Law firm website content should give potential clients an idea of who the firm is and what the team is capable of. More importantly, the content needs to speak to the proper audience and target the correct clients and leads. Many firms don’t realize that their website or legal blog misses the mark because it wasn’t created with a clear picture of the target client in mind.
This is where legal client personas come in. Personas are fictional characters that embody the most important pain points, traits, and demographic information of the firm’s ideal client. Through legal persona development, the firm can avoid the mistake of trying to appeal to too many people all at once, which significantly dilutes client acquisition and legal marketing efforts.
Ask the Right Questions
When creating a persona, sometimes the best way to think about your ideal client is to ask a few basic questions:
- What is the client’s main pain point?
- What type of legal issues are they facing?
- What types of legal or equitable remedies are appropriate for them?
You should also incorporate background demographic information such as their:
- Geographical location
- Educational background
- Various other indicators
By narrowing down your audience, you’ll really be able to zero in on the type of client that you’re looking for.
Note: Persona data is also highly subject to different market trends and influences; by understanding the market, you’ll also understand your clients better.
Take Your Persona’s Reading Level Into Account
One of the most common mistakes we’ve seen with legal content marketing is that many law firms fail to consider their personas’ reading levels. You’re writing for potential clients, not your necessarily your legal peers.
It’s easy for lawyers to get stuck in legal writing mode and not be aware that they’re using highly technical legal jargon. Of course, this will depend on the practice area, but the average reader won’t be exposed to esoteric legal terms.
Not only that, but potential clients don’t always need to know nitty-gritty details like motions or venue — these types of references will likely fly over their heads. Instead, most clients just want reassurance that they will be represented zealously and treated kindly by their attorney during the legal process.
Aim for a writing style that’s light and easy to digest, while at the same time maintaining decorum and professionalism.
The Buyer’s Journey is Important for Persona Development
Another important aspect to consider is where your target persona is located in within the buyer’s journey. The buyer’s journey is as follows:
- Awareness Stage: A person in this stage is just becoming aware that they have a legal issue or problem
- Consideration Stage: The person is now considering different possible solutions to their legal issue
- Decision Stage: The person has identified a solution and is now deciding which law firm or attorney to select to help them solve their issue
Many law firms make the mistake of trying to reach only Decision Stage-oriented readers; what’s more advisable from a legal lead generation standpoint is to begin reaching potential clients earlier on in the buyer’s journey. That way, they become more familiar with your firm’s brand name well before they’re ready to make that phone call.
The same potential client might have different needs depending on what stage of the buyer’s journey they are in. Your content and lead generation efforts need to take into account how close your persona audience is to making a conversion.
Single vs. Multiple Personas
One question we get asked often is whether the firm should have multiple personas or only one persona. This depends on a whole host of factors, but at the very least, you should have one solid persona developed for your main practice area. This persona should be revisited regularly to update it with any new data you gather over time.
From there, you can create other personas. If you‘re a smaller firm specializing in one practice area, you can develop secondary personas to supplement your main one. For larger firms, it is recommended to develop at least one persona for each practice area.
There’s no need to follow any strict formula or pattern, however; personas are intended to give you a better understanding of how to prioritize which people to reach.
Work With a Professional Lead Generation Agency for Assistance
While legal client persona development is crucial to the success of lead generation efforts, it can be a complex process. Some firms don’t have any experience in this area and may need some direction on how to create, and more importantly, how to use personas. That being the case, most law firms would benefit by working with a professional lead generation agency to help with persona creation.
At Flashpoint, we have extensive experience in helping law firms develop personas that will provide laser-focused direction for lead generation and client acquisition efforts. Persona development is the cornerstone of all strategies that we tailor for each of our clients. Contact us today to get started on a persona-driven lead generation campaign for your firm.