1. Have a marketing strategy
Without a strategy, you have just a list of tactics or even worse, incoherent ideas.
You won't know where to start or where to invest your time and money.
Without a strategy there's a real danger of either being inactive or focusing your efforts in the wrong area of marketing.
A strategy will help you identify who your target audience is and how you can engage them and turn them into enquiries and paying clients.
The objective of your strategy is to get more paying clients. To do that you need more relevant enquiries from your marketing efforts.
The next question is what are the most cost-effective ways to drive more enquiries for your family law department?
Think about the people who you are trying to target and the channels that will be most effective to do so.
Next consider the people and processes you're going to put in place to achieve to make the channels work effectively.
For example; is posting on social media every day - to an audience of 5 people - a better use of your time and money than investments in paid advertising and SEO?
Strategy is the series of tasks that you need to accomplish in order to reach your objective of getting more paying clients.
Luckily for you, if you focus on the ideas in the rest of this blog, your strategy will take care of itself.
2. Invest in law firm SEO
Lots of people with family law issues start their journey to getting a solution on Google.
This could be a simple search such as “how much does it cost to get divorced” or “what rights do fathers have?”
By ensuring that your website or one of your social media accounts appears in a Google search results page, you can attract lots of relevant traffic and start converting that traffic into enquiries.
SEO can take a while to get right, but once you do, it's a great way of generating recurring monthly and queries.
If you don't believe us check out our most recent law firm SEO case study.
3. Use Google my business
An optimised Google My Business profile can be an essential asset for a family law firm.
You can add images, content, contact details and also get customers to review you on your Google Business page.
More good reviews means more people are likely to click through and make an enquiry.
You just need to be sensitive to their predicament. Not everybody wants to share the experience of dealing with a family solicitor.
However getting positive feedback on things like the manner and caring attitude of the solicitor dealing with the case can help persuade future clients.
4. Use Google ads
Sticking with Google, Google ads are a fast way to get in front of your target customers on a Google Search results pages.
You tell Google which search terms you want to bid on and your ads will appear, depending on your bidding and a few other competitive factors.
With Google ads, you need to find the ideal cost per enquiry.
For example, if you spend £500 and only get one enquiry back, you need to be sure you're going to make a return on investment from that enquiry. Is it going to turn into a paying client?
Of course, your chances of success with Google ads is dramatically increased if you use somebody who knows what they are doing.
5. Get reviews on third party sites
Other review websites also have prominence in Google Search results such as third-party sites like feefo and trustpilot or business listings such as Yell.
Set up profiles on these sites and start asking people to review you.
6. Get clever with social media
Don't just pump out social media content when you don't have an audience.
Build an audience by understanding what to invest your time and money in.
For example is it better to create 100 posts and pay somebody to do so, when you don't have an audience or is it better to pay somebody to create 30 posts and use the rest of the budget to advertise your page so that people see your posts and going forward you have an audience to market to?
Understanding the right types of social content to put out is also vital.
Are people starting to tire of the image with text overlay posts? So how about trying stories?
Instagram stories for example, give people something significant to engage with and it's a great way of increasing your organic reach.
There are loads of great pieces of software out there, including Microsoft PowerPoint, where you can quickly put some images together and create an Instagram story that can hang around your Instagram profile the months on end.
Your story could explain how the divorce process works and what the grounds for divorce are.
7. Advertise on social media
There are great debates as to how far your organic reach will be on both Instagram and Facebook. But one thing cannot be denied and that is how cost-effective they are as advertising platforms.
When it comes to advertising family law services on Facebook and Instagram you'll need to be subtle, due to the nature of it being sensitive.
For example you might be perceived to be encouraging divorced which may attract negative comments underneath your ads (don’t worry, if that happens you can hide them).
However if you position yourself correctly, then Facebook and Instagram ads are a great way of reaching a wider audience when they are ready to enquire.
Top tip: Don’t be too direct.
Don’t write something like “Time for a divorce?”
Write something subtle like how you’ve been supporting families through sensitive legal issues.
8. Cross sell
A good one for getting referrals to and from other departments.
People who are separating or looking for help with issues such as prenuptial agreements may also be looking for will writing services or conveyancing services.
Is there potential to cross-sell between departments? Or even between other law firms?
9. Don’t use an agency
You weren’t expecting that, were you?
To be more specific, don't use an agency that charges thousands of pounds every month to do the same thing, without driving any results or setting any expectations.
SEO strategies can take a few months before you really see the benefits, but you should be made aware of all the hard work that is going into it from day 1. Don’t just accept the old line: “It takes time” without being informed about the stages or being given proof that it works.
Ask which other law firms or businesses that they have worked with and ask for proof that it has worked including time scales.
10. Be a personality
Have you got solicitors who are experienced in family law?
Do they have other unique selling points such as their ability to listen?
It's a great idea to position yourself as a personality when it comes to family law. The idea of talking to Sally or Jim about your problems, suddenly seems a lot more personable than the idea of paying a solicitor to help me through a family ordeal.
This can help you with any branding you might have across your website or ads because you could include the individual as a personality and build trust.
You can create video to talk people through the processes involved in various areas of family law.
Youtube is the world's second largest search engine and having videos on the channel will only help increase your visibility.
You can also repurpose any video content you create so that it works for ads across Google and social media. E.g. change the length, add text overlays.
12. Create an offer
What type of offers can you create to encourage people to enquire?
You could for example include a 20-minute free consultation. The only danger is that you may get some irrelevant enquiries, but that may not matter if you are starting out as you can pick and choose?
13. Long form content and guides
What type of questions do clients commonly ask you? Why not put all of these questions into one guide around a particular area of family law, whether it would be child access, custody divorce and separation or even domestic violence.
Long form content gets ranked in Google and helps potential clients to make a decision to use your services and helps give potential clients real value.
There are loads of podcasts about family life, being a mother or being a father.
Appearing on a podcast can give you is a great way to increase your visibility and it also gives you more content to share across your website and social channels.
There are loads of podcasts out there and chances are that some of the people you are trying to target are listening to them.
15. Local radio
What??? Something more traditional? Local radio still gets listened to. An advert on local radio served to people in your area can go a long way to building up awareness of your services.
This can often be a bit more expensive than online ads on Google and social media as you may pay per campaign as opposed to interaction or listen!
16. Create an engaging web experience
How engaging is your web experience?
People who have family law legal issues may be vulnerable and you need to cater to them.
They want fast answers to sensitive questions and an understanding of how you can help them.
An engaging web experience can help. You can have an option to quickly exit the site should people be vulnerable and in a position that someone might be looking over their shoulder.
17. Write about what you know
You are an expert in your field and can share your experiences with an audience.
Take a local or national news story when it comes to family law.
You could share your experiences of working with families to help them achieve positive outcomes.
Either way if you can show your expertise and authority you'll be able to build trust and engage your target audience.
18. Repurpose your content
Once you have created and written unique, authoritative content (see point 17), you should be able to repurpose this content in video formats and make it visual for sharing across social media.
For example a text blog could become a transcript for a video.
19. Be more accessible
Think about the ways that people who are suffering from family law issues may want to contact you.
They may not want to speak by phone or may not be in a position to do so. The idea of filling out a contact form may also seem cumbersome when they need immediate help.
Think about WhatsApp, Facebook messenger or even a live chat function so they can get real answers without the commitment and having to speak to somebody via the phone or face to face.
20. Measure everything
If you don't measure, you won't know what's working and what isn't.
Measuring everything that happens online, from website visitors to enquiries and where they found you, means you can determine if you have achieved a return on investment.