Hiring a Lawyer Marketing Agency? 9 Tips + 4 Questions
When deciding which marketing agency to work with, you must know what to look for and what factors to consider. You can’t just hire the first marketing agency you find online–you must follow a set of guidelines to narrow your choices down to the best ones for your law firm.
I’ll discuss those exact guidelines in this post to help you shortlist agencies that can build and execute a marketing strategy to maximize revenue and scale your business faster. But first, let’s discuss what a legal marketing agency is responsible for.
What Does a Law Firm Marketing Agency Do?
A legal marketing agency helps your business get noticed online and generate more highly qualified leads. By taking the marketing responsibilities off your company’s shoulders and refining your lead generation process, it frees up more of your time to entertain potential clients and focus on what you do best.
To do this, the agency sits down with your organization to discuss your marketing pain points and challenges. Using the gathered information, it develops a marketing strategy tailored to your needs using tactics like search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC), website design, and more. These help improve your law firm’s website traffic and get more people to inquire about your legal services.
The legal marketing company is also an extension of your team. You can contact them for any questions and concerns about the marketing efforts. In fact, the agency should be the ones scheduling regular calls to update you regarding the marketing campaigns and their results. It should also send detailed reports of each campaign with insights on improving its performance.
Why Should You Hire a Legal Marketing Company for Your Law Firm?
Some law firms might think of marketing their business themselves. However, people like yourself know how difficult it can be to develop, launch, and monitor marketing initiatives.
First, prospective clients have a short decision cycle. Once they come in contact with a legal service provider, they hire the company immediately after engaging with it. So, being the first law firm people contact with their legal issues is your priority.
Also, search engines hold legal websites to a higher standard, especially in legal SEO, where the competition is fierce. With the various algorithm updates in the past few years, Google is getting better at weeding out sites that engage in poor and shady SEO practices from search results. One wrong move in your SEO strategy can cause your site to drop outside Google search and not generate any traffic from this channel.
You can only increase search traffic and get in contact with prospects if you have solid marketing strategies in place. However, they require a high level of skill and tons of experience running them, which your organization may not have right now. At this point, getting help from someone with both is better. And thankfully, there are so many legal marketing companies to choose from.
How Much Does a Digital Marketing Agency For Lawyers Cost?
The cost of a digital marketing agency for your law firm depends on the services included in your package, its skill level, and other factors. Nonetheless, expect to shell out between $1,000 and $10,000 monthly.
As you can see, hiring an agency for their legal marketing services is an investment. While you have to spend now, the revenue the agency’s marketing campaigns generate over time should cover the costs and then some. However, there’s no guarantee the launched campaigns will yield your desired results. This is why knowing how to select which among the law firm marketing agencies available is essential.
9 Tips for Hiring the Right Legal Marketing Agency for You
Since your business is on the line when choosing your law firm’s marketing agency, it’s only fitting to do your due diligence before signing the dotted line with the company. For instance, just because it appeared first on Google when searching for one doesn’t automatically mean it’s the best.
Below are ways to ensure you pick the agency that offers the best digital marketing services for your legal business.
1. Ensure They’re Experts in the Legal Industry
There are legal marketing agencies, and there are those that have honed their craft through years of working with multiple law firms and helping each one generate more cases. The latter is the group of agencies you should focus on hiring for your legal practice.
A way to determine an internet marketing company’s expertise is by looking at its awards and certifications. Granted, some agencies can buy these off award-giving bodies. But Clutch Leader Awards and G2 Trust Badges can’t be bought. Furthermore, check how reputable the awards other organizations are before you trust the agency with your marketing needs.
2. Check Their Reviews and Testimonials
Concerning awards and badges, agencies receive them if they have generated tons of positive reviews from their clients through the years from review sites like Clutch, G2, and others. The more reviews that praise their services and customer support, the higher the chances they will win awards.
Despite the positive reviews, you also want to see the negative comments and how the agencies deal with them. The best legal marketing companies respond gracefully and are willing to resolve any issues the reviewer has, no matter how harsh the criticisms are. These are agencies that you want to hire as your legal marketing partner.
3. Evaluate Expertise in Your Practice Area And Market
Some law firm marketing agencies specialize in specific practice areas, like bankruptcy, criminal defense, family law, and more. Their expertise in these areas should be evident in the case studies published on their websites.
Each should detail the problems their clients had, the methods they used to address these issues, and the results of the campaigns they launched. Some companies don’t reveal the names of the clients they work with. If they do, you can conduct your research to confirm the results using tools like Semrush or Ahrefs.
So, if you operate in the bankruptcy market, for example, you want to see case studies of bankruptcy law firms from agencies. The fact that agencies were able to launch successful marketing campaigns for them means that there’s a high chance they can do the same thing to your business.
4. Learn About Their Project Management
The agency should properly communicate its process, from discovery calls with prospects to what happens after the campaign launch. Browsing through its website should show you information about this. If not, a quick call with each one should help you know its project management style.
5. Check if Their Values Align With Yours
It’s one thing if the agency checks all the boxes regarding services and processes. It’s another if the company holds the same beliefs as yours with your law firm. So, finding a service provider that shares your values and attitudes would be best.
For instance, if your business values integrity and ethics, working with a company that uses aggressive marketing tactics by harvesting customer data without consent would produce disastrous results.
On The Map Marketing not only observes ethical marketing practices that will only benefit its clients in the long run. It also matches customer success managers with personalities similar to the clients’. If they are big-picture folks or want to get nitty-gritty with your campaign’s technical and tactical details, our CSMs are allocated as per attorney personalities.
6. Evaluate if The Agency is Transparent
The last thing you need is to work with an agency that withholds information from you to make the campaign results look better than they are. You want an agency that communicates everything with you and takes accountability for the outcome of its marketing strategy.
In this case, you should inquire about its communication style, how deliverables are handed to you, and the frequency of the reports for campaign results. Also, ask about the details of the reports and how it gathers data for them.
Regarding communication, you want an agency that takes time to educate clients about everything marketing-related. This is how On The Map Marketing approaches working with law firms. It gives them the information they need on how the strategy works and why it will be launched. By getting clients to care and learn about the marketing campaigns, we are able to produce the best results.
7. Shop Around With Multiple Agencies
Cast a wide net when hunting for agencies that offer law firm marketing services. Find at least three potential agencies that you feel will help fulfill the marketing needs of your business.
From your call with each one, ask complex questions like how long will it take to see results to see how they respond, compare pricing, and the value you’ll get from each one. Their answers will help you gauge their capabilities as an agency and whether you should trust them.
The best lawyer marketing agencies offer some free audits and growth roadmaps. On The Map Marketing can provide you with a free website marketing audit if it has a mutual fit with your business. We want to see your law firm generate more leads and cases, so we’ll go the distance to make that happen.
8. Read Contracts Carefully
Before signing the dotted line of your contract with the agency, you must look at its details with a fine tooth comb. Ensure that the scope of work matches what you discussed earlier, the invoicing and payment terms are clearly stated, and that the limitations of liability and indemnification clauses are acceptable.
More importantly, review intellectual property ownership and termination clauses. Some agencies like Scorpion and FindLaw won’t give you the website they built and the marketing data they gathered for you if you cancel your contract with them.
This effectively means you’re stuck working with either unless you’re okay with this arrangement. Ideally, however, you want the flexibility to exit a contract with an agency while taking your website and marketing accounts to another company without problems.
9. Find The Growth Ceiling of The Agency
You have your goals for your law firm now, but you may have long-term goals for it as well. Ensure that your chosen internet marketing company supports both so you can grow with it. Aside from the agency’s core services, it should provide additional solutions allowing you to tap into other marketing channels.
Other services include multi-location SEO if you expand your legal practices in different locations and exclusivity slots. The latter requires you to pay additional fees to prevent the agency from working with your competitors. This lets the company pour all its resources into sustaining your law firm’s marketing efforts and results.
4 Considerations Before Hiring a Law Firm Marketing Company
At this point, you should know how to search and vet digital marketing agencies for your law firm. The next step is to prepare your law firm before going into business with your agency of choice. Below are things you must prepare for this to happen:
1. Your Marketing Goals
As mentioned, your law firm has short- and long-term goals, and the agency should be able to fulfill both. However, it would be best to define these goals so the company has a clear idea of how it can help you achieve both.
Ideally, your short-term goals include increasing website traffic and generating highly qualified leads for your business. The agency can do this by launching effective SEO and PPC campaigns. Also, a law firm website design might be necessary if your current site is loading slowly or doesn’t reflect what your business is about.
Long-term goals are tapping into other marketing platforms and expanding to new locations and legal practices. The agency should offer email and social media marketing as channels for you to grow your audience further. It must also have experience marketing law firms in your new practice areas so you can gather leads out of the gate.
2. Marketing Budget
While you want to choose the best legal marketing agency for your business, you must also be mindful of the budget allotted for your marketing needs. This is why gathering as many potential agencies as possible is essential. If your first choice is too expensive, you can move on to the next and more cost-effective alternative.
3. How Much Involvement Do You Want with Your Agency?
Some agencies are okay with independently developing your law firm’s marketing strategy and campaigns, while others require your input before moving forward. However, are you okay to give them free rein on how to run your marketing strategy, or do you want to take a more hands-on approach?
Maybe you don’t have the time and knowledge to be involved in planning your law firm’s marketing as much as you want. Regardless, your answer here will guide you in choosing the right marketing agency to fulfill your demands.
4. Does The Agency Align with My Needs?
The calls with your shortlisted agencies should give you a good idea of whether they line up with your law firm’s core values and beliefs. Ultimately, however, you’ll only know how well you match up with each other when you start working together. Therefore, let your intuition guide you in choosing the specific company you’ll work with.
Choose a Legal Marketing Company That Wants to Grow Your Business With You!
By looking at its credentials and case studies, On The Map Marketing is the top marketing agency for growing your law firm. No matter your company’s size or practice area, we have the skills and experience to meet your marketing goals without exceeding your budget.
Contact us today for a free consultation. We offer holistic legal marketing and are transparent about the results we can provide. You can even get a free website marketing audit if we are a mutual fit.
Article by Christopher Jan Benitez
Chris has 15+ years of experience providing top-notch content for agencies and consultants across various industries. He has expertly weathered through and adapted to the ever-changing demands of client content creation. Outside work, he has a healthy Nintendo Switch obsession and plays terrible guitar.
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