Are You Ready For An Outsourced Marketing Solution NOW?
In the year prior to becoming president, Honest Abe himself advertised the opening of his law practice.
He even gave lectures (for a fee) touting his legal prowess. However, when it came to legal marketing, Lincoln had a distinct advantage over modern law firms: Placing an ad in a newspaper or giving a speech was pretty much the sum total of what you could do, enough to reach nearly everyone in a community.
By contrast, in today’s legal marketplace, attorneys need multi-channel promotions, social media savvy, SEO expertise, inbound marketing skills, pay per click, design aptitude, email marketing, analytics know-how, content writing skills and much more. Frankly, who has the time? It can make your head swim just thinking about it.
You could hire someone–but are you willing to hand over your law firm’s reputation to a stranger? Do you have the time to find that person in the first place? How do you decide if it is even worth the effort? Let’s find out by asking a couple basic questions, to see if an outsourced marketing expert is the right approach for you and your firm.
What Are Your Goals?
Obviously, you’d like to build—or expand—your practice and/or increase revenue. But how? Don’t just think in terms of you want more clients. Maybe you just need a different type of, or better, client base. Think specifically about who are the new clients that you want to have. What are their demographics?
For example, are you a general practitioner, but you’d like to shift your practice in a more targeted way? A talented marketing consultant can help your firm appeal to a specific niche. Or perhaps you have a narrowly focused practice, but you want to broaden your client list: A good content marketer can help you reach the traditional client base, to those who need your particular expertise, but haven’t yet realized it.
What Is Your Marketing Strategy?
Do you have a plan that has a consistent theme and message from websites to direct mail? How often do you send email newsletters or other media that offers clients information on your services or relevant legal news? Are these efforts coordinated, or is it more of a haphazard, ad hoc approach? When is the last time you updated your web design, logo and marketing materials?
What Is Your Existing Web Presence and Visibility?
From the lawyers’ perspective, having a LinkedIn profile, a website or a Facebook page may seem like a huge leap into a Brave New World. But from the perspective of potential clients, those are all sine qua non. In fact, there’s evidence to suggest that clients look down on attorneys without a web presence.
Expanding on that by writing an educational and informative blog post, a few relevant tweets or a Facebook essay can be an outstanding way of getting your ideas across—and your name out there. But social media isn’t a one-shot proposition: You need to regularly add and update your content, interact with others and build your community. It’s an ongoing process.
If you’re starting to feel like marketing your firm could be a full-time job all on its own, my response is: “Yes, exactly.” But that isn’t a bad thing. It means that it’s time to realize that the value in hiring a marketing expert to help your firm, just as you would bring in an outside expert to help on a client matter.
We’ll talk in a future post about how to get the most from hiring outside marketing consultants, but for now, there’s just one more question to ask: Can you really afford not to do it?