2020 Law Firm Internet Marketing Plan

Transcript of the Webinar

Good morning or afternoon depending where you are and thank you for joining us for this session which is your 2020 internet marketing plan. This is a session that’s going to be really specialized towards and tailored to folks in the legal services, but if you happen to be one of the viewers that I don’t recognize feel free to follow along and we’ll see what you can take away. I’m sure there will be some great takeaways for your business as well.

Before we get started I just want to take a few moments let you know what we plan to cover and and then we’ll dive right in. First and foremost, we’re going to be setting goals for 2020 and that’s gonna come down to how many lead calls, referrals and basically inbound communications for potential clients that you’re going to need to hit your target.  We’re going to talk a little bit about the fundamentals of marketing success and really three fundamental areas that you’ll need to hone in on your practice and in your messaging so that you’ve got a viable message and a compelling message for your potential clients. We’re also gonna talk about your website and conversions and every year things have a little bit of change. I’m gonna share with you what’s working across the legal service industry and frankly in the digital marketing industry for building conversions and ultimately more business sales and a big picture of the online marketing channels. Also how everything taps together and how you can use that flow to maximize your overall lead flow online. A couple more trends for you to take away and consider and then we’ll actually sit down and develop an action plan based on where you are now and what you need to do now for this. 

I’m gonna ask for your attention, this is meant to be an interactive seminar and not something that you play in the background so if you got a cell phone nearby go ahead hit that mute button and turn it off or put it under pillow, whatever it takes to help you focus on today’s content. Same thing is goes with any distractions that you might have on your laptop like your Facebook, Instagram or any other social distractions. My commitment to you is that if you’re able to engage on this process that this is going be a game changer for you and for your firm and just so you got a little bit of an incentive on all of that, if you do to stay until the end I’ll be sharing three of our biggest marketing documents with you. You’ll get the marketing done right checklist which is a checklist to go through with whoever handles your marketing touch points and just make sure that you’ve got a solid foundation for for all of your efforts.

We will also be sharing our experience on what the most commonly searched terms are in legal services. We’ve got about four or five of the the most common practice specialties. If for whatever reason yours isn’t represented there’s Randi in the chat or you can even contact us directly and and we’ll pull the highest volume key terms for your area of practice. It’s a very important piece to know because those search terms are actually indicators of intent. If someone’s searching for a DUI attorney near me now they probably have an intent and a need that needs to be solved right away and you want to make sure that you’re showing up whenever those people are searching for people with your expertise. In the back here, certainly not the least though is the digital dominance guideline and that is a break down of what we see is the seven most important channels that marketers need to focus on and what law firms need to focus on to drive leads for their firms.

So who are we and why should you even listen to us? Well we’ve been in the the marketing game as an agency really since marketing was in the dial-up internet phases so we have a long history of working with organizations and firms. Legal clients have been some of our  best clients, so we’re really focusing in on that and we are actually in the process of letting some of our other clients go just so that we can really focus in this area. I’m the author of “The Complete Guide to Internet Marketing for Attorneys and Law Firms,” We’re also associate members of the Jacksonville Bar and of course will be joining a few more bar associations throughout 2020 and have spoken at various industry events across the U.S.

In our history we’ve built over 200 websites, I actually think at the end of this year will be somewhere between 220 and 230 and have actually taken brands from zero to triple their growth. We would love to work with you in whatever capacity you are specifically in the legal sphere. We’ve worked with with attorneys across the gamut from intellectual property trade to personal injury and even working with some folks and software-as-a-service practice management. Our goal and our mission is basically is to work with 200 law firms to triple the size of their legal business and hopefully with a takeaway from today you’ll be well on your way to do the same.

So questions? Love to hear from you, again this is meant to be an interactive session. Go ahead and take a moment, let me know what you’re encountering. Joey looks like you need a site that looks good on a phone. Yeah mobile is a pretty important one and looks like Betty just wants the phone to ring. Yeah it’s a pretty common one, that’s one that we hear a lot of. Today’s session should be helpful for you. Let’s talk a little bit about that before we dive in. There is a download that you should have gotten with the email confirmation if not you can just go to our website www.thinkonething.com and then forward slash workbook. It’s about a 10 pager that it’s really going to outline some of the questions that I will be asking you and some of the the terms and ideas that we’ll be sharing on this webinar. If for whatever reason you’re not in front of a printer and can’t get to it right now that’s not a problem just grab a napkin or a legal pad if you’ve got one. One of the things that tends to be a game changer for the folks that that actually embrace the process and my mentor spent quite a bit of time hammering this quote: “success is goals all else is commentary” and I’m sure we’ve all have those clients or peers friends that have a million goals right; they’re gonna do this, they’re gonna do that, they’re gonna do. Funny thing is after five years time they’re still saying the same thing and that’s what we want to avoid with this so we’re gonna take this a step further and really set the right type of goals.

I just want to talk a little bit about the power of goals and one of the things we’ve noticed. I’ve noticed that when I hit a plateau, when I’m spinning my wheels, or I’m doing good but you know you’re out to sea on that sailboat and there’s no wind, right, there’s nothing to drive you towards what you want to do and really the power of a goal is that, it creates that wind for you. That’s where I’m going to encourage you and why we’re spending so much time at the beginning of this webinar just talking about having a clear goal is like wind in your sails. Harvard University, I think this was their their grant students that they had the interviewed but back in the 70s. They interviewed their grad students and what they found when asking about their goals was that 84% had goals about where they wanted to go. You know they just didn’t have any specific goals. A vast minority, thirteen percent did have goals but didn’t write them down and I think most people when you speak with them they’ll at least say hey this is what I’m trying to accomplish. So you’re gonna be looking back on your goals and saying okay where am I focusing my time and does that correlate with the goals that I’ve set so what are your goals for 2020? With that, please go on your workbook that you’ve downloaded, I’m just gonna have you fill in and we’ll take a quick moment here, the revenue target and you’re going to know how many clients or cases you need to get to that. Typically there’s an average number that we’re working with them that we’re aware of and you’re going to use that just for simple math. What is that going to come out to monthly and then how many inbound calls or referrals or chats form fills. Whatever that first contact is, you are going to need to get to that and that just comes back to the the average case value.

So a quick example and this is just to use round numbers this might be a bit high for some and really low for others but for round numbers let’s say that at the end of 2020 we wanted to be billing a million and a half dollars. Simple math divide that by twelve that comes out to $125,000 a month now you’re going to want to adjust that. You’re not going to come out of the gates if you haven’t been doing this so if you’re at half of that number in 2019 it’s probably not fair to think that you’re going to jump up to $125,000 in January but that’s the number that you’re gonna want to distribute throughout your calendar if your average case value is and please put in that number in your workbook. If your average case value is $2,000 that’s going to come out 262 cases per month that that you need to be billing for, so with that how many leads do you need to get to that 262 and this is where your conversion rate is going to matter.

You know unfortunately for attorneys it’s a little more complicated because people typically don’t come to our website on the first touch and say I want to hire you, there’s typically a consult conversation that happens before and those are the three conversions that you’re going to wanna to track but in any case you want to divide your target value by that conversion rate to figure out how many leads you need. So what is your goal for 2020? Let’s take a moment and and drop that in the chat and if you’re so inclined and certainly put it in your workbook. I’ve got a note here from Randi, How much is spent on marketing? Sorry I must have missed it here from earlier but yeah that’s that’s certainly a big question to answer.

Great, so now that we’ve established at least the goals and the overall broad picture of where we want to be financially I’d like to talk a little bit about just the fundamentals of marketing and some folks talk about the four PS and marketing. I try to keep it a little simpler that just three M’s that we’ll be looking at what is your message, who’s the market and then what media are you gonna be using to reach out to that market so let’s talk about how that fits in and updating your marketing message because a lot of folks, I think they really miss on this or they’re going by their gut versus having a formalized plan for putting that together and it really comes down to can you tell me about your ideal client. Let’s not look back at everyone that you’ve worked with last year because you probably worked with some folks that you never want to work with again, right let’s pull them out of the equation and and really focus on what’s the ideal and one of the things that the marketing maxim is you know the riches are in the niches and what you’ll find is when you niche down certainly that’s important from legal case because of malpractice issues but it’s also important because it really allows you to communicate clearly in a soundbite what you can do for that ideal customer.

So one one exercise that we routinely do in marketing sphere is put together an avatar of our ideal customer. Mr. and Mrs. Jones, whomever they may be and with that avatar what we’re looking at is you know who they are what their goals are what their pains and frustrations are. Their fears the implications of those etc the more detailed the better the idea here is if you can picture who you’re crafting your message to you’re gonna have that much more of an effective message some of the basics the easiest was if you know what’s the education level of that person and by the way this is going to be different for every type of specialty and that’s why I wouldn’t encourage you to copy what’s on the screen here and our webinar it really needs to be crafted for your specialty because there’s a very big difference in the way that you’re going talk to somebody who’s hasn’t gotten their high school diploma versus somebody who’s a grad student. A very big difference in that but some of the things that we’ll look at is just the basic demographics of who you’re speaking with certainly their pains and frustrations but peeling that onion a little bit more, what are the fears that they have and the implications of those fears and then the goals that they have and the desires with that right and that carrot and that stick really balance each other out because you know some people are motivated more by painted version some people are motivated more towards the approach of land.

You’re gonna want to craft that into your message so some people are worried about getting ripped off, being overcharged for legal services or paying a lot of money and not getting the desired result; Other folks realize you know legal is a cost of doing business and and they’re going to work with depending on who your audience is and who your avatar is you’re gonna want to craft your message a little bit differently for them. The key here though is if you can see Joe Jones through Joe Jones’s eyes you can sell what Joe Jones buys so what is your message? We’ll take a moment here and really answer two questions for your message. Why should somebody choose you and retain you versus a competitor and that’s a deeply personal question right because you know how you want to run your practice, you know what you’re good at, you know the types of cases that you’re going to do well for and that’s what needs to come through if you’ve got an elevator pitch.

This is the time you pull out that elevator pitch and kind of fill in these blanks the other piece here is you know what benefits you can offer that target client avatar that they’re going to resonate with and if there’s a particular vertical or if there’s a particular language that’s where that comes in. If you’re going after the Hispanic market certainly Spanish language or even Spanglish may be appropriate for what you’re doing thought we’d share with you just some of the messaging that has worked in the legal ads that we’ve run across the gamut certainly the 24/7 service and I get it by the way not everyone wants to answer their phone at two in the morning but there are certain specialties where it makes sense to have at least an answering service there to grab those calls for you quickly no fee unless we win. I think you can tell with what specialty that’s from but focusing on the number of years of experience that you have if you’re in a high-volume area of the law perhaps bankruptcy.

You might even want to talk about the number and volume of cases that you’ve already done; Certainly language and then location that’s going to be a huge driver and frankly going to be an efficiency for you right it’s a lot tougher on both sides if there’s a three-hour drive involved in a meeting versus a twenty minutes so your location is going to be a big part and go ahead and make your case with the 24-hour service. We only collect if we win making that painless process for you and discretion so hopefully we’ve got a couple ideas for our messages in our workbook and we can take a look at the next piece which is your media. Where is your message going to go? that is the most important and powerful piece of your media, at least in our opinion, is going to be your website.

We are pretty much a wordpress shop and we certainly work in a lot of platforms, we’ve just found that the WordPress seems to work the best for the level of detail and technology that most of our clients need along with the simplicity of use but regardless of what it is, your website is going to be the hub of your digital marketing. For those of you that have billboards out there, TV, radio, whatever; print maybe that’s also going to be a part of this but all of that is gonna fall apart if your hub isn’t designed to convert well. Here’s an example and then we’ll give you a checklist on it but what you should be looking at for some of the minimum points on your site is a clear call-to-action. Who you are, What you do and how do you take away their pain points to how you deliver services for your client. What is that up in the right-hand corner where the eye tends to gravitate towards is your phone number and then notice on this page there’s two calls to action to get started, to get my free consultation and then over here you’ll notice that there’s a lead form right. First name, last name and email. How are you gonna get in touch? What you want to do is make sure that your website is a tool to convert visitors to callers versus a barrier to getting that visitor to become a caller.

So quick cheat sheet here one of the things and we’ll need to do is update this slide a little bit. 30 – 40 percent of mobile of traffic searches being mobile we’re actually seeing a 10 percent growth in that every single year and we even have some websites that we manage that have 90 percent mobile traffic so what I’m going to encourage you to do right after this call is to make a little note in your workbook and look at your website for the first time, hopefully it’s not the first time, but for the first time on your mobile device and see if if that’s going to be something that people are going to be able to go over and interact with. One of the first things to check is Do you know if there is a call to action as soon as they come onto your page? and if there is, click to call. You don’t want them to sit there tapping on your phone number and not get anywhere, it’s a phone right, so they can’t call you from their own phone guess what’s gonna happen, they’re going to go to another legal services provider. It’s a part of the rewards you’ll get these bullet points. Here is a full checklist and if you’d like someone from our team to review that with you we can certainly set up a strategy session and we’ll talk a little bit more and go through the checklist together and then even give a few pointers for whoever is maintaining this for you on what they can do to help you maximize conversions on your site. Basically what we’ve seen what’s been communicated to us is the biggest challenges issuing and faces biggest issue facing law firms is unconverted leads putting some numbers to that 50 to 60 percent.

Half if not more of inbound visits leave unconverted and if you’re running you know twenty thousand dollars and ads every month that’s a big problem. Literally half of your budget is wasted another staggering statistic that can be worked around if you do it right is the web forms that are on pages 90% of the time they’re going to fail to convert so you’ve got to have other conversion areas on your website because let’s face it, most people are going to pick a different pathway, a different way to to interact with you when they’re ready for those leads even when they have generated one of the pieces of feedback. We get that it wasn’t a good lead and that the person didn’t ever answer, they weren’t serious. That’s the one common thing we hear that we have found during various studies. Feel free to google it. That is that within 15 minutes of the being generated, that lead goes cold and if you think about your own behavior the answer is right there. Typically when we have a problem that we want to solve we’re going to go on the web, we’re going to go wherever, and we’re going to go through three to five vendors and the first one that we interact with, that gives us the answer we’re looking for, gives us the hope that we need we’ve made the decision right there so if they come to your website leave a message fill out a form get your voicemail whatever that may be and then call the next person on the list and there’s an answer even if that answer is let’s book a time tomorrow guess what happened; You’ve just fallen into third place, fourth place, tenth place, whatever it is, you’re not going to hear from that person unless the primary person; primarily a law firm that they’re speaking with falls apart and somewhere beyond that you’re gonna need to follow up with client five to seven times before before they’re going to retain you.

I’m not suggesting that you should be making five to seven phone calls but there are ways to automate this and offload this so that technology is handling that for you versus you doing all the work and by the way today’s consumers are especially with all the robo dialing out there, they don’t prefer to communicate by phone, text or some sort of messaging platform that needs to be integrated into your flow and luckily there’s plenty of technologies out there. There’s no shortage of ways to do this so leveraging marketing automation to follow up on those web forms is critical. I think you should be doing this in your first 30 to 60 days in your practice and what we have found is a tenfold increase in what people are saying are serious clients just by getting them on the hook and interacting with them immediately. There’s technologies where frankly our favorite usage case was a voicemail that goes out basically saying “hey just following up with you on the form field that you filled our. I’m going to send you a text and an email with a link to my calendar. Let’s talk”. And by following up with that booking for this client, it actually went up tenfold, it blew my mind. Certainly it blew the client’s mind as well and something I recommend you do is to automate that process. You don’t want to do that yourself and by the way with regards to the texting in the voicemail it doesn’t have to be from a singular cell phone, there are technologies where you can have a shared number and basically drive that through your customer management, your CRM, your practice management tools and I’d encourage you to look into that if you don’t already have someone who can help you with that, we’d be happy to speak with you on a strategy session.

The bottom line and this was another staggering finding for us when we surveyed 400 different legal websites we found that less than 5 percent are using these types of technologies; Having some sort of a live chat, some way to interact with somebody in that office number is a little bit higher when you go to Facebook. Facebook it’s closer to about 15 percent, I think was just under 15%; Where if you message the firm through Facebook someone has the ability to reach back out to you but that means 85 to 95 percent of your competitors aren’t doing this and it’s a simple way to engage with your prospective clients at the at the early end and hopefully book a consult. So simple math and we’re just gonna use that $2,000 average case number because frankly it’s an easy number to work with but if you’re converting 10% of the people that initially talked with you have some sort of a reach out of a hundred of those that’s gonna come on to what 10 cases right and and 10 cases at $28,000 you know is not gonna make it or break it. Well not gonna make your year that’s for sure so what if we were able to take that ten percent and make it thirty percent or take that 30 percent make it sixty percent right what if we could take what we already are getting and and just do a better job of of working with that  prospect so at 30 percent that same two thousand dollar average case now turns into sixty thousand dollars and that’s what I’m going to encourage you to do in your practice. Is to make every single lead that you generate that much more valuable. If you’ve got that thousand dollar ad budget and you’re able to to double or triple the number of clients that you’re getting from it that’s a good day let’s do this in your business. So back to the interactive portion, I’d love to hear from you. Take a moment in your workbook and let’s talk about the conversion elements that you want to implement on your website. So got a couple chats here looks like Randi is looking to just get the phone number and actually no that wasn’t Randi excuse me that was Marlon yeah definitely a big upgrade for the website and it’s something that the folks will need. Looks like Joe typing oh you want to chat great we’ll set something up Randi on here who’s kind of moderating. We’ll set something up let’s chat great so hopefully you got some takeaways got some notes on what you learn there what you’re noticing and in your own practice your own digital footprint versus what other folks are doing and thanks for sharing. We’re in the the bottom half here let’s talk a little bit about tracking your KPIs and and this is something that is a bit of a hot button for me because in the marketing world you know there’s as we follow up other firms there’s a lot of reporting that goes out and and sometimes it just gets too distracting to figure out you know what’s important here right and a KPI key performance indicator. Here are the couple key metrics that we need to follow so what you’ll find in a lot of reporting is you know you got this many visits got this many clicks yet this much time spent on site etc and you know from from the marketers standpoint those are gonna be important metrics but for you and your practice you know it’s really going to come down to your call tracking and making sure you’ve got technology set out there where you can see who’s calling you where those calls are coming from and what traffic drivers are creating those returns but then also what is that average cost for each each caller tracking. I’ll say at the outset here this is a remarkably incredibly efficient campaign I wouldn’t expect that for you heck in the personal injury space we’ve got campaigns where we’re paying up to three hundred dollars just for a click so this number here for your average lead cost is definitely on the lower end but it will change right your mileage will vary depending on on what your practice areas. In any case, I’m gonna encourage you on a very simple dashboard right there’s seven metrics here to track how many leads you’re getting right. How many of them just came from organic methods basically the Google search page but then also break out if you’re running paid campaigns. How many of those came from from the paid campaigns as well as anything that’s on Google Maps Google my business people do search there quite frequently as you can see from this campaign the web forms on your website and then social or other things you should have another number in your lead breakdown for each channel that you’re focusing on. From the digital domination graphic that we shared with you so definitely a dashboard for you to keep and to work on and and and take a look at at least on a monthly basis weekly if you can and from there we get to build our 2020 plan. What we have found is most attorneys when we look at seven different channels or venues that you can drive traffic to your practice on most attorneys are really just in two maybe four of these areas. Certainly Google search you’ll want to show up for your name but then paid ads. Oftentimes will find somebody in the office that’s just trying to run some ads for themselves with with varying degrees of success on them. Social is a great piece and one that’s a little higher in the funnel but certainly a place that you want to be. We often find is if somebody’s looking for an attorney they’ll go to their own social network and say hey you know I’m looking for a divorce attorney and then the friend who’s worked with you will say hey talk to Bobby and tell you in that post so incredibly important for you to keep an eye on that that social piece um not all these are gonna work for everybody and the prospect over here getting interviews getting podcast starting a podcast doing those sorts of things. Like press releases that can be very time-consuming and it isn’t right for everybody but what i will say is if you’ve got the bandwidth right if you’ve got more time than the billable hours it does make sense to start nurturing some of the local relationships with media and that way when things come up you’re on the shortlist of someone who’s going to get interviewed on on that topic and guess what happens after that interview you’re considered the expert in the field and the calls really come to you organically so again if you’ve got more time than billable hours certainly something to look at. Couple trends that that i’d like to share with you as you’re figuring out which of these channels you’re gonna want to ramp up in twenty twenty reviews right review sites have been out there forever easily ten years probably longer than that but with google integrating those into the search engine results page. They’ve never been more important than they are now because frankly if there’s three attorneys showing up for whatever the search is the one with the most positive reviews they’re gonna get the call first right they’re reviewed as as the trusted source so it’s up to you to keep an eye on the various review sites certainly Yelp and Google my business and even Facebook and doing what she can to curate the right kind of reviews but then also addressing the negative reviews which inevitably are going to happen also key trend we touched on earlier is just shifting that conversation from the phone it’s in messaging via facebook Messenger live chat text whatever it is especially with the robocalling and all the things that are going on there people are just answering their phones less and frankly just the nature of mobile phones right they might not be in a place where where they can or want to answer your call but a text message is that much easier to respond to so make sure you’ve got the technology in place for that and then having an all in perspective right you can’t in these day and age rely on one channel to drive all of your traffic and by the way that goes with word of mouth too right it really is important to be available and visible on all the channels so that wherever that user is looking for for legal help legal representation they’re going to be able to find you and see good things about you. This graphic is gonna be a great one for you to keep at the top of your your marketing plan. Where you can just say hey you know little note this is what I’m doing in this area this is what I’m doing in that area you know even if it is a simple press release at least you’re doing something to be visible in each of those channels and with that you can build your custom plan the checklist that that we referenced earlier that’s gonna be in the rewards section but if you want to just get to that document directly just come to our website think one thing dot-com forward slash checklist alright so love to hear what are some marketing initiatives that you plan to implement to reach your 2020 goal. Got a note here from Marla let’s see, that’s a good question Marlon if you if you have digital agencies with with rates higher than yours we should definitely talk sorry for the sales pitch but you definitely should should revisit that relationship. Let’s see what else do we have here. Judy you want to talk. Randi or I’ll reach out for you on that one. So hopefully you have a few takeaways what you’ve learned what you’ve noticed that that’s going on your market maybe we’re even first reinforced some of the things that you were already noticing but really hadn’t had an internalized and how it impacts your your practice. so what if we covered so far quick recap. Setting our goals for 2020 how many leads you need to hit your target I think we’ve got that number and really some of the the other numbers that are gonna help you get there. We viewed the three fundamentals 3ms of marketing success and optimize your website and really some of your other digital properties for conversions you know in the year 2020 but even then beyond as people are are changing the way that they’re interacting digitally and what their touch points are their preferences and technologies. Hopefully you got a big picture especially with the digital dominance graphic there on the different marketing channels and what you need to do or at least looking at that and being able to write some notes at the tailor to this call on how you’re gonna utilize each of those channels to get your message out there and then some of the latest trends that you need to be aware of here in 2020 and hopefully you’ve got a customized action plan based on where you are today. We realize not everyone’s in the same place and that’s totally fine right that’s where we’re a customized plan is is gonna be critical if you would like some help we’re here for you just type in the comments and let Randi and we will do some follow up with you and can get together have a strategy session. You certainly can come to our website thinkonething.com and we can talk about that. Again our mission is to triple the size of 200 law firms and and whether it’s you know in in a formal arrangement or are you just following us online that’s fine we just want to get you there because frankly the thing that we’ve noticed and and you know I guess we think we can fix is there’s that 1% 5% of law firms out there that just have tremendous budgets ridiculous budgets and frankly it’s it’s almost impossible to escape them right you’re gonna see them everywhere and then we see kind of everyone else is is faced with those high costs to try and keep up and we don’t think it needs to be that way. What we’ve really found is you know these technologies are approachable it’s just somebody who knows how to implement them for the legal practice and we’d love to partner with you in that way. Frankly I think you’ll be surprised at how accessible how approachable those things are. I’d love to talk to you about it. So as I promised you a reward thank you so much for sticking around with us throughout the presentation. If you go to our website thinkonething.com/reward right there you’ll have the three documents that we talked about the the checklist digital dominance graphic and most commonly searched terms. Great, thank you so much for joining us today and and have a fantastic week.


Results driven Marketing Executive accomplished in all facets of digital marketing and website development projects. Deep experience in digital and social media strategy, project management, campaign marketing and client services within high-profile corporations