Marketing Checklist for Busy Solo Attorneys and Small Law Firms
There’s still time to review your law firm’s achievements, figure out what is working, and eliminate or pare down what is not. While BigLaw firms have massive marketing departments who take care of all these tasks, owners of solo and small law firms are often responsible for them. As you gear up for the end of the year, make sure you can check off each of these items on your list to ensure your law firm’s marketing is on track.
Audit Your Law Firm’s Website for Functionality and Safety
Your website is often potential clients’ first impression of your law firm. Web design and functionality are always changing, so what was cutting-edge and working seamlessly six months ago could now be outdated and clunky. Test your site on various devices and browsers to see how quickly it loads and how easy it is to find the information that a potential client might seek out. This is also an excellent time to review federal and state requirements for internet privacy and any courts’ guidelines where you are admitted to practice. Ensure that your site has the proper disclaimers and policies, as well as an updated security certificate.
Are You Reaching Your Law Firm’s Online Growth Goals?
You should have set clear goals regarding traffic, conversions, social media shares, and other metrics at the start of the year. The data helps tell you what is resonating with your audience and what is not. You will need to pull the analytics from your website, any legal directories you pay to be a part of and your social media pages. Are you consistently achieving your monthly goals, or are you at least halfway to meeting your annual goal? If you are, excellent. Figure out what is working and spend more time on that. If you are not, figure out where you are falling flat and address those areas.
Dig Into Your Content Marketing Plan
Content creation should be a substantial part of your law firm’s marketing plan, but it can also be a relatively time-consuming and expensive component. As a result, it is crucial to ensure that your content marketing efforts achieve the goals you have set. Take a look at the content you have published since the beginning of the year. What is yielding the most views? Which pieces are shared across social media? What isn’t performing up to your expectations? Are published pieces bringing in the audience you want to attract? It is time to identify weak spots in your content marketing plan and correct them going forward.
Assess Your Law Firm’s Social Media Efforts
Social media is a massive source of traffic for many law firms, especially now as many of the first client-attorney interactions are happening online. Do a quick scan of all your social media accounts. Have any been abandoned? Are posts sporadic on certain accounts? If you have an account, you must use it properly by engaging with your audience and posting regularly; otherwise, it is not worth keeping. Consider automating and scheduling out your posts for the coming months to save time and promote engagement. Think about posts you would like to share at relevant times throughout the year, upcoming events or award ceremonies, and resources you would like to provide concerning your practice area. But don’t just set it and forget it. You may need to push or remove posts in favor of more timely topics or unexpected sensitivities that might make them inappropriate to post.
Plan for Client Outreach
Part of your marketing plan should focus on retaining current clients, not only on securing new clients. As the holidays approach, ensure that you have a plan in place to reach out to the clients who have joined your firm and reaffirm your commitment to their legal needs. This could be as simple as an automated holiday card mailing or as personalized as individual emails to each client to follow up on the legal issue that initially brought them to your firm.
Review Your Online Reputation
The internet never forgets, which can either be a huge advantage for your law firm or a significant detriment. Investigate your law firm as if you were a potential client deciding whether to work with your firm through a simple web search of your law firm name. Are the reviews mostly positive or negative? If they are negative, have you taken steps to change what led to such poor feedback? Did you respond to reviewers and attempt to resolve the issue?
You must also ensure that the information available about your firm online is current and accurate. Suppose legal or other online directories (Yelp, Google Business Profile, etc.) have the wrong vital information (firm name, location, hours of operation, etc.) or are full of outdated images. In that case, you could be missing out on or misleading potential clients who would otherwise be interested in your services.
Update Your Award Calendar
It is crucial to highlight your team’s achievements, so set aside an afternoon to list your firm’s most recent awards on your website. If there are any awards you have not posted about publicly, schedule blog posts or social media posts to praise your team for their hard work. You may also want to look at award deadlines coming up in the coming months and create an editorial calendar for deadlines. This gives you a fighting chance at earning more awards and driving more business to your firm.
With a solid plan and a full review of your law firm’s current marketing strategies, you will be in an excellent position to finish the year strong. The time you spend crafting and perfecting your marketing plan can lead to more clients, more income, and a more substantial community role.