How Your Firm Can Establish a Solid PR Presence
While not all publicity is good publicity, it’s a general attorney advertising rule that the more your name reaches prospects and key figures, the greater your client portfolio. Building a solid public relations presence involves several aspects such as strategically connecting with the correct press contacts, producing high-quality and engaging material, and consistently positioning your law firm in the web and press limelight.
The following list of best practices and tricks of the trade may just help you and your law firm establish a conspicuous and ongoing PR presence, which in turn can mean increased traffic to your site and a greater number of incoming leads.
Build From the Inside Out
First, write good material for your law firm’s blog, newsletters, and/or press release page, as well as any other publications. Announce current events such as award wins and new attorney hires to display the “inner workings” of your law firm.
It is also important to flesh out a content calendar to ensure that you’re consistently pumping out material that is relevant and interesting to your audience (if the idea of outlining a content and law firm marketing schedule makes your head spin, don’t panic—check out our blog post on creating a content and SEO calendar).
Create Content with a Purpose
Don’t forget that the most appealing news and blog content differentiates your firm within the market. When building attorney advertising campaigns, consider how you can position the content to be both informative and a call to action. For instance, even white papers—which are educational pieces—can be spun to demonstrate that your firm’s attorneys possess the knowledge and expertise to provide unbeatable legal counsel concerning the white paper’s particular topic.
Spread the News Around
After creating the content, the next step in attorney advertising is to blast the content out to as many vital platforms as possible, keeping in mind that you always want to drive traffic back to your website.
- Post to your firm’s social media platforms
- Email your firm’s newsletter to prospects and current and former clients
- Send press releases and announcements to your local business journals or newspapers
- Utilize a press release distribution service such as PR Newswire
Read on to learn more about the last two points above—forming beneficial relationships with local publications and press release distribution.
Cultivate Relationships with Local Publications
Connecting with key contacts at your local publications can be extremely beneficial to your attorney advertising efforts. If you don’t know any reporters or editors at your local business journal and legal publications, reach out and determine the best people to begin contacting.
Once you’ve developed a solid relationship with a few crucial figures, publications will probably be more willing to print your press releases, discount advertising space, or contact you for special features such as one-on-one interviews with top legal professionals within the community.
Utilize a Press Release Distribution Service
A press release distribution service may be the best option for your law firm when first building your PR foundation. Essentially, distribution services send your firm’s press releases to leading online publications, hopefully resulting in greater SEO on search engines like Google.
Paid services range from affordable to pricey. Before breaking the bank, check out free services such as PRLog.org and Newsvine to determine whether they meet your needs.
What Lawyers Should Look For in an Internet Marketing Company
When you search Google for “Internet Marketing Company,” you’ll get over 400m hits. With this kind of service available, how do you find a reputable and effective online lawyer marketing company, without spending as much time as preparing for trial?
Luckily, there are some key traits to look for in an Internet marketing company that can gauge their ability to boost your firm’s online presence, and help your business succeed. First, let’s start with the basics.
What Does an Internet Marketing Company Do? An Internet marketing company’s primary job is to utilize the most effective—including cost-effective—ways to brand and promote your business and its services online. They work to improve traffic to your site, blog, etc., that ultimately converts viewers into customers.
A reputable Internet marketing company will be experienced and well-versed in the following:
–Social Media Marketing (SMM)
–Email Marketing Campaigns
-Tracking and Testing of Conversion Rates
Social media has made it possible for anyone in any industry to market themselves online, including lawyers. An experienced Internet marketing company can navigate through this influx of marketers and make sure that your website is being found and optimized—saving you time, money, and letting you focus on what you should—your clients.
How Can You Find a Good Internet Marketing Company?
Start online. Use Facebook, Twitter, even LinkedIn, and get recommendations from your friends and followers. Post a question such as, “What is a good #Internetmarketing company?,” or search #seocompany, #attorneyinternetmarketing, etc.
Also, ask your colleagues and other professionals in your industry about their Internet marketing. This is a good way to compare agency fees, services, etc.
3 Must-Have Internet Marketing Company Traits
Here are 3 traits an Internet marketing company must have to ensure effective and qualified service:
They Practice What They Preach
An Internet marketing company should be good at, well, Internet marketing. See where these companies rank on Google, Bing, and social media. If you can’t find them, or they rank low, this isn’t a good sign. Also, if they have a poor website or no Twitter/Facebook followers, this is also a red flag.
They Provide Updates and Can Show Results
Make sure a marketing agency can show results they’ve secured for previous clients before you sign up with them. If they have a record of success, it will speak for itself. Also, see that they provide performance reporting in the form of weekly or monthly reports. This will show their efforts in regard to improving your site’s traffic through varied sources and metrics.
They Don’t Guarantee Rankings
An Internet marketing company should never guarantee rankings on Google, Bing, or anywhere else, because they can’t. It’s not possible. A good agency will establish targeted KPI’s, or key performance indicators, to ensure your business is being marketed effectively.
And lastly, a qualified Internet marketing company will be creative and use outside-the-box thinking. This is what can set your marketing efforts apart from others in your industry, and help you surpass your competition.
Optimized Attorney Is the Right Choice For Law Firm Digital Marketing
Online legal marketing companies are abundant these days, as more businesses—law firms included—are grasping the importance of a strong online presence for branding, client generation, and client retention. Content that sells, an engaging website, a well-developed email campaign, organic search engine optimization, and social media management is what gets your law firm found, and keeps it found.
Online marketing companies, however, are not created equal, and some can actually sabotage your business development efforts.
While we don’t want to point fingers here, or drop names of bad marketing companies, we do want to point out what makes us better, and why using our services is the best marketing decision for your law firm.
But first, let’s look at the bad stuff.
Online Marketing Pitfalls
There are pitfalls when it comes to some attorney marketing companies, such as FindLaw (OK, we dropped one name).
These pitfalls can damage business development, both in the short and long-term, and include:
- Domain ownership
- Content ownership
- Contract issues/retainer fees
- Migration processes
- SEO penalties
- Cancellation penalties
What Makes Optimized Attorney the Better Choice?
In addition to building customized websites with optimized content (both standard and mobile), we provide premier SEO services, social media management, e-mail marketing packages, practice area-specific 100-page referral books, and content a la carte: marketing content that can be purchased separately to upload on your own website, such as videos, infographics, slides, and articles. We also offer all of this for less than the leading marketing companies out there.
Let’s take a more detailed look at our top services.
Our custom websites offer sophisticated, lead-generating designs and innovative features. You can choose article topics to suit your practice, as well as optional videos and PDF downloads, submission forms, maps to your office location, live chat options, and more.
Search Engine Optimization
In general, the higher your website is ranked, the more visitors your site will receive. We provide high-quality inbound links, use proper anchor text and intelligently keyworded content to help improve your ranking. We’re all about transparency and you will never wonder whether the work is being done. We actually itemize the number of links built and the amount of content added to your site each month to show you the benefits on pen and paper. With our monthly ranking reports, you can also see what progress is being made over time.
Social Media Management
We create professionally-designed Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn pages for your law firm, and schedule optimized posts, tweets, and more to engage followers, encourage interaction, and boost your online reputation.
We also set up and maintain your Google+ Local account, and create citations monthly on local business sites such as Yelp and Foursquare to increase your Google+ listing visibility in local search rankings.
Shop For Content
Our quality content can be purchased separately to fit your marketing needs—for only $100 each! Choose from videos, infographics, slides, and articles. Our content is custom, SEO-friendly content that is written by a mix of professional, US based English grads and lawyers. No need to worry about receiving unreadable content from overseas content farms.
Additional Perks Offered By Optimized Attorney
Other perks that set our marketing services above the competition include:
- More flexibility in our arrangements
- Direct contact with front line developers and optimizers
- Prompt efforts to fix any problems that arise
- Short-term cancellation clauses
Success Story: Prospective client inquiries up 8x
In one year Phoenix, AZ criminal defense lawyer Howard Snader went from receiving 18-25 calls per month from prospective clients to receiving over 200 calls each month. His 1st quarter 2016 revenues are up 22% over the year-ago figure, and his 2nd quarter is up 41%. How did he do it?
After analyzing how Mr. Snader was marketing his practice, what results he was receiving, and where he was spending his discretionary dollars, James implemented 3 major changes:
1. CRM. We installed our legal customer relationship management system to automate Mr. Snader’s follow-marketing, analytics, and reputation management. James Legal CRM instituted:
- a fully-automated and criminal-law-specific email drip campaign
- call-tracking and full analytics of lead sources, and
- solicitation, screening, and coordination of online reviews
2. Mail. A direct mail effort was launched. Call volume immediately spiked and mail is now the source of half of the law firm’s leads.
3. Website. We reduced Mr. Snader’s spending on his website, and with our team we refined his website’s optimization, increased both the quantity and quality of content being added to the site, and added 24/7 live chat for immediate prospect interaction. Average browsing time on the site has skyrocketed to 90 seconds and leads coming from the website are up 200%.
To better enable Mr. Snader’s firm to handle the increased volume, we took full advantage of Google’s free suite of tools, moving the practice to Gmail and Google Drive.
Mr. Snader now needs more people and space to handle the growth, and:
- Has hired a part-time attorney
- Is seeking both a full-time attorney and a paralegal
- Foresees needing another dedicated phone person
- Is knocking down several office walls to create more space
Coming next for Mr. Snader from James are creation of a 100-page fully-branded book on criminal law, more extensive automated follow-up through the CRM, and additional marketing and automation guidance and implementation.
Optimized Attorney has been publishing law books for more than 30 years. We understand the law, and how to effectively market law firms. For more information, contact us, and let us show you how we can take your legal marketing to the next level.