While larger law firms have the resources to develop grandiose marketing campaigns and outsource excellent specialty-related content, smaller and solo law firms have to make do with much less. They tend to take a DIY, or do-it-yourself, approach to legal marketing which can result in a scattered and ineffective marketing plan that doesn’t pay off.
It’s time for solo and small law firms to approach marketing from a different angle in order to become more effective. If your legal practice is on the smaller end, start implementing these mindset changes and attorney marketing strategies today.
If you don’t have the time or financial resources to keep up with the Biglaw firms or even medium-sized legal practices, it’s time to think smaller—fewer marketing campaigns, fewer dollars spent, fewer attorney marketing avenues explored.
However, note that smaller (and fewer) doesn’t mean less effective. Rather, thinking smaller forces you to focus on the handful of areas to commit to 100%, which can lead to far better results than spreading yourself too thin and trying to pursue every marketing avenue.
What might “thinking smaller” look like in the context of producing audience-focused content, for instance? Let’s pretend that Joe, an attorney at a small personal injury practice, struggles to produce a new 1,000-word blog article every week. He can’t find the time to write but wants to regularly put something new on the blog, so he ends up rushing through and writing generic blog articles that don’t provide much value.
Because of this, his blog readership is poor and his articles don’t rank highly on search engines (when it comes to SEO, value and user experience are two of the top factors that search engines use to determine ranking). His efforts are going to waste.
Rather than striving for a 1,000-word post every week, Joe should switch gears: he could develop a well-researched, user-focused, 2,000-word blog post once a month on the most compelling topic for his audience, such as the most common types of medical malpractice cases. This slower but steadier approach is much more likely to garner readership from potential clients.
Tip: If you don’t have time to produce content in-house, consider working with an attorney marketing partner like James Publishing & ClientTech. We have a library full of specialty-specific marketing pieces, which could free up your time to focus on building your small or solo practice.
Use Data to Make Well-Informed Marketing Decisions
On a small budget, every marketing dollar is incredibly valuable. Use data to guide your marketing actions and ensure that your budget results in positive ROI. For example, in the content example above, Joe the personal injury attorney shouldn’t take a stab in the dark regarding which topics to write about. The better course of action is to:
- Source questions from the comments section of his blog posts
- Seek out popular blog posts within personal injury law and medical malpractice (on competitors’ sites, for instance)
- Search through popular questions about personal injury law on Quora to determine which commonly asked questions he can address on his blog
With this data in hand, Joe can set his blog up for success rather than writing about topics at random and hoping for readership.
Choose Your Battle: Positive Online Reviews
As a small or solo practice, you may not have the ability to compete against larger law firms in terms of some SEO-related activities, like building a large website with loads of blog posts, but you can beat out competitors by focusing on building positive online reviews that boost SEO and attract attention from potential clients.
One of James Publishing & ClientTech’s own clients, personal injury attorney Loren Etengoff, has more than doubled his caseload by focusing on generating positive online reviews. After using the James Online Reputation Management tool, Mr. Etengoff reports that 90% of his new clients mention his reviews as one of the reasons they chose his law firm over others.
It’s worth noting that Mr. Etengoff’s law practice is a small firm with just a few employees. His success is proof that solo and small legal practices can thrive by focusing on fighting the right battles.
Let Technology Act as an Extra Employee
Stop spending time on repeat tasks and to-dos that can be streamlined; automate as much as possible. A technological tool like the James Legal CRM (client relationship management system) can act as an administrative assistant and marketing manager in one.
For example, the James Legal CRM automates follow-up, such as sending an email to website visitors who download a personal injury guide from your attorney website. It also streamlines review solicitation and automatically sources pertinent data into one easy-to-view dashboard, so you can instantly see:
- Your total number of reviews
- Average rating
- Benchmark of your current rating compared to past ratings
- Percentage of positive ratings versus negative comments
- Number of website visitors
As a small or solo law firm, you wear a lot of hats. Take the most time-consuming attorney marketing tasks off your plate with the James Legal CRM and rest assured that nothing will fall through the cracks.
We typically save attorneys $1,000 per month on wasted spending and ineffective marketing efforts.