According to an IBISWorld report on the legal industry, nearly 450,000 law firms in the United States provide services to clients. And according to the American Bar Association, about 25% of lawyers are either in California or New York.
Wherever you are located as a legal professional, you may wonder, “How do law firms build brand awareness?” It is a question of utmost importance for anyone in the legal industry.
Why Worry About Brand Awareness?
Firms with strong brands have the most success getting and retaining clients. Hence, any firm that wants to grow and thrive should seek to strengthen its brand. In many ways, the term “brand” describes nothing new in basic marketing. It simply refers to something a business is known for.
Consider regional television commercials for lawyers. Through repetitive, directed marketing, many lawyers across the country have cemented their brands as motorcycle lawyers, divorce lawyers, workers’ compensation lawyers, and more.
Buying television airtime is not the secret to success when it comes to building a successful brand. There are many ways for your firm to increase its footprint in the mind of potential clients besides shooting a commercial.
What Are the Benefits of Brand Awareness?
There are a variety of direct benefits of brand awareness, all of which help your firm thrive sustainably. Although each of these benefits helps in its own unique way, it is most optimal when they are all working together.
How can a firm increase brand awareness? Getting a client is good. But it is even better when this client returns for more legal services. And we all know that clients don’t continue to give businesses their hard-earned money without getting what they’re looking for, especially in a world of nearly half-a-million law firms.
Brand awareness is a compliment to your legal services. It gives clients another reason to return besides the quality representation they received. It increases feelings of loyalty and trust and makes clients feel like they are part of something important.
A strong brand makes potential clients think of your firm before they even set foot in the door and long after you have served their legal needs. This “lasting power” will keep your firm growing sustainably in the future.
The annals of marketing are replete with flash-in-the-pan marketing hits that bring in clients but don’t retain them. It is essential that anyone wondering “how can a firm increase brand awareness?” work with an agency that is adept at developing strategies that help ensure long-term success and sustainability.
Of course, money can go a long way toward making firm workers happy, but so can the feeling of being part of something special. When your brand grows, your firm’s reputation and prestige will likely grow alongside it. Although not as important as a paycheck, reputation and prestige are highly valued by your attorneys, paralegals, secretaries, and other staff.
Strong brands are partnership magnets. If yours grows, then not only will potential clients take note, but other businesses and organizations will also, including the media. You may find that some reach out to team up with your firm because your firm is known to be the go-to firm on a particular subject, which can yield a healthy partnership that increases your exposure.
How Can a Firm Increase Brand Awareness?
Many law firms have come to understand the importance of brand awareness and know that with the right amount of time and effort, any quality law firm can increase its presence in the world of potential clients. Due to their busy schedules, most typically hire an experienced marketing firm, such as Lawyers Marketing Associates.
Before finding the answer to the question “how can a firm build its brand?” you must figure out your brand. Your brand is more than just the type of law you practice. With the number of law firms out there, it has to be. Understanding or deciding just how you want your firm to present to the public is an important process that Lawyers Marketing Associates can help you through.
Since the economic downturn in 2008, we have helped thousands of clients distinguish their firm from the many others in their areas of law by working closely with them to compose the face they want to show to their potential client pools. We can help you, too.
Know Your Audience
Any effort at building brand awareness must also begin with knowing your audience. Knowing your audience means more than knowing what legal issues they have. It requires you to know what they need to see or hear in order to become repeat clients.
For instance, the clients of a law firm specializing in high school sports injury cases would need to see or hear something entirely different than those of a white-collar defense firm in order to be affected by brand-building efforts.
And neither is impressed by simply seeing that your firm specializes in the type of law they need. Both need something more that inspires a connection between them and the law firm.
Know Where to Find Your Audience
Because the world frequently interacts digitally, it is important to not only know your audience but to also know where they spend time online. Do your desired clients spend time on Facebook or Instagram? Or are they more likely to be found somewhere in a criminal law chat room or a forum dedicated to one of the many construction trades?
Finding out where your potential clients spend time online and what they need to hear can be accomplished in many ways. At Lawyers Marketing Associates, we employ proven methods that reveal what your clients respond to and develop our plans for your firm based on what we discover.
High-Quality Targeted Ads
Once you know who your clients are and what they respond to, the next step is to develop and run high-quality, targeted ads. Although there are benefits to general advertising, it has a risk of coming off clumsy, off-point, and even off-putting.
On the other hand, targeted ads can often be employed with near surgical precision. With a properly aimed ad or campaign, you have the potential of not only gaining more clients but also saving time and money by narrowing down your target range.
But never skimp on quality. Once you set your sights on a specific group, make sure that the means of delivery are shiny and polished. If your plan consists of articles, make sure the writers and editors are seasoned wordsmiths. If web design is involved, contract the services of a competent web designer who knows how to create top-quality sites.
SEO Is Still Relevant
Search engine optimization has been around for a while and continues to be relevant. Although it was once all the rage and touted as a magic pill for solving obscurity on the internet, low-quality SEO services turned some businesses off to any agency offering SEO.
You may be familiar with some of these poor attempts at maximizing a company’s search engine results. The resulting websites often overused keywords to a ridiculous degree. They sacrificed the quality of the message to land higher in an internet search, but the post-click web page results reflected poorly on the business.
Fortunately, the SEO practice is still a staple of successful brands. With interest in SEO consulting services at all-time highs (according to a Google Trends search), it seems safe to say that true businesses understand the value of quality SEO services and are willing to continue spending time and money on agencies that know what they are doing.
Timing and Frequency
They were right: Timing is everything, which is why you need an agency that understands not only the who and why but also the when of its marketing campaigns. Many who ask “how do law firms build brand awareness?” hire firms that understand many of the basic points covered in this article. However, the concepts of timing and frequency escape many of them.
Timing refers to the “when.” When is the best time to release an ad campaign or redo your website to increase your branding? When you work with an experienced legal marketing agency like Lawyers Marketing Associates, you get a group of professionals who will determine this with great precision.
Many factors determine when to engage your potential customers with branding efforts. Economic, cultural, and political forces and events all influence how your target audience will react to your branding efforts. You deserve to have an experienced marketing agency help you navigate the timing of your marketing campaigns.
Contact Lawyers Marketing Associates Today
At Lawyers Marketing Associates, there’s nothing more important than seeing our clients realize the visions they have for their firms. Helping you build your brand awareness is one of the many services we can provide to foster healthy, sustainable growth.
As the national and global landscape changes rapidly and sometimes unpredictably, we can help you build your firm to weather the test of time and change. Call (919) 637-9144 today to speak with a consultant.