There’s no doubt about it: content marketing is still one of the best ways to promote legal firms. Surprisingly, many law firms seem to overlook the legal content on their website — they tend to have too little content, the content itself is not optimized for search engines, and it’s often not targeted at the correct audience.
Understanding the need for innovative and informative legal content is the first step toward boosting your firm’s online presence and website performance. The following are some tips and guidelines to steer you in the right direction:
Quality Legal Content Increases Traffic to Your Website
One of the most immediate benefits of creating your own original, informative content is increased traffic to your website. The more content you host on your site, the better the chances that potential clients will find you organically while searching on Google. Ask yourself: “What are my main practice areas that I want to focus on? Do I have enough content on my website to support searches for those practice areas?” Google only knows what your firm does based on what you put on your website. When you offer a lot of content in a specific area, Google knows it is a focus for your firm, and this will help users searching in this field find you.
For instance, suppose your firm practices in the area of intellectual property law. If a potential client has a question about trademark infringement, will they find your website if they do a search for terms like “trademark infringement,” “registered trademark violation” or “trademark attorney?” Are you including those keywords in your content? Do you have blog posts that address these key search terms? If not, you may need to reconsider your overall content and search engine optimization (SEO) strategy, so your website can be found online.
Additionally, if you are pushing and promoting your legal content through social media (as you should be), more blogs and content equals more “ammo” for your social campaigns. This will translate directly into more page views, conversions and, ultimately, more returns for your firm.
Your Content Humanizes the Firm
Your online legal content is one of the rare opportunities when you can present the firm’s personality and character to the world. Your website is your chance to spotlight what your firm stands for and what sets you apart from the rest of the competition. Original content allows you to highlight distinguishing aspects of your firm such as:
- Notable court victories and recovery amounts
- Awards and achievements, both by the firm and individual practicing attorneys
- Contributions to policy and precedent in your field of practice
- Up and coming star attorneys
- Community involvement
This last point is especially important — prospective clients love seeing attorneys being contributing back to the community through charity events, fundraisers, pro bono work and other efforts. Pictures and videos from events are highly encouraged!
Be Sure to Use Your Legal Blog in the Correct Way
In the early internet days, many lawyers and firms overused their law blog (or blawg) in two erroneous ways. First, they wrote blogs that were too academic and complex for the average client, and no one but attorneys ended up reading those types of pieces. Technical pieces and in-depth legal analysis might be better presented in white papers or in firm newsletters that have more attorney readership.
Second, some attorneys injected too much personal opinion in their blogs. While some opinion may be necessary for debated topics, the opinion should be relevant to the discussion rather than simply personal. Both of these extremes can cause a drop in readership and a corresponding drop in leads.
Ideally, legal blogs should be used for presenting:
- Recent developments in your practice area
- New law, legislation and policy stances
- Announcements that might affect client rights (for instance, changes in filing requirements)
- Relevant cases that might change precedent
The blog portion of a legal website can still present fairly complex ideas and legal concepts; however, it needs to be tempered with the correct writing voice so that it appeals to the audience you are targeting.
Great Content Can Boost Attorney Referrals and Partnerships
A less well-known benefit of writing great legal content online has to do with your relationship with other attorneys. Many firms build and maintain their client base through referrals from other attorneys. Other firms welcome the opportunity to work with attorneys from other firms on particular cases or legal issues.
Other practitioners in your field are more likely to make referrals or work with you if you provide fresh insights on new developments in your area of practice. They may see your writing and think, “Now that’s someone I’d like to work with.” Or, they might say, “I don’t practice in this area of law, but I know someone who does.”
Attorneys Are Already Effective Writers
Finally, written content is a natural mode of communication for the legal industry, because the practice of law revolves largely around the skillful use of words. Clients expect their advocates to be able to write clearly, expressively and efficiently. Thus, your online content is your chance to begin showcasing your writing skills.
Remember, the key is to be able to communicate complex legal terms and issues in ways that clients can understand. Your job is not to overwhelm them with complicated legalese. Instead, your task is to demonstrate your ability to be creative as well as professional in your writing. Be sure to pick topics that are relevant, up-to-date and leading edge.
Proper creation of legal content and distribution of it through the proper channels can greatly increase your web traffic, as well as the number of leads you receive. Be sure to keep your content fresh, updated and innovative as you establish your voice as an authority in your field.
At Flashpoint.Marketing, we love implementing best content practices for our legal clients to maximize their success in the long run. Contact us today and learn how we can help you craft a content campaign to boost your firm’s performance now!
Free Download: Legal Advertising Guidelines
These guidelines will help you grasp the differences between lawyer advertising and solicitation, learn what can and can’t be said, leverage social media and blogs and understand how images are supposed to be used in a legal ad.