Legal Marketing Techniques Online in the UK

March 8, 2016

Many law firms in the UK are unable to gain new clients and cases because they are unable to get past the old traditions of offline legal marketing such as print, newspapers and local media advertising.

Obviously these methods of legal marketing do work however working very closely with law firms across the UK over the past several years, we have found that it is a task (to say the least!) to entice established law firms into the realms of online legal marketing without thinking that marketing professionals perform some kind of witch craft!

With recent changes in the law in regards to fees paid for referrals we have seen a lot of law firms in the UK hire professional marketing agencies like Infused Media to undertake their online marketing and provide self generated leads via their website, social media or other online platforms.

The following methods are tried and tested, ones that we have put into practice for several law firms in the UK that we have worked alongside either as consultants or legal marketing partners.

Keep it simple with your law website & design

Potential clients that visit your website are looking for an overview of a particular legal service you offer, with some smart call to action areas will leave their details if they feel that you are a professional firm who meet their requirements.

We have often found that law websites offer masses and masses of content even at the page level, which a user is very unlikely to read. The content must clear, in a large font that is legible and not read like a small book. Space your copy with images and call-to-action (CTA) areas which entice the reader to call or contact you. Keep it short, professional and to the point.

The website design itself is also a large selling point of your services. Keep it simple, clear and professional.

Working with law firms on their website projects and planning we have found that research and data are probably the two most important factors when creating a new law website design. We know that customers want a good user experience, would rather watch a video than read a full page of content, they enjoy warm colours and a professional feel. Keep your design simple, easy to use and focus on your target market.

Law website basics to follow…

– Responsive – Make sure your smart device users can access your website.

– 3 clicks to contact – Set a maximum of 3 clicks for the user to leave their details or call you.

– Clear and professional copy – Ensure that the content you display is relevant to the user looking for the service and is not complicated with legal terms and errors.

– Use your brand colours – keeping with the brand of your offices and offline brand that people will be able to recognise.

– Keep the website simple – after lots and lots of experience & data over the years customers prefer a simple website that is easy to use and easy to leave their details with. Don’t over complicate the design.

– Pay attention to detail – remember you are offering a serious service and people expect a degree of professionalism – check the copy, check that all links work and that any accreditations are displayed correctly.

– Hire a SEO or marketing agency to get your website ranked for your target legal sector keywords. Doing this alone will require a lot of investment of your time – let the professionals take care of it and offer direction.

– Install tracking software such as Google analytics, webmaster and phone tracking tools to track the performance of online of offline campaigns, this data is extremely valuable.

– Be sure to include all of the services you offer, even if not one of your main services you will be surprised at the traffic that is gained for potential second category services on your website.

Know your legal brand – both online and offline

I am unable to count the amount of times that a law firm have got the very basics of branding completely wrong, whether it be using mascots of giant solicitors that look daunting and threatening to animals and other furry creatures that have almost no appeal to their target market. As simple as it may sound, we suggest that a law firm should brand itself as a law firm. Clear, concise and here to offer help in times of need. Transparency and professionalism account for around 90% of what a person is looking for when locating a suitable solicitor or law firm to represent them.

Getting your brand out and on the web is probably one of the most important steps a law firm needs to make in this day and age. Your company could potentially be exposed to 1000s if not millions of potential customers looking for your service. We cannot stress the importance of brand awareness for any law firm looking to make an impact in the already over crowed market.

Content Strategy

The law industry is fast paced with new legislation and industry news coming out daily from a large number of sources. Hire a professional content team to ensure that your law firm’s news and blogs are kept up to date with the latest news and updates. This could be done monthly or weekly and it gives a potential customers confidence that you are up to date on current laws and industry news.

If you are unable to write copy for your legal website use the skills of a professional company and provide direction on the services you offer, they can often write engaging user friendly content that attracts and entices people to use your service. Content marketing campaigns are a massive SEO ranking signal and will help you gain rankings within the search engines.

Social Media

We have seen traffic and referrals from social media website jump to around 120%+ over the past 2 years. This traffic is extremely targeted as the person viewing your social media profile is more than likely already engaged with your law firm and is now ready to take the next step by either contacting you directly or viewing your website for more information. Social media is becoming one of the ‘go to’ marketing tools for many law firms that employ a professional social media team to engage with potential clients.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)

SEO and natural search engine ranking for long and short tail keywords is probably one of the most effective routes to online success for any law firm looking to make an impact on the UK market. Ranking for your chosen sector with several keywords will provide you with highly targeted traffic in your niche.

We offer a few basic rules to follow when hiring a professional SEO agency to undertake work for you:

– Be realistic – SEO takes some time to mature and there are often much bigger firms with bigger marketing budgets

– Target realistic keywords – Keywords such as ‘business law’ or ‘clinical negligence’ may seem enticing however we have found that there are actually more searches per day for longer tail keywords and localised keywords such as ‘business law west London’, the volumes may not be as high but add a few more similar volume low competition keywords to the mix and these keywords become realistic targets of ranking highly for

– Put a marketing budget in place – SEO is not just about writing content and onsite optimisation, there is a great deal of offsite work to be carried out such as blogger outreach, gaining back links and so on which can sometimes be additional costs

PPC (Pay Per Click)

Pay per click advertising seems daunting to most law firms, we often see CPCs (cost per clicks) for certain keywords hover around the £100 per click mark (that’s a click not a lead!) which can put many law firms off for life.

Yes, there are huge firms out there that have huge budget but it doesn’t mean that you are unable to complete. Hiring a professional PPC agency or consultant that can identify keywords with much lower CPCs and will bring leads and new cases, its more about being smart with your PPC budget and making sure that its optimised to bring the best value for traffic.

There are many other online avenues that we could document here, but we feel these are the basics and enough to get you started. We hope that you have found some of the basic techniques that we have applied to our clients in the past useful – Infused media is a fully integrated agency offering professional Legal Marketing to law firms, solicitors and barristers that want to be successful online.

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