How to Get More Leads for Your Law Firm
Date: September 14, 2021
Law school is notoriously intense, and law students spend hours developing critical thinking, legal writing, public speaking, and regulatory interpretation skills.
Unfortunately, one thing they don’t reach is how to generate and qualify leads.
Lead generation (the process of identifying and cultivating relationships with potential clients with the ultimate goal of converting those relationships into a sale or contract) is a critical part of the modern sales funnel. Your potential clients are searching through a crowded marketplace to find a partner who will support them as they solve complicated problems, and you have to convince them that you’re their perfect match.
We’re here to help you figure out how to present your best self when talking with a potential client.
But First: A Quick Review of the Sales Funnel
A sales funnel is a visual representation of the key decision points potential clients face when evaluating a purchase. The goal of a sales funnel is to help you organize your marketing efforts to preemptively answer the questions and meet the needs of your leads so that they’re continuously moving closer to purchasing your product or service.
There are four stages in a sales funnel:
The top of your sales funnel is all about promoting your brand, not your products. The primary goal in the awareness phase is just to let potential clients know you exist. In terms of digital marketing, strategies used to reach people within the awareness phase could include a mix of social media marketing, pay-per-click ad campaigns (Google Ads, Bing! Ads, etc.), presentations and backlinks from sites with a high domain authority.
In the awareness stage, your content should be instructive but should also be engaging and differentiate you somehow – you’re trying to get people to want to get to know you better.
During the interest phase, potential clients want to know more about your company and its products or services, but they don’t want a full-blown sales pitch.
Content during this phase can be delivered through email campaigns, landing pages, blog posts, lead magnets, retargeting campaigns, or social media accounts, but all content should use a clear brand voice and have consistent messaging.
During the decision phase, your lead has expressed enough interest to be a legitimate prospect, so your content needs to be all about the expertise you offer and how you can help them with the challenges they’re facing. Case studies, testimonials, webinars, in-depth consultations, product comparisons, and service pages (with pricing!) are very effective content delivery methods for this stage.
Congratulations – you made it!
During the action phase, your content shouldn’t just be about the sale. You want your potential client to feel like you’re setting them up for success, so your calls to action should be partnered with follow-up emails, training materials, and welcome packages.
Ways to Generate Leads for Your Law Firm
As the sales funnel narrows, leads naturally start to drop out. But the hope is that by continually refining your marketing approach at each stage, you can convert higher percentages of leads into clients.
Generating leads happens in the top two stages of the funnel, and the content you put out at these stages is critical to converting leads into clients. Here’s a breakdown of some of the most effective ways to get more leads that’ll keep the top of your funnel full.
It’s hard to overstate how important your website is in every stage of your funnel. High SERP positions, backlinks, and regularly updated content can increase awareness. Campaign-specific landing pages and lead magnets can push leads from the interest phase to the decision phase, and service pages, testimonials, and case studies can help close a deal.
And all of that content can be housed on your website.
If you want your website to be successful, you should trust its build to a professional who can ensure the user experience is seamless, mobile-friendly, and properly indexed. They can also set you up with the analytic capabilities to gather the information you need to identify and fix friction points on your site.
Your site should also:
- Use only high-resolution images that include alt-text
- Have in-depth service pages that clearly explain what you do
- Include bios for all lawyers (even paralegals if they spend a lot of time with clients)
- Include at least one strong call to action on each page
- Offer submission forms or contact us buttons that allow you to collect email addresses and phone numbers
Content marketing (increasing brand awareness by creating and distributing relevant and engaging information online) is the Swiss Army Knife of lead generation. Content marketing can be blog posts on your website, infographics, explainer videos, guest posts, or social media posts. Whatever form of content marketing you use, it’s important to make sure your strategy is data-driven and focused on issues that matter to your target audience.
Search Engine Optimization
Optimizing your website for search engines (SEO) can seem overwhelming—after all, SEO isn’t something they teach at law school. But good general and local SEO strategies are critical to making sure people find and trust your website.
9Sail specializes in SEO for law firms and has a proven track record of helping our clients increase the number of qualified leads they get from organic traffic.
Pay-Per-Click Advertising and Local Service Ads
Pay-per-click advertising, or PPC advertising, is an advertising model that lets you put display ads on a platform like Google or Bing, and only pay when someone clicks the ad, which will then redirect to your website. A PPC ad strategy is based around commonly searched keywords and is often partnered with customized landing pages that offer a free consultation, downloadable resource, webinar, or other useful content.
Local Service Ads is another paid advertising option offered by Google. This platform requires you to submit an application, and if you’re approved, your ads will be given a “Google Guaranteed Badge” in increase brand reputation and trust in your services. Check out our guide to Google Screened for Lawyers to learn more.
Alone, PPC advertising won’t give you enough leads to keep your funnel full , but when combined with a targeted SEO strategy, a great website, and an active online presence, it can be very effective in helping build your firm’s client list.
Lead magnets are free items or services that companies give away in exchange for a lead’s contact information. Downloadable white papers, eBooks, and checklists are a great way to start building a relationship with a potential client while also demonstrating your expertise. Lead magnets are also helpful in getting authoritative backlinks.
Reviews and Referrals
Digital marketing is important, but old-fashioned networking still goes a long way toward building a business’s reputation. Highlighting good reviews, writing case studies, and publishing testimonials on your website and social media accounts will provide the positive word-of-mouth that brings people to your door—as will creating and claiming business pages on crowdsourcing sites like Yelp, Facebook, Google My Business, FindLaw, and Nextdoor.
Charitable Partnerships and Event Sponsorships
Finding nonprofits and events that share an interest in your practice area can allow your firm to be active in the community while increasing your visibility and reputation. Additionally, any write-ups or publicity related to the partnership or event will likely include a backlink to your website.
Need Help Getting More Leads for Your Firm?
If your firm is ready to grow and needs help increasing the number of quality leads coming into your sales funnel, then 9Sail might just be your soulmate. Our years of experience in developing SEO and PPC strategies for law firms have given us the knowledge, skill, and adaptability you need to make your lead generation dreams come true.
Let’s set up a call and see if we’re a match.