Law Firm Internet Marketing: Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How

Gyi Tsakalakis
March 16, 2010

The more law firm search engine optimization and consulting that I do, the more I am reminded of the core principles of law firm internet marketing and law firm marketing in general. You have to think like your potential client!

Like investigating a case, you have to learn the Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How.

WHO do your potential clients look to?

Are there recognized experts in your field? This is where personal branding of your law firm becomes so important. In the realm of marketing your law firm on the internet, your key tools are your website, your law firm blog, and the content you publish on the web.

Many of our clients have established personal brands. Their name and firm name constitute a significant percentage of their total visitor traffic. When these visitors "convert" there is already a built-in degree of trust with regard to the lawyer's experience, knowledge, and expertise in their field.

Becoming "who" your potential clients are searching is a core component to successful law firm internet marketing.

WHAT are your potential clients looking for?

This is the most common question that lawyers and lawyer marketing consultants ask. When it comes to attorney internet marketing strategies, asking this question is critical to performing quality keyword discovery, on-page search engine optimization, and content writing.

This is the real meat and potatoes of your marketing efforts. Understanding what your potential clients are looking for will not only help you get found online, it will also help you convert more of your visitors into actionable leads for your law firm.

WHERE are your potential clients looking?

Almost as common as "the what", understanding where your potential clients are looking is on the mind of most lawyers and law firm marketing consultants. This is an area that is undergoing a rapid evolution right now. More and more people are abandoning "traditional places" to look for lawyers and turning to the online community for information and advice. However, not all law firm internet marketing "places" are the same.

While we know that getting prominent position in search engines is an important component to marketing your law firm online, there are many other successful online platforms that may produce excellent return on your marketing investments. One of the most valuable and overlooked advantages to partnering with a law firm internet marketing professional, is their knowledge of the legal internet marketing landscape. A good consultant can help you quickly identify places to avoid, and more importantly, places that work.

WHEN are your potential clients looking for you?

The "when" question is intimately related to the where. In our experience, different segments of the legal services market will look for lawyers in different places based on the time of day, fiscal quarter, or year. Taking time into account, can have large impacts on the effectiveness and efficiency of your campaigns.

WHY are your potential clients looking for you?

While all of the questions posed here are important, in my view, none are as important as the why. Understanding why your potential clients are looking for you may impact your entire marketing message, strategy, and implementation.

Are your potential clients looking for you because they were recently charged with a crime? Are they looking for you because they have suffered serious injury? Are they facing a difficult financial situation or business decision? Knowing the "why" can completely change how successful all your law firm marketing efforts works both online and offline.

HOW are your potential clients looking for you?

More specifically than know where and when your potential clients are looking, knowing how they are looking for you may make all the difference. Different people look for legal services in completely different ways. These methods will vary greatly depending on age, geography, gender, socio-economic factors, as well as, what kind of lawyer they are looking for.

When it comes to online law firm marketing, knowing how people search for you services online may dictate whether certain internet marketing avenues make any sense at all.

Each of these questions should be taken into consideration in shaping your law firm internet marketing strategy. The more you understand the answer to each of these questions, the higher your likelihood of success.

Gyi Tsakalakis
Co-Founder of AttorneySync
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