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Data Driven Law Firm Marketing: Technology and Data Drives Results

Scott Brandt

Written by

Scott Brandt


September 15, 2023

Marketing for Lawyers: Technology and Data Drives Results

Supporting thousands of lawyers across three continents, we’ve identified a key attribute many successful firms use to grow profitably. Successful firms embrace technology to help their firms and people scale. These firms are data-driven, leveraging marketing and legal technologies to help them successfully target potential clients, onboard new clients, and create effective marketing strategies.  

Data-driven law firms connect with clients by embracing digital marketing tactics, allowing them to collect and access story-telling data which they use to regularly improve their efforts. Implementing an online marketing strategy helps place your firm front and center when prospective clients need you most and are searching for answers.  

In this article, we’ll share insightful tips to help you better leverage the valuable combination of marketing and legal software to understand your firm’s best clients, helping you make strategic decisions at every stage of a new client’s journey.

Implementing successful marketing efforts are crucial to help you scale your firm. In the content that follows you’ll learn how to:

  • Select the right tools for each marketing stage
  • Use data to engage potential new clients (PNCs)
  • Track performance and optimize spend

With a data-driven marketing strategy, you will employ KPIs (key performance indicators), identifying successful efforts to help you guide future business decisions. By incorporating data into your marketing efforts, you’ll be able to understand the impact of your marketing decisions and pivot from unsuccessful efforts to those that drive measurable results.

Marketing consists of key stages, including:

  1. Awareness
  2. Consideration
  3. Decision Making
  4. Retention
  5. Advocacy

Awareness: Create a lasting first impression

People in need of attorneys find potential law firms through search engines, websites, blogs, social media and referrals. Ensuring your firm is found means you need to create a digital footprint for your firm, complete with messaging and differentiators to help your firm stand out. A good first impression is a critical first step in grabbing PNCs’ attention and driving new leads to your law firm.

Build your online presence with these marketing tools:

  • Showcase your expertise on your website by sharing happy client testimonials and relevant legal information detailing your experience and specific areas of law. Lean on topics that showcase your law firm’s expertise and are search engine optimized (SEO) – SEO is the practice of writing and creating content using the language and ideas that your target clients use and resonate with. By speaking their language and using words they enter in google or on social media searches, these platforms are more likely to show your content first.
  • PPC (pay per click) advertising campaigns, on Google, Facebook or other sites, are also a great method in attracting PNCs. The benefit of good ads, like SEO, is that you pay to be a first choice and get visibility with PNCs because you are targeting, their needs when they need you most.

PPC can be complicated, and you may want to seek an expert for support and advice. We suggest considering these 5 easy steps before getting started:

  • Step 1: Define your PPC goals. Is it website traffic or new leads?
  • Step 2: Audience targeting. Make sure you are targeting your high potential clients.
  • Step 3: Optimize your landing pages/website. Make sure your content provides solutions and benefits and allow PNCs to submit their info directly and call your firm.
  • Step 4: Create quality ads. This article can help you:
  • Step 5: Analyze and optimize. PPC platforms like Google Ads have great data analysis tools to help you understand what’s working and what isn’t.

If you’re able, we strongly recommend integrating your website with your legal CRM’s customizable forms. LeadPro, our solution, gives you the tools to create custom forms, tailored to your client intake needs. When a PNC fills out your form, it seamlessly builds a lead and contact profile, automating the intake process so you'll never have to do double entry again.  
If you’re not a Smokeball user, integrating your website and lead forms with your legal CRM allows you to remain organized and ready to follow up in a timely manner when a contact reaches out for an initial consultation.

Engage your visitors, don't just broadcast and promote. Engage PNCs through multiple marketing channels from website to social media to legal forums and more. Start by mapping out a consistent strategy of how and where you do marketing outreach, which includes tactics like strategically sharing content–even other people’s relevant and helpful content - and providing meaningful commentary in relevant threads and conversations on your social media channels.

Leverage awareness data to see which tactics are driving engagement

  • Tap into your website analytics to understand the most popular pages and content on your site, and then optimize your content based on visitor demographics, behavior, and conversions. Use Google search console to understand the search terms PNCs are using and edit your content to incorporate the most significant and relevant terms for your PNCs
  • Analyze which sources generate the highest quality and converting leads.
  • Analyze social media metrics to understand which efforts drive PNC engagement best. What catches people’s attention and gets a like, comment or share? Which posts drive no action? By understanding what works and what doesn’t you’ll improve your overall success and ROI metrics.
  • This data is your secret sauce to driving more client growth. Use it to refine your marketing campaigns to capture the interest of your target PNCs.

Consideration: Highlight your firm’s value and key differentiators

Clients today prioritize accessibility, transparency, timeliness, and experience as their most sought-after attributes in an attorney. It’s important you highlight these attributes on your website and within your marketing materials, as it will increase PNC consideration when you do.

Additionally, embracing marketing and legal technology demonstrates your commitment to your clients because as your firm follows up faster, with a better understanding of the PNC’s needs and legal situation, the client is more inclined to feel comfortable moving forward with your firm.

Engage PNCS with marketing and legal software to provide a great first impression

  • CRM systems (like Smokeball’s LeadPro) capture lead details, direct inquiries, and tailor communications to PNCs. Capturing such information all but guarantees a great first conversation.
  • Use Email marketing campaigns to share insights and keep your firm top of mind. Once a PNC submits their info, this is just the beginning. Using email can help you demonstrate your expertise, share important information about the road ahead, and provide PNCs with a sense of comfort related to working with your firm.
  • Send checklists and templates to clients, which can and should be automated, to follow up, check in, and move the client forward in their decision journey. Doing so will help convince the PNC that you’re experienced and capable of meeting their needs.
  • Use video conferencing. Tools like Zoom are great for hosting engaging webinars, providing client demos, and holding important meetings. Make it easy for PNCs to connect with you by eliminating the barrier of needing to be in-person.

Decision Making: Turn PNCs into paying clients

When a PNC is at the crossroads of choosing one legal team over another, demonstrated expertise, convenience, and personalization are important factors in their decision-making process. Legal software helps you streamline client onboarding, showing prospects how easy it is to work with you. And marketing software will help you identify which of your marketing efforts drives the most new clients.

There are great options to simplify client intake and onboarding when you do secure a new client, such as:

  • Online calendaring and booking tools to schedule consultations without the back-and-forth. Time is of the essence so get meetings and consultations booked quickly and easily, providing clients with a sense of comfort knowing help is on the way.  
  • Use a client portal to facilitate document sharing and eSignatures for smooth client agreements.  
  • If you’re able, put Chatbots on your website. Chatbots instantly guide prospects, schedule calls, and deliver forms to capture PNC information and case details.
  • Legal client intake software that syncs directly with your legal practice management software for a one-click conversion from a PNC (or “lead” in Smokeball) to matter intake and matter management when you convert them into a retaining client.

Retention: Delivering great client experiences leads to lasting relationships

Guiding clients through their stressful legal situations is only part of the battle. Cultivating enduring trust is critical for repeat business. We’ve found that great experiences are key to generating referrals from happy clients and are the most direct and lucrative method in helping your firm thrive! Legal software drives great client experiences leading to increased retention.

Advocacy: Transform happy clients into referral-driving advocates

Successfully completing a case presents an opportunity to transform happy clients into devoted advocates and champions of your firm. Referrals demonstrate trust - clients who have a positive experience become your best marketers, and the most cost-effective.

Expand your referral network  

  • Practice management software provides more than simple organization. It puts new client and matter intake, communications, billing, and data analysis in one place. Ultimately it allows your firm to provide great client experience every time, creating more advocates that will drive more referrals. With Smokeball, you can track referral sources so you can make sure to keep those relationships thriving.
  • Sites like Google allow clients to post reviews. High quality reviews from happy clients might just be the most effective marketing technique to employ. And positive reviews cost you nothing. Driving and securing quality Google reviews has several benefits, including Google ranking for local SEO, enhancing your online reputation, and driving new leads. Maintaining your online reputation is essential. Make sure you actively manage your business profiles on all relevant platforms as you gather reviews. Responding to both positive and difficult reviews is a best practice.

Technology drives success

As we’ve demonstrated, adopting marketing and legal software will supercharge your new client strategy, providing your firm with a competitive edge. It demonstrates your firm’s commitment to effectively and efficiently meeting client needs - setting you apart from your competition.

Technology will allow you to become a data-driven marketer, leading to more accurate business decisions and better client experiences. You can optimize campaigns to attract and retain happy clients by consulting performance reports across the different platforms you use.

Data-driven marketing strategies are key to the success of your firm. With the right strategies powered by marketing and legal technology, you can simplify and improve the client experience at every stage and win more PNCs than you thought possible.  With the right strategy you will know who your target clients are and how to meet their needs, giving them the confidence that your firm is the right one for them.  

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