Lead Generation for Lawyers: 10 Ways to Generate More Targeted Leads for Your Law Firm
Thursday, April 27, 2023

Are you tired of staring at your empty client list and wondering if the world has suddenly gone "litigation-free"? Are you looking for more creative (and cost-effective) ways to generate leads?

Fear not, for this article has got you covered. 

Whether you're a seasoned attorney or a fresh-faced paralegal, these tips will have you generating new legal leads in no time. From digital marketing to networking to good ol’ referrals, we’ll cover some of the best ways to get clients flocking to your firm.

Let’s dive into the world of law firm lead generation. 

But first, what are “legal leads”?

“Legal leads” refer to potential clients who have expressed an interest in your legal services or have otherwise been identified as potential clients via your marketing efforts. Legal leads can come from a variety of sources, including but not limited to referrals, website inquiries, phone calls, email, or social media. 

Generating legal leads is an essential activity for any law firm, as it keeps the clients coming in, resulting in revenue for your business. Lead generation often takes a conscious effort, as word-of-mouth leads and inbound referrals aren’t always guaranteed.

Once you have one source (or a few) of consistent leads, these leads can then be nurtured and converted into new clients!

1) Drive organic traffic through SEO

As the world’s largest search engine, it’s no surprise that Google is one of the most powerful sources of traffic for businesses. This is especially true for local businesses – like law firms – that rely on Google to attract users who are looking for services in their area.

In order to harness the power of Google, though, you’ll need to learn a thing or two about law firm SEO. Short for “Search Engine Optimization”, SEO is the practice of optimizing your website and business listings to appear in Google’s organic search results.

The SEO process goes something like this:

  1. You launch your website, which includes web pages, images, and articles that describe to users (and search engines) what your law firm is all about. 

  2. You research keywords that your potential clients are using to find your services and incorporate these into your site content. 

  3. You update the technical infrastructure of your website to ensure your site is fast, user-friendly, and optimized for mobile and desktop devices

  4. You leverage PR and content marketing to earn backlinks from other industry publications, websites, and blogs to increase your website authority. 

  5. Google picks up on all of the positive SEO “signals” from above and determines how and where to rank your website in the search results.

  6. If your website ranks high in Google Search, then users can click on your website and, hopefully, turn into new leads. 

SEO is one of the most effective lead generation tactics for law firms. Want help developing your SEO strategy? Learn how to generate more legal leads with SEO here

2) Capture leads through optimized landing pages

Many law firms solely rely on contact forms or posting their phone number on their website to capture inbound leads, but did you know there’s a better way to improve lead conversion?

Optimized landing pages (i.e. pages on your website) specific to your service offering are often more effective in enticing leads than a generic contact form.

For example, say you were looking for a plumber to fix your sink and landed on a plumbing company’s website.

Which call-to-action would be more enticing to you?

  1. “Contact us to learn more about our services”

  2. “Sprung a link? Send us a message here and one of our plumbers will get in touch with you within 48 hours!”

Probably number 2, right?

This is because option two is more specific and clarifies exactly what will happen once someone submits a form (i.e. “one of our plumbers will get in touch…”). This way, the lead isn’t left wondering if their message will end up in the abyss or whether they will ever hear back from the business.

Law firm landing pages can work a similar way by effectively describing the service, including a clear call-to-action, and getting specific about what clients should expect once they contact you. You’ll find that potential clients are then more likely to submit their information and will have more trust in your services. 

Unbounce provides a great landing page builder for you to create high-converting web pages. Use optimized landing pages to not only attract more eyes to your site but convert that traffic into potential clients. 

3) Increase brand visibility through social media marketing

Most law firms are familiar with social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, but aren’t sure how to use them for effective lead generation.

You need to keep in mind that few people go to social media actively searching for a lawyer, so these platforms are most effective for brand building and engagement than direct selling. 

Here are a few ways to use social media to boost your brand visibility:

  • Generate clients reviews on Facebook and LinkedIn

  • Post informative content that provides value to your audience

  • Engage users with live videos (e.g. Facebook Live and LinkedIn Live)

  • Share content and tag other law firms and legal professionals

  • Respond to user comments and ask questions to keep your audience engaged

  • Drive traffic to your website by sharing your recent blog articles

  • Post business updates, like photos and videos from your firm

In fact, there are many creative ways to use social media to grow your firm. Get more legal leads through social by checking out the Ultimate Social Media Marketing Guide for Law Firms

3) Drive interest through valuable, informative content

The legal process can confusing, intimidating, and stressful. When facing legal issues, many people turn to the internet for valuable and accurate information.

This is where you come in. As a legal professional, you are best equipped to provide thorough and helpful information about the legal process, answer legal questions, and connect people to resources. Demonstrating your expertise through content is a great way to build trust and attract clients.

This content can take the form of FAQ pages, blog articles, videos, whitepapers, resource libraries, PDFs or ebooks, interviews, or how-to guides. You can take about complicated subjects, guide people on the steps of the legal process, and tell them what they need to know when hiring a lawyer (like you!).

Content can also be a great source of organic traffic. By conducting keyword research (as mentioned in strategy #1), you can then optimize your content for search engines so that it appears in relevant searches.

4) Reach clients with Pay-Per-Click ads

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising can help you reach potential clients who are actively searching for legal services. While Google (organic) allows you to attract users by making SEO improvements on your website, Google Ads allows you to “bid” on certain keywords and pay for each click on your ad.

If running paid ads sounds intimidation, don’t worry – Google has a complete Google Ads Checklist that can help. However, mastering Google Ads may take some practice, or you can decide to hire an expert of you’d rather not do it yourself. 

With PPC ads, you can target specific terms, locations, or demographics to ensure your ads are shown to the right people. This ensures that you attract users who are most likely to want your services and who live in your geographic service area. 

5) Increase organic leads through Local Search

While law firm SEO allows you to optimize your website to rank higher in Google organic search, local SEO is a subset of SEO that allows you to attract geo-specific traffic (through optimized listings and the Google “Map Pack”).

You might not have paid much attention to it before, but Google will often show businesses (with their phone number, business hours, etc.) above the rest of the organic search results. As a local business you want to show up here if people are looking for your services!

There are a few ways to optimize for local search:

  1. Make sure your city/county keywords are included throughout the content on your website. This indicates to Google where your business is located and what geo-specific terms it should rank you for.

  2. Create (or optimize) your Google Business Profile. This is the free profile Google provides, where you can add your business name, website URL, phone number, business hours, and more.

  3. Generate client reviews on your Google Business Profile. Ask past clients to leave positive reviews on your listing. This will help your listing rank higher and will help persuade people to work with you. 

  4. Submit your business to reputable directories. Directory sites like Yelp, YellowPages, Avvo, and the like are other places where local users can find you online.

5) Build and convert an engaged email list

Building and engaging an active email list is a great way to keep your firm top of mind with potential clients. While not everyone is in the market for an attorney, email marketing may help you generate referrals and future business.

You can grow your email list through nearly any channel – by having a sign up form on your website, by including a link in your LinkedIn bio, by advertising your newsletter on social media, etc. Over time, you will gain more subscribers, who may eventually turn into new clients.

The key is to make sure your emails provide value and are not just sales pitches. Experience with different content types, like:

  • A summary of your latest blog post

  • A recap of a recent interview

  • A screen-grab of a happy client’s testimonial

  • News and updates about your company

  • Helpful tips, tutorials, and how-to’s

  • Special offers, promotions, and partnerships

  • Videos and webinars

  • Upcoming events, conferences, or meet-ups

Your email content doesn’t have to be a mundane newsletter every month. There are quite a few interesting and fun ways to land more clients with email marketing.

6) Reach potential clients through direct mail

Direct mail marketing involves sending physical mailers to potential clients in order to drum up new business. Sending targeted direct mail campaigns can be an effective way to reach potential law firm clients.

Direct mail is highly targeted, in that you are paying (for mailing materials) to reach people who you know are already in need of your services. The cost of running a direct mail campaign is often lower than that of PPC advertising. 

Direct mail marketing can be set up quickly. All you need is a design (you can use Canva for this), printing services (like FedEx), and mailing services (like USPS).  Make sure all your mailers describe your business, include a clear call-to-action, and provide a way for people to contact you. 

You can send direct mailers to your existing contact list, participants at a local event, or in partnership with a lead generation service. 

7) Leverage law firm partnerships

Partnering with other businesses and law firms in your local market can help you reach new clients as well.

Consider that there are likely some local law firms that don’t offer your type of legal services. If you form partnerships with them, they may be willing to send referrals your way. 

For example, if your law firm specializes in estate planning, you might want to partner with a financial planning firm or a family law firm. Their client bases may also be interested in your services. 

Beyond that, building rapport in your network is just a good idea all around. They may be willing to re-share your content on social media, tip you off to industry events, provide marketing tips, and more. Or, at the very least, you make make some new happy hour friends in the progress!

8) Build your client referral base

Word-of-mouth referrals are still one of the most effective ways to generate new legal clients. This is because people are often most likely to trust law firms if they have a friend or family member who has worked with them before.

Your past and current clients are the best sources of potential referrals. To encourage referrals, it’s best to maintain a positive relationship throughout the engagement, ask your clients for feedback, and ask them to send potential referrals your way. 

You can also network with other professionals such as lawyers, local businesses, accountants, financial planners, or real estate agents who might refer clients to you. Again, building these relationships could earn dividends for your business!

9) Utilize law firm lead-generation tools

There are tons of lead generation tools and software out there to make legal lead gen more efficient than ever. Through these tools, you can automate many of your lead generation, nurturing, and management activities.

Here are just a few types of tools you can use for lead generation:

  • Legal practice management software: This type of software helps you manage your business operations, from client intake and case management, to billing and reporting. Some examples include Clio, MyCase, and Filevine.

  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software: CRM software allows you to manage and analyze client interactions throughout the client lifecycle. Examples of CRM software include Salesforce, Zoho, and HubSpot.

  • Email marketing software: Email software lets you create and send emails to your subscribers. It makes creating, monitoring, and optimizing email campaigns way easier. The best email tools include Mailchimp and Constant Contact.

  • Legal directories: Legal directories like Avvo and FindLaw allow people to find you online (beyond just your website). Many of these platforms also provide native lead generation services. 

10) Gauge client interest through free consultations

Another well-known way to generate law firm clients is by offering free consultations. 

Through a complimentary consultation, you can demonstrate your expertise, build trust, and show the person that you’re interested in their case. During the consultation, you can ask questions to better assess their legal needs, answer any questions they have, and introduce them to your services. 

After the consultation, if the potential client feels confident in your ability to help them, they may choose to hire you! You can also use the consultation as an opportunity to collect their contact information and follow up with them after the meeting (via phone call or email).

You can include calls-to-action for potential clients to schedule their free consultation on your website, in your paid ads, in your email campaigns, and social media. Free consultations are a great way to build trust with potential clients and then do the “soft selling” of your services. 

Generate More High-Quality Lawyer Leads

Each of the strategies above can be effective in generating more client leads for a law firm. 

But it's important to keep in mind that no single approach will work for every firm or situation. It’s best that you experiment with different strategies to find out what works best for your firm!

 

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