A Law Firm Marketing Blog Series Edition #20
Welcome back to our blog series, in which we talk with some of today’s most knowledgeable legal marketing minds. In this edition, we feature Amy Juers, the founder and CEO of Edge Legal Marketing.
We hope hearing the thoughts and ideas shared by the people in these blog posts, will inspire you to make positive changes to your marketing strategies. We also know that marketing legal services these days is more complex and challenging now than ever before, and hope that some of our readers may identify with some of the marketing struggles presented here, and perhaps be able to offer solutions.
The biggest goal of this blog series is to get the conversation going, so let’s dive in.
Our Marketing Conversation with Amy Juers
Edge Legal Marketing, a marketing and public relations firm serving the needs of businesses and organizations in the legal industry, is now 20 years old, and appears to be running stronger than ever before. The company was recently voted Best of the Midwest in a survey by The National Law Journal, which asked its readers to select the best legal industry product and service providers. Amy Juers believes that its the legal marketing experience of her team that has given the company an edge over competitors.
“When we consult and advise clients it isn’t based on smoke and mirrors, it is our tenureship, relationships and hard work that brings impactful results that simply gets us noticed,” Juers said. “Winning these awards affirms our leadership position in this space.”
In this blog post, we’ll give you a chance to learn from an award-winning mind. In our below conversation with Juers, we discuss how new technology is impacting marketing, the biggest mistakes being made with legal brand strategy and why PR is so important for law firms in the digital age.
Answering Legal: What legal marketing trends have caught your attention so far in 2019?
Amy Juers: Content is still king! The change I have noticed is that more entities are utilizing lead capture and nurturing software, like HubSpot or Pardot. Systems like these feed on content and are branching out to encompass more of the digital marketing ecosystem, thus making it easier for marketing professionals to create, deliver, manage and analyze results.
Video and podcasts are hot!! Anyone that has a smartphone can do it. Practice, post, push and pull!
Another trend that I think will continue to grow is the use of LinkedIn for B2B marketing and public relations. LinkedIn has fantastic hyper-targeting capabilities and we’ve seen positive and impactful results.
AL: A few years back, you were asked in a piece to talk about what’s next for legal marketing, and discussed how AI was transforming the power of marketing. How has new technology impacted and changed the job of a legal marketer in recent years?
Amy: Since that last piece we have seen the use of AI technology increase and this has provided marketers with greater knowledge about their customers. AI enables us to deliver the right message to the right person at the right time. Legal professionals appreciate a more sophisticated pitch and by leveraging AI, a marketer’s content and precision improves significantly. The trick here is to properly address the recipient through intelligent content, but not appear “Big Brother-ish” as that would have the opposite effect and result.
AL: Which AI tools should lawyers be taking advantage of to help with their marketing efforts?
Amy: AI is built into many platforms they are already using such as Google, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and email systems like HubSpot and Pardot. AI takes away the guesswork and perhaps even some of the need to do A/B testing. An example of this is when I go to launch an email campaign, it will tell me the best time to schedule and send the email and that is based on AI. My advice is to let the technology help you and you won’t be sorry!
AL: What advice would you have for lawyers who have dabbled in social media marketing, but have gotten limited results from it?
Amy: When done consistently, correctly and across various platforms, our clients have seen a boost in website visits and hence leads which then all trickles down to the bottom line. Lawyers should engage in social media! And now you can add Instagram on top of your LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook accounts.
Some strategies that help are to always try and link back to your website and then review the analytics and visitor reports. Add variety by posting links to your YouTube videos and podcasts. Also, consider using software like Hootsuite or dlvr.it to make this task easier!
AL: Have you found that there are certain social media platforms that seem to work better for certain types of lawyers?
Amy: Yes, this is absolutely true. If you run a solo or small practice that perhaps focuses on family law, I would place a heavier emphasis on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube as marketing tools. But, if you are the CMO of an AMLAW 100 firm, aim toward LinkedIn first, then Twitter and YouTube.
AL: What are some of the biggest mistakes you see legal professionals making today when it comes to brand strategy?
Amy: The biggest mistake I see is when they do not clearly define their focus. If you claim to be everything to everyone, no one will believe you. Legal professionals should define their focus area and clearly articulate that throughout all of your messaging. Once the area of focus is articulated, make sure the message is consistent across all marketing channels including your website, social media, brochures and advertising.
AL: Why is PR so important for law firms in 2019, and what are the biggest keys to doing legal public relations right?
Amy: Stemming off of the legal marketing trend that content is king, public relations can produce a lot of content that can then be fed directly into a firm’s marketing strategy and ecosystem. Public relations also affords firms an additional avenue for the more sophisticated pitch. Traditional public relations activities such as press releases and byline articles provide fresh website content that web crawlers love and then they can feed email campaigns and social media channels. The line between public relations and marketing has gotten more gray over the years, which is why incorporating PR into your overall plan is a must.
AL: How can lawyers use email marketing to their advantage?
Amy: I am a big fan of leveraging marketing automation platforms but I also encourage our clients to personally reach out to their clients and prospects on occasion. Email marketing platforms can help marketers navigate lead acquisition and nurturing. What is fantastic about these platforms is that many of them incorporate social media, analytics, reporting, SEO, paid media, and digital advertising.
Common platforms that we see our clients use include HubSpot, Pardot, Salesforce/Marketo, Constant Contact, iContact, and Mail Chimp. Use marketing automation platforms but be cautioned as to not break any GDPR or spam laws.
AL: What are some offline marketing methods that still have value for lawyers in the digital age?
Amy: Here are some methods that we utilize:
- A hand-written note or send seasonal greeting cards
- Public speaking at conferences
- Sponsoring and appearing at local events
- Community service / goodwill
- Hold workshops
- Invite your client/prospect to lunch
- Advertise in public (billboard, newspaper, magazine, airport)
AL: What’s your top piece of marketing advice for an attorney just starting out in 2019?
Amy: Start by creating a strategic plan that has quantitative and qualitative goals across a manageable timeline. For the plan, think about how you can leverage each item produced across your marketing and public relations “ecosystem.” The ecosystem will allow you to squeeze every ounce of energy out of that one piece of content so that it can pay dividends in return.