Law Firms Poised to Boost Digital Marketing

BY Kathy Crosett
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Today’s business leaders are looking for every competitive edge they can get. For many, the focus on profitability means scrutinizing costs such as legal fees. With fewer businesses willing to pay to have attorneys on retainer, law firms are looking for better ways to market their services and increase their client base.

The 2018 Law Firm Marketing and Business Development Survey from LexisNexis outlines the strategies legal marketing professionals are using. The survey encompassed the opinions of over 400 attorneys at large firms. Many of these attorneys also serve in marketing roles.

Legal marketers believe that they’re operating in a ‘new normal.’ In this new normal, clients have become more demanding. To compensate, law firms should be focusing on business development. Yet, 61% of survey respondents grade themselves average or below average in their business development efforts. And, only 40% of managing partners say their marketing department is keeping up with the changes.

While clients have grown more savvy, so have competitors. Survey respondents face challenges from peer firms (49%) and larger firms (46%.)

To gauge their positions with clients and with respect to competitors, most firms track how well individual attorneys perform (61%), firm wins/​losses (60%) and achievement of goal by practice area (56%). They’re also tracking visitors who check out their blogs or bios (57%). And they use metrics (43%) to evaluate how well their thought leadership events are working.

Law firms indicate they’ll continue to spend about 5% of revenue on marketing. But, in the coming year, legal marketers will make budget changes as follows:

  • Building brand +4%
  • Increase though leadership +5%
  • Increase digital marketing +2%
  • Decrease traditional marketing (-6%)

These businesses also plan to increase spending on client and market research by 20%. You can help law firms with preliminary research by checking out Local Account Intelligence Reports and AudienceSCAN profiles available at AdMall by Salesfuel. Armed with that data, you can sell them digital advertising services designed to help them increase their client base.