8 Law Firm Marketing Statistics That Might Surprise You

The landscape for legal marketing is constantly evolving. And the past year has only added to the rapid shift toward digital marketing efforts across all legal practice areas. Because of this continuous shift in the marketplace, it’s essential to stay up to date with the most recent trends and strategies. 

To that end, here are eight law firm marketing statistics that are indicative of where the industry stands and where it’s going. 

#1 Event Sponsorship Was the Leading Marketing Channel Pre-COVID  

According to the American Bar Association, prior to COVID-19, event sponsorship was a major element to legal marketing strategies and the number one channel across all firm sizes. In fact, 48% of all respondents utilized in-person events to drive client acquisition.1 

This was followed by:

  • LinkedIn (42%) 
  • Email (41%)
  • Facebook (33%)
  • Print (21%)

The pandemic put an end to large gatherings, effectively crippling an entire marketing channel. In response, many marketers pivoted toward digital marketing strategies. As a result, LinkedIn, Email, Facebook, Twitter, and legal listing sites all surpassed event sponsorship and print. 

As of now, there’s no way to tell whether event sponsorship will reclaim its top spot as the most popular marketing channel, but it seems unlikely. Going forward, most analysts expect the focus to remain on digital strategies, which have a better ROI and the ability to reach far more people. 

#2 More Than One-Third of People (37%) Begin Their Hunt for a Lawyer Online 

As of 2017, more than one-third of people looking for a lawyer started their search by Googling it. And even the vast majority of people who first sought referrals from friends and family later followed suit. Once they had a name in mind, they then visited their website to find out more.

What does this tell us? It demonstrates the importance of two things:

  1. Ranking highly on SERPs plays a massive role in conversions 
  2. Having a professional-looking website that speaks to your target client matters 

By conducting a legal marketing strategy that includes both PPC campaigns and focusing on site-wide search engine optimization (SEO), you can rank higher and ensure that the prospective clients in your area looking for your services see you first. 

#3 Practically Everyone Looks for Legal Advice Online 

Here’s a follow-up law firm stat: 96% of all people start looking for legal advice online.3 This statistic should get you excited. It represents an opportunity to become an authority in your space. 

How do you do this? There are a few digital marketing strategies you can employ, including: 

  • Regularly write blog content that addresses common legal questions, topics, and relevant matters to your legal specialty and your client’s needs. 
  • Include a fully-fleshed FAQ on your firm’s website and regularly update it.
  • Write white papers and eBooks. 
  • Share relevant content (both internal and external) on social media. 
  • Create and post legal videos and explainers. 

By doing this consistently, you can establish yourself as an expert. Over time, people will start to automatically turn to you for legal advice or seek your services.

#4 Mobile Matters 

More than half of all internet searches are conducted on a mobile device or tablet. And this number has consistently hovered around the 50% mark for more than five years.4 

But why does that number matter for legal marketing? 

Put simply, if your website is not mobile-responsive—i.e., built to be easily read and navigated on a mobile device or tablet—you will disincentivize one out of every two people seeking your services. On top of that, you won’t do yourself any favors from an SEO perspective, considering that Google’s algorithm prioritizes mobile-friendly websites. 

Surprisingly, according to the ABA survey, 6% of legal firms said that their site was not mobile-friendly, with another 26% saying they weren’t sure.1 

Today, having an outdated website can be detrimental to getting new business. Especially when the vast majority of your marketing efforts will run through your website. 

Even if you’re a solo practitioner on a limited budget, there are cheap and easy web builders that you can use to revamp your site and create a better experience for mobile users.

#5 35% of All Attorneys Have Gained a Client Through Social Media 

And this number is growing every year. That’s because social media is one of the most influential and cost-effective marketing channels at your disposal. In reality, this number seems lower than it should be, which is most likely due to legal firms failing to take full advantage of all that social media offers as a marketing tool. 

Remember, not all channels provide the same value. While Instagram is a wildly successful marketing channel for retailers, it’s not nearly as useful for legal firms. 

So, what channels should you pursue? We recommend focusing on the following: 

  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter 
  • YouTube 

These channels give you a way to inform and engage with your target audience while positioning yourself as an expert. Whether it’s LinkedIn or Facebook, social media allows you to interact with an audience while posting high-quality content, including: 

  • Blog posts
  • Articles
  • White papers
  • Videos
  • Success stories 

#6 Only 24% of Firms Use Video as a Part of Their Marketing1 

Like social media, far too many legal firms are underutilizing the power of video for digital marketing. 

But this represents an opportunity to distinguish your legal firm from others. By regularly producing high-quality video content, you can establish your voice in a high-value, low-competition channel. According to a CISCO report, by the end of 2021, more than 80% of internet traffic will be video-driven.5

YouTube and Facebook are the ideal social media platform you can use to regularly post video marketing content to your followers. And what types of videos should you be posting? 

While it depends on your specialty and clientele, generally speaking, consider creating the following types of video content:

  • Educational videos that answer specific questions asked by clients 
  • Branded videos for your homepage 
  • Media interviews you participate in
  • Client testimonials 
  • Vlogs 

#7 The Vast Majority of Legal Websites Are Barebones

Although most firms have a basic website set up, only a small minority fully realize its potential. According to the ABA survey, fewer than 20% of those surveyed had any of the following listed on their website:1 

  • Community/charity announcements
  • Paralegal profiles
  • Court/administrative links
  • In-house consumer guides
  • Support staff profiles
  • Outside legal articles
  • Outside guides/forms

Similarly, a notable percentage also lacked basic page elements like a listed email address and phone number or even CTAs. 

The various page elements represent an opportunity to differentiate and sell your legal services. Including them will boost your SEO prospects and provide site visitors with even more information about the firm’s history, composition, and mission. Chances are, if a potential client is deciding between two similar legal firms, they’ll opt for the one that provides more information, not less.  

#8 Less Than Half (46%) of All Law Firms Have a Marketing Budget 

This is one of the more surprising stats we’ll discuss today. Once more, it represents yet another chance to create a competitive advantage, especially when it comes to your local marketing efforts. 

This law firm stat tells us that most practices don’t have a robust client acquisition plan in place. Many likely believe that they can still get by with word-of-mouth client acquisition via referral. 

Unfortunately, they’re mistaken.  

In a digital age, solely coasting off your laurels and reputation is a tactic few will find success with. A slapdash marketing campaign and a lack of a budget will eventually hamstring your ability to reach new clients. According to Law.com:7 

“The average law firm spends 6.7% of gross revenue on marketing. That means for every $1 million a firm brings in, an average of $67,000 is redirected toward marketing efforts. That might seem like a lot—until you calculate the amount you make as a result of that marketing.”

Convert It—Your Legal Marketing Experts  

The statistics above illustrate one crucial point: A notable portion of legal firms are lacking in their digital marketing strategies. They’re missing the actionable plan, and as a result, they’re lagging behind. 

This presents an opportunity.

If you have a plan and budget in place, then you have a chance to drive your business forward and pull further away from the competition. Wondering where to begin? At Convert It, we provide digital marketing for lawyers. Our proven PPC platform can help you get found, receive quality calls, and convert clients.

Want to see how? Reach out today. 

Sources:

  1. ABA. Tech Report: 2020 Website and Marketing. https://www.americanbar.org/groups/law_practice/publications/techreport/2020/webmarketing/
  2. Above the Law. Referrals Remain Leading Way Lawyers Get Clients, Per Legal Trends Report. https://abovethelaw.com/2017/10/referrals-remain-leading-way-lawyers-get-clients-per-legal-trends-report/
  3. Smart Insights. Search Engine Marketing Statistics 2020. https://www.smartinsights.com/search-engine-marketing/search-engine-statistics/
  4. Statista. Percentage of mobile device website traffic worldwide from 1st quarter 2015 to 1st quarter 2021. https://www.statista.com/statistics/277125/share-of-website-traffic-coming-from-mobile-devices/
  5. Cisco. Global 2021 Forecast. https://www.cisco.com/c/dam/m/en_us/solutions/service-provider/vni-forecast-highlights/pdf/Global_2021_Forecast_Highlights.pdf
  6. Finances Online. 46 Legal Marketing Statistics You Must Read. https://financesonline.com/legal-marketing-statistics/
  7.  Law.com. Legal Marketing Budgets. https://www.law.com/njlawjournal/2020/12/02/legal-marketing-budgets-everything-you-need-to-know/#:~:text=For%20most%20firms%2C%20the%20range,to%20setting%20a%20firm’s%20budget.

 

Lawyer Marketing: 5 Things You Can Do to Start Seeing Traffic & Results

Even before COVID-19, there was a migration-of-sorts in the legal world—a strategic transition away from traditional advertising methods and into digital marketing channels. Then, a year-long pandemic hit, shifting consumer behavior and fundamentally altering the way legal firms were able to market themselves. 

Naturally, this accelerated the ongoing march into the digital space. As an increased percentage of lawyers shifted their focus to online marketing, it became harder to stand out, drive traffic, and convert. 

Now, legal firms’ digital presence and marketing strategy are more important than ever.

Knowing this, what is a law firm marketing strategy you can employ to start driving traffic and seeing results? Here are five tips.  

#1 Focus on Paid Ad 

Google and other search engines should be law firms’ primary focus. Landing at the top of search engine results pages (SERPs) gives you the best chance to be seen by the people who are searching for your exact legal services. 

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, also known as paid ad, is a viable lawyer internet marketing strategy that enables you to instantly boost your law firm’s website to the top of search results based on certain keywords you bid on. 

For every click you receive, you pay. 

As National Law Review notes, it can be well worth the cost:1

“For highly competitive markets, running Google Ads is a necessity, as they are often displayed above the organic search results. If you see that your competitors are running paid ads and they are burying your site in the main search results, it’s a good idea to consider running your own paid ads.”

So, although a PPC campaign can be more costly, it generates immediate results, allowing you to:

  • Rapidly improve your visibility
  • Target potential customers by region or custom parameters 
  • Generate more leads and conversions
  • Gain insightful data
  • Constantly optimize

How does PPC work exactly? 

First, you bid on target keywords. The amount you bid is contingent upon your geolocation and the market interest for those keywords. Here, the law of supply and demand kicks in. Greater competition means more expensive clicks, which is why it’s better to choose long-tail keywords that are more specific. For example, the phrase, “real estate lawyer” will likely be more expensive than “real estate legal firm in Waco, Texas.”  

Tips for Paid Ad 

One of the most important aspects of paid advertising is that a campaign needs to be constantly optimized. To ensure success, you must use analytics to see what is or isn’t working, then adjust accordingly. There are several ways to tweak a PPC strategy, including: 

  • Modifying your ad content
  • Altering keyword targets to cheaper options
  • Selecting different keyword targets to higher converting options
  • Shifting the targeted number of clicks to increase profits or cut losses
  • Improving your website landing page to increase client conversions

But this is easier said than done, especially if you lack the marketing or analytical background. This is why it’s ideal to hire outside experts to manage your legal PPC campaign. With their help, you can target potential clients searching for your services, eliminate unprofitable clicks, and maximize your ROI. 

#2 Generate Search Engine Optimized (SEO) Content

While PPC can generate immediate results, search engine optimization (SEO) takes time and effort to have a noticeable impact on organic search. However, that doesn’t change the fact that it must also be a major part of your long-term marketing strategy. 

At its essence, SEO is all about optimizing your legal firm’s website so that it will rank higher on SERPs relating to your field. And for legal firms that depend on localized customers, SEO allows you to target potential clients in your area that are looking for your services. According to Search Engine Journal:2 

“Through local SEO, law firms can target users within a geographical location, reducing the amount of competition compared to targeting at a national level. They have a better chance of ranking for terms like “top personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles” (keyword difficulty: 63%) than “top personal injury lawyers” (keyword difficulty: 71%).”

SEO starts with keyword research—identifying the key terms your target audience uses to look for legal firms such as yourself—and implementation. But that’s just the beginning. There are dozens of ways you can optimize your law firm website and align it with Google’s Algorithm, including: 

  • Regularly posting content to your website  
  • Optimizing web and blog pages with keywords, meta descriptions, title tags, alt-image texts, internal links, and external links
  • Having a mobile-responsive website with fast loading pages 
  • Refreshing low-performing pages with new content
  • Claiming and updating your Google My Business (GMB) page

#3 Utilize All Content Marketing Channels

The content you publish can have a significant impact on your legal firm’s website SEO, but its efficacy in terms of marketing strategies goes far beyond simply optimizing for search. And since they’re interrelated, content marketing, like SEO, takes time before you can see a shift in your traffic and conversion analytics. 

But that shouldn’t stop you from pursuing it. 

At its essence, content marketing is all about creating and then distributing informative content online to accomplish three cascading goals:

  1. Educating and engaging the target audiences
  2. Attracting them to your website
  3. Converting website visitors into clients 

For lawyers, a robust content marketing strategy should focus on the following channels:  

  • Blogs – Blogs not only help you rank highly on SERPs, but they also allow you to build an audience, establish your authority, and demonstrate your expertise in the legal field. The focus here should be on quality, not quantity. They should be:
    • Easily digestible
    • Informative
    • Up-to-date and accurate
    • Actionable
    • Edited and proofread 
  • Email – Email marketing is just as important as ever, generating the best ROI of any content marketing stream. A DMA 2019 study found that for every $1 you spend on email marketing you can expect an average return of $42.3 Email marketing offers several benefits, including: 
    • Business development
    • Client experience 
    • Increasing client touchpoints 
  • White papers and eBooks – Long-form content demonstrates your authority and can be leveraged to gain leads or encourage potential clients to take action. In exchange for signing up or filling out a form, they receive informative content. 

#4 Stay Relevant With Social Media 

Although social media could technically fall under the auspices of content marketing, it deserves its own category because of its outsized importance. 

The vast majority of lawyers understand social media’s latent ability to drive traffic and conversions. According to the American Bar Association, 35% of lawyers who use social media for professional purposes have gained clients and lead generation, with even better results for smaller firms (42%).4 So, even though they’re getting results, the problem is that few legal firms utilize social media marketing to its fullest potential.

It’s also important to note that not all social media channels are as viable as others. What you focus on may largely depend on your legal specialty and ideal client. That said, there are four primary mediums you should devote most of your attention to: 

  1. LinkedIn
  2. Facebook
  3. Twitter
  4. YouTube 

And how do you get the most value out of these channels? 

First, remember that social media is a business tool. Engaging in pop culture fads and viral content may generate likes and friend requests, but they’re less likely to win you bonafide clients. Instead, you need to take a focused approach by posting content that your potential clients would find of interest. To do that, you must understand your target client. That way you can address their pain points and create content that resonates. 

From there, follow these tips:

  • Position yourself as an expert
  • Interact with your audience 
  • Set a posting schedule 
  • Post informative and engaging content, including:
    • Internal blogs
    • Videos
    • Infographics 
    • Articles
    • Success stories
  • Measure your results and adjust your strategy accordingly   

#5 Join Legal Directories 

Legal directories are websites that catalog law firms and legal practices online. They make it easy for potential clients to search, discover, and learn some basics about your firm. According to Search Engine Journal:5

“Being listed in directories is important because they’re a reputable source of information for potential clients. However, directories also provide some SEO benefits that will be an added boost to the rest of your digital marketing efforts.”

These types of listings help with link building, ensuring that you get backlinks from websites with authority in the legal space, which helps you rank higher on SERPs.

What are the top legal directories? We recommend you register for some, if not all of the following: 

  • Avvo
  • Nolo
  • FindLaw
  • Lawyers.com
  • Lawyer.com
  • LegalZoom
  • Justia

Convert IT—Lawyer Marketing Experts at the Ready

The world of legal marketing has shifted into the digital realm. It’s not just a fad you should be dipping your toes in. Rather, it’s the local swimming hole where all your potential clients meet. So, dive in headfirst.

If you’re just beginning to market your legal services, start with a broad strategic approach—one that utilizes several channels, including PPC, SEO, content marketing, social media marketing, and legal directories. 

Do you need help building a lawyer marketing plan template? Do you require help running a PPC campaign that drives traffic and converts? Are you looking for a website revamp and increase conversions?

Then you’ve come to the right place. 

Here at Convert IT, we’re PPC experts that specialize in digital marketing for lawyers. Compared to the industry average, our paid ad campaigns are 340% higher than the top 10% of advertisers’ conversion rate, and 1062% higher than the average advertisers’ conversion rate.

If you’re interested in seeing how you can start driving high-quality leads, then reach out today. 

 

Sources:

  1. National Law Review. Law Firm Digital Marketing Strategies. https://www.natlawreview.com/article/law-firm-digital-marketing-strategies
  2. Search Engine Journal. Why SEO Matters for Law Firms. https://www.searchenginejournal.com/law-firm-seo/why-seo-matters-for-law-firms/
  3. DMA. Marketer Email Tracker 2019. https://dma.org.uk/uploads/misc/marketers-email-tracker-2019.pdf
  4. ABA. 2018 Marketing. https://www.americanbar.org/groups/law_practice/publications/techreport/ABATECHREPORT2018/Marketing/
  5. Search Engine Journal. 9 Law Firm Marketing Tactics for Business Building in 2021. https://www.searchenginejournal.com/law-firm-marketing-tactics-business-building/391563/#close