Optimizing Your Law Firm’s Online Marketing in 2018

Over the last couple of months, I’ve been writing on this blog about what Personal Injury law firm’s online marketing should be doing in 2018.

So I’ve put together this handy guide of the 19 things you need to do for your law firm to succeed in getting new clients online. Each link will take you to a more comprehensive explanation.

1. Make sure your website is “Responsive”.

Instead of a separate website for mobile devices, you need just one website that is “responsive”. One set of files is used to make your website look good, whether it’s on a PC or a smartphone.

2. Reduce your page loading times.

Your website has to load quickly, and it’s especially important for mobile users who may have slower Internet connections.
Slow loading times will increase your bounce rate, since some visitors won’t wait for the loading to complete.
Slim down your large image files.
Add caching to your website.
Add Accelerated Mobile Page (AMP) functionality to your website.
Check for slow loading scripts or other embedded content.
You should aim to get your page loading times down to 3 seconds or less. Find a new web-host if necessary.

3. Look at shortening your title and description meta-tags.

Mobile devices with smaller screens will display less information than a PC. So check if your title and meta tags are too long for mobile devices and optimize your content by trimming them down accordingly.

4. Add Schema.org markup to your site to optimize for voice search.

Voice search is something we need to wise up to, just like the iPhone forced us to take mobile browsers seriously back in 2007.
One way of optimizing your website for voice search is to add Schema.org markup – code that helps the artificial intelligence understand what your web-pages are all about.

5. Optimize your content for local search.

Claim and optimize your Google Maps business listing.
Ensure your web-pages have your town and contact information in the header, footer and sidebar, and that it matches your other directory listings and citations.

6. Set up a “Promoted Pin” on Google Maps.

Promoted Pins enable you to brand the pin for your business on Google Maps. You can also use it to offer a coupon or promotion.

7. Understand “Micro-Moments”.

With mobile, the thinking is that content should be more bite-sized, so that it can be quickly and easily consumed while the user is on-the-go.
Whether it’s the information on your website or what you share on Social Media, think about packaging it so that it’s easy for the user, and that they actually want to consume what you have.

8. Tweak your Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Campaigns for mobile.

Once again, you need to think about the reduced amount of information that will be shown in an ad on a mobile device.
There are also a number of extensions you can add to your ads to enhance them on mobile devices, like click-to-call.

9. Consider investing in “boosting” your Facebook content or running targeted ads.

Unless you have content that is just so good it goes viral, your content will be seen by just a fraction of the fans of your law firm’s Facebook page. Facebook says it’s to give greater prominence to the content shared by other people in the user’s network. What it means is that if you want to get more people to see your content, you’ll have to pay for it. Start with a small budget and compare the results to when you were not spending any money.

10. A share on a personal Facebook page gets 8 times the action.

Social Media is about people and relationships. People have relationships with people, not corporate Facebook pages. So when a lawyer shares their law firm’s Facebook post on their own Facebook page, it will get eight times the number of clicks.
Facebook wants to see content being shared organically, and you can do that yourself, along with other people you know, like your employees and family.

11. Be relevant more than 1% of the time.

People use Social Media to be entertained and to stay in touch, not to find a lawyer.
If your content is entirely focused on trying to sign up a new Personal Injury client, then 99% of the time it’s irrelevant. You’re hoping for that 1% of the time when the user has just been in a car wreck and…. Bingo! They land on your Facebook page and call you up.
So the challenge is to think more creatively about your content so that it’s relevant to more people, more often. Try to be entertaining and remarkable, and don’t be afraid of doing something different. It’s stories about the unexpected that go viral. If a boring lawyer goes viral, it’s probably for the wrong reasons.

12. Know your audience.

Before you create new content, first think about who the audience is that you want to target. You may have more than one audience. This should help you create a message that will resonate with them.

13. Create content regularly, but self-promote in moderation.

Practice the 80/20 rule about the content you share on Social Media. Share great content from other sources 80% of the time, and share your own great content 20% of the time.

14. Turn testimonials into human interest feature articles.

Facts tell but stories sell. And your clients’ happy endings – their transformation, in which you played an essential role – is exactly the kind of good news stories that Social Media loves.

15. Use retargeting to increase your conversions and ROI.

98% of visitors to your website will leave it without taking action. By using retargeting, you can bring them some of those visitors back to your website and convert them into leads.

16. Run your Twitter account yourself.

People love Twitter because it offers a direct connection to other people – unless their PR team or marketing assistants are running the account for them. Take control of your own Twitter account. Give the public a direct connection to you, the expert lawyer. But don’t just talk about the law. Have an opinion. Be interesting. Talk about your hobbies. But don’t be unprofessional.

17. Make your LinkedIn profile as good as it can be.

When was the last time you looked at your LinkedIn profile? Have you made use of all the different sections you can add? Have you posted any helpful PDFs or videos that might persuade a potential client to hire you, or another lawyer to refer cases to you?

18. Network in LinkedIn groups.

Grow your network of not just lawyers but also other professionals who could refer new clients to you. Don’t be a shameless self-promoter. Instead, become a respected member of those groups by offering valuable and helpful information.

19. Be neutral in your solicitation of online reviews.

Google has updated their terms of service. If you’re going to ask happy clients for an online review, you must also ask unhappy clients to do the same. So if you’re using a review management platform, you can no longer use it to filter out bad reviews.