Law firms have recently started investing in content marketing as a way to connect with clients during the pandemic when face-to-face interactions were limited. However, they are now concerned about the quality and impact of their content. To address these concerns, Semrush has gathered insights from marketing experts in the legal industry and developed a 9-step guide to effective content marketing for law firms.
Content marketing for law firms involves creating practical and useful information, such as blog posts, social media content, videos, newsletters, etc., to reach local communities and generate leads. When people have legal questions or problems, they often start by searching online, which is where content marketing comes in. Law firms that have a strong content marketing strategy tend to rank higher on search engine results pages, making them more visible to potential clients.
Tips for a Strong Legal Content Strategy to deliver value to your target audience and improve your brand awareness and caseload, we have gathered tips from marketing experts in the legal industry.
Step 1: Prioritize Optimizing for Long-Term Organic Traffic
Many law firms lack a marketing team, making it crucial to focus on optimizing for Google searches initially. This will help establish you as an authority and bring in organic search traffic over time.
If you don’t have the time to write, you can collaborate with external copywriters who may be subject matter experts or work with your legal team to produce relevant and accurate content. Another option is to source content from other channels like podcasts, videos, or team interviews.
Step 2: Conduct Research on Frequently Asked Questions and Create Relevant Content Search engine
Visibility is crucial for your law firm’s content, but more importantly, it’s vital to produce content that is of value to your current and potential clients.
To determine what content is valuable, consider the questions that your clients frequently ask and perform thorough topic research to understand the themes and types of content they are interested in.
Sources of Content Ideas for Law Firms
To identify what clients and potential clients are looking for, law firms can gather frequently asked questions from various sources, such as:
- Sales call: Have sales representatives or paralegals keep track of the questions they receive during interactions with clients and prospects.
- Social media inquiries: Record the questions and common answers you receive through social media platforms.
- Online forums such as Quora, Reddit, and local forums: Search for questions related to your practice areas on these popular forums and compile a list of questions you are equipped to answer.
- Google: Utilize Google’s related searches and the “People Also Ask” section for inspiration and ideas for your content.
- Facebook and LinkedIn groups: Join local groups related to your practice area to gather questions and comments that can be used as content ideas.
Step 3: Enhance Website Rankings through Keyword Research and Content Hub
Creation to drive more traffic to your site, it’s crucial to optimize your posts. Thus, after determining the topics you want to cover, the next step is to research and define relevant keywords. When creating content, consider including the relevant keywords you have identified. By having a comprehensive resource, the firm establishes its authority in the area, provides answers to its reader’s questions, and enhances its search engine optimization.
Step 4: Showcase Your Client Outcomes with Case Studies
It is possible for small law firms to present their own cases in the form of a story demonstrating the results achieved by their clients. However, it is important to treat these case studies with caution in order to preserve the anonymity of the client.
Here’s how to do it:
- Determine Objectives and Audience.
- Gather all the necessary information.
- Decide what is most important to the reader – the objective, outcome, process, or experience.
- Structure the Case Study. Start with the outcome, mention the challenges, describe why the client chose your firm, outline the process, reiterate the outcome, and highlight the takeaways for the reader.
- Write and Review.
Step 5: Monitor Your Competitors
To gain an advantage over your competitors, it’s important to keep a close eye on their strategies and activities. Here’s a useful checklist to help you do that:
Check search engine rankings: Look at your competitors’ home page meta description to see how they present themselves and set themselves apart from others.
Track social media presence: Observe which posts receive the most engagement and take note of any interesting comments. Also, pay attention to reviews or testimonials they share to understand their target audience’s values and the type of content that resonates with them.
Download their guides: Downloading long-form content such as guides and ebooks gives you insight into what your competitors believe is important to their customers. Conduct a full competitive content analysis.
Step 6: Develop attractive fundamental and educational content for your website
The underlying content is designed to increase relevance in the distribution of search engines, while the informational content is designed to assist potential clients in choosing a law firm that meets their needs. It is extremely important for lawyers to know their target market and specify their area of jurisprudence in keywords.
Step 7: Use Google
Google is the largest search engine in the world; if you want to be the first in the distribution, you need to target your content to display on Google. These are the pop-up answer options at the top of the list. If your content is on this list, it will significantly increase the overall traffic.
To increase your chances of being noticed, you should follow these steps: Choose a keyword for your content and consider using long-tailed keywords that have a better chance of being selected.
Step 8: Demonstrate Your Knowledge and Credibility Through Your Content
To maintain a high ranking on Google, it’s important to create content that demonstrates your expertise and authority, especially if your website deals with topics that can affect users’ money, life, or happiness. Google’s algorithm evaluates websites in this category, called YMYL, to ensure they provide accurate and trustworthy information. To meet these standards, your content should always be produced with the help of subject matter experts and clearly identify the author with a byline and bio. Additionally, the author’s qualifications should be listed, and it should be easy for visitors to find your contact information.
Finally, including any awards, testimonials, or endorsements can help build trust in the information on your website. Google regards these factors as important indicators of a high-quality user experience.
Step 9: Organize Your Content for Optimal Readability and Search Engine Friendliness
Using the Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF) structure can improve the reader experience by presenting the most critical information first, with details following. This is similar to an inverted pyramid, where the headline contains the broadest information, and the details become more specific as the content progresses.
Search engines prefer structured content, which they can more easily understand. In addition to BLUF, including elements such as a headline (H1), headings, subheadings (H2s and H3s), bullet points, tables, and lists, where appropriate, can make your content easier to read for both humans and search engines.
It’s important to remember that enhancing the user experience and making your content user-friendly will ultimately help improve your search engine ranking.
Law firms are investing in content marketing to connect with clients and generate leads, but they are concerned about the quality and impact of their content. The guide includes prioritizing optimizing for long-term organic traffic, conducting research on frequently asked questions and creating relevant content, enhancing website rankings through keyword research and content hub creation, showcasing client outcomes with case studies, monitoring competitors, developing compelling fundamental and educational content for the website, and leveraging social media.
By following these steps, law firms can increase their visibility, establish themselves as authorities in their practice areas, and deliver value to their target audience.