Digital marketing is constantly changing and evolving. That’s no secret for those that are personally on social media channels or are currently implementing digital marketing into their law firm marketing strategies. Staying up to date on law firm trends, changes, and everything else in between can be a daunting task in and of itself. And to keep up with law firm digital marketing, website trends, and strategies can be a hard task to manage on top of everything else.
At Civille, we like to think we do a good job of communicating and providing valuable information not only to our clients, but lawyers as a whole. And when it comes to digital marketing, we know a thing or two. Which is why we’re writing this blog –to help you and your law firm’s digital marketing succeed even more in 2022.
End of the year is always a good time to reflect on not only your accomplishments at your law firm, but things you could do better. Regardless of how successful or unsuccessful you were in 2021, it’s important to look back and start thinking about strategies and improvements as you head into the new year. So before you skip ahead, start with the following first:
Audit your Law Firm’s Online Presence
We’ve harped on the importance of auditing in several articles, but as you start thinking about budgets, upgrades, resources, and needs law firm digital marketing needs in 2022, it’s even more important to audit all pieces of your online presence and the performance of your online channels. Things to think about:
Audit Your Law Firm’s Social Channels
- What social channels is your law firm on?
- What social channels need attention?
- Are your law firm’s social channels consistent with your branding on your website?
- How was the quality of your posts? Are they valuable to your audience?
- And more importantly, what was your performance like? Did people engage with your posts? Did you grow your followers?
Audit Your Law Firm’s Digital Marketing
- What was your law firm SEO and content strategy like in 2021?
- Did your organic traffic grow in 2021? Did your law firm’s organic leads grow?
- Is your law firm’s Google My Business page up to date? And are you optimizing your law firm’s GMB page?
- Did you invest in paid digital marketing strategies for your law firm? If so, what was your ROI?
Audit Your Law Firm’s Website
- Does your law firm’s website need attention? Is it modern? Is it fast? Is it responsive to all devices? Is it ADA compliant?
- Are you tracking performance and lead volume coming from your law firm’s website? If so, what was performance like?
- Are you utilizing chat tools or other third party lead tools to help with conversion rates? If so, what was the performance like?
Taking a hard look at and auditing all of the pieces of your online presence is the key to building better strategies in 2022, and more importantly for growing your practice. Auditing can be a lot of work, and if you need some quick help, we do offer FREE SEO/Website Review that can take a lot of the leg work off your hands to help set you up for success in 2022.
2022 Law Firm Digital Marketing Strategies Your Need To Focus On
As we mentioned above, digital marketing can be a challenging task to not only implement, but to keep up with. Strategies are constantly evolving and changing, and not all of them last. So as you’re thinking about plans for the new year, you definitely want to look at trends and strategies that are both sustainable and effective.
1) Focus on Your Law Firm’s Local SEO in 2022
While SEO strategies have changed over the years, the importance of it all has stayed the same. People continually use search engines to find whatever it is they are looking for, and that’s no different when it comes to law firms and legal advice. SEO is just as important today as it was 20 years ago. In 2022, don’t ignore SEO, and more importantly, don’t ignore your law firm’s local SEO. Here are few things you need to prioritize as you look ahead in 2022:
Law Firm Google My Business Optimization
Optimizing your law firm’s Google My Business page is one of the best SEO strategies you can take. Your GMB page plays an important role in your organic strategy because it’s often the first thing people see in search results. Getting in the “3 pack” or first 3 listings can be hard to do, but it’s not impossible.
Now you might be asking yourself, well this was important in 2021, why is even MORE important in 2022? The reason being is because:
1) Most law firm’s are still not putting effort into building and optimizing their GMB pages
2) Google continues to change how GMB rankings work
The first is pretty self explanatory — most local businesses in general build a Google My Business page, and don’t often maintain it or continue to build it out. Most don’t analyze their GMB page as they would with other social channels. And most don’t measure their GMB results. Just like any other digital channel, you should be maintaining, optimizing, and measuring results of your law firm’s GMB page. And if others aren’t doing it, it’s the perfect time to take advantage.
The second thing that continues to evolve with GMB is the key to higher rankings. We do know that those that continually post, optimize their services and products, and continue to engage and add more photos can get higher rankings. Our GMB guidebook can walk you through many of these pieces.
Don’t Ignore Reviews on Your GMB Page
And now as we approach 2022, increasing the amount and quality of reviews has become a priority. Google hasn’t said it per say, but data has shown that those who don’t consistently get reviews have seen a decline in their GMB rankings in both search results and maps listings.
In short – Google is rewarding those that can continually get reviews, on top of everything else that’s involved with your GMB page. And if you think about it, it probably makes more sense than anything else that’s involved with GMB. Reviews not only help your law firm grow, but helps consumers make decisions on ultimately who they choose to work with or go to. It’s important in any local industry, not just law firms. So the key in 2022 is to not only optimize your page, but encourage customers to leave reviews.
Getting your law firm’s GMB page to rank higher is the first step–after all, people can’t leave reviews if they can’t find your page. Building a review gathering strategy internally and with digital marketing is the next. Here’s some ideas:
Encourage happy customers to leave reviews. Give them a reason to leave a review. Help them understand why reviewing your business is important to not only you, but your customers. There’s many ways to approach this with direct out-reach, direct mail, email marketing, social media, etc. The key is to build an approach, and continue to maintain it.
Local Content Marketing
Higher SEO rankings, especially from a local perspective, are driven by many things. But the most important thing is quality content. Content should be written for the user, and not for search engines. It’s no longer about stuffing keywords and writing as many pieces as possible. It’s about developing resourceful content that is useful to the reader. As a law firm, it’s important to develop content that is useful to not only prospective customers, but to your local audience.
So where and how do you start or build a better strategy? If you’re interested in learning more about content marketing and local content marketing strategies in 2022, check out our recent blog here.
2) Focus on Law Firm Video Marketing in 2022
When you look back at emerging trends over the last several years, there’s very little that has stayed. But video marketing is one that continues to remain a priority, mostly for the same reasons as does your GMB page –it’s something most law firm’s still haven’t prioritized or implemented in their digital marketing strategies. And now with video taking priority on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok, it’s even more important to look at implementing video in your law firm digital marketing in 2022.
Establish a TikTok Presence for You or Your Law Firm
Did you know that TikTok is expected to surpass over 1.2 Billion users in 2022? To put it in perspective, it’s growing faster than any other social media platform has in the past. And now it’s expected to pass Instagram with active users. And while younger demographics make up the majority of users (25% are under the age of 19), the growing trend is ALL the other age groups — most of which are part of your ideal law firm demographics. The point is TikTok isn’t going anywhere, and if you’re not on the bandwagon yet, you need to be.
There’s challenges that come with organic TikTok marketing for many brands. And most of it boils down to creativity, strategy, and quality of content. Building a following, interest, and views for you as an attorney or your law firm’s brand isn’t easy, but there are lawyers out there that are doing it, and quite frankly, are killing it. Here’s some examples:
Top Lawyers on TikTok
There’s some really great lawyer TikTok accounts. Here’s some of the top and most unique ones we’ve found:
- Michael Mandell @lawbymike – Personal Injury & Criminal Defense Attorney
- Calina Plotky @galawyer – Family Law Attorney
- James Helm @topdoglaw – Personal Injury Attorney
- Marco Brown @divorceattorney – Divorce Attorney
- Ali Alwad @ceolawyer – Personal Injury Attorney
- Ethen Ostroff @ethenostrofflaw – Personal Injury Attorney
- And we even have a Civille client, specializing in Veteran’s Benefits exploring the TikTok realm @tabakvaattorneys
So what do all these lawyers have in common? They’ve embraced social media. They embraced trends. They’ve created all sorts of content, and much of which is extremely valuable to their audiences. And most will probably tell you it’s been extremely beneficial to their brand and their success.
Targeting Locally with TikTok
The other challenge TikTok can pose (as with most organic social media & SEO strategies) is targeting locally. If you’re not a national law firm, it’s often out of your control who and where someone watches videos. But again, if done right, this challenge can be solved with proper use of keywords and overall branding. Using hashtags with local keywords can be a great way to reach local audiences. Many of the previous examples have also taken a proactive approach in branding themselves as The (practice area) Lawyer in (geo-location). That obviously helps make a name for themselves, and helps with search results on TikTok and on search engines.
If there’s any words of advice it’s this – start out small, and work your way up. Be cautious with providing legal advice and ensure you follow both legal and ethical guidelines with your videos. The more content you can create, the more you can learn what works and what resonates with your audience. And the more you learn, the faster you can develop a strategy that works.
At the very least, TikTok videos can be used on other social media platforms (like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube) where you may have an audience built already. And just like other social media strategies, it’s about frequency and creating valuable content.
3 ) Focus on Expanding Your Law Firm’s Paid Media Channels in 2022
If you’re a small firm, paid search ads on Google may not make the best sense, especially if you’re trying to compete in a large market with highly competitive keywords. Don’t get me wrong, there’s still opportunity with a well focused keyword strategy and landing pages to combat. But in the end, your best bet may be exploring some more cost effective, yet efficient ways of advertising, especially with avenues that are expected to grow in 2022.
Get on Local Service Ads and Maximize Your Budget
We’ve talked about this one before (yet again) in other blog posts, but Google’s Local Service Ads is another huge opportunity for law firms of all sizes in 2022. The reason being, it’s still an underutilized avenue in the legal space, and it offers a lead driven approach to paid advertising. If you’re not familiar with local service ads for law firms, you can check out our recent blog here.
Most law firms utilizing local service ads have seen huge dividends in both lead volume, and cost per lead. Comparing it to other paid media approaches, the cost per lead can be upwards of 50% less. That’s a huge opportunity, especially for those on limited budgets.
If you’re already using Local Service Ads, you’re one step ahead. In 2022, focus your strategy on maximizing the opportunity. Expand your service areas, geo-locations, and ultimately your budget, especially in months when search volume is higher or seasonality affects your business. With advertisers and law firms alike expected to increase their budgets in 2022, it’s the perfect time to expand and take advantage of it while you still can.
Expand to Other Paid Platforms like TikTok
If you’re already thinking about or planning to build a TikTok profile or strategy in 2022, expanding your advertising approach to include TikTok ads makes a lot of sense. With users and TikTok’s advertising expected to grow exponentially in 2022, it’s the perfect time to think about getting on board, especially if you’re looking to do things other lawyers are not.
TikTok’s advertising platform mimics a lot of the features that Facebook ads have. From a geo-location perspective to utilizing demographics, custom audiences and lookalikes, there’s many similarities that can be useful to you to reach your ideal local target audience. If you’re creating videos on other platforms or within your TikTok account, many of which can be utilized from an advertising perspective.
There’s plenty of other paid media channels that still offer value to small law firms and those with limited budgets. Facebook & Instagram have continued to make changes to their platform, targeting, and ad placements. In 2021, we saw a huge spike in messenger ads, stories, and more, that all have helped advertisers become more successful. The point is, expanding to platforms outside of Google Ads, can have a lot of advantages.
All of these options laid out above DON’T all need to happen in order for you to be successful in 2022. Starting with at least one can help you get there, especially if you really nail it. If you want help with your law firm’s digital marketing in 2022, partnering with someone like us can take a lot of that off your hands and fast track you to the next level.
Anyways, here’s to the new year and more success for your law firm!