion.
Creating a Blog Calendar
You should create a blog posting calendar in which you think about the specific content of your upcoming blogs and schedule them for publication. As mentioned above, you'll want a roadmap that helps you target your ideal reader. In so doing, you'll want to plan out a series of blog posts that answer your reader's questions, inform them of specific legal issues they may be seeking, and ultimately explain why your firm is in an excellent position to help them.
As you develop the roadmap for your blog posts, you should integrate your posting calendar. As with any good piece of legal writing, you'll want to think about the order of the blog posts and how they relate. Only schedule your blogs to post at a time, but instead, consider a calendar in which 2-3 blogs post each week.
Write and Publish the First Blog Post
The final step in starting a blog for your law firm is writing and publishing your first post. If you do not see immediate results from your law blogs, you should not necessarily worry. Blogging is a long-term investment, and it can take months (and sometimes years) before your content begins to generate the type of interest you want, and in the end, the investment in time and energy will be worth it. Many marketing firms offer services to law firms seeking to expand their internet presence and can discuss your options for starting your law blog.
Find more tips and tricks in our full blog on Starting a Legal Blog.
How Many Legal Blog Posts Are Enough?
When you start a blog for your law firm (or for any business, for that matter), you are probably wondering about the "right" number of blogs to post each week or every month. Generally speaking, the number of blogs you need to serve your firm's needs will depend on what you hope to accomplish with your blog. For any blog goals, you'll need to plan to post regularly so that readers will see fresh content. Yet you'll also need to consider various other issues when developing a blogging calendar.
Although there is no hard and fast answer to inquiries about "how many blog posts are enough," there are considerations you should consider as you plan the content that will appear on your blogs. As for the content itself, we've got some ideas in our Law Firm Content Blog.
Keeping Your Legal Content Fresh
You'll need to have sufficiently regular posts to show readers that you're developing new and fresh content. Even if you can't stick to a schedule in which you produce several blogs per week or a dozen or more posts per month, you'll want to—at the very least—post regularly so that you do not have a blog with months-old material. If you advertise your firm online and a potential client clicks on your website to learn more, having an up-to-date blog can only help. You can imagine that a client who clicks on your blog could be dismayed if you haven't posted in months or, as is sometimes the case, years. Show your readers and potential clients that you're currently in the field and engaged in conversations about current legal issues.
So, in sum, when you're trying to decide how many blogs to post each week or each month, it's ultimately most important to ensure that you're posting something regularly. Once you're committed to regular posting, you can start thinking about the optimum number of blog posts per week or month.
Increasing Organic Traffic and Generating Leads through Frequent Posting
As we mentioned above, the frequency of your blog posting does matter. The more blog posts you produce regularly, the better your chances of increasing organic traffic to your firm's site and generating more leads. Even if your firm cannot currently create more than a dozen posts per month, the frequency of blogging will, in part, play a significant role in the amount of traffic your blog receives. The more organic traffic to your site, the more leads you may get. If you are blogging with potential clients as a target audience, blogging frequently.
Should I Plan a Weekly or Monthly Number of Posts?
As you're considering the ideal number of blog posts, you might be wondering whether you should measure weekly or monthly. Posting weekly can help show you're engaged in the field and keep your content fresh. Having weekly posts does not necessarily mean that you'll need to create a particular number of content pieces every week. However, if you develop a blogging calendar up front, you can create a backlog of posts allowing you to schedule blogs to go live on certain days of the week.
Ultimately, most search engine optimization (SEO) work focuses on the total number of monthly blog posts on your site. For example, Hubspot looks at the total traffic that websites receive based on monthly posts. Regarding the number of monthly posts, Hubspot reports that blogs publishing 16 or more posts per month tend to get about 3.5 times as much traffic as blogs that only post about four blogs per month. If you think about those numbers in a weekly format, the data says that you'll need to post more than one blog per week if you want to drive traffic to your site and, optimally, that you'll need to post four or more blogs per week to get the maximum amount of traffic.
Even if you can't commit to four posts per week, Hubspot data suggests that more than one post per week is better than just one post per week. Blogs with ten or more monthly posts see at least three times the traffic as blogs with only one or two posts. You should be thinking about the total number of monthly posts (and aiming for 12-16 per month if possible). Still, you should design your blogging calendar to post weekly or at least regularly. This is the key takeaway: a higher blogging frequency is more beneficial to your firm in driving traffic to your site and generating more leads.
Creating More Indexed Pages for Search Engines
Why do you want to create 12-16 posts per month? You might think this seems like a lot of writing for a blog. In short, the more indexed pages you have, the better the chances that your blog will appear on first-page Google searches or even show up first in a Google search when a client seeks information related to your firm. For a sense of the importance of indexed pages, businesses with more than 400 blog posts have almost double the internet traffic of blogs with fewer indexed pages. While your page might not reach this point immediately, you should consider ways of creating more indexed pages in the coming year or two.
Speaking of planning a year out or more for your blog, we want to emphasize that you shouldn't expect your initial blog posts to drive all the traffic to your page. A blog can take months, sometimes even longer, to generate significant traffic. While you might not expect it, a blog you posted last year, or even in the distant past, might suddenly generate hundreds of thousands of hits. Blogging is a long game, and you should plan accordingly.
Working Toward a High Number of Indexed Pages
As mentioned above, you should aim for a regular and frequent post rate that allows you to work toward many indexed pages. Sticking to a blogging schedule when you start your blog is essential to build up the total number of indexed pages over time. Your firm can only benefit.
Making Decisions About Your Blog
When determining the right amount of content for your blog, you'll want to consider various issues. You'll want to consider how much you can reasonably blog per week or month and whether hiring a marketing company to handle your firm's regular blogging needs makes more sense. For many businesses, including law firms, weekly or monthly blogging can become pretty time-intensive and difficult to keep up with when handling matters directly related to client and team member needs.
You'll also want to think carefully about who you're trying to reach with your blogs and what you see as the purpose of your blog. If you hope to increase organic traffic to your firm's site and generate more leads, you'll likely need to plan several blogs per week, aiming for anywhere from 12-16 blogs per month on a regular monthly basis. If you have questions about making blogging work for your firm, you should consider discussing different options with a marketing firm.
Different Types of Law Blogs
Depending on what you're trying to accomplish, there are different types of law blogs.
What is evergreen content? If you're familiar with evergreen trees and other plants, you may know that they have their name because, appropriately, they have foliage during all seasons and are always green—hence the name "evergreen." Similarly, evergreen blogs or evergreen content is always relevant or applicable to a reader who encounters it for the first time. Evergreen content doesn't get "stale" in just a few weeks or months. Rather, this kind of content can be developed by writers and accessed by readers for years. Any legal blog should have some evergreen content to draw readers to the site and rely on older blog posts to drive that traffic. Blogging does not typically have an immediate payoff but certainly pays off over time. For example, you may post a blog in June 2020 that only gets a handful of clicks or "hits" in the weeks and months immediately after you post it. Still, within a year or two, it could be one of your site's most widely read blog posts that regularly drives thousands of readers to your blog.
With that idea in mind, what does evergreen content look like for a legal blog? As you might imagine, evergreen content will be different depending upon the type of blog or website where it appears. Typically, evergreen content on a law blog will contain information that will still be relevant to readers a year from now (or even longer). For example, evergreen articles or blogs for a criminal law firm might include topics like "Understanding Misdemeanor and Felony Penalties" or "Consequences of a Driver's License Suspension." For business law blogs, evergreen content might contain articles like "How to Choose a Business Structure" or "Choosing Between a C-Corp and an S-Corp." In theory, the information in these posts will not change and will remain applicable.
Newsworthy Topics and Trends in the Law
You might also want to include blogs about newsworthy topics to help readers locate your firm if they're seeking information about a recent legal issue or change to the law. When you create blogs about newsworthy topics, you can also attract clients who may be searching for information about that news issue. For example, a lawyer who runs a personal injury law practice focusing on nursing home neglect might want to plan blogs about recent allegations of elder abuse against facilities in the same geographic region. A resident of that facility, or a person with a relative in that nursing home, might run an internet search to find information about abuse allegations against that particular facility. Suppose your law firm's blog has a post about the allegations against that facility. In that case, your post might come up in a search, and you may be contacted by a potential client who wants to learn more about options for filing a lawsuit against that facility.
Newsworthy topics can also lean more toward trends in the law, such as recently published studies or decided cases, or new legislation in your area. For example, if you run a family law blog in your state and a new study on divorces appeared in a peer-reviewed psychology journal, you may want to craft a blog post discussing that article. Other family law attorneys and potential and current clients may be interested in learning about the study. Similarly, for example, if you are an employment lawyer, blogging about new employment law statutes or cases in your state can be beneficial to show other attorneys and potential clients that you're engaged in dialogue in your field. These kinds of blogs can demonstrate that you're constantly engaging in relevant legal issues and are up-to-date on changes in the legal field.
When blogging about newsworthy topics or trends in the law, it's important to be quick. Unlike evergreen content, this material will not remain "fresh" for readers as the evergreen posts will. As such, you should consider these blogs as timely posts that can help draw traffic to your firm's website while the topic remains newsworthy and relevant.
Firm Updates and News
Some legal blogs will also have posts that include updates about the firm and news about lawyers working there. These types of blogs can help attract potential clients, as well as for attracting new lawyers to the practice. For example, a blog post about a firm update might alert readers that one of the partners was named to a community advisory board or was selected as a "Super Lawyer" or "Rising Star" in the area where the lawyer practices.
These blogs can be particularly helpful for attracting potential clients who have already researched your firm. In addition, posts that provide information about firm updates and news can also appeal to other lawyers considering moving from a larger firm to a smaller or midsize firm like yours. Indeed, suppose you're currently hiring new associates or looking to expand your firm. In that case, brief articles about the firm and its successes may also help you grow your business.
Buyer Personas for Law Firm Marketing
How to Define Your Law Firm's Buyer Personas
When you're building a new website and online presence for your law firm or revamping an older website that desperately needs an update, you should be thinking about various ways you'll bring traffic to your website. You will attract potential clients to your law firm. If you're unfamiliar with online marketing for law firms, there are some terms and ideas you might not be familiar with. One of those is the "buyer persona." While you might not think of your potential legal clients as "buyers" or "customers," the term can help you think through how to design your website, practice area pages, and blog content with specific types of readers in mind.
In other words, focusing on the idea of the "buyer persona" for your law firm can provide you with a better understanding of who might be landing on your website or reading your blogs and, ultimately, how you can get those people to take the next step in contacting your law firm for possible representation.
What is a Buyer Persona, and Why Should I Think About It?
Law firms are businesses. Although they're offering services that are certainly distinct from other partnerships, LLCs, and corporations, law firms are still businesses that need to consider clients' interests and needs to be successful. Similarly, like other businesses that provide varied services, law firms must market themselves to potential "buyers" (i.e., clients) to keep the firm running. And, of course, not unlike other businesses, law firms need to gain the trust of clients to continue attracting new clients and to demonstrate to other legal practitioners that they're providing valuable services to their communities. We're not suggesting that law firms necessarily have anything in common with, for example, art galleries in the same area of town. What we are saying, however, is that, regardless of the content of your business, it can be helpful to use business marketing language to develop the most effective strategies for marketing your business. For a law firm, you can find much value in thinking about your "buyer personas."
So, what are buyer personas? According to HubSpot, a buyer persona is the most detailed "semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer" you can imagine. Where does the buyer persona live? Where does she or he work? What kind of home does that buyer persona live in? What kinds of social issues does the buyer persona care about? What types of cultural matters are significant to the buyer persona? How old is this semi-fictional person? What are some key features of this semi-fictional person's other socioeconomic or sociocultural background? You might think of a buyer persona as a roadmap for the type of person you want to gain as a client (or, if you're recruiting, as a potential new team member at your law firm). Who are you selling your website and blog posts to? You'll want to answer that question before you ever begin writing.
And as you consider your buyer personas, you'll want to think about the specific area (or areas) of the law where you handle cases and the types of clients you serve or want to serve in the future. The answers to these questions will likely differ for every law firm.
Why Do I Need to Develop Buyer Personas?
Developing buyer personas is one of the most effective ways to create content to help your business succeed. If you don't know who you're hoping to target with your practice area pages or detailed blog posts, you probably won't be too successful in bringing those readers to your pages and other types of content. However, if you spend a significant amount of time at the start, you can tailor your online presence and content to attract your ideal clients and meet those clients' needs. Otherwise, you could end up attracting the wrong type of client or attracting no clients.
How to Develop Your Buyer Personas: Start with Research
Now that you understand more about buyer personas, it’s time to sit down and think about the buyer personas for whom you want to develop online content on your website and in your legal blog posts. The first step in creating a buyer persona is to do your research. Your research can take many different forms, but it will most likely involve looking at detailed information about your past clients, especially those who are similar to clients you'd like to be able to attract in the future. Your research may also involve going back and asking some of your previous clients to agree to fill out a survey questionnaire, do a brief interview, or write a testimonial that provides answers to certain questions. In short, you'll want to gather as much information as possible about past clients whose cases were similar to those you plan to handle in the future and who are most similar to what you imagine as your ideal client.
Your research should also explore trends in website visitors and information about anyone who has shared your content in the past. This type of research can be more complicated for several reasons. First, you may need to seek advice from a website developer who can help you to obtain and make sense of the data about visitors to your website who have clicked on certain links or have shared certain content. What links were clicked most often, and what type of visitor clicked them? Which of your pages or blog posts have been shared most frequently, and who shared those blog posts?
Remember that this type of research certainly isn't limited to prospective or previous clients. Anyone, or any entity, that regularly shares your posts and drives visitors to your website should be considered when you're thinking about buyer personas. For example, maybe a local bar association routinely shares your blog posts in which you analyze case law or legislation. Or, for instance, if you work in an area of law that allows you to contribute to nonprofits in your community regularly, maybe some of those nonprofits often share your posts or pages on their own social media accounts and thereby drive new traffic to your law firm's website. These kinds of entities should also be considered when considering buyer personas. Different types of legal blogs will allow you to attract interest and visits from your various buyer personas.
Naturally, this kind of research is only possible if you already have a website and simply want to increase the benefits of your online presence by revamping your site and developing a blog. For law firms that don't yet have an internet presence, gathering information from previous clicks and shares won't be possible.
Create a Template for Your Buyer Personas
For each buyer persona, it can be helpful to develop a template in which you fill in the following information:
Demographic data for the buyer persona;
Your buyer persona's motivations and interests;
Keywords or key phrases your buyer persona might use to run internet searches;
Your buyer persona's ultimate goals; and
Concerns your buyer persona might have.
Considering these issues, and any others that seem relevant can allow you to develop content that will bring in precisely that type of visitor you're hoping to attract. You can craft content from practice area pages to blogs with your buyer personas in mind.
You can learn more about defining your persona by reading: How to Define Your Law Firm's Buyer Personas.
Writing Blogs with Clients in Minds
When writing blogs with clients in mind, you are likely considering attracting new clients and supporting interest from existing clients. For potential and existing clients, you should ask yourself: what kind of information are these readers seeking, and how will they find it? In other words, what content do potential and existing clients want, and what keywords will they enter into an internet search to locate that content?
Not all potential and existing clients will be searching for the same type of information, of course. When it comes to attracting potential new clients, you should start thinking like that potential client who is seeking out legal representation. The content you produce will depend upon the legal field you practice in and the reasons that a potential new client will be seeking legal representation.
For example, if you are a lawyer who routinely handles large-scale class action claims and are seeking new clients for a data breach class action claim, you can imagine that a potential new client might be seeking out:
information about lawsuits about that class action in the news;
general facts about how to file a class action lawsuit;
attorneys who other lawyers and previous clients will review; and
contact details for attorneys in their specific area who are managing class actions.
So, what types of posts might attract those potential clients? You can imagine that some blogs about news stories about class action claims for data breaches might interest a potential new client, especially if it can bring that client from knowledge-gathering about class action lawsuits in the news to your law firm's website. At the same time, potential new clients might want general information about how and why to file a class action claim. As such, evergreen content on class actions might appeal to a reader. For instance, you might consider a couple of blog posts with information on "How to File a Class Action Lawsuit" or "Who Qualifies for a Class Action Claim." You should include geographic keywords in that evergreen content if you target readers in a particular geographic region. Finally, blogs about firm updates or lawyer awards can help to show a potential client that your firm is engaged in the field and is well respected among lawyers in the community. Of course, any blog content should give potential clients a way to contact your firm.
Existing clients may look for similar information, yet they might search slightly differently. For example, an existing client might want to know that you are staying up-to-date on the legal topic. Newsworthy blog posts, as well as some of that evergreen content, may appeal to existing clients. Moreover, blogs highlighting firm achievements can also solidify an existing client's knowledge that they've hired the right lawyer for their legal issue.
Writing Blogs with Other Lawyers in Mind
While you may hope to reach clients with your blog, you might also consider how other lawyers may engage with your posts. Legal blogs written with other lawyers in mind are usually designed for several potential purposes. First, blogs can allow lawyers to engage in dialogue with other practitioners on a particular issue, such as a new piece of legislation or a recent case ruling. While legal scholars might engage in this kind of conversation with one another through law reviews and other journal articles, practitioners may develop this kind of discourse through blog posts. Accordingly, if you're writing a blog to attract other lawyers for research and scholarly conversation, you might consider analytical articles discussing recent law changes.
At the same time, you might imagine a reader who is also an attorney considering a firm change. In other words, if you're hoping to attract new talent to your law firm, you might demonstrate your expertise in a particular area of the law, or your frequent engagement in contemporary and relevant legal issues, by writing posts to show potential hires that your law firm can provide a fresh and exciting work environment. Lawyers at large firms, in particular, might want to move to a smaller or midsize firm to handle significant cases and to develop stronger relationships with clients and colleagues. When drafting posts about legal trends and analysis, you can consider this type of reader.
Regional Specificities and Law Blogs
As you think about your target reader, you also want to consider geographic interest. When aiming to gain new local readership and thinking of "local" as state-specific, you'll also want to craft your blogs state-specific. For instance, if you want to target potential clients in California and California alone, posts about issues in Florida or New York are unlikely to attract attention from clients running searches focused on California. Similarly, you may routinely handle appeals for a particular region, such as the area covered by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. If this is the case, you'll want to target readers in the region instead of in a particular state.
Suppose you're a nationally recognized lawyer and handle cases across state lines. In that case, you'll likely want to think less about state-specific or regionally-specific posts and more about the subject matter. For example, you might be a class action attorney handling cases across the U.S. In a scenario like this, the regional focus of your blog posts may be less important than the specific subject matter. At the same time, you may also want to consider multiple blog posts on the same topic that target readers in various geographic regions. For instance, you might write several posts about the potential for a class action lawsuit over a data breach, and each of those blogs might be focused on readers in a specific state or geographic region. As such, you could end up with multiple articles about data breaches, but each focused on a particular city, state, or province.
Finally, you'll want to know what type of searches your regionally specific reader might run. For example, many American internet users searching for legal representation will use the words "lawyer" and "attorney" interchangeably. Most Canadian readers will search for "lawyer" as opposed to looking for posts about an "attorney," a "barrister," or a "solicitor." The key is to know your intended audience and to target your intended audience accordingly.
You can define your buyer personas with our Buyer Personas and Legal Blogs: Who is the Target Reader?
What is Hyper Local Marketing for Your Law Firm?
If you have recently started a law blog for your firm, or you're thinking about starting a legal blog, you may have come across the term "hyperlocal" when it comes to marketing. You may even have done a bit of internet searching into the term hyperlocal to identify a specific definition that can help you to frame the content you're posting on your law blog. Regarding hyperlocal marketing, it's important to understand that this term doesn't always mean the same thing in every situation. Instead, marketing firms and professionals involved in search engine optimization (SEO) consider using certain keywords, phrases, language, or outbound links to target readers in a particular geographic area.
Defining the 'Hyperlocal'
There's no single definition for the term "hyperlocal," but there are some concrete ideas of what the term involves. An article in the Small Business Chronicle explains hyperlocal is often used as "a buzzword" to refer to geographically nice marketing. What that marketing involves can vary depending on the needs of the blogger. Hyperlocal marketing may be "a marketing campaign targeted to a certain region . . . or to a more specific target audience, such as shoppers in a certain city or within a certain distance from a business."
Similarly, an article from WordStream defines hyperlocal marketing as a "process of targeting prospective customers in a highly specific, geographically restricted area, sometimes just a few blocks or streets, often targeting people conducting 'near me' searches on their mobile device."
Marketing to Your Hyperlocal Clients
Before you begin any hyperlocal marketing campaign, you'll need to decide what hyperlocal means to you: does it mean your state or province? Or are you using the term more narrowly to target readers in a specific city? And even beyond a particular city, are you imagining that you will have readers in a particular city who are interested in discovering information about a specific legal or business issue? You should always have your potential reader in mind, and using the "hyperlocal" framework can help you identify the particular geographic regions and areas in which your reader may be conducting internet searches.
Your firm's definition of the hyperlocal may depend on your particular type of legal practice, whether you work with clients in a specific geographic region or represent clients within broader geographic boundaries. Once you define what the hyperlocal means for you, it's important to begin thinking of the hyperlocal keywords and phrases your potential reader might enter into an internet search. You can then aim to include those hyperlocal keywords and phrases in your blog posts to gain a specific audience.
Regionally Specific Issues for Your Potential Clients
Depending upon your particular type of legal practice and your definition of the hyperlocal, it may be very important to focus on state-specific or region-specific legal issues. For example, if you focus on personal injury law, you must inform your reader about personal injury law cases and methods in your state or province. Although an interesting personal injury case might arise in New York City, for instance, the outcome of that case might not have any bearing on a legal matter in Seattle. At the same time, a regional approach may also be warranted based on the current makeup of federal circuit courts of appeal or higher courts in the U.S. and Canada.
For example, while a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals case out of California might not seem immediately relevant to residents of a distant U.S. state, Alaska and Hawaii are included in the Ninth Circuit districts. As such, any decision out of the Ninth Circuit, even if it's a case that arose out of a California court, will be binding in Alaska and Hawaii.
Local Interests for Your Readers
Some law blogs may understand hyperlocal marketing to include references to local businesses, experiences, events, and other regionally particular words or phrases that would be knowable to a potential client or new law firm member. For example, suppose you have a law firm that does work in business formation and helps startups to determine the business structures that are best for their business plans. In that case, you might consider referencing local startups or businesses that would be familiar to your readers. For instance, if you are crafting a blog targeting new bars and restaurants in Toronto, ON, you could refer to existing and popular bars and restaurants in the area with which your readers may be familiar.
For example, TimeOut Toronto remarks that "an influx of Middle Eastern and Latin American folks turn the best restaurants in Toronto into foodie destinations" and then proceeds to list popular establishments like Byblos, Kiin, Patois, Carmen, Chiado, and a wide variety of other best-loved restaurants in the city. Suppose your firm is targeting new restaurants and bars that want help deciding how to structure their businesses and how to develop employment agreements. In that case, it can be incredibly beneficial to demonstrate your familiarity with similar businesses in the geographic area where your potential new clients need legal assistance.
Who is Your Target Audience?
Depending on your targeted audience or the "buyer personas" you're seeking to target with your blog posts, hyperlocal marketing could be extremely important to consider in some of your blog posts. The term "buyer personas" can be helpful to use in thinking about who you're writing your blog posts for—is it a potential client, an existing client, a potential new associate or partner, or other law firms that you're hoping will identify you as an expert in the field? As you consider your buyer personas, you must consider what keywords those readers will use in internet searches and what types of titles will attract attention.
For most law firms, especially those seeking to attract new clients while demonstrating their contributions to the legal field, hyperlocal marketing will be valuable in some but not all blog posts. For example, a criminal defense firm in Los Angeles, California, might use approximately 50 percent of its blog posts to target potential clients and thus may consider ways of making those posts "hyperlocal." Such hyperlocal posts may consider news stories about police brutality in Southern California or recent cases concerning criminal defense strategies or issues in the state.
At the same time, however, that firm might be working to expand its business and thus may be hoping to attract new and diverse attorneys from other firms in California and, perhaps, other firms nationwide. Accordingly, some of the firm's blog posts should focus on major criminal law issues that can demonstrate the firm's engagement in current, contemporary legal questions. For example, suppose the U.S. Supreme Court considers a challenge to a defendant's Fourth Amendment rights against unlawful search and seizure. In that case, the firm might want to consider a post that analyzes the recent case law and engages in dialogue with other legal scholars and practitioners. The use of hyperlocal content and marketing strategies will depend upon who your firm identifies as its target readers or buyer personas and how it wants to attract readers.
Read more about hyperlocal marketing in What is Hyperlocal Marketing for Your Law Firm?
Choosing the Right Keywords for Your Law Firm Blogs
When you begin developing a blog for your law firm and creating a calendar with blog topics, you'll want to think carefully about the content in each post. When you begin crafting a list of blog topics, you want to consider your "buyer personas," or the target readers of your pages.
Depending upon the specific area of law in which you practice and, for some firms, the particular geographic area you are targeting, you'll have a few different types of readers in mind. For example, you're probably creating a blog to expand your business and attract potential clients to your site. At the same time, you might also be thinking about other lawyers as target readers, both as potential new employees of your firm and leaders in the field with whom you can be in dialogue over specific legal issues. What keywords should you use when writing new posts?
While the overarching strategy for your blog should be focused on your target readers, and developing a long-term blogging calendar and strategy, each of your posts will need to consider search engine optimization (SEO) and the keywords that can help your target readers—or your "buyer personas," as it might be helpful to think of those target readers—to find your blog content when they're searching on the internet. We'll give you some information and tips for choosing the keywords for your law firm blogs.
What is Search Engine Optimization?
If this is the first blog you're creating and starting from scratch to learn the ins and outs of targeting internet readers, the first step in choosing keywords for your posts is to learn more about search engine optimization. The notion of SEO has arisen with the increased use of online marketing for businesses across the globe.
When it comes to SEO best practices, the key thing to remember is that you want to do everything you can to make your blog friends with search engines like Google to get your ideal readers to find and click on your blog posts. So how do you accomplish that? The answer to the question isn't a straightforward one. Given that the internet and new technologies change rapidly, what works one day for SEO may not be ideal in a few months. However, suppose you are willing to be flexible. In that case, understanding the basic aspects of SEO and where keywords come into play can allow you to develop useful blog posts that help to bring potential clients and other lawyers to your site.
Keywords are just one aspect of SEO, but an incredibly important one. Where do keywords fit into SEO? Generally speaking, there are many elements of SEO, including but not limited to the following:
Making your blog accessible to search engines (such as Google or Safari, for example);
Creating content that provides readers with the information they're seeking;
Developing content to which other writers and sites link and cite;
Increasing your click-through rate (CTR) with your blog title and description; and
Choosing keywords that attract readers in internet searches as well as search engines.
SEO includes many elements designed to have search engines find and list your blog and if readers can obtain the information they want within your blog content.
What Are Keywords?
Now that you know more about SEO in general and understand that keywords are one aspect of the SEO equation, it's important to understand what we mean when we refer to keywords. In short, keywords are the words or phrases that a person enters into a search engine to find content. Keywords certainly are not limited to law firm blogs or blogs in general.
Keywords can include any words a person uses to seek information. For example, if you're looking for information about a local restaurant serving Japanese food, you might use keywords that include your neighborhood and "Japanese food." So, if you live in the Silverlake area of Los Angeles and want Japanese food delivery, you might enter the words "Japanese food delivery Silverlake" into a search bar. Many searches like this also use qualifiers like "best Japanese food delivery Silverlake" or "popular Japanese food delivery Silverlake."
Keywords might be much different when a person is searching for solutions to a legal issue or legal representation, but the same ideas apply. For example, if that same person in Los Angeles is seeking information about divorce in his or her area, that person might use the keywords "divorce in Los Angeles." Or if the searcher doesn't want to go too far from home and wants to find a top-notch family law attorney within a mile or two, that searcher might enter the keywords "best family lawyer Silverlake" or "top family lawyer near me." In the latter example, the searcher might recognize that the search engine can identify his or her geographic location.
Choosing the Right Keywords for SEO
For each blog you write, you'll want to think carefully about how your target reader will search. While SEO used to suggest that bloggers needed to incorporate keywords as often as possible, "keyword stuffing" can hurt your ability to be found by a potential reader. Why? Search engines don't want to highly rank content that is only aiming to be ranked highly. Instead, it wants to rank content highly that provides readers with the information they seek.
You want to
come up with a couple of keywords for each post and include them in particular areas of each post;
include the keywords in your title tag, the "headline" of your blog post, and within the first 100 words of your content; and
make sure the keywords show up in your URL and meta description.
Longer keywords tend to be better than short, single-word keywords. SEO describes these longer keywords as "long-tail keywords" or "key phrases;" they tend to be more specific than just a single word or two. Think about what you want your reader to take away from your content or what actions you want your reader to take, and craft your keywords to match.
If you're new to the blogging universe, you should know that platforms like Hubspot, WordPress, and others provide SEO tools that can help you select your keywords and help ensure that you've placed them in all the right areas of your post. But you must choose the keywords that will do best to attract your intended readers. As you write any blog post, you'll want to sort out the keywords in advance and write with those keywords in mind.
Read Choosing the Right Keywords for Your Law Firm Blogs for a more in-depth look at keywords and SEO.
How to Create Landing Pages for Law Firms
Online marketing for law firms requires investment in landing pages that can help to convert visitors to clients. As much marketing for law firms occurs online and by virtual word-of-mouth, it's more important than ever for smaller and mid-size law firms to build websites allowing them to take advantage of inbound marketing. Depending upon the size of your law firm, your landing pages may take the form of practice area pages, allowing visitors to "land" on a particular practice area page that provides links to more specific resources and encourages your visitor to schedule a consultation. How should you create landing pages for your law firm? You'll want to learn more about landing pages before you get started. Then you'll want to consider buyer personas, SEO optimization, specific content like client testimonials or videos, and crafting a straightforward call to action.
Learning About Landing Pages and How They Work
Landing pages aren't just used for law firm online marketing; a wide variety of Businesses engaged in online marketing use landing pages. A landing page is exactly what it sounds like, a page where visitors land to learn more about a business (or, in the case of a law firm, to learn more about the law firm's offerings). A landing page is usually distinct from a homepage. It's the page, or one of several pages, designed to bring visitors to a particular service you offer or to encourage the visitor to provide information for follow-up contact.
For example, a law firm specializing in one legal area, such as a family law firm, might have a single landing page directing visitors to divorce or child custody and is asking a visitor to supply contact information to set up a consultation. For a law firm that does work in more than one area of the law—and especially if those areas of legal expertise are distinct from one another, such as a firm that has business formation attorneys, family lawyers, and criminal defense lawyers—more than one landing page for each legal field might be appropriate for your firm. Depending upon your law firm's needs, your landing pages may be your practice area pages.
If you've heard about the differences between inbound and outbound marketing, you know that landing pages are used as a form of inbound marketing. These pages aren't like television or billboard advertisements; they're not like online advertisements you might place for your firm. Rather, they've carefully crafted pieces of online content designed to bring potential clients to the page and to turn those visitors into clients of your firm.
Thinking About Your Buyer Personas
Landing pages, like any other online content, are part of your inbound marketing plan and should be developed with your buyer personas in mind.
What is a buyer persona? It's the "identity" of your ideal client. Any content you create for inbound marketing, including landing pages or practice area pages, should be done with your ideal client in mind. To ensure that your content targets that ideal client, you'll want to do a lot of work upfront to develop buyer personas. When imagining your ideal reader or website visitor, you'll want to consider characteristics beyond the legal topic—geographic residence, socioeconomic status, cultural background, and other factors. Many law firms have more than one buyer persona depending upon who they hope to draw into their online content and what they want those visitors to do (e.g., get in touch about hiring a lawyer or apply for a legal position).
Crafting buyer personas upfront is crucial to ensure that your landing pages are tailor-made for your ideal clients. Inbound marketing is only effective if you put in the effort to frame your content to attract specific visitors carefully. By doing so, you can captivate potential clients and turn them into loyal customers of your law firm.
Considering Law Firm Landing Page Optimization
To optimize your landing pages for search engines, there are various strategies you can implement. While some may require the assistance of a website designer, you can tackle plenty of SEO techniques on your own. Considering your buyer personas, it's important to consider the keywords and phrases they may use when searching for legal services. Incorporating these into your landing pages can boost your search engine rankings. Additionally, link building through external links can further enhance your online presence and attract more potential clients.
The quality of a landing page can also play a major role in search engine rankings, and the length of your landing page is extremely important.
Client Testimonials and Law Firm Results
Including certain visual elements and information on your landing page can be helpful, such as client testimonials or law firm results. Many law firms use short videos on their landing pages, which can help to engage visitors. However, not all videos are the same for purposes of conversions. If your video takes too long to load or makes it difficult for your visitor to navigate the page in any way, the visitor simply might run another search and click on a different law firm's landing page link. Yet some videos certainly can benefit your firm. Typically, if you have a single video, it's short (and loads quickly) and provides helpful information that complements what's already on your landing page, it can help. Yet, if the video won't load or is distracting to your visitor, it could ultimately end up hurting your inbound marketing efforts.
Emphasizing Your Call to Action
You want to keep your landing pages simple and visually pleasing so your visitor can easily navigate them. This strategy emphasizes a single call-to-action (CTA) on the page. Rather than having multiple forms your visitor can fill out or various options for providing contact information, it's usually best to have a single CTA, such as a free consultation form. Ensure it's visible amidst the other information on your landing page and quick and easy to use. A CTA will only be effective if visitors engage.
Revising Your Landing Page After Testing
Like other online content you'll create for your law firm, such as blog posts, one of the great things about online marketing is that you can revise it as you test it out to see what works (and what doesn't). You should remember that not all law firms have the same elements on their landing pages, and various landing page elements can work well to attract clients for different firms. Accordingly, you'll want to create a landing page and go live with it, with plans to make revisions as you go along if necessary. Even if most of the elements work for your firm from the start, you'll also want to remember that SEO practices and optimization methods can change over time, and you'll want to make sure you update your content to reflect the current trends.
Read more about How to Create Landing Pages for Law Firms.
Topic Clusters and Competency Pages for Law Firms
When you are thinking about starting a new website for your law firm or creating a legal blog to market your firm, you'll need to do more than just think about the content you want on the blog. Certainly, you'll want to give your legal blog a significant amount of thought, from the specific topics to the publishing calendar.
Make sure to do all the necessary pre-planning to make certain that your strategies for marketing your firm are as successful as possible. For many law firms, online marketing might begin with a legal blog, but the marketing practice should expand to corporate information from your blogs onto your website. Ultimately, you want to create the content that your target reader seeks. Here’s where pillar pages and topics clusters will come into play.
Thinking About Search Engine Optimization for Your Law Firm
Pillar pages and topic clusters should be considered in a broader plan to improve search engine optimization (SEO) and to use your content writing, including the material in your blog posts, to target specific readers. There are many different facets of SEO, such as:
Getting search engines to find your website and accompanying pages;
Developing content that gives your target readers the information they want;
Posting content that is cited by other online websites and pages and to which other internet pages link (i.e., another website links to one of your blog posts);
Improving the rate at which internet users click on your links and pages (increasing your click-through rate); and
Using keywords to bring readers (those searching on the internet) to your website, pages, and blog.
One important aspect of SEO is creating content that readers want. Pillar pages and topic clusters can help you to think through this process and to develop pages that ultimately bring more attention to your law firm.
What is a Pillar Page?
A pillar page is a particular website page that provides readers with a significant amount of in-depth content about a specific topic, and it usually provides readers with a variety of useful links related to that topic. As Hubspot explains, pillar pages are often known as "content pillars," and it's incredibly important to differentiate them from landing pages. We'll explain more about the distinctions between pillar and landing pages in just a few moments, but first, it's important to learn more about the different types of pillar pages you might consider creating.
According to Hubspot, there are two major pillar pages: the resource pillar page and the 10x content pillar page. What's the difference between these two kinds of pillar pages? A resource pillar page will typically be a reference tool for a reader, and it will likely include a variety of useful links—internal links to blogs written by your firm, for example, and external links to sources that can be helpful to the reader. Differently, a 10x content pillar page gives the reader a "deep dive on a core topic."
What might these pillar pages look like for a law firm? Imagine you have a law firm specializing in commercial law in Chicago. A resource pillar page might provide information for a potential client considering starting a new business. That resource pillar page might provide key information about the different business structures available, necessary steps to file business paperwork and rent a commercial space, and other practicalities of opening a new company. On that page, the law firm might include external links to filing articles of incorporation in Chicago and specific statutes concerning commercial lease agreements. At the same time, the page might include internal links to blog posts about negotiating a commercial lease agreement for a new business and how to choose the best business structure for your needs. Differently, a 10x content pillar page might take a "deep dive" into the history of corporations as a business structure, the process of forming corporations, how corporate structures and entities have been considered in court cases, and information about some of the most successful corporations.
Now what's the difference between a landing page and a pillar page? If you've read this far, you know little about what a pillar page includes. A landing page, differently, is designed to get more leads for your business—to get readers to make contact. While pillar pages provide the reader with specific types of content without requiring any commitment, landing pages usually ask a reader to provide their name or contact information before they're eligible to get the content you have to offer.
What is a Topic Cluster?
The term "topic cluster" refers to a model of organizing your website's various pages of content. Your pillar page will be the primary place where your content "lives," so to speak, and various pages and blog posts that fall under the same topic will link back to that pillar page. To put it another way, a particular topic cluster will contain many different pieces of content within your website, grouping them into a shared topic.
To return to the examples we gave you above, topic clusters for a commercial or corporate law firm might include "business structures" and "commercial real estate agreements." You can create various other topic clusters as you develop more content, and the topic clusters can make it easier for your target readers to locate the information you have to offer them.
Planning Online Content for Your Law Firm
For most law firms, blogs are just one element of a larger online content marketing strategy. As explained above, blog posts can help you to develop pillar pages for specific questions or issues your readers might be searching out. Within those pillar pages, topic clusters can help you organize material that will allow your reader to obtain the information she's seeking by visiting your website.
When you're just getting started with online marketing for your law firm, the specifics of blogging and content creation can feel overwhelming. Many law firms realize that hiring a marketing company with experience setting up new SEO-friendly pages and managing content weekly can be incredibly beneficial. Yet law firms can learn how to engage in online marketing themselves.
If you're already familiar with SEO and the ever-changing face of what search engine optimization means, you're already a step ahead. At the same time, when learning about these online content marketing terms for the first time, you should know that you're certainly not alone! Just as each field of law has its specificities and nuances, so does the world of online content marketing. And when it comes to online content marketing for law firms, it's important to know that there are specific practices particular to law firm marketing within the larger world of business marketing.
The more you read and learn about online marketing for your law firm and draw your target reader to your sites, the better off you'll be in the long run. Since SEO tips and guidelines change over time, you should also acknowledge that your online persona—created through pillar pages, topic clusters, downloadable content, blogs, etc.—must be updated and revised. Ultimately, by discovering more tips and tools for marketing your law firm and by remaining flexible as you craft pages and blogs, you'll be able to gain some control over how your website gets found and who reads your work.
More information about competency/pillar pages and topic clusters can be found in Topic Clusters and Pillar Pages for Law Firms.
SEO for Your Practice Area Pages
When you are beginning to think about online marketing for your law firm, you'll want to consider a wide range of internet marketing strategies, from regular blogging to content creation for potential new clients. Many lawyers leaving larger firms to start their own smaller and mid-size firms will need to consider ways technology can assist in marketing their business. As for law firm marketing, there is not one specific way of marketing or type of marketing that will work for every firm. However, it's important for law firms that are considering a marketing strategy to think through the type of readers they're seeking and how they want their web presence to bring in clients, potential employees, or other people who may be clicking on a home website, landing pages, or a blog.
When helping potential clients or other interested readers find your website and its pages, you need to think about search engine optimization (SEO). While you want to consider SEO on nearly everything you develop as part of your online marketing strategy, we want to specifically discuss the links among SEO, landing pages, and practice area pages for a law firm.
What is SEO, and Why Is It Important to Consider?
If you've never done any work creating content for websites, you may not be familiar with search engine optimization, or SEO for short. Or, maybe you've done a little bit of work and know that SEO is a way of making sure that certain online content is optimized in such a way that people who are looking for it will find it, and perhaps you've even read about using keywords or key phrases to attract readers. These elements are part of SEO, but as Hubspot explains, they're certainly not the only part of SEO. What works now isn't what worked in the early 2000s and won't be what people are doing a decade from now. Algorithms change, but the goal remains the same.
Okay, so if SEO is fluid and changes with technological innovations and internet user practices, is it worth learning more about how to do it? The answer to that question is yes—although SEO methods have and will continue to shift over time, the aims of SEO generally remain the same. Search engine optimization simply means using certain practices to help make your website and any internet pages findable and visible to your target reader. In other words, you should consider who you want to target with your website. Is it a potential family law client searching for a divorce lawyer? Is it a person planning to start a small business and needs assistance with business entity formation? Or is it a lawyer who currently practices at a large firm and is thinking about transitioning into a role at a smaller or midsize firm? For each piece of content you make public, you must consider the target reader and how SEO can help that reader find you.
Ultimately, a primary goal of SEO is for whichever page you optimize to rank highly in internet searches. What does that mean? For example, when a person types in search terms on Google or Safari, she'll get a list of possible sites to click on, which appear in a particular order. Most internet browsers will click on the first or second link and may even scroll down to the bottom of the page. However, many people won't click through subsequent pages. Accordingly, you want to do everything you can to have your firm page be that first or second click. And even if you can't rank that highly yet, you want to do all you can to appear on that first page of search results.
Is There a Difference Between Landing Pages and Practice Area Pages?
So now you know what SEO is, how it can bring internet traffic to your law firm's website, and the detailed content you are creating. We want to discuss SEO on your landing pages and practice area pages, but first, we want to consider whether there is a difference between landing pages and practice area pages.
If you search for information about building a law firm website, you'll likely encounter information about landing and practice area pages. You might even find information that sounds like it refers to both landing and practice area pages. We're here to help explain that, for most law firms, practice area pages are landing pages. The term "landing page" refers to a site designed to generate leads. It's a term that is not specific to law firm marketing but rather is designed as a page on which an internet user will "land" after running a search and clicking on a link. Then the landing page will seek information from the user through a contact form or similar item. Any kind of business can create a landing page. Depending upon the size of your law firm, your website home page will likely be a landing page, but individual practice area pages will also likely be landing pages. Landing pages are not defined by their content but rather by what they're designed to do. Practice area pages will usually be tailored to specific legal content, but they'll also likely be designed to generate leads.
Now that you understand the relationship between landing pages and practice area pages, how can you optimize your practice area pages for internet searches?
Tips for Practice Page SEO
You'll want to focus on SEO to some extent when developing your practice area pages for your firm's website. The following are some tips to consider to ensure that internet searches bring up your firm's links and thereby generate business for your firm:
- Think carefully about your “buyer” (the person who will be searching for the practice area pages on which you want them to land), and what kind of information that buyer is seeking. In other words, what are your “buyer personas” and what keywords and phrases might they use to find your practice area pages?
- Consider keyword and key phrase searches for your buyer personas, and incorporate those keywords and phrases into your practice area pages.
- Work with a website designer to ensure that the technical elements of your practice area pages are optimized, include the code. By working with a website designer, you can make sure that the architecture of your website will result in search engines “crawling” your site (or discovering your specific practice area pages). If your practice area pages are not visible to search engines, then search engines cannot crawl those practice area pages and ultimately cannot index or rank them. Once a search crawls your practice area pages, then those search engines will store the information from those sites. This latter process is known as indexing. Finally, search engines will decide, based on the index, which websites best respond to a specific internet search, and then it will rank or order websites in response to searches.
- Learn more about mobile SEO, and make sure you’ve optimized your practice area pages for both desktop or laptop usage, and for searches on a mobile device.
- Understand the difference between helpful links and unhelpful links for SEO purposes. You’ll want to have different types of links, and you’ll want them to go to reputable sites. On practice area pages, you can link to your own firm’s contact page or blog, but you should also consider providing links to legitimate sources.
Remember, nothing you put on the internet is set in stone. Remember to be flexible, recognizing that you can always make revisions. Read our blog on this topic to learn more.
Law Firm Content Marketing Elements and Tools
When starting a law firm or just beginning to think about content marketing for your law firm, various content marketing elements and tools exist to help you bring your desired reader to your sites. Once your reader clicks on one of your links, you'll want to think carefully about how to craft the content on that site so that your reader takes action. The type of action that an internet reader depends upon who that reader is and what that reader wants. Everything you create should be developed with that ideal reader in mind. Many content marketing elements and tools are not specific to law firm marketing. Still, they can be used in law firm marketing to allow firms to grow their businesses and establish themselves as leaders in their fields. The following are some content marketing elements and tools you should consider as you develop a law firm website with practice area pages, a legal blog, and other content that can provide the information your ideal reader or client seeks.
To make your law firm website and any pages within it the best, you'll want to start all content creation by considering the reader you're targeting. Generally speaking, law firms may have more than one kind of ideal reader in mind. In content marketing, you'll often see these ideal readers described as "buyer personas." You'll want to think about who it is that you want to click on your sites and take additional action afterward concerning your law firm.
For most law firms, ideal readers almost always include potential clients. Still, they can also include potential employees or partners (such as lawyers newly out of law school looking for a job or a lawyer currently at a different firm wanting to make a lateral move) and even colleagues in the legal field you practice. You'll likely want to target different buyer personas on pages or blog posts. In short, every time you create new content, consider your buyer persona and develop the content around that "person." Many law firms find it helpful to flesh out specific buyer personas, conceiving of the specific geographic area where that "person" lives and works, what kind of goals that "person" has, and what types of social and cultural patterns in which that "person" might engage.
Landing pages are crucial for generating leads. While landing pages are developed for nearly all businesses that want to engage in content marketing, they often take the form of practice area pages for law firms. When developing a landing page, you should be thinking about how to get your reader to contact you or engage further on your website.
Pillar pages are different from landing pages, and you need both. While landing pages are designed to generate leads, pillar pages provide readers with information that doesn't require them to get in touch any further. Landing pages are often clearly a way to promote your firm's services and seek more information from potential clients. In contrast, pillar pages are designed to provide potential clients with in-depth information on a topic without requiring additional commitment. For example, a landing page might be a practice area page on divorce in your geographic area, and that page might provide a link to your "contact" form and a "call to action” to contact your firm for assistance. Differently, a pillar page on divorce might provide the reader with information about how to file for divorce, what materials are necessary, and how the law applies to particular divorce matters.
Downloadable content is anything your law firm creates that a reader can download. It may be an ebook, or it may be something much shorter. Any downloadable content should provide the information your reader seeks and be designed to help the reader answer a question or query. Creating downloadable content for your law firm can allow you to see exactly who has clicked the "download" link and determine how the reader found the downloadable piece. Indeed, using analytics to track downloadable content can provide you with necessary information about keywords commonly used to find the downloadable content or when and where the link to the downloadable content has been shared on social media.
Your law firm should have a blog, and you should maintain it regularly. Legal blogs can be incredibly useful for attracting potential clients and new employees and remaining in dialogue or conversation with other lawyers in your field. You should consider different types of law blogs, including evergreen blogs (which remain relevant even as time passes), blogs about newsworthy stories and events, and legal analyses of recent case law in your field.
To have a successful legal blog for your firm, you must create and keep up with an editorial calendar. It's best to have a backlog of blogs you can use and to plot out when each blog will post and become accessible to internet readers. There is no hard and fast rule about exactly how many blogs you should have, but generally, you should aim for about 16 monthly posts. However, the frequency with which they post is more important than the overall number of blogs each month. Here is where the editorial calendar will become especially relevant. You don't want to post all 16 blogs at the month's end. Instead, you want to be sure that blogs post regularly. With an editorial calendar, you can be certain that you have at least one or two blogs scheduled each week and on different days.
Calls to Action
A "call to action" (CTA) is exactly what it sounds like. It's a directive telling your reader to do something or to take a certain action. Most law firms will have a "call to action" on both practice area pages and any blog that gets written.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a phrase that refers to tactics your law firm would use on its website and pages to ensure that search engines like Google or Safari find your website and its content, that they link to your website and its content, and that those links rank pretty highly on the first page of search results. There are a variety of issues to consider in SEO. For most law firms, it's important to keep your buyer personas in mind and to develop keywords and key phrases that will result in an ideal reader finding your website or other online content. Other SEO practices are more technical, taking steps to ensure that a search engine can "crawl," index, and ultimately rank your website, your blog, and other pages.
Effective legal content marketing requires experience and knowledge about client patterns, search engine optimization, website design, and field content knowledge. If you're just getting started or planning a major update or overhaul to your law firm's website, you should remember that you can always make revisions as you learn more about what works and what doesn't.
Types of Law Firm Marketing
After several years of working at a larger firm, have you decided to start your law firm? Are you involved in partnership talks with another lawyer about working together to start a new law firm? You'll need to consider how you will market your law firm. Given that we're now in the second decade of the 21st century, you should certainly be thinking about options for online marketing. Yet you might also want to consider other marketing forms that do not require online engagement. In other words, even though you'll be engaging in online marketing, you might want to consider some of how you can advertise your firm or gain referrals through more traditional means. We want to give you more information about marketing for law firms and distinguish between "inbound" marketing and "outbound" marketing. Both forms of marketing ultimately may be useful for a law firm, but inbound marketing strategies can help immensely during the digital age.
What is the Difference Between Outbound and Inbound Marketing?
To fully grasp how inbound marketing methodologies work instead of outbound marketing techniques, you must clearly understand the difference between outbound and inbound marketing. Traditional "outbound" marketing might be a practice or method with which you are more familiar. With outbound marketing, a business, like a law firm, promotes itself and outwardly advertises itself to potential clients. Some examples of outbound marketing might include television commercials, advertising billboards, and even physical mailers that get sent out to a wide range of people living and working in the area you tend to serve. As you may already know, these forms of outbound marketing can get pretty pricey, and they may not yield the kind of results you're hoping for when you put in the time and money upfront. How does inbound marketing differ?
With inbound marketing, you're not looking outward for potential clients and seeking to promote yourself to a wide variety of people—only some of whom might ultimately be interested in your legal services. Instead, inbound marketing involves employing methods crafted with specific potential clients in mind and using those methods to bring those potential clients to your website, blog, and other pages. HubSpot established the term inbound marketing in 2006, and since then, it has become an effective way of marketing your business. However, inbound marketing requires many different techniques than outbound marketing. With inbound marketing, you'll need to spend significant time thinking about who your ideal clients might be and creating content that allows those ideal clients to find your online information.
For many businesses, inbound marketing involves a set of methods or strategies that are designed to bring potential clients to your online pages, such as your law firm website or your legal blog, to engage and educate them about issues they're seeking answers to or information about, and to convert them into clients. Ultimately, once a potential client has been converted into a lead, the goal is to inspire that client to promote your firm to friends and family members and to promote your website and blog on their social media sites.
Common Types of Outbound Marketing for Law Firms
Outbound marketing, as we explained above, is any form of marketing that involves reaching out to potential clients, often in broad ways. A lot of outbound marketing does occur offline (or in the "real world"), but outbound marketing can also involve certain forms of online marketing. Generally speaking, any time you're advertising your law firm and trying to get potential clients through advertising, you'll likely want to think about this process as outbound marketing. The following are some common forms of outbound marketing that have been popular with law firms for decades, and some of them can still generate leads in the 2020s:
Snail mail flyers;
Email advertisements; and
Certainly, these are not the only options for outbound marketing. Yet we think these examples help to show how outbound marketing involves your law firm reaching out and, quite often, casting a wide net. With outbound marketing, you're not usually thinking about buyer personas, keyword searches, who is looking for legal services, or what those internet searchers hope to find. Instead, you'll be looking outward and engaging in a substantial amount of effort to bring in clients by reaching out to far more people than the number of leads you'll get through those efforts. Indeed, outbound marketing often takes more time and money than inbound marketing, which involves advertising to many people. At the same time, only a small percentage of those reached by the advertisements will be interested in your legal services.
Useful Types of Inbound Marketing for Law Firms
Inbound marketing, distinct from outbound marketing, involves a process through which your law firm does a lot of work upfront to identify your ideal clients and engages in marketing work that brings those potential clients to you. Much inbound marketing involves online marketing, but it need not necessarily require all of your marketing work to take place online. The following are some great examples of inbound marketing methods that can bring potential clients to your law firm:
Social media posts;
Calls to action on blogs and web pages; and
Local bar association referrals.
While many inbound marketing methods involve online marketing, local bar association referrals and other community-based referrals are also inbound marketing tools. Rather than looking outward to advertise to clients, your community work can help generate interest in your firm and new clients. Referrals, of course, can also come through legal websites and social media accounts linked to legal and community organizations in the location where you practice.
When you're creating online content for inbound marketing purposes, there are a variety of elements you'll want to consider. In crafting blog posts and social media posts, you'll want to think carefully about who your intended reader is, and you'll want to design your content with that reader in mind. For example, what search terms might that ideal reader type into a search engine? What type of content might that reader be hoping to find? When it comes to search terms, you'll want to think about keywords and key phrases your intended reader might be searching for, and you'll want to include those. It's important to remember that some elements of inbound marketing won't necessarily require any technological expertise. However, if you want to ensure your legal blogs are "crawled” by search engines and that internet users can find your content when they search, you may need to contact experts in website creation and search engine optimization (SEO).
Ultimately, there are many different forms of marketing that law firms might employ, but it's important to distinguish between inbound and outbound marketing. By and large, inbound marketing can allow you to do business for your law firm all through the power of technology.
More details about the various types of law firm marketing can be found in Types of Marketing for Law Firms.
Inbound Methodologies for Law Firms
Whether you are just starting a new law firm or rethinking your marketing strategy, you may be considering the benefits of online marketing. While online marketing has existed for several years, internet marketing strategies are changing. Rather than using online marketing resources to reach potential customers, law firms and other businesses can use certain methodologies to draw customers in. This distinction is one of "outbound" versus "inbound" marketing. While certain outbound marketing strategies may still have appeal in particular markets or for particular firms, any twenty-first-century law firm needs to consider the benefits of inbound marketing. The following information is designed to provide you with some essential information about inbound marketing methodologies for law firms.
According to HubSpot, inbound marketing has three major elements: attracting, engaging, and delighting people. We'll give you more information about how to do each task and explain why they're important for any law firm's inbound marketing strategy.
Attracting Potential Clients
The first element of any inbound marketing methodology can be summed up as attracting the right visitors to your online materials. You'll want to develop your online content to attract the ideal client or the specific kind of person you're hoping to work with. To be clear, you'll need to think carefully about online marketing and how you can be found by the people seeking your legal services. There are many elements involved in attracting your ideal client. The following are some key examples of ways you can attract the people who want your legal services and are seeking them out:
Crafting detailed buyer personas: When thinking about inbound marketing, you'll want to spend a lot of time building buyer personas for your ideal visitors. Law firms may have multiple buyer personas—and often should have. When you craft a buyer persona, you'll want to think through everything about your ideal client. For instance, where does that client live, and how does that person's professional life intertwine with his or her social and cultural life? To what socioeconomic or sociocultural group does the person belong? Why is the person seeking legal services? For every imagined client you're targeting with online marketing, you'll want to think about buyer personas well in advance—your carefully curated content will only produce the desired result if you know who you're producing it for.
Using search engine optimization (SEO): There are many different elements of SEO, and some may require you to work with an experienced web designer. In short, though, SEO is what allows your online content to be found by potential visitors. It's how search engines like Google or Yahoo! see your pages in the first place and "crawl" them and how your online content ends up in Google search results when a potential client types keywords or key phrases into a search engine search bar.
Keywords and key phrases: While thinking about keywords and key phrases is part of SEO, it's important to keep certain keywords and key phrases in mind in all the content you create. While you may need outside assistance to ensure that your website or blog is being "crawled," it's in your control to ensure that certain keywords or key phrases end up in the online content you create.
Blogging: Creating a legal blog is an important way to bring potential visitors to your website and online content more broadly. You'll want to create a blogging calendar that allows you to stick to a regular publishing schedule, and you'll want to make sure your blog topics are tailored to your buyer personas.
Engaging Online Visitors
Engaging online visitors is to convert them into leads and continue developing your relationship with those clients. How do you convert website or blog traffic to a lead? Typically, you create material that educates and engages your reader and ultimately gets that reader to act in some fashion—e.g., to fill out a contact form, sign up for a newsletter, to enter an email address for regular blog updates. To engage and ultimately convert a visitor on your law firm's website into a client, you'll want to consider employing the following methods:
Use the “call to action" buttons on your website, at the bottom of your blog posts, and on other pages to ask your reader to take the next step. What should a "call to action" button say or do? It might ask the reader to request more information about a certain legal topic or issue, or it might ask the reader to request a consultation with your law firm.
Use a web form that asks the reader to enter his or her contact information to get help with a particular legal matter or question. It’s usually best to keep these web forms brief so that a reader is not burdened when filling them. You'll usually want to ask for a name, the best contact information (email or phone number), and a brief description of that person's legal question or concern.
Ask the reader to subscribe to blog updates or emails. If your readers like what they see on your blog, you can ask them to enter their email address into a pop-up button to subscribe.
Engaging online visitors and ultimately converting those visitors to leads is an essential practice for any law firm using online marketing and, specifically, inbound marketing strategies. Not only can information from visitors to your website provide you with contact information to get in touch with potential new clients, but it can also provide your law firm with data you can use to help tailor your blog posts and other online content even further. For example, you may get several web form submissions from visitors who have questions about a specific legal issue that you haven't yet addressed from a particular perspective on your blog. Adding a blog post or two to answer some of those frequently asked questions from website visitors can build trust in your readership and gain additional website traffic from other internet searchers seeking the same information.
Delighting the Visitor
Once you've converted an online visitor into a lead (or you've turned the online visitor into a client), you want to do everything you can to delight that client so that they will promote your online content themselves. This theoretical person might share your blog posts on their social media accounts, such as Facebook or Twitter. Or they might direct other potential clients who require legal services to your website. For some law firms, one buyer persona might be a popular legal blog that can link to some of your content in that blog's online output.
For law firms in the 21st century, inbound marketing is an effective strategy for building your business and gaining clients at your firm. For many law firms, inbound marketing becomes an essential element of marketing the business in the present and for the future.
Learn more about why inbound marketing works in the law firm marketing context with our article: Inbound Methodologies for Law Firms.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Create a professional website: Your website should provide information about your law firm, including your areas of practice, your team, and your contact information. It should also be user-friendly and mobile-responsive, as many people access the internet from their smartphones.
- Use social media: Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn can be useful for sharing updates about your law firm and engaging with potential clients. You can also use social media to share blog posts and other useful content.
- Invest in search engine optimization (SEO): SEO is optimizing your website and its content to appear higher in search engine results for relevant keywords. This can help more people find your website when they search for legal services online.
- Use pay-per-click (PPC) advertising: PPC advertising involves placing ads on search engine results pages or other websites and only paying when someone clicks on your ad. This can be a good way to get more visibility for your law firm online.
- Create and share useful content: Blog posts, articles, infographics, and other types of content can help establish your law firm as a thought leader in your practice. Sharing this content on your website and social media platforms can help attract potential clients.
- Ask for reviews: Client reviews and ratings can be an important factor in a potential client's decision to choose your law firm. Encourage satisfied clients to leave reviews on your website, Google, and other review platforms.
There are several strategies you can use to get more clients for your law firm:
- Network and build relationships: Attend industry events, join local business organizations, and join online legal communities to meet potential clients and referral sources.
- Use referrals: Ask satisfied clients to refer their friends and family to your law firm. You can also ask other attorneys or professionals in related fields to refer clients to you.
- Use paid advertising: Consider using paid advertising methods, such as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, to get more visibility for your law firm.
- Offer free consultations: Offering free consultations can be a good way to attract potential clients and show them the value of your services.
- Create and share useful content: By creating and sharing useful content, such as blog posts or articles, you can establish your law firm as a thought leader in your practice and attract potential clients.
- Optimize your website for local search: Make sure your law firm's website is optimized for local search by including your location, contact information, and relevant keywords on your website. This can help more people find your law firm when searching for legal services in your area.
- Define your target audience: Who are the clients you want to attract? Consider their location, age, income level, and legal needs.
- Assess your budget: How much money do you have to spend on marketing? This will help you determine which strategies are realistic for your law firm.
- Research your competition: What are other law firms in your area doing to market themselves? This can give you ideas and help you identify opportunities.
- Identify your unique selling proposition (USP): What makes your law firm different from others? How can you communicate this to potential clients?
- Determine which marketing channels are most effective: Different marketing channels, such as social media, email marketing, and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, can be effective for different audiences and purposes. Consider testing different channels to see which ones work best for your law firm.
- Set clear goals and measure your success: Determine what you want to achieve with your marketing efforts, and track your progress to see what's working and what's not. This will help you make adjustments and optimize your marketing efforts over time.
- Create a social media presence: Set up profiles on social media platforms that are popular with your target audiences, such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
- Share useful content: Share useful content, such as blog posts, articles, and infographics, on your social media profiles. This can help establish your law firm as a thought leader in your area of practice and attract potential clients.
- Engage with your audience: Use social media to engage with your audience by answering questions, responding to comments, and sharing updates about your law firm. This can help build relationships with potential clients.
- Use social media advertising: Many social media platforms offer paid advertising options that can help you reach a larger audience. Consider using social media advertising to promote your law firm.
- Monitor your social media activity: Keep track of what people are saying about your law firm on social media, and respond to any questions or concerns promptly. This can help build trust with potential clients.
- Use social media to showcase your personality: Social media is a great way to show the human side of your law firm. Share updates about your team, community involvement, and other personal touches to help potential clients get to know you.
- Track website traffic: Use tools such as Google Analytics to track the number of visitors to your law firm's website, where they come from and what pages they view.
- Monitor social media metrics: Use tools such as Facebook Insights or Twitter Analytics to track the number of followers you have, as well as engagement metrics such as likes, comments, and shares.
- Measure lead generation: Use tracking tools or forms on your website to see how many leads (potential clients) your marketing efforts generate.
- Monitor your online reputation: Use tools such as Google Alerts or Mention to track what is being said about your law firm online and monitor your ratings and reviews on sites such as Google and Yelp.
- Analyze your conversions: Use tracking tools to see how many leads are turning into actual clients for your law firm.
- Assess your return on investment (ROI): Calculate the total cost of your marketing efforts and compare it to the revenue generated from those efforts. This will help you see how effective your marketing is at bringing in new business.
- Determine your marketing goals: What do you want to achieve with your marketing efforts? Do you want to attract more clients, increase brand awareness, or something else? Your marketing budget should be aligned with your goals.
- Assess your available resources: How much money do you allocate to marketing? You should also consider other resources, such as staff time and expertise, that can be used for marketing efforts.
- Research and compare pricing: Look into the cost of marketing strategies, such as social media advertising, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and content marketing. Compare the costs to determine which strategies are within your budget.
- Create a budget plan: Based on your goals and available resources, create a budget plan that outlines how much you will spend on each marketing activity. Make sure to allocate enough money to see results, but also be realistic about what you can afford.
- Monitor and adjust your budget: Keep track of your marketing expenses and compare them to your budget plan. If you see that certain strategies need to produce the desired results, consider adjusting your budget to allocate more resources to more effective tactics.
- Review your budget regularly: Review your marketing budget regularly to ensure it is aligned with your goals and effectively allocating your resources. Make any necessary adjustments as needed.
- Make sure your website is user-friendly and easy to navigate: Your website should be organized in a way that makes it easy for visitors to find what they are looking for. Use clear headings, bullet points, and concise content to help visitors quickly find the necessary information.
- Optimize your website for search engines: Use relevant keywords, tags, and descriptions to help your website rank higher in search engine results for relevant queries. This can help more people find your website when searching for legal services.
- Include calls to action: Make it clear what you want visitors to do on your website. This could be to schedule a consultation, fill out a contact form, or learn more about your services. Use calls to action, such as "Contact Us" or "Learn More," to guide visitors toward taking the desired action.
- Use testimonials and case studies: Sharing testimonials and case studies on your website can help build trust with potential clients. Testimonials can provide social proof that others have had positive experiences with your law firm, while case studies can provide more detailed examples of your work.
- Make sure your website is mobile-responsive: More and more people are accessing the internet from their smartphones, so it's important to ensure your website is mobile-responsive. This means that it should look and function well on various devices.
- Keep your website up to date: Regularly update it with new content and information to keep it fresh and relevant. This can help keep visitors engaged and coming back to your website.
- Create a content marketing strategy: Develop a plan for what types of content you will create and share, who your target audience is, and how you will distribute and promote your content.
- Produce high-quality content: Create useful, informative, and engaging content that addresses your target audience's needs and interests. This could include blog posts, articles, infographics, videos, or other formats.
- Use SEO to optimize your content: Use relevant keywords and tags to help your content rank higher in search engine results. This can help more people find your content when searching for information related to your areas of practice.
- Promote your content: Share your content on your law firm's website and social media profiles, and consider using email marketing or paid advertising to reach a wider audience.
- Engage with your audience: Encourage comments and discussions on your content, and respond to any questions or feedback. This can help build relationships with potential clients.
- Analyze and adjust your strategy: Use tools such as Google Analytics to track the success of your content marketing efforts and see what's working and what's not. Make adjustments to your strategy as needed to optimize your results.
- Claim and optimize your Google My Business listing: Claim your law firm's Google My Business listing and ensure all the information, such as your address and phone number, is accurate and up to date. You can also add photos, business hours, and other relevant information to your listing to make it more comprehensive.
- Use local keywords: Include local keywords, such as the name of your city or region, in your website's content and metadata. This can help search engines understand that your law firm is relevant to local searches.
- Get listed in local directories: Include your law firm's information in online directories, such as Yelp and the local chamber of commerce. This can help search engines understand that your law firm is a reputable local business.
- Encourage reviews: Encourage satisfied clients to leave reviews on your Google My Business listing, as well as other review platforms such as Yelp. Positive reviews can help improve your local SEO.
- Use structured data: Structured data is code you can add to your website to help search engines understand the content on your website. Using structured data can help your law firm's website appear in local search results and the local "3-pack" (a list of the top three local business results).
- Optimize your website for mobile: As more and more people are accessing the internet from their smartphones, it's important to ensure your law firm's website is mobile-friendly. This can help improve your local SEO and make it easier for potential clients to find and contact your law firm.
Email marketing can be an effective way to attract clients to your law firm. Here are a few ways you can use email marketing to promote your law firm:
- Build an email list: Collect email addresses from potential clients through your website, at events, or other means. Make sure to get permission before adding people to your email list.
- Create a newsletter: Create a regular newsletter that includes updates about your law firm, useful tips and information, and other relevant content. You can use tools like HubSpot, Mailchimp or Constant Contact to create and send your newsletter.
- Segment your email list: Consider segmenting your email list based on factors such as location, area of practice, or other characteristics. This can help you create more targeted and personalized email campaigns.
- Use a clear subject line: The subject line of your email is the first thing people will see, so make sure it is attention-grabbing and relevant to the content of your email.
- Personalize your emails: Use personalization techniques, such as including the recipient's name, to make your emails more engaging and relevant to the recipient.
- Track and analyze your results: Use email marketing tools to track the success of your campaigns, such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversions. This can help you see what's working and not and adjust your strategy accordingly.