Law firm marketing is essential to attracting clients and sharing what your law practice offers. It can also set you apart from other practices in your area.
The goals and the practical details of law firm marketing are not as obvious and straightforward as marketing for other brands.
Rather than pushing a product or service upon them, you want to draw people to your law firm. It’s about educating the public as a whole and your client demographic in particular, about what you can do and why you’re better than other firms.
A pull, rather than push, strategy is referred to as inbound marketing. This approach allows you to be in the minds of your clients when they need you.
Below, I’ll cover several inbound marketing methods, as well as some traditional marketing strategies for your law firm. Whatever combination you choose, it’s important to remember to take the ethical, honest, and straightforward path to keep yourself out of hot water.
Legal Restraints in Law Firm Marketing
We’ve all seen the examples of lawyers using marketing efforts that are slimy or outright illegal. Before we dive too deeply into what you should do, let’s talk about what you shouldn’t do.
Hopefully, as a legal expert, you’re already familiar with these. However, you might not know exactly how these restraints impact your marketing plans.
Laws Pertinent to Lawyers
As you create your law firm marketing strategy, get clarity on local and state laws about what you can and can’t do. Some states have very specific rules about legal marketing, including whether you can make comparative statements, such as “We’re the best!” and how you need to mark your marketing collateral as advertising.
Keep yourself out of hot water by checking with your state bar association for specifics in the location and field you practice.
Laws and Ethics Marketing in General
Keep in mind there are marketing laws and regulations relevant to all types of organizations. Finding ethical ways to build your prospect lists, respecting privacy, complying with GDPR, and more can help keep you out of legal entanglements. They’re also just the right thing to do.
Small Vs. Large Firms Strategies Will Differ
Before we get the specifics, let’s talk about how law firm size can impact your strategies. The approaches we discuss can be customized to either size, but it’s important to think through the differences as you consider your goals.
If you’re a solo firm, your sales cycle may be longer than a larger firm with dozens of attorneys. This could be a factor of your own bandwidth because you don’t have time to reach out to make those touchpoints more often.
Your specialty could also impact the sales cycle length. A larger firm can find out what a client needs and then shuttle them to that department, but a smaller firm may spend more time educating and waiting for specific legal issues to arise.
If you’re a small firm in a big area, you may be facing a high level of competition. Are there a lot of other law firms nearby offering similar services? The bigger firms may seem like they have the upper hand because they can be everywhere.
Smaller firms should focus on getting real about who you are and what you offer. That will help you set yourself apart as THE attorney who provides the best service in the area.