Law firms will be taking advantage of recent developments that open new marketing channels to various demos. The questions always lie in the balance; at what point does marketing and advertising become too invasive and scare off the consumer? With most businesses using social media to market, thus avoiding the information push without too much force, there is a growing concern regarding how to attract new followers and maintain a deeper level of interest. In 2018, many firms will consider shifting their marketing strategies based on these factors:
Recent state bar decisions to allow marketing via text messaging has pros and cons. This was a big win for lawyers who wish to take advantage of this technology, as bar regulations on marketing have put the legal industry behind others. Lawyers in some states can now send text messages to market to potential clients, but at what point will this backfire, making it reminiscent of cold calling? While it may be useful to criminal, personal injury and other “lawyer to consumer” lawyers, it will not change the way some lawyers already subtly market via text to existing clients.
A Shift to Results from People:
Law firms will have to be creative as their target Generations Y and Z become more need-centric and desensitized to internet marketing. This will cause firms to re-brand and shift marketing attention to “what have you done lately?” Many law firms do this already, but instant gratification clients might focus on this more than what a lawyer did decades ago.
Marketing to Existing Clients
As noted, marketing to current clients is becoming increasingly important and why professional services firms carefully manage their Twitter and Facebook accounts. As loyalty to specific firms is not a guarantee with younger generation clients, many firms will need to start having constant interactions with existing clients to stay “top of mind.” Part of this strategy will also include more personalized points of contact to highlight new services and relevant results. Clients that historically remained loyal to big name firms might not do so as three marketing P’s: “Product,” “Price” and “Promotion” influence younger generations in different ways.
Spending More on Marketing Teams:
In the past, law firms might have allocated small budgets to marketing in an attempt to stay lean. They might not have allocated the requisite 2-5% of annual revenue. This won’t work for law firms in the coming years as they must market to “survive or die.” Legal Darwinism will force firms to invest in innovative marketing professionals who will churn out vital (and viral) content that connects law firms with new decision makers. The increase in money allocated to building a better online presence will pay for itself and keep firms up to date with the latest and most effective marketing strategies.