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The #1 Rule of Legal Marketing: Collect Data

As a kid, my dad would regularly sit myself and my siblings down for one of his life lessons discussions. One of his favorite rules of life was to “never put all of your eggs into one basket.” During his lecture, he even went as far as to collect baskets for each one of us and use eggs from our refrigerator to illustrate what happens when you break this lesson. Needless to say, my mom was not pleased with the mess but his point was well taken. Diversification is important in almost all aspects of life and the same rule rings true in digital marketing. 

Earlier this month, Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp crashed for several hours leaving businesses that were solely utilizing these platforms for marketing to rethink their strategy. Our legal marketing clients were relieved we guided them towards using a multi-channel marketing approach focused on data collection.   

What is a multi-channel legal marketing strategy?

In the most basic form, it’s “never putting all of your eggs in one basket.” Multiple communication platforms are utilized to create brand awareness, generate clients and assist in building the know, like and trust factor that closes deals. 

I’ll give you an example of a business owner who receives notice that they are being sued. The business owner immediately hops on Google and searches for the “best business litigation firm” once on the site they become sidetracked and close their browser. Later in the day, the business owner opens their local business publication and sees an article authored by a member of the same business litigation firm but opts to call their contracts attorney for a recommendation. Their attorney recently had lunch with a partner at the business litigation firm due to a LinkedIn outreach campaign. The attorney sends an email introduction but once again the business owner is distracted and doesn’t immediately follow up. That evening, the busy business owner opens their Facebook account and sees an ad for the same litigation firm, they click on it and schedule a call.  

The average American consumes over 34 gigabytes of data a day. That’s a 350% increase over three decades. Without a multi-faceted marketing approach, you’re fighting an army and only have one soldier.  

What does it mean to run a legal marketing campaign focused on data collection? 

When a consumer product good start-up seeks funding, investors will evaluate the social media following and emails of prospective purchasers. An online following serves as an indicator of need in the marketplace. If properly collected, an email database demonstrates proof of intent to buy. 

It makes sense that emails collected would be weighed much higher than an Instagram following. Emails provide a direct line to a prospective client 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and without having to fight any algorithms. Law firms should prioritize the collection of emails from prospective clients ahead of growing an online social media following. Email collection can take many forms but the most successful campaigns we’ve seen are those offering educational materials. Examples include “things to consider before filing for divorce”, “steps to follow after a slip and fall accident”, “top missteps business owners make when creating partnership agreements”, or legal updates, etc. Depending on the type of law being practiced, collecting cell phone numbers may also be of interest to your firm and should be considered. (If you do plan to call or text as part of the response campaign, ensure you have the necessary FCC disclosures stated on all submission forms. All law firms should check with their state Bar to ensure their data collection forms have the proper disclosures and are compliant).

While it’s never happened to one of our clients, I have heard the horror stories of law firms and others spending large sums of money to create quality social media content, develop a robust following, and months down the road have the accounts hacked or worse yet, shut down over missteps which went against a social media platforms rules. Avoid mistakes by hiring a knowledgeable team to run your communications campaigns. But remember, email and phone numbers ensure you can reach prospective clients and referral sources even if social media channels are not available. 

Interested in outsourcing your digital marketing or learning more? Schedule a call with us.

 

About the Author

Katherine Doble is the president and founder of INGAGE. Since founding the firm in 2011, Katherine has developed award-winning social media and online campaigns for all sizes of organizations, from top Fortune 500 companies to privately-owned businesses. 

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