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The Complete Guide to Marketing Your Elder Law Firm

by | Feb 27, 2019 | Law Firm Marketing

Marketing your law firm can be overwhelming.

It can feel almost impossible to run a law practice and still find time to execute all the marketing tactics out there.

But, marketing can be distilled down into two categories.

Finding clients…

And keeping clients…

So by focusing on those two things, marketing your law firm will not feel as overwhelming and you’ll be able to focus all your energy on what works.

Now, ask yourself…

Will this tactic help me get new clients or keep my clients?

If the idea won’t directly answer those two questions then you shouldn’t do it or call it marketing.

For example, a new website.

Spending money on a new website might create better branding or maybe increase consultations. But there’s no way that a new website on its own will do anything without people knowing who you are.

Therefore, we’re only going to focus on direct actions that will help you grow your law practice.

Preferably as cost effective as possible.

Common Attorney Marketing FAQ

As a digital marketing specialist that helps attorneys get a steady stream of clients every month with my ad agency, I get asked these two question the most.

How do lawyers get clients?

Well, lawyers get clients using two marketing methods:

  1. Offline Marketing
  2. Digital Marketing

And both categories have their place in running a successful law practice and both methods have been used to scale huge law practices. So truthfully it comes down to your comfort level and how much you’re willing to spend on acquiring clients.

Offline marketing includes tv, radio, news, billboards and community outreach. And some of the biggest law firms in the country use these methods so they do work. But what about the smaller attorney or the solo law practice?

Well…

Digital marketing and the internet have changed the marketing landscape because it democratized client acquisition. And no longer are expensive tv ads or billboards needed to get clients.

Any attorney or digital marketing specialist with an ad budget of $1500 can fill rooms for an Elder Law workshop.

Elder Law Marketing Workshop Cost Per Registered Attendee

So how quickly would you be able to grow your Elder Law practice with 132 RSVPs for your next workshop?

Now, I don’t recommend that you go all in on one strategy over another but a cost per attendee of $12 for a workshop is something worth looking into.

The second question I get asked the most is:

How much does the average law practice spend on marketing?

I’ve yet to see a large scale study done on this so it’s hard to determine. However longtime business and marketing expert Dustin Ruge has been in the sales and marketing space for over 30 years and he created a simple benchmark that I love to use.

He says, to address this problem, use a simple starting benchmark formula:

Desired Annual Billings X 3.7% = Your Annual Marketing Budget

Personally, I love using a benchmark because there is no magic number to spend on marketing. So you want to start off with a number that you’re comfortable with, analyze your results and then either increase or decrease.

Now, let’s say you spent $3,000 on digital marketing services to fill an Elder Law workshop and from that, you made $6,000.

Would the marketing budget be worth it then?

I think it would. Therefore, the idea is to establish a benchmark you’re willing to live with and adjust from there.

Now,

How Can Digital Marketing Help Your Law Practice?

The purpose of digital marketing is to scale a business cost-effectively.

If you’re anti-waste or risk-averse then digital marketing is for you.

It might seem a little biased from someone with an agency but there has never been a better opportunity for attorneys to focus on being attorneys and grow their law practice at the same time.

Attorneys went to law school to become attorneys, not marketing experts.

However, thanks to the internet attorneys can grow their law practice alongside practicing law because the costs of growing a law practice have been dramatically reduced.

According to the American Bar Association Journal, ⅓ of all attorney clients start their search online.

And from that same source…

29 percent of respondents would ask a friend or relative first.

So think about that, 38% + 29% = 67% of people start their search online or ask a family member. This means that the best attorneys have a great referral program and digital presence.

A Digital Marketing Agency should be able to help you with the following:

  1. Improve your visibility in Google’s search results
  2. Building and improving landing pages that help attract potential clients
  3. Help stay up to date in all the legal directories
  4. Increase authority, branding, and retention with video marketing
  5. Use newsletter marketing for specific practice areas
  6. Developing a sales process to convert your leads

So that’s how digital marketing can help your law firm grow and succeed. Anything else is just taking away from being a great attorney.

Now,

Do attorneys need to be on social media?

If it’s for the sake of being on social media, then no.

But if the purpose of you being on social media was because you are having a Q&A and you’re sending clients to tune in live then yes!

Again, answer the question if what you’re doing is to directly get more clients or retain current clients. If your answer doesn’t directly impact those two things, then do not use that method.

Once you have steady growth and decide to outsource more work to people that can manage social media or do some value-added brand building then, by all means, work on extraneous things personally.

If your goal is to grow your law practice, everything you do needs to be intentional.

The Best Elder Law Marketing Tactics and Referral Sources (Actual Attorney Responses)

  1. Nursing home workshops (Least Efficient)
  2. Discharge planner at the hospital
  3. Local coalition on aging
  4. Alzheimers Association
  5. Financial planners
  6. Existing clients
  7. Internet (Most Efficient)

Asking the attorneys that I’ve worked with in the past about their most effective marketing methods was eye-opening. There are methods they mentioned that I haven’t thought of and others I know are effective.

Therefore, the best plan for your law firm is one that combines offline and online marketing in the most cost-effective way possible. And you need to tailor your message differently depending on each referral source.

That’s why the law firm that wins at the end is the one that acquires a client for the least amount of money. Which shifts your focus to being an attorney, creating amazing relationships with referral sources and finally giving your clients the attention you think they deserve.

So which method do you think allows you to serve more people?

Notice that no one mentioned a popular strategy…

So do direct mail and print marketing still work?

I mean, there isn’t a marketing method out there that gets zero results given enough time. And people still respond to direct mail and newspaper ads. However, the name of the game is cost-effectiveness and return on investment.

Your law firm needs to keep growing and you need to focus on being a lawyer. So focusing on making your money do more in less time is the best solution.

In Conclusion

I would imagine that law school didn’t cover marketing your law firm very much. So how are you supposed to hire more staff, learn new tools, reach more potential clients and do more of what you love to do?  You need a team around you that helps you serve your clients like they’re your own family.

That’s why you shouldn’t waste your time or money on marketing methods that don’t stretch your dollar to the fullest.

At Bambiz, we work with elder law and estate planning firms and have extensive experience in developing social media, video and online marketing strategies unique to your firm, location, and potential client base.

To learn more about how we can help grow your business using online marketing, schedule a free 15-minute call with us

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Jim Blake

Jim Blake

Founder/CEO Bambiz

Jim’s mission with Bambiz is to help Elder Law and Estate Planning attorneys get more clients and grow their business.  He was awarded the Tampa Bay Business Journal Top Up and Comer Under 30 and is a Certified Digital Marketer.  Jim is also passionate about running and fitness, having completed over 26 full marathons in three continents.