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5 Effective Law Firm Marketing Tips to Know About

business litigation

business litigationThere are over 47,000 active U.S. law firms.

Many people assume that law firms will always be in demand and never lack clients. However, this statistic does not include independent attorneys and private legal practices.

In the scope of the entire legal industry, law firms have to constantly identify means of staying competitive to ensure a solid client base.

One means all law firms have at their disposal is marketing. Effective advertising, both online and offline, can be the secret to retaining clients and captivating new ones.

In this post, we’ll discuss five solid law firm marketing tips that you can implement today.

Read on for insight!

1. Jazz Up Your Website

Most people refer to the internet to gain insight into legal practices and options. A few Google searches and some blog browsing can give them the information they need to navigate any legal situation.

For this reason, your website is a central component of your ability to engage clients. It should be your foremost digital marketing tool.

Many law firms assume that having a professional-looking website is sufficient to attract clients. While we never want to undermine the value of a seamless, professional website, simply relying on looks isn’t enough.

A law firm website crafted with your clients in mind is far more likely to generate the results you need and keep users on your site.

What does this look like? For one thing, your website should be easy to navigate and to read. We know you probably have a lot of information on there, but now is the time to clean this up for the sake of your clients’ eyes.

Distinguish information clearly by using simple, minimal menu tabs. Organize subpages under parent pages, such as a “Contact” page under an “About Us” heading.

Break page content into easy-to-read paragraphs and make use of headers, bullet points, and numbers. Ensure that all of your website content is distinct, meaning that each page presents new (not redundant) information.

Make sure your website is responsively-designed, meaning that it can accommodate a variety of screen sizes–especially mobile. This will keep your mobile users happy.

Also, ensure that your website content is loading quickly. Page load time plays a huge role in coaxing users to stay or leave.

Lastly, you may wish to include a chatbot on your site’s homepage. A chatbot is designed to answer and direct client questions effectively.

Want an example of a solid law firm website crafted with clients in mind? Check out The Utah Advocates.

We recommend investing in professional web design services to ensure that all of these boxes are checked and your clients are impressed.

2. Implement Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Google processes over 1.2 trillion search queries a year. That translates to 40,000 a day!

More and more users are relying on search engines to find the information they need. Because legal situations are often complex, many potential clients begin their legal proceedings with Google.

For this reason, it’s essential to meet your prospective clients where they are at. Implementing Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can do just this.

SEO optimizes your online content for keywords that potential clients are likely to type into Google to find you, such as “law firm near me” or “injury attorney.” An effective SEO campaign enables your pages to appear towards the top of Google search results when these keywords are entered.

The higher your Google ranking, the greater your odds are at earning high organic traffic. This is essentially free digital traffic to your website, essential in improving your online visibility.

When you implement SEO for lawyers, you automatically generate rich content designed to appear in popular legal-related searches. As such, you become a prominent competitor in clients’ searches for legal assistance.

3. Consider PPC Marketing

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) marketing uses the same principles as SEO to give businesses greater ad visibility. One common channel of PPC marketing is Google AdWords, a service that enables users to craft ad content optimized for certain keyword searches.

PPC advertising is an investment, as users pay per user click on their Google or Facebook generated ads. However, PPC ads have the potential of offering a massive return on investment.

For example, a single $3 click could turn into a seven-year new client relationship. That’s an incredible ROI!

What’s more, law firms can choose the maximum amount they wish to pay per click. This accommodates virtually any law firm marketing budget.

PPC marketing is a great addition to an effective SEO campaign and professional website.

4. Educate Your Clients

Navigating legal challenges of any kind is difficult, complex, and sometimes emotional. Your prospective clients are likely to have a lot of questions about legal assistance.

Successful law firm marketing keeps these client concerns in mind.

Educate your potential clients as a means of attracting them to your services. One easy way to do this is to include a blog on your website.

Generate posts about topics your clients are likely to have questions about, such as how to file for bankruptcy or financial assistance for low-income individuals needing legal help.

You can also upload information videos, hold online webinars, and give potential clients infographics outlining legal steps and processes.

These efforts display your authority in the legal industry, which can build client trust. They can also give you more digital fodder for SEO and initiate client relationships from the start.

5. Build a Local Presence

As a law firm, you likely have a healthy amount of local competition. Stay ahead of the game by building a local presence.

Surpass local competition by implementing local SEO. This optimizes your digital content for location-based searches, such as “Atlanta law firm” or “criminal attorneys in Los Angeles.”

Claim local citations on review platforms, such as Yelp or Angie’s List. As a law firm, you should also claim your Google listing on Google My Business.

Consider establishing a Facebook business profile so that you can organize events, engage with local clients, and receive reviews. You may even wish to sponsor local events.

Indicating your interest in the community can go a long way in building your credibility as a law firm.

Law Firm Marketing Tips

As a law firm, you depend on a constant stream of clients. You also depend on existing client relationships and their longevity.

Employing strategic law firm marketing strategies can be your key to maintaining a robust pool of clients.

Begin by amping up your digital presence, crafting a professional, user-driven website and implementing SEO. Don’t overlook social media when leveraging your local reputation.

Consider Pay-Per-Click marketing if you’ve taken these steps, and brainstorm ways to educate your clients.

Business Blogs is your online resource for navigating the corporate world. Looking for more legal business advice? Check out our industry-relevant posts.

Legal

Brexit Unknown Makes UK Businesses Nervous

Brexit and the markets

Brexit and the marketsBrexit is certainly making businesses nervous right now, and there are many reasons for that. Despite almost three years having passed since the original vote, things are no clearer as to what the impact will be on business or what kind of trading relationships the UK will have with the EU going forward. Therefore, some nervousness is to be expected.

UK Businesses Rely on EU Workers

UK businesses of all kinds and in all industries employ EU workers. The question that remains unanswered is how those working relationships will function after Brexit has properly occurred.

There are guarantees in place that workers currently residing in the UK will be able to carry on living here, but it’s not at all clear whether more EU workers will be able to move here with ease after Brexit, and most indications suggest that won’t be the case. This will certainly have a big impact on businesses in many sectors.  See this article on: Solicitors talk Brexit.

All Types of Workers Are Required for the UK Economy to Function

One idea that has been floated by the UK government is the idea of an income threshold, meaning only those earning more than a certain amount of money will be allowed to live and work in the UK. This would mean that highly skilled workers would find it much easier to work in the UK than low skilled workers would.

However, the UK economy relies on both skilled and low skill labour in order to function properly. If that supply of low income workers was cut off after Brexit, more businesses would struggle.

Contingency Planning Might Not be Enough for Small Businesses

For big businesses, contingency plans are already being put in place. This is expensive and time-consuming for large companies, but it will mean that they’re able to protect themselves against the upheaval brought about by Brexit. On the other hand, small businesses don’t always have that option because they don’t have the resources to put adequate contingency plans in place. It’s those small businesses, therefore, that are likely to be hit hardest.

It’s clear that small businesses are not opening at the rate they previously were because of Brexit uncertainty too. This denies the UK economy future growth prospects as well as depriving society of potentially successful ideas and businesses.

What Can Business Do to Prepare?

In terms of what businesses should be doing now, it’s best to seek professional legal advice about the situation, what you can expect and where your business and its staff stand. You should also analyse your supply chain and think about how that could change in the future under various Brexit scenarios. It might also be a good idea to look at existing contracts with EU companies and seek clarifications regarding those.

The Brexit situation is constantly in a state of flux, so things can change very quickly in one direction or the other. Therefore, it’s important for businesses to be watching and listening so that they can work out what their next move should be in order to prepare properly and minimise risk.

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Legal

If You Own A Business, You Need An Estate Plan

planning

planningIt’s an unfortunate fact that arguments over material possessions break out between family members when somebody dies. It’s rough when one beneficiary thinks they’re entitled to that person’s possessions and financial resources more than the others. The complexity of the situation is amplified when the deceased person owned a business.

If you’ve got a family, you have every reason to care about what will happen to your business when you die. Your business has the potential to be an investment for your children or a nest egg for your spouse. If you haven’t created an estate plan that includes your business, it’s time to create one.

Start with a will

Your will is the most basic estate planning document. It allows you to declare who will be named the executor of your business. Your business executor will be responsible for continuing the business.

Dying without a will places a huge burden on your employees, business partners, and the success of your company.

Although a will is important, it’s not everything.

Your will isn’t the principle governing document of your estate

Our USA based readers may be interested in what’s in this article titled: What Might Surprise You About Your Will, CG Trust explains that many assets don’t fall under a will or probate like real estate, life insurance, and mutual funds. When you purchase these assets, you’re asked to assign a beneficiary and sometimes a contingent beneficiary.

When you specify a beneficiary for an asset, that overrides anything stated in general terms in your will. For example, say you leave everythin’ to your aunt Suzie in your will and your children are listed as beneficiaries on your life insurance policy. Your aunt Suzie can’t touch your life insurance policy – only your listed beneficiaries can.

Identify your designated beneficiaries for all business assets. If it’s not somebody you want to inherit that asset, change your beneficiary immediately. Remember, a beneficiary on a specific asset overrides what’s in your will.

Focus on minimizing your taxes

Most people don’t realize that when a business owner passes away, the estate taxes can tank the business. Estate taxes can be more than 50% of the value of your business and must be paid within nine months of your death. Most businesses need to liquidate to pay these taxes.

Thankfully, the IRS has tax breaks in Section 303 and Section 6166 that can protect your business. Section 303 deals with using stock to pay death and funeral taxes; Section 6166 deals with Federal estate taxes.

Both sections make it easier to pay necessary taxes without breaking up your business.

Avoid probate as much as possible

Although the process is mostly clerical, probate ties up assets for months (sometimes years) and can be expensive. It’s best to plan ahead to avoid probate as much as you can.

When you create a properly structured ILIT living trust, the benefits paid from the insurance policy won’t pass through probate. The funds will be available immediately to cover estate taxes and other financial obligations.

You can also establish a grantor retained annuity trust (GRAT). With this trust in place, if your assets grow over the terms of that trust, the appreciation won’t be subject to estate taxes. This allows you to pass your business assets to your kids or your spouse.

Declare power of attorney

You need to declare power of attorney to someone trustworthy to handle legal matters on behalf of the business when you pass away. This individual will be in charge of things like payroll, managing vendor payments, and financial assets.

If you don’t declare power of attorney to someone before you die, the court will appoint a guardian who may not have your company’s best interests in mind.

You also need a succession plan

A succession plan is designed to ensure your business runs as smoothly as possible; it’s a plan that chooses decision makers and creates a strategy for transferring company information to the right people. Although the details for every business will be different, Fidelity.com describes what might be included in this plan.

For example, a management succession plan might include training your successors, delegating responsibilities, and bringing in an outside advisor for their objectivity. An ownership succession plan might include defining who will own vs. manage the business, creating terms that consider your family’s best interests and timing the transfer of your business to avoid a discounted sale of your business.

Get professional guidance

Making sure your business survives and stays in good hands when you die is important. If you’re not sure where to start, contact an estate planning professional for help.

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Legal

4 Things to Consider When Creating a Business Continuity Plan

finger boxes

finger boxesOne of the biggest mistakes a business owner can make is abiding by the “it will never happen to me” rule in regards to disasters. Each year, thousands of natural disasters occur all over the country.

Acts of nature like wildfires or floods can lead to a business closing for long periods of time. The only way to prevent problems when dealing with disastrous situations is by creating a business continuity plan.

Studies show that nearly 82 percent of the businesses in the United States do not have the IT infrastructure in place to deal with a disastrous act of nature or network outage. Instead of leaving the functionality of your business to chance, now is the time to take continuity planning seriously.

The following are some of the things you should consider when creating a business continuity plan.

1. Work on Identifying the Potential Threats You Face

Before you can create a comprehensive business continuity plan, you need to adequately identify the potential threats your business faces. Having a plan for a variety of possible disasters can help you rebound in a hurry following one of these events. Some business owners only make continuity plans to deal with things like natural disasters, but there are many more disastrous situations to consider.

For instance, figuring out what you would do to keep your business functional in the event of an employee strike or cyber-attack is essential. Once you have a list of possible disaster situations, you need to map out all of their outcomes.

If you are unsure about how to map out these outcomes, working with professionals who are experienced in continuity planning is a must. Often times, these professionals will be able to look at these situations objectively and help you figure out how to create adequate plans for each one.

2. Constructing a Recovery Team is a Must

One of the most vital parts of a successful business continuity plan is creating a recovery team. If you want to keep your own staff freed up during a disaster, hiring a third-party to perform this job is easy. Before hiring a company to fill this role, you need to assess the amount of experience they have.

Not only can a third-party act as your recovery team, they can also help you hone and refine your existing continuity plan. Allowing professionals to get a look at this plan can help you out greatly. They will be able to look at your continuity plan objectively and provide you with guidance on how to improve and strengthen it.

3. Know What is At Stake Without a Continuity Plan

Driving home the importance of a continuity plan is easy if you actually assess what you stand to lose without one. Often times, businesses without a comprehensive continuity plan will lose a lot of money in the event of a disaster.

While some of this money can be recouped via a class action lawsuit, a business may still lose lots of customers in the process. You can learn more about disaster-related lawsuits with a bit of online research.

4. Prioritizing is Vital When Creating One of These Plans

When disaster strikes, you will have to limit the number of resources your team uses. When creating a business continuity plan, it is important to figure out what technology or systems you need up and going first. Having this list of priorities in hand in the event of a disaster can help you limit the amount of downtime your team experiences.

Instead of trying to take on this complicated process alone, you need to reach out to disaster recovery professionals. With their help, you can get a plan in place in a hurry.

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