Internet marketing for law firms can be a rather expensive affair. Fortunately, there are numerous ways law firms can make their online marketing campaign more cost-effective. This article provides 5 easy tips that any law firm can follow to make their online marketing campaign more effective and less expensive. Read on, and you’ll soon realize that internet marketing for a law firm needn’t cost an arm and a leg.
1. Invest in a Detailed Internet Marketing Plan
An internet marketing plan is a crucial document that outlines how online marketing activities will be promoted, executed, monitored, etc. It outlines how much time and capital will be required for certain activities and how it will affect your ROI. Unfortunately, numerous law firms choose to stick to an outsourced or overly-simplistic internet marketing plan, and it often backfires. You really don’t want to cut corners in this aspect of internet marketing for a law firm, because you are likely missing out on a lot of opportunities for exposure in places such as online directories, industry-relevant social communities, and even trade shows (yes, there are trade shows for attorneys). Over time, limiting your own exposure can cost you a lot.
Therefore, you want to market yourself in a way that doesn’t put all of your eggs into a single basket; instead, create a more holistic and varied lawyer SEO marketing plan and conduct research online to see what avenues seem to be working for your competitors.
Quick Tip: There are some great resources on the web specifically pertaining to the creation of lawyer SEO marketing plans. Here are a few:
2. Conduct Training Sessions on Content Writing
These days, internet marketing for a law firm revolves largely around content creation. Law firms, and many online companies in general, pour huge amounts of capital into acquiring content for their website, blog and social media pages. Thousands of dollars are spent not only on content but on their marketing and upkeep. This cost can be significantly reduced in one ease way – train your own department.
While this may seem like a method where law firms need to spend money, the long-term advantages are monumental. With more companies spending increasing amounts on content marketing, teaching your marketing or online marketing department how to write content properly can save thousands in the future. Or as they say, if you want something done right, do it yourself. Arming a lawyer with SEO and marketing knowledge will ultimately translate to high quality content that earns valuable views and shares.
Quick Tip: Websites such as Copyblogger.com are a treasure trove of information on writing effective and compelling copy. You can also learn the old fashioned way by checking out a book on copywriting. Taking some time to read through these available resources is really all it takes to get started.
3. Go Local
While this may seem like a rather odd method to make internet marketing for law firms more cost-effective, the truth is, local internet brings a host of benefits with it. When law firms narrow their location, they trade off greater impressions for greater conversions. As a result, they acquire more clients for every $1 they spend on online marketing, especially when spending on online ads.
Quick Tip: It is highly important to keep your business listings consistent across online directories. Google pays close attention to the Name, Address and Phone number (NAP) of each listing it crawls. If your “NAP” is inconsistent or incomplete across the various directories, it will negatively impact your visibility and rankings. Listing management tools such as Moz Local and Yext can also help you keep track and fix these errors or inconsistencies. We do feel that Moz Local offers the better value ($84/year) compared to Yext ($199/year membership fee plus additional costs per URL).
You can also use a tool like Whitespark to track your local rankings.
4. Go Mobile
Numerous online marketing platforms, such as Google AdWords, give you the option to create an internet marketing campaign for mobile platforms. With over 60 billion mobile searches, it makes sense for law firms to extend their online marketing to mobile platforms. In fact, combined with over 12 billion local mobile searches, it is important for law firms to go mobile.
Quick Tip: Limit your mobile Adwords campaign to more local cities that you service. This will dramatically increase your conversion rate without causing a large increase in your budget. Remember, internet marketing for law firms is more about conversions than impressions.
5. Check to see what your competitors are doing
It costs you nothing to look up your competitors in Google, and you may learn quite a lot from what you find. Competitor reconnaissance is a huge part of lawyer SEO marketing. Search them directly and also consider searching for key phrases that you would ideally like to show up for in search engines (e.g. “trial lawyer san diego”).
Dig through the results that show up on the 1st page and analyze the websites that are ranking to see what they are doing that you are not. Perhaps they have a blog, news section, or active social media that you can try and implement as well. Additionally, you may or may not find that directory listings such as Yelp and YellowPages.com dominate the first page of search results. If that’s the case, then proceed to submit your law firm to those same directories. If you see that your competitors are adding photos, videos, etc. in their listings, then you should also do the same.
Anything that you find on that 1st page of Google you should take note of and possibly try and replicate for yourself.
Quick Tip: Although it is a little technical, Moz’s Open Site Explorer helps you compare metrics that include social signals and domain authority alongside your competitors. You can also use this tool to gain insight into the sort of links that your competitors are creating. This tool can be used at no cost, but to utilize all of its features, you will need to upgrade to a Moz Pro account ($99 per month). You also get additional tools for being a member, such as Followerwonk, which will allow you to research the top Twitter influencers within your industry. You can then try and build relationships with these people/profiles and possibly get them to share your content or website with their own audience, which will yield excellent exposure for your law firm.
While internet marketing for a law firm may seem expensive, there are plenty of ways to to cut costs while also getting more for your money. With the 5 tips above, law firms will be able to make their internet marketing campaigns more cost-effective than before.