While marketing is a challenging task for all lawyers these days, some types of attorneys seemingly have it easier than others. When trying to cultivate an urgent call-to-action to potential clients, criminal defense lawyers don’t have to work too hard to come up with selling points. For example, you need to put your trust in experienced legal hands, or you could go to prison! Commercial lawyers on the other hand… well a lot of people out there probably don’t even know what exactly it is a commercial lawyer does.
If the field of law you practice in is a bit on the boring side, or is tough to explain to average consumers, we have something to tell you. No one is going to feel sorry for you! If your firm is struggling to attract new clients from its marketing efforts, don’t blame it on the field you practice in, but rather a lack of creativity.
“For a good writer, there is no such thing as a field of law that isn’t exciting or interesting,” says marketing writer Rodney Warner. “Some areas of law require more digging, more research, more empathy and imagination to make them exciting or interesting, but it can be done.”
In this post, we’ll share some expert legal marketing tips, that should spice up your online advertising efforts, and help make even the most mundane types of law come across as interesting.
Tell A Story
Overwhelming a potential client with facts about your field of law typically won’t win their business, especially when the facts presented by themselves are just plain boring. A better way to go about grabbing and keeping a consumer’s attention is to engage them with a story.
“Stories help solidify abstract concepts and simplify complex messages,” said content creator Allie Decker in a post for HubSpot. “Taking a lofty, non-tangible concept and relating it using concrete ideas is one of the biggest strengths of storytelling in business.”
Presenting the value of your firm through the lens of a real life experience will give the average person a chance to envision what it’s like to have you as their lawyer, and fully understand the benefits that can come from choosing your practice. If you’re wondering what stories you have to tell, just take a look back at some of the things your law office has done over the past few months, and discuss the bigger picture attached to all the work your firm does.
“Every legal issue, every court case, is a story,” Warner said. “You need to come up with characters, the plot, conflict, the setting and resolution.”
Once you’ve established the main events and players in your legal tale, you’ll need to develop relatable storylines that will strike an emotional chord with potential clients.
“You need to think about the repercussions of different outcomes,” Warner said. “Take land use as an example. If there’s a change in the statutes, regulations, codes or a court decision, might it be easier for a factory to be built next to someone’s home? How might that impact homeowners? Might their homes become polluted? Might increased noise and traffic pull their property values down? With more factories in town, might property taxes fall, or at least not rise so quickly? If housing is allowed to be more dense, traffic congestion may go up and housing prices may go down. Might more basement dwelling millennials move out of their parents’ homes and into their own homes?”
Right there, Warner takes the seemingly bland subject of land use and finds a way to make you care about it. With the right mindset, and perhaps the help of a talented writer like Rodney, any boring old issue can produce fascinating storylines.
Focus On Clients’ Needs
Having award-winning lawyers is great. Being able to say your firm is the top rated in its area is also pretty nice. But, these sorts of things usually aren’t difference makers when it comes to attracting new leads. Why? Because your competitors are saying the exact same things in their marketing campaigns. When searching for legal help, consumers quickly grow tired of seeing firms pat themselves on the back. Your prospective clients will be craving something different, even if they don’t realize it at first.
So how can your firm stand out as different than all those other guys? Focus less on what your firm has accomplished, and more on what your firm can accomplish. Present consumers with real solutions. Identifying the problems your client base really cares about, and answering their questions with your marketing is a great way to make your seemingly boring field of law more appealing.
“One person might not think a legal area is interesting, however, if they get in a legal jam and need that type of legal service, quite quickly, the topic will become interesting,” said Jodi O’Hara of Web Visibility Advisors in an interview earlier this year. “Answer potential client needs in a variety of forms on social, with content, video, blogs, infographics and images.”
Sometimes generating an interesting topic for your next blog or vlog post can really be as simple as answering frequently asked questions your firm receives. Don’t worry too much about giving away your legal guidance for free. Remember, even though your advice might help a consumer in getting through a rough legal time, hiring your firm is still a major part of the solution.
Don’t Hide From What You Are
Perhaps the best advice we can give a lawyer who thinks their field of law is problematic, is to focus on what it is they are able to provide and embrace it.
“Take a good, hard look at what your business does and tell people what you do in an honest, compelling way,” said author Ryan Holiday in a 2017 article for Huffpost. “People are sick of the obfuscation and lies of corporate behemoths, they love when a business is upfront with them.”
If you’re an attorney focusing in on one or two specific areas of law, you don’t really need to worry about having mass appeal. After all, you’re not McDonald’s, you’re a tax lawyer. You don’t need to make a burger seem attractive to a wide-range of people. Your marketing needs to make it clear that your firm can help those who are starting a business or planning to bring a suit against the IRS. If your marketing clearly explains the problems you can help someone avoid, and how going with their firm will improve a person’s quality of life, you’re much more likely to be successful.