When it comes to marketing, you can take your pick: old school or new media.
A new survey shows both are effective at bringing in new business.
In 2014, the Denver-based marketing group Alyn-Weiss & Associates surveyed firms across the nation with less than 100 lawyers.
Seventy percent of respondents reported getting new clients from their websites. More than half said traditional marketing methods like meet-ups and networking worked for them.
“The data makes clear that you can still be successful running a firm based solely on the traditional relationship tactics used for decades – the word-of-mouth model that includes seminars, client entertainment, trade and community group presence,” says Bob Weiss. “However, the data makes it equally clear that some work firms are receiving comes completely as a result of online rankings, client reviews, LinkedIn, blogging and a firm’s website.”
Dot Coms Mean Money
The survey asked what tactics had generated new business – either directly or by referral – over the past 18-24 months. The results:
- Website (70 percent)
- Seminars and presentations (51 percent)
- Law firm networks (46 percent)
- Trade and community groups (42 percent)
- Entertainment (31 percent)
Next came blogging, LinkedIn, social media and e-alerts. Also cited were Search Engine Optimization, online rankings and ratings directories.
“For years we have said the practice of law has always been a relationship business and will always be a relationship business,” according to Amber Vincent of Alyn-Weiss. “The data now reveal cases come to firms whose new clients identify and vet them online completely absent a personal recommendation from a friend, colleague or other lawyer.”
“Millennials understand this communication model works for a portion of the market, but it can be a leap of faith for mid-career and senior practitioners,” Vincent says. “That’s true even though the lawyers I work with tell me they or their partner recently got a case from a new client who said they found their colleague online and checked their ratings and rankings before emailing them about their matter and negotiating a fee agreement.”
Bottom line: there are different paths to the same destination. The best marketing tactics are the ones that suit your budget, experience and practice type.
- Law Practice Advisor, article by Bob Weiss http://www.lawpracticeadvisor.com/law-firm-marketing-spending/
- Alyn-Weiss & Associates http://www.themarketinggurus.com
Jay Reeves a/k/a The Risk Man is an attorney who has practiced North Carolina and South Carolina. Formerly he was Legal Editor at Lawyers Weekly and Risk Manager at Lawyers Mutual. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org