The new year is almost upon us, and you know what that means…
It’s time to start planning business growth for your practice.
You’re probably looking into options like pay-per-click marketing or maybe even another website. But most of the options out there have just one big problem:
They. Cost. Money.
And given the time of year, I thought it’d be a good idea to do a post on three things you can do to quickly grow your firm — without spending a dime.
Follow these tips, and you’ll look a lot like this guy here:
By the way, this article is going to be written with the assumption that you don’t like wasting money on needless overhead; if that sounds like you — read on.
Attorneys can quickly get more clients by leveraging their website’s analytics
Every law firm should be working on optimizing their website for organic traffic. It’s another excellent low-cost way to grow your firm.
According to FinancesOnline, 70% of law firms have acquired new clients through their website. And that’s why investing in your website and its traffic creates a huge opportunity for more leads.
Sadly, I’ve had far too many conversations with lawyers who can’t even tell you how much traffic their website gets because they don’t check their analytics.
Most attorneys who track their traffic can’t tell you much more than how much raw data they get and what their referral sources are (such as whether traffic came from Google, Facebook, etc.).
When you go to trial, you leverage all the favorable information in your client’s favor. So why not do the same for your web marketing?
Let’s talk about exactly how to get more out of your data.
Getting the Most Out of Your Website Data
First, log into your Google Analytics account and set the reference date for the last 12 months.
Then, in the left-hand column, scroll down to the “Behavior” section.
Click on “Site Content” and then click on “Landing Pages.” Here’s where you’ll see the most popular pages/blog posts in search over the last twelve months.
Find the most popular topics, and expand on them in your blog.
For example, one of our clients did a single post on how drug use impacts child custody cases. That post received substantial traffic, so, a few months later, she created a comprehensive blog series on the topic.
And these subsequent posts turned out to be strong traffic drivers too. Want to know one of the best ways to drive quality traffic?
Giving people what they’re looking for.
And leveraging the landing page data from your analytics program will help you do just that.
Your first step for growth is simple. See what your most popular pages and topics have been over the last twelve months and develop a plan for developing additional content on those topics.
Remove Badges and Unnecessary Outbound Links
You want more clients, right?
Then it’s time to stop helping your competition out of the goodness of your heart.
The longer people remain on a lawyer’s website, the more likely they are to pick up the phone and call.
Many attorneys, however, drive traffic away from their site without thinking twice about it.
Think of those various “best of” and “rating” badges that many attorneys have all over their pages. While they may think it helps out, they’re actually driving traffic away.
For example, lots of lawyers have an AVVO rating badge on their site showing their “10/10” rating. Every time a client clicks on that, they go to AVVO, which means they are no longer on the website that you own and control.
And now that they’re on AVVO, they’re that much closer to searching through your competitors.
In other words, someone was perusing your site and considering whether to hire you and then your site encouraged them to visit another website full of competition. It’s practically anti-marketing.
Matt Majeski, our featured attorney for October of 2014, took all the outbound links and badges off of his website after we discussed this in our 30 days to a better law firm series. He found that removing those outbound links, in part, helped to increase his business substantially. You should consider doing the same.
Focus on Conversions
Virtually every lawyer would insist they’re great at conversions when asked.
Most of them, in my experience, aren’t quite as excellent as they may think.
If you find yourself saying:
“The people calling aren’t good leads.”
“The people calling never have any money.”
“They’re just calling around, they aren’t serious.”
Then it’s time to take a look at how your office is handling those calls.
The truth is that that most of those people calling fall under one of these categories:
a) Are seriously looking for a lawyer.
b) They have money, but your firm’s pitch didn’t make them feel comfortable giving it to you.
c) They just say they’re “calling around” as a polite way of getting off the phone — so they can call another law firm that makes them feel more comfortable.
There’s no quicker and cheaper way to grow your business than to leverage the phone calls that you’re already receiving.
Improving conversions on your existing calls can be broken down into a few steps:
Communicate through your lead’s preferred communication method.
I see many attorneys who receive an email inquiry and then respond by telling that person to call the office and schedule a consultation.
Here’s a news flash: That person was on the attorney’s website and had a choice between calling or sending an email inquiry. If they wanted to call, they would have called in the first place.
You’ve got to realize that when people contact you, they are doing so through their preferred method of communication. Don’t make your potential clients jump through hoops.
Someone who emails you has reached out. If they left a phone number, then pick up the phone and call them to schedule their consultation. If they didn’t leave a phone number, then respond by email to get them scheduled.
Confirm any consultations by text the day before.
Many attorneys, for reasons beyond my understanding, don’t confirm with people the day before.
It’s important to remember that seeing an attorney is a nerve-wracking experience for someone already facing some type of legal issue.
People may schedule a consult, but still be on the fence about whether they should file for divorce, file for bankruptcy, etc.
It only takes a small nudge to take someone from the “should I go see the lawyer?” mindset, to being someone who actually shows up in your office if they were already on the fence about things.
Following all the steps above will grow your practice much quicker than you realize. If you want to get more clients, then do these things.