Content Marketing Strategy for Legal Service Providers.
If there is one industry that has mastered the skill of persuasive verbal expression to its fullest, it is undoubtedly law. However, there is one area where law firms failed to harness this power, and that neglected area is content marketing.
According to the most recent Tech Report of the American Bar Association, only 15 % of solo attorneys and 25 % of law firms incorporate blogging into their business strategy.
However, this trend is about to change as more and more legal service providers are jumping on the bandwagon of content marketing by launching a blog on their legal practice website.
If you have been entertaining the idea of using the power of the written word to generate leads for your legal services in the digital space, this blog post is for you. We will cover what content marketing is and how you can integrate it into the marketing strategy of your legal practice.
Define your objective.
Before you embark upon your content marketing strategy, it is important to define your objective. What do you want to achieve by incorporating blogging into your marketing strategy?
To make the most out of your investment, it is important for your content marketing efforts to feed into the overarching goals of your business. After all, it is not content that is the king. The business is king, and content must ultimately serve the king.
Before you start brainstorming content ideas, make sure to carefully think through what exactly you want to accomplish by launching a blog.
Do you want to build off your most profitable practices or generate demand for your underperforming functions? Or maybe you want to establish yourself as an industry expert in a particular area of law?
Determining your content marketing objective will not only inform your blog topics but also affect other internal business processes such as budgeting (how much are you willing to allocate to content marketing?) and staffing (do you need to hire a copywriter or outsource your content to freelancers?)
Create lead generation content.
Like for any business, the ultimate goal of content marketing for a legal practice is to generate leads and convert them into paying clientele. Informative web content (in the form of blog articles, videos, social media posts, emails) is intended to draw prospective clients into your website. However, if people are not clicking through to your legal practice website or attorney bio pages, they won’t become leads you can nurture and, ultimately convert.
Effective lead generation requires more than mere publishing of content in the online space. To use content as an instrument of lead generation, it must be optimized for search and targeted to the types of prospective clients who search for legal solutions online. In the context of legal practice, prospective clients can be categorized into ‘buyers’ and ‘browsers’.
Buyers are those who are seeking an immediate and specific legal solution. As such, buyers search with ‘transactional keywords’ or keywords that have commercial intent such as ‘business liquidation consulting in London’ or ‘hire a divorce lawyer’.
Browsers are those who are just seeking for more information on legal matters. As such, browsers tend to run informational search queries such as ‘what to include in an employee handbook in Dallas’.
Once you have captured those leads – whether they are at the buyer or the browser stage – they become your prospects. Your next task is to convert them to your paying clients. Keep in mind that buyers and browsers are at different stages of your sales funnel, and therefore, require a slightly different approach when it comes to conversions.
Buyers need to be convinced that your legal practice is experienced and competent enough to handle their specific case; they need assurance. Browsers, on the other hand, need more information on the legal matters that are of interest to them; they need to be nurtured. So, you need to create content that provides both assurance to the buyers as well as the sought-after information to the browsers.
In addition to content, you also need to include call-to-actions that are compelling to both buyers and browsers. For example, buyers are more keen, and therefore, more likely to respond to more immediate call-to-actions such as ‘Get a no obligation service quotation’. Browsers, on the other hand, are more interested in more information about the legal matter in question, and therefore, are more likely to respond to something like ‘Get your questions answered by a lawyer’ or ‘Book a free consultation’.
Market your content.
Far too many businesses create and publish great content but their efforts do not result in traction they are looking for. The reason? They overlook the marketing part of content marketing. After all, what good is great content if it doesn’t have an audience? Therefore, you need to put as much effort into marketing or promoting your content as you do into creating it.
At the core of a content promotion strategy is knowing where your target audience gets their information in the online space. Which blogs do they read? Which forums do they frequent? Whose newsletter do they subscribe to? These are the places where you need to promote your content.
How to market your content.
Many lawyers who want to position themselves as thought leaders publish all of their content on the website or social media of their legal practice. Although blogging on your website is a great strategy for prospect nurturing, it is not very effective for generating new leads (unless your web pages are already ranking on search engines for relevant, high-volume keywords).
When it comes to lead generation, a better approach is to publish most of your content on trusted third-party websites that already get traction with your target audience. This strategy is called guest blogging. You can find a lot of websites that publish guest blog thought leadership pieces on legal matters through a simple google search. Simply reach out to them and ask whether they will be interested in publishing a blog post on your proposed topic under your byline.
One of the biggest challenges a lawyer or law firm faces when trying to build a reputation as a thought leader online is getting people to take notice of their content. People are busy, they’re bombarded by information, and they jealously guard their attention. They pay attention to those they trust, and ignore the rest. Accordingly, if you’re not already part of someone’s trusted inner circle of content producers, they will hold you, and your content, at arm’s length.
The solution to this dilemma is to make an end-run around their attention-defense measures by associating yourself with those who already hold sway with your target market.
These “influencers” are the people who have the industry authority and trust of corresponding niche audiences. If you want to get your content in front of your target market, influencer marketing can get you results fast.
They key to effective influencer marketing is identifying and building relationships with influencers that are right for business. Just because an influencer is publishing content about legal matters, it does not necessarily mean that partnering with them will help you expose your business to the right audience.
There are many ways you can promote your content in the online space but every marketer knows that email marketing is the most effective. After all, email messaging allows you to connect with ‘warmer leads’, that is people who have already shown interest in what you have to offer by subscribing to your content.
Email marketing is a great way to cultivate trust and credibility with your prospects. When people trust in your business, especially in such a delicate matter as legal services, they are more likely to become a buyer.
As a law marketer trying to secure business through content marketing, it is imperative that you stay top of mind with your existing and prospective customers. You never know when they are going to need your services, so it is important to be there when such a need arises. The best way to do that is to gradually build trust with them by emailing them valuable content on a consistent basis. But first you need to build your email list.
Building a targeted email list starts with offering your visitors something valuable in exchange for their lead information (typically, name and an email address). In the context of legal services, it can be a resource (e.g. e-book, report, infographic, or a video) that explains the particularities of a certain legal issue that is of interest to your target audience. For example, an immigration lawyer could offer their visitors an e-book that details possible ways of immigrating to a country.
Keep in mind that a lead magnet does not often secure immediate business. Rather, it is a tactic aimed at prospect nurturing as opposed to conversion. However, in the realm of legal practice, conversions at first sight are quite rare. Understandably, people do no impulse-hire the first attorney they find. In fact, legal services have one of the most complex sales funnels!
If you are struggling to come up with an appealing lead magnet that will be of interest to your target audience, you can take inspiration from your competitors or ask your prospects directly by placing a short marketing survey on your website.
Consider content writing service.
Virtually any business involved in content marketing has the intention to create and publish more thought leadership content. However, most struggle to keep consistent with their content creation efforts. After all, creation of thought leadership content is a very time-consuming and labor-intensive endeavor.
At Content Crash, we understand how difficult it is to keep on top of your content creation efforts when you have a business to run. We would be happy to take content creation off your business agenda! We have an extensive pool of qualified and rigorously vetted writers with experience in a wide range of business verticals. Whether you need to create engaging blog content, creative social media captions, persuasive email copy, conversion-driven product descriptions, or an authoritative white paper, our copywriters can craft it both quickly and competently! Click here to get your no-obligation quotation for your content project.
Darya s a blogger, freelance writer, and SEO content strategist. She works closely with marketing agencies and B2B businesses, providing content writing and SEO services to help them rise above internet noise and forge meaningful connections with their target audience.