Whether new or established, one of highest needs practice owners have relates to either how to get more law firm clients, or how to get better clients.
While there are as many marketing strategies as there are firms, there are three places every lawyer and law firm should be visible to achieve both.
If you want to drive enquiries and connect to more potential clients, here we reveal the top three places you need to ensure your lawyers and firm are visible and involved. While the first two won’t be new to you, it is the detail within that you need to give focus to.
1. Engage where your potential referral partners are
There is no easier path to acquiring new clients than through the endorsement of another trusted advisor. So, it’s helpful to be aware of where those people are present and interacting, online.
Our first proven recommendation is to follow/ connect with the referrers you already have a relationship with, as well as those you don’t, on platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram and Tik Tok. This is particularly helpful if these people are in a different city or hard to connect with in real life.
Responding to their contributions online can be an effective way to get on their radar. This can be a great way to start to build a connection or strengthen an existing relationship while creating the opportunity to become more visible, not just with your potential referral partners but also with their networks.
By adding value by way of comments, you have the ability to show you are engaged in the field and that you know what you’re talking about.
I’m sure it goes without saying but always ensure your comments truly add value to the post, rather than just a simple ‘like’.
If this seems hard, start by being routinely visible and contributing to just one platform that your networks are consistently using, even if only for five minutes each week day. It will make a difference with time and like all goals, success comes from consistency.
If this isn’t your style, connections don’t need to be made on client connection opportunities alone. They can develop over a mutual area of interest or shared values. Looking out for different areas of alignment will help bring you the types of clients you are searching for, and make it enjoyable and sustainable for you.
The second recommendation when looking to be more visible and attract more (& better) law firm clients is…
2. Get reacquainted with IRL networking
We can all acknowledge that the pandemic and the series of lockdowns changed the way we interact both personally and professionally. Many of us took a long and necessary break from in-person networking events and for some of you, may have even dropped off entirely.
As we publish this content, we’ve just come out of the first holiday season where there wasn’t a threat of lockdowns so the boost in social events has been a big adjustment for many of us. Perhaps you’re still not really ‘back’ like you used to be, so this one might be exactly what you need to ease back into…
There’s nothing quite like backing up your existing and online connections with a “great-to-put-a-face-to-the-name” type of conversation.
While you don’t need to go to all the events you see online or in your inbox, you also shouldn’t make the mistake of slipping back into the networking events you have historically gone to.
Think strategically. Consider where you may be able to connect with not just other lawyers but also potential referral partners. And these events might not even fit strictly into the category of ‘networking’. Think outside the box a little and it might just give you the opportunity of being one of only a few lawyers at an event.
Broadening your network, even if you’ve been in this game for years, can only benefit you. And if you don’t find the right connections at the first few events, restrategise, revisit your networking options and get curious about where the right people are and how you might find a way to meet values-aligned professionals that could one day point work in your direction.
Also, if you’re a bit older, seriously consider putting yourself into environments with younger people or different types of events that you might ordinarily discount as irrelevant for you and your firm.
In-person events can be hard, especially for introverts. Start with what you can manage and grow from there. Take a break from the space, give yourself five or ten minutes of serenity somewhere, reset and go back again. Give yourself a break but don’t drop the ball on this. Networking (even just being social) is like a muscle. Some of us have let it waste away more than others over the last few years but it’s time to develop it again!
The third recommendation I offer when people ask me how to get more law firm clients is…
3. Use the platform of all platforms
When it comes to reaching potential clients, you must focus on the ability to connect with those who have what’s called commercial intent.
An individual has commercial intent when they type into Google something like “family lawyer brisbane cbd”, “gold coast business solicitor” or “deceased estates lawyer sydney”. Search queries like this typed into search engines infer that they want legal advice, or information (commercial intent).
While most firms focus on posting to Facebook, Instagram and even Tik Tok, if you want to get clients faster, shouldn’t you be focusing your efforts by tapping into those that have commercial intent, first?
Want to know the platform I’m talking about? It’s called Google Business Profile. You might remember it by its old name, ‘Google My Business’. While it’s a big statement to label it the platform of all platforms, here’s why…
Consider you are looking for a service, maybe a dentist or a local mechanic. You need someone local, maybe you want someone who works specifically with your car brand. Perhaps you are wanting a dentist for your child. How do you get in contact with this business if you don’t have their phone number? Would you use Google to search for a children’s dentist in your local area? And then what? The listings appear, maybe marked on a map and you can phone them directly using their link in their listing.
If you don’t have a Google Business Profile listing, now is the time to get a profile in place. If you’re not confident about what the profile looks like, you can take a quick look at ours here. If you already have a profile, revisit your profile and check that all the information that is currently there, is correct.
Google Maps and Google Reviews are part of and attributed to, your Google Business Profile.
Before you even have a chance of improving your position on Google Maps (a geographic list of ranking), you must have your office location (or locations) verified. This is a process that requires you to prove the location of your office/s.
Next, it is important to keep an eye on your Google Reviews and respond to them. Even the good reviews should be acknowledged. While it is possible for you to get great reviews from clients, it can be harder for law firms when compared to other businesses. Not everyone who has been through an estate dispute or a divorce will be okay with having their name attached to praise for their lawyer. This is common for any areas of law that are personal or sensitive in nature.
If you have a profile, here are a few steps we recommend you take:
- Check your profile is verified
- Fill out as many of the prompts on your profile as you can
- Include as much detail as possible about the services you offer in your business description
- Add photographs of your office and your team
- Add posts or updates that speak to the ‘ready to engage a lawyer’ reader of your profile
- Make sure you open emails from Google Business Profile and follow steps to update your profile (as they make changes or people suggest information about your business that you need to approve or dismiss)
It’s common for firms to grab a paragraph from their website for their profile. This results in your business’ profile looking no different to your competitors. Detail the specific areas of law you operate in. Flesh out your profile using commercial intent words and phrases. To do this, consider the language people would use before they become familiar with your area of law. For example they may be searching for ‘divorce lawyer’ rather than ‘family lawyer’.
Build up your profile, post regularly and request reviews. A well structured profile has great potential to sit higher on the page and for prospects to build familiarity and trust with your business before they have called your office.
Taking time to ensure your Google My Business listing is up to date, detailed, that your location is accurate and your description includes words potential clients are searching for can pay off in spades. Equally important is regular posting to the platform.
Google Business Profile is genuinely the most important place to ensure your practice is visible to drive potential clients to discover your firm.
Planning for How to Get More Law Firm Clients Starts Here
Time is precious so if you are serious about increasing enquiries and clients, exercise caution when planning what you intend to do to increase the visibility of your lawyers and your firm.
Online networking, connecting and strengthening, developing new, broader or better networks in real-life and prioritising the platform most aligned to commercial intent, are where your focus should be.
Avoid the distraction of what you see other firm’s doing. These are the core activities every law firm should have established first.
To be notified about our upcoming program to boost your Google Business Profile, register your interest here.
How Do Law Firms Get Clients?