The legal sector is at a pivotal point as new technologies and digital techniques change law firm marketing. Explore the latest digital trends that are causing disruption for the legal sector
It’s the first time in modern history that four generations work side by side in the workplace. This, plus digital transformation, enables a big shift for law firm marketing. Traditionalists, baby boomers and practitioners of traditional marketing, work alongside Generation X and Millennials who are digital natives.
If law firm marketing is to be successful and reach a modern audience, then it needs to pay attention and adapt to the digital trends that are disrupting the sector.
Up to 75% of all clients in the legal sector will visit a firm’s website to take action, so content is a critical element for law firm marketing. This includes text, imagery and video relating to services, staff profiles, case studies and updates that will start a dialogue with visitors.
By 2020 video will make up 82% of all consumer traffic, according to technology giant, Cisco. Video enables law firms to move away from the traditional ‘stuffy’ image associated with the sector. Publishing video content to answer frequently answered questions or to talk about specific services is a great way to convert visitors. A recent survey showed that not only can video content increase website conversions but that B2B audiences want to see more video content.
Text based media still plays a critical role, as Google loves written content. In the future video and text-based marketing content will complement each other.
97% of all legal firm websites lack any kind of personalisation. That’s a lot of missed conversion opportunities. Tailoring content to website visitors’ profiles increases visitors’ time on site and the average conversion rate. Each visitor should have a personalised experience by being shown content based on their segment data, demographics or recent visitor activity.
Cloud technology is a big disrupter for law firm marketing. Virtual law firms create new competition for established law firms. They have smaller overheads and are growing in popularity. They use cloud technology, so employees can easily work remotely. This will become more important as 82% of millennials have said that flexible working options would improve their loyalty to an employer. 83% of all workers claim flexible working improve their productivity.
Digital documentation and data security are two additional benefits of cloud computing. This reduces manual admin hours for employees and therefore costs. It also adds an additional layer of security. Cloud partners, like Kagool provide dedicated Sitecore hosting for law firms.
Through Sitecore cloud management and Sitecore Azure hosting client data is protected securely. 94% of businesses claimed they saw an improvement in security following the implementation of cloud solutions.
‘Always on’ businesses
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning are changing law firm marketing. Whether it’s a law firm, car dealership or phone network provider, customers’ expectations have evolved. Customers’ look for a quick, personalised experience from businesses, that’s accessible 24/7.
AI powered chatbots are increasingly popular additions to websites. Chatbots will save businesses around £6 billion annually according to Juniper Research. Firms looking to strengthen customer relationships would be wise to consider chatbots as digital assistants that are able to scour the website in seconds to answer customer questions without using up employee resource.
Another benefit to this ‘always-on’ service is that firms will be able to gain further insight to their audience. This information can help to develop a firm’s digital marketing strategy to attain desired results. In addition this means law firms can generate new business enquiries and job applications 24 hours a day.
Law firm marketing that considers design and user experience (UX) is breaking the mould of the more conservative, traditional image that’s associated with the sector. Using photography and messaging that make firms inaccessible to their audience can be a deal breaker – first impressions count.
User experience design is proving to be more and more important for websites. This includes being optimised for hand held devices (mobile, tablets). In fact, 57% of users say they won’t recommend a business with a poorly-designed mobile site. Firms that aren’t considering a ‘mobile first’ approach are at risk of falling behind.
It’s time the sector started to really capitalise on the huge benefits associated with search marketing. Shockingly it was revealed that 92% of law firms are unaware of their cost per lead (CPL) with a further 94% not knowing what it costs them to acquire a new client. Globally 61% of marketers are prioritising SEO for their businesses, probably because it serves the following benefits:
- Increases online visitors
- Generates high volumes of traffic
- Appeals to a wider audience
- Increases conversions
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Another law firm marketing tactic that is ripe for disruption opportunity is paid per click (PPC). PPC is a great way to generate relevant traffic without high cost. As PPC ads tend to attract genuine interest, it also helps reduce bounce rate.
Email marketing that adopts personalisation and automation is emerging as a valuable channel for law firm marketers. Firms are realising the benefits of harnessing powerful email platforms that are user-friendly and have in-built features for segmentation, reporting and testing.
Whether firms use email marketing for monthly newsletters to keep their clients engaged or to target specific audiences with suitable services, the ROI for email is four times higher than for any other channel. eMarketer reported the average email marketing ROI as 122%.
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