Challenges of Legal Marketing
Written by: Advantage IM
August 30, 2016
Advantage Internet Marketing proudly calls several local attorneys their clients. We are experienced and well versed in designing law websites and understand that the legal industry faces a very difficult and diverse set of challenges that most other industries do not. While marketing can be challenging no matter what your business is, lawyers and law offices fall into a category with many restrictions and they must walk a fine line when it comes to marketing that will be under constant scrutiny.
We are so accustomed to being marketed to by various companies and industries that are free to use hot marketing tactics that can sometimes involved statistics, claims, and so on. When marketing for legal businesses it is important to remain completely straight forward and transparent. Keep in mind that marketing and advertising for law firms have been illegal for just a few decades. Up until the 1970’s it was prohibited for lawyers to advertise in any form.
Two lawyers, Bates and O’steen changed all that, the two lawyers were running an unsuccessful law firm and in an effort to stay afloat violated the law of ethics and began to advertise their services. It began as an ad in the Phoenix local newspaper, and guess what? -It worked. Following their ad they attracted numerous clients and saved their firm. Theirs was an industry first, their brave move did however attract some negative attention as well, in fact a suspension from the State Bar of Arizona. Their ca made headlines and was closely watched by the legal industry. Ultimately the case was won on ground of free speech and has set the precedent of today’s legal marketing, there are some special rules that apply to legal firms when advertising.
Lack of Knowledge
Because marketing is such a new concept for lawyers there is a huge learning curve. Many established lawyers do not understand social media, blogging, and new marketing tactics, this putts them at a disadvantage to younger lawyers that may be more versed on internet marketing and it’s benefits. Today’s marketing platforms live primarily online, very few people pick up a phonebook anymore to peruse the legal section for ads. If the law office isn’t investing in a responsive website and a robust internet marketing strategy they are going to find themselves overlooked.
Many industries have options to marketing in a humorous way, humor in marketing is a fantastic way to reach your audience on a personal level and to make a memorable impact. But lawyers are not usually afforded the luxury of being able to market anything but responsible advertising, their clients have a lot at stake, money, fees, jail time, family matters, not usually something that can be taken likely.
So many industries are free to use big data, personal metrics, and experience in order to woo their audience and make claims for their excellent service. Lawyers must never claim that they can actually win a case, so while a local grocery may market themselves as having the lowest prices and the best produce, the lawyer in comparison would have to suggest they are affordable to most and do their very best for every client they represent. Lawyers advertising can also never give advice, they are held to strict standards and must focus on education and truths at all times.
Legal Firms and Lawyers face many marketing challenges, our experience helps us to make strong marketing plans for lawyers that don’t violate the standards and restrictions that they face. If your legal firm is looking for ways to market and increase your flow of new clients consider partnering with a marketing agency that understands lawyers and their very specialized marketing needs.