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Law Practice Magazine

The Marketing Issue

Legal Marketing Design: The Basics

Julie Bays


  • Research target audience and competitors to tailor marketing strategy.
  • Build a strong brand identity and online presence to attract clients.
  • Leverage tools like social media and SEO along with networking to broaden reach.
Legal Marketing Design: The Basics Khismatov

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Marketing is a vital skill that can help you attract more clients, stand out from the competition and grow your practice. This article focuses on why marketing is important for lawyers and law firms, and how you can create a marketing strategy that works for you.

Marketing is communicating your value to potential clients and persuading them to choose you over other options. It plays a crucial role in bolstering your legal practice by enhancing your visibility, building trust and credibility, generating leads and referrals and converting prospects into clients. By using various channels like your website, social media and newsletters, you can broaden your reach, appealing to individuals seeking your legal expertise.

Marketing also enables you to establish authority and credibility in your field by demonstrating your expertise, sharing client reviews and offering valuable information to your audience. It assists in attracting potential clients and encouraging referrals by presenting compelling offers like free informational guides. Last, marketing provides an avenue to highlight your competitive edge, address concerns and influence prospects to choose your services over competitors.

Understanding Your Target Audience

One of the most crucial steps for a law firm when developing an effective marketing strategy is to gain a deep understanding of your potential clients and their requirements from your legal services. Here are key factors to consider when defining your target marketing audience:

Demographic Analysis

A demographic analysis refers to the process of identifying and outlining the characteristics of your prospective clients, such as their age, gender, income, education level, geographical location and more. By conducting a demographic analysis, you can categorize your potential market into various groups based on shared characteristics and distinguishable traits. This will allow you to adapt your communication and services to cater to each group's specific needs and preferences.

Client Needs and Behavior Analysis

An analysis of your clients' needs and behavior includes understanding what legal issues your clients are trying to resolve, what motivates them to seek your legal services, how they utilize your services and their level of satisfaction. Through this analysis, you can identify your clients' pain points and needs, as well as their expectations and feedback. This enables you to construct a value proposition that aligns with your clients' requirements and enhances their experience.

Competitor Analysis

Getting to know your competition is key if you want to stay ahead of the curve. Look at who else is operating in your space and learn from what they're doing well––and not so well. Check out their branding and messaging and how they position themselves in the market. By conducting a competitor analysis, you can learn from their successes and shortcomings, identify gaps and opportunities in the legal market and distinguish your firm from others. This assists you in gaining a competitive advantage and increasing your market share.

Social Media Analysis

By examining your potential clients' social media behavior, you can glean insights into their preferences, interests and the content in which they engage. This information can help shape your content strategy and improve your interaction with your audience.

Client Journey Analysis

Client journey analysis involves charting the path that your clients take from the initial interaction to the final engagement of your services. It can identify potential barriers or frustrations that could discourage a client from using your services. Understanding the client journey allows you to refine the service process, making it more seamless and pleasant for your clients.

By incorporating these methods into your marketing strategy, you'll achieve a comprehensive understanding of your potential clients. This not only aids in providing legal services that meet their needs but also allows you to communicate your services in a way that resonates with them, leading to increased client satisfaction and greater client acquisition and retention.

Building Your Brand Identity

As a lawyer or a law firm, establishing a strong brand identity is crucial for standing out in a competitive industry. Your brand identity not only differentiates you from other legal professionals but also conveys your values and establishes trust with your clients. There are three essential steps: defining your brand values and mission, creating a brand name and logo and establishing brand guidelines.

Defining Your Brand Values and Mission

Before you can craft your visual elements, it's vital to clearly understand what your brand represents and the purpose behind your legal practice. Your brand values should reflect the principles that guide your legal services, such as integrity, empathy, expertise and commitment to justice. Consider these questions when defining your brand values and mission:

  • What issues or problems do you aim to solve for your clients?
  • What unique benefits and features does your law firm offer?
  • What beliefs and values shape your legal practice and company culture?
  • How do you want to be perceived by your clients and your peers in the legal industry?
  • What are your long-term goals and vision for the future of your law firm?

Compile your answers and distill them into a concise statement or a few keywords that encapsulate your brand's essence.

Creating a Brand Name and Logo

Choosing a compelling brand name and designing an impactful logo are essential components of your brand identity. For lawyers and law firms, it's crucial to balance professionalism, credibility and memorability. Consider these tips when creating your brand name and logo:

  • Brainstorm a variety of ideas that align with your brand values and target audience.
  • Conduct thorough research on your industry, competitors and naming trends.
  • Seek feedback from potential clients and colleagues to gauge the effectiveness of your ideas.
  • Refine your options, eliminating names and designs that are overly generic, confusing or like existing brands.
  • Select a brand name and design a logo that aligns with your brand values, resonates with your audience and has a timeless quality.

Establishing Brand Guidelines

Consistency is key regarding brand identity. Establishing brand guidelines will ensure that your brand's visual and verbal elements remain cohesive across all platforms and communications. Here are the steps to develop your brand guidelines:

  • Revisit your brand values and mission, aligning them with your visual elements.
  • Choose a primary color palette that reflects professionalism and trust, while considering the emotional impact of colors.
  • Select a secondary color palette that complements your primary colors and adds versatility to your branding.
  • Choose a font family that exudes professionalism and legibility across various media.
  • Define a tone of voice that matches your brand's personality, ensuring consistency in written communications.
  • Provide examples and guidelines on how to apply your brand elements in different contexts, including your website, social media, letterheads and other marketing materials.

By following these steps, you can establish a powerful brand identity that distinguishes your law firm from the competition, fosters trust with clients and highlights your legal expertise. Remember, building a brand identity is an ongoing process, so regularly assess and refine your brand to ensure it aligns with your evolving goals and resonates with your target audience.

Using Legal Marketing Tools

Website Development and Optimization

Your website is your online introduction to potential clients. It should clearly communicate who you are, what you do and how you can help them. Building a website for your law firm need not be a daunting task. Readily available tools and tutorials can help you to create a professional and effective online presence that showcases your expertise and attracts new clients. To create a professional and effective website for your legal practice or law firm, you should approach the project methodically:

Define Your Purpose

What do you want your website to do for you? Will it be a passive site that doesn’t change, or will you use it to provide content that demonstrates your expertise? If so, consider what kind of content you want to create and are willing to update regularly that will attract your target clients. Perhaps you should consider including a blog so you can create new content that keeps your site fresh. Lawyers should make sure their website is user-friendly and interactive, including, at the very least, a contact form to provide a safe method for prospective clients to contact you.

Choose a Domain Name

Your domain name is your web address (like, It should be easy to pronounce, spell and be as short as possible. You might even consider some of the specialized top-level domains like .law, .lawyer, .attorney, or .legal but note the higher annual price. You can purchase a domain from domain registrars like GoDaddy, Namecheap, etc., or directly from your chosen website builder.

Select a Website Builder

Tools to create your website are plentiful. Among the most used website builders are Wix, Squarespace, GoDaddy Website Builder and Google Sites, but there are many others. Each platform allows you to purchase your domain name directly through their respective websites, and each brings its own unique set of advantages and drawbacks.

Wix, GoDaddy Website Builder and Google Sites provide free tools for building your website that are relatively easy to use and can help build your website quickly. Squarespace has a monthly fee of $12.95 and offers a comprehensive package of tools and services. This includes creating the website, hosting that site, acquiring a custom domain name and monitoring your site's performance. Experts point to Squarespace for its design features, which make it ideal for blogging. You may find that Wix, GoDaddy and Google Sites are more user-friendly if this is your first website. Regardless of your choice, though, all these web builder applications allow users to build and manage a website without a Ph.D. in coding.

Choose a Theme and Customize Your Website

Most website builders offer a variety of templates/themes that act as style sheets for how your site will look. You can browse through various categories, such as Finance & Law, to find templates suitable for your niche. Choose one that fits your site's purpose and your personal aesthetic.

Fill out your template with your own content (text, images, videos, etc.). Customize your chosen theme to fit your needs. This may include adding, removing or rearranging sections and changing colors or fonts. You can also add your logo, contact information, testimonials or links to popular review sites to build trust and credibility.

Add any special functionality you want. This could include a blog, a contact form, links to or from your social media, etc. You can also use apps and plugins to enhance your site's performance and features. For example, you can use an online booking system to schedule consultations, or a live chatbot to communicate with potential clients.

Optimize for SEO

SEO, or search engine optimization, is like having a neon sign in front of your law firm that says exactly what kind of legal services you offer, but for the internet. It's about making your law firm's website easy to find by search engines (e.g., Google, Edge, Firefox, DuckDuckGo and Yahoo) so they can then recommend your site to users looking for legal advice or services you offer.

Keywords are what potential clients type into a search engine when they're searching for legal services. For instance, if you're a family lawyer in Edmond, your keywords might be "family lawyer Edmond," "divorce attorney Oklahoma" or "child custody legal advice Oklahoma." By strategically incorporating these phrases into your website's content, you help search engines understand your services better and match your site to potential clients searching with those terms.

If your website includes images, note that search engines can't “see” images like humans. Instead, they read the image's file name and the alt text (a text description of the image). So, if your site has an image displaying your law firm team, instead of naming it "img001.jpg," consider a name something like "family-law-team-Norman.jpg" and an alt text like "Our experienced family law team in Boston." This minor change allows search engines to better understand the image, potentially showing it in image searches related to family law in Norman.

Meta tags are like the summary on a legal brief but for your website pages. They are short descriptions that aren't seen on the webpage itself but are embedded in the page's code. Search engines read them to understand the content of the page. Important meta tags include the title tag (a concise and accurate title of your page) and the meta description (a summary of the page content). These often appear in search engine results, working like a teaser that encourages people to click on your site.

By optimizing for SEO, you're essentially explaining your services in a way that search engines can then index, or catalog, your site in their databases, thereby making it easier to suggest your firm's site to potential clients when they're looking for the legal services you provide. A well-optimized site increases your visibility on the internet, attracting more potential clients.

Social Media and Online Advertising

Choose the right platforms. Not all social media platforms are created equal, and different platforms attract different demographics. Research which platforms your target audience uses the most and focus your efforts on those. For instance, if you primarily target professionals and businesses, LinkedIn might be the ideal platform, while Facebook and Instagram could be more effective for reaching individual clients.

Create a professional and engaging profile. Your social media profiles should reflect your professionalism and expertise. Use high-quality images and a consistent branding strategy across all platforms. Write a compelling bio that clearly communicates your areas of specialization and highlights your achievements. Include relevant keywords to improve your search engine visibility.

Share valuable content. Social media is a great platform to share informative and engaging content that positions you as an expert in your field. Create a content strategy that includes a mix of educational articles, blog posts, videos, infographics and case studies. Provide practical advice, answer common legal questions and share recent developments in your practice area. This will help build credibility and attract potential clients.

Engage with your audience. Social media is not just about broadcasting your content; it's also about building relationships. Be responsive and courteous when interacting with others online. Engage with your audience by asking questions, conducting polls and encouraging discussions. Show empathy and understanding when addressing legal concerns or questions. By engaging with your audience, you can establish trust and foster a sense of community.

Utilize paid advertising. Social media platforms offer powerful advertising tools that can help you reach a wider audience. Consider running targeted ads to promote your services or specific content to reach potential clients. Use advanced targeting options such as location, demographics, interests and behavior to ensure your ads are seen by the right people. Track the performance of your ads and adjust as needed to optimize your campaigns.

Leverage video content. Video has become increasingly popular on social media, and it presents a great opportunity for lawyers to showcase their expertise and connect with their audience. Create short videos addressing common legal issues, explaining complex concepts, or providing insights into recent cases. Videos can be shared on social media platforms, your website and even through email newsletters, expanding your reach and engagement.

Stay up to date with legal marketing trends. The digital landscape is constantly evolving, so it's crucial to stay informed about the latest trends and strategies in legal marketing. Embrace new technologies, platforms and techniques that can give you a competitive edge.

By effectively leveraging social media and online advertising, lawyers can increase their online visibility, establish their expertise and attract a broader client base.

Email Marketing and CRMs

Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a crucial tool for law firms and legal professionals, helping them effectively manage their interactions with clients and prospects. Implementing a CRM system can provide numerous benefits to lawyers and law firms, including:

  • Efficiently organizing contacts and data. A CRM platform allows lawyers to centralize and manage all client and prospect information in one place. It streamlines the process of storing client details, case history, communication records and other relevant data, making it easily accessible and searchable.
  • Automating key tasks. CRM software can automate essential tasks integral to legal practice. This includes client intake processes, appointment reminders and email campaigns. Automating these tasks saves time, reduces manual errors and ensures that crucial client communications are not missed.
  • Enhancing client experience and satisfaction. With a CRM system, lawyers can provide personalized and targeted services to their clients. A CRM system helps lawyers and law firms nurture and maintain relationships with clients. By tracking client interactions, identifying potential opportunities, and managing follow-ups, lawyers can improve client retention rates. The system also aids in identifying potential referral sources and managing referral relationships.
  • Providing detailed analytics and insights. CRM software provides lawyers with valuable analytics and insights into their client base and business operations. It offers data-driven reports and dashboards that enable lawyers to track key performance indicators, identify trends and make informed business decisions. This information can enhance marketing strategies, allocate resources effectively and improve overall business performance.

Given the rapid growth of the CRM industry, lawyers and law firms must embrace CRM technology to stay competitive and deliver exceptional client service.

Referral Marketing and Networking

Getting referrals is still a valuable way to attract clients. Here are effective strategies for lawyers to generate referrals:

  • Seek client feedback. Request feedback from your clients to understand their experience with your services. Consider setting up a system to collect client reviews or ratings online.
  • Build a referral network. Establish relationships with professionals who serve the same target audience. This includes other lawyers in complementary practice areas, financial advisors, accountants, real estate agents and other professionals who may encounter individuals needing legal assistance. Maintain regular contact, refer clients to them when appropriate and they will likely reciprocate.
  • Strengthen relationships with other attorneys. Collaborate with attorneys who specialize in different practice areas. By working together on cases or referring clients to one another, you can expand your network and increase the likelihood of receiving referrals. Attend legal networking events, join professional associations and participate in online legal communities to connect with other attorneys.
  • Engage in community involvement. Active participation in community organizations, nonprofit boards or volunteering for causes aligned with your interests can help you build connections and raise awareness of your practice. This involvement can lead to referrals from individuals who value your contributions to the community.

By putting these strategies into action, lawyers can build a strong referral network, nurture meaningful relationships and create a steady flow of referrals. These efforts will contribute to the growth and overall success of your practice.

Measuring the Success of Your Marketing Efforts

Analyzing web traffic and conversion rates is an important aspect of marketing analysis for lawyers. Here's a general process you can follow to analyze web traffic and conversion rates for their marketing efforts:

  • Set up website analytics. Start by setting up a website analytics tool, such as Google Analytics. This involves adding a tracking code to the website, which allows lawyers to collect data about visitor behavior.
  • Define goals and conversions. The lawyer needs to identify the goals of their marketing efforts. For example, it could be getting potential clients to fill out a contact form, sign up for a newsletter or make a phone call. These actions are referred to as conversions.
  • Track website traffic. With the analytics tool in place, the lawyer can monitor their website traffic. They can analyze metrics such as the number of visitors, page views and time spent on the site. This data helps them understand the overall traffic patterns and identify trends.
  • Monitor traffic sources. Analytics tools provide insights into the sources of website traffic. Lawyers can determine which channels are driving visitors to their site, such as search engines, social media or referral websites. This information helps them evaluate the effectiveness of different marketing channels and make informed decisions about resource allocation.

Overall, analyzing web traffic and conversion rates provides lawyers with valuable insights to measure the success of their marketing efforts, identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions to optimize their strategies.

Marketing is an essential tool for lawyers and law firms to thrive in today's competitive legal landscape. By effectively communicating your value to potential clients, marketing helps you differentiate yourself from the competition, attract more clients and ultimately grow your practice.

Today, where information is readily available and choices are abundant, having a solid marketing strategy is no longer optional for lawyers and law firms. It is a fundamental necessity for success. By embracing marketing and leveraging its power, you can position yourself as a trusted and sought-after legal professional, attract more clients and take your practice to new heights.