The law firm marketing agency you choose for your lawyer marketing services is important. They should help you grow as a business. That much is given.
Unfortunately, it’s not always that simple. Most companies will get the job done relatively well. The problem is that it’s hard to tell whether a given candidate will propel you forward or bog you down. Also, a general marketing firm will not cut it. When it comes to law firm marketing an agency that specializes in marketing for lawyers is a necessity.
In this article, we’re going to try and break it down — which types of pricing, services, and partnerships that different types of firms look for when sourcing lawyer marketing services. Naturally, this is also going to be about how we do business here at FORWARD Lawyer Marketing.
For services you’re already using, we’re also going to take a look at how to assess progress, what’s a normal timeframe to expect results based on various situations, and so on.
First off, one of the most important things to look for is a company that will give you the attention you deserve. Sure, you can automate some things for the sake of efficiency — but the question is who’s benefiting from that efficiency.
For things like automatic tracking of ad performance, automatic SEO tracking, and automated reports, everyone wins. You get on-demand metrics, and the marketing firm gets a virtual number-crunching robot for advanced analytics.
For chatbots and such, the line is a little blurrier. If you want 24-hour support, an automated customer service rep might be able to answer some of your questions.
But when it comes to intake, campaign maintenance, and issue resolution, you’ll want to be able to get in contact with a human. These are high-level tasks. You want to have a real person determining the services you need, advancing your goals, and solving your problems. That’s what we offer here at FORWARD Lawyer Marketing, and that’s why law firms across the country prefer us as partners.
Jumping off of the previous point, you’ll need an expert opinion to choose the exact services you need for the current state of your business. You’ll also need the freedom to choose.
Right off the bat, that knocks out many of the lowest ranks of lawyer marketing services online. You will see again and again that these types of companies offer tiered subscription services for their clients.
Sure, a tiered system is easy to understand and easy to approach. However, it’s often also easy to take on services that you might not need when using this type of company.
We believe in giving our clients what they need to get the results they deserve. We’ll suggest new campaigns and new expenses from time to time, but we also often suggest cutting back or tweaking ads that are unnecessary or not performing well.
In fact, cutbacks are especially common after our initial consultation — you’d be shocked at how many lawyers are paying way too much for ads that just don’t work. Regardless of the direction, our suggestions are always based on the firm’s exact situation.
Besides what you need right now, you should also think about the future. Do the firms you are considering have the capability to grow with you? Or — as is unfortunately often the case — will you have to go shopping again in a couple of years after your business expands?
In your growth stage, you’ll want versatile partners. That means looking for firms that handle various aspects of web marketing and advertising:
If you’ve read a few online marketing firm websites, you’ll notice a lot of highly persuasive arguments. Everyone seems to be a passionate expert with all of the technical expertise, good judgment, and ethics you could hope for.
Well, as law firm marketers, it’s our job to make ourselves and our clients look good. As a potential client, it’s your job to look at how well these firms are equipped to help you — how well they follow through on the image they present.
Look for hard information. Look at review scores on third-party services like Google Maps. Look for certifications and, if you have the time, look up the requirements for those certifications. For example, our Google Partners credential requires significant study and has to be periodically renewed.
After you have a shortlist, it’s time to reach out. This stage should be about more than just brass tacks if you really want to get an idea of your future with this marketer. It’s also about first impressions.
We’d suggest you keep a notepad handy here. Take note of your feelings about the attitude, the simplicity of the process, how well you understand what the marketer is saying — make some notes about the little things.
There’s a specific reason we suggest keeping an eye on how you’re treated. For lawyers, intake is such a critical process. Clients come to you with big problems — they need to be treated well.
Your first impression makes a huge difference in your baseline for credibility and trust. In turn, that has a major impact on your initial ability to discern the facts of their situations and provide them with the representation they deserve.
In short, the premise here is that client intake matters. The assumption: your prospective marketing firm’s process represents their best attempt at intake. Is that process good enough that you want it for your firm?
Another big part of law firm marketing is reputation and word of mouth. On the internet, that happens mostly on review pages. That’s why you need to take a moment to look at your marketing firm’s review profile, at least on Google Maps (Google business profiles).
You will want your Google My Business profile to be as accurate, complete, and refined as possible. You’ll also want fake or inappropriate negative reviews to be removed.
With that in mind, take a look at the marketing firm’s Google business profile. Does it have all the information you need to make a decision and to contact the firm? Is anything outdated or inaccurate? Are there any old, obviously fake negative reviews? How well is the firm responding to the people who leave messages on the review sites?
So, if you’re seeing a pattern emerge, you’re correct. To fully vet a firm, check out their:
Is it the type of presence you want for your law office? If so, you might have a promising candidate.
After you have a set of strong options, it’s time to get personal. Additionally, this assessment process can and should continue throughout your professional relationship. We’ve split it up into three stages here, so you can make sure you have the right marketing firm for your unique situation.
During the first conversations, you should start to get an idea of how the marketing firm does business. Beyond choosing a firm that has the services you need, you should also trust your gut. If their level of responsiveness and professionalism is a good fit, then you can probably continue on for the time being.
As you start to move forward with the strategy you’ve put in place, it’s important to keep track of which promises are being fulfilled in which actions are being taken. Most marketers these days will send you updates periodically about their progress.
If you’re unclear about which tasks are further in which goals, simply reach out. Most good firms will be happy to explain exactly why they’re doing what they’re doing.
Finally, although you may not initially see this as a benefit, you want a firm that will continue to suggest new options to increase your marketing budget. This is an especially good sign if you’re getting results already — but also be wary of marketers that need more money than they planned to get the results they promised.
Give us a call or reach out in the manner that’s easiest for you. We’re standing by to schedule your initial consultation. Please call 888-590-9687 to get started.