[Author: Noreen Fishman]
Content marketing for law firms is hard. Unfortunately, fun, exciting, and engaging aren’t usually the first words people use to describe content in the legal industry. The content that most law firms publish often gets a bad reputation for being boring and uninteresting. A lot of digital marketers will also shy away from working in the legal industry and avoid legal marketing projects because they find the work to be uninteresting and tedious. Nonetheless, any law firms looking to demonstrate knowledge and experience to prospects and clients need to create and publish engaging content.
Content marketing for law firms provides plenty of opportunities for lawyers and law firms to develop unconventional and innovative ideas and strategies. Below are some tips to create engaging and remarkable content for your law firm.
Tips on Content Marketing for Law Firms
1. Create Content that Covers Each Step of The Client Journey
When creating engaging marketing content for your law firm, it is important to know your audience. Rather than trying to appeal to a large demographic of online users, try creating content that directly relates to your target audience and where they are in the client journey.
The client journey consists of four phases: Awareness, Consideration, Conversion, and Retention. To create content for each of these stages you must first understand them. Check out this podcast on mapping your client’s journey to learn how to best optimize the content in each step.
2. Make Your Main Point Clear
Items like your headline, meta description, URL, and the intro should make the purpose of your content very clear. Headlines and introductions are a user’s first impression and your one chance to get them to click on and keep reading.
Don’t beat around the bush with stylistic choices when it comes to your intro and meta description. Grab their attention while simultaneously showcasing what it is you’ll be discussing in this piece of content.
And lastly, make sure your headings and subheadings give readers a good idea of what each section is about. Remember: readers are there because they want answers. Don’t lead them down a rabbit hole, unable to find the answer to their questions.
3. Shape Content Around Your Target Audience’s Pain Points
Everything you create should have your target audience in mind. Start by creating an ideal client profile, built out with the demographics, interests, lifestyle, and attributes of your target audience. Then, identify your client’s greatest pain points/questions.
From there, you can come up with content that offers solutions to these problems and remedies the stress they’re feeling.
Check out this free guide for help with creating an ideal client profile: A Law Firm’s Guide to Creating an Ideal Client Profile.
4. Use Different Formats to Your Advantage
There are many different types of content you can offer, such as blogs, eBooks, and whitepapers. And even blogs alone have a lot of subtypes like how-to guides, listicles, think pieces, etc.
Think about how much information it’ll take to sufficiently answer your target audience’s question or remedy their pain point. If it’s something that will take a large amount of reading, consider creating an eBook. Or if it’s something that you feel can be communicated rather quickly, create an easy-to-follow listicle.
Don’t waste your time uploading blogs that are the length of an eBook when you could put that information into a chaptered format and get a better response.
And lastly, consider trying other content types like webinars or videos in order to educate your audience while remaining engaging. In our experience, many users prefer to learn about intricate topics via audio and video content rather than muddle through a long and involved blog post.
5. Create Content That Appeals to The Human Experience
Online users often respond to content that is engaging, emotional, and/or controversial. With this in mind, there are ways to create content that will truly resonate with your target audience. Educating your audience on current trends and developments within the law is one way to do this.
Marketers need to ensure that their content is timely and relates to their target audience. Think about ways to incorporate current events, popular culture, and trending topics into your content to grab your audience’s attention and pique their interest. Try to create content that is relevant and interesting to your audience. You want to make sure that your content resonates with your audience and encourages engagement. Make sure that your content is genuine and doesn’t feel overly technical.
6. Use Visuals/ Videos as Needed
Readers today are much keener to work through blog posts or longer pieces of content if it’s filled with images, infographics, or videos. If you’re breaking something down with a lot of vocabulary, consider creating a colorful infographic to go alongside. If you want to expand on a topic, create a short explanatory video on the topic with more info.
Above all else, make the visuals appealing and entertaining. Stock images are fine when necessary, but creating your own content where you can will help make your writing extra engaging.
7. Ditch Passive Knowledge
Often, law firms, in particular, can be guilty of producing passive content that only serves to inform and provides overly-technical knowledge. This method could work for SEO but is not as effective in conversion. While creating content that works to inform might only reach audiences who are searching for that particular information, content that utilizes applied knowledge can draw in a wider demographic of potential clients. Content based on applied knowledge not only informs but also helps the viewer understand the information. It should inspire, instruct, and help the reader take action on whatever the issue or topic may be.
Using applied knowledge in your content marketing shows your audience that you understand them and their experience. The most important aspect here is to not bog down your client with overly-technical or boring information. Instead, apply the information in a way that appeals to your client’s needs and desires. This is also a great opportunity to incorporate charts and infographics into your content to share numerical and technical data in a more approachable way. Offering applicable knowledge allows the client the power to make well-informed decisions and builds trust that your firm provides valuable expert information.
8. Use Storytelling to Your Advantage
Just explaining legal terms can get pretty boring. Amplify your content by including stories, examples, and metaphors to make it easy to understand. Not only does this help you further explain your points, but it also makes your writing entertaining to read.
9. Write in a Casual Tone- Avoid Legal Jargon
Imagine if you read a blog by a chemist after googling how baking powder works and they simply only explained the process in chemistry vocabulary without breaking it down? Although terms may seem easy to understand to you, that’s not always the case for the general public. Although readers are on a quest for information, they’ll click off all too quickly if they find the blog difficult to understand.
Above all else, try writing the way you speak. Consider having someone read through your writing who isn’t in the legal industry. Or try speaking your writing out loud. If the words don’t roll off the tongue naturally and sound like an everyday dialogue, then it may be too formal for online readers.
10. Make it Actionable
Sure it’s nice to hear an explanation of legal terms or news, but what should readers be doing about it? Write in the second person so it’s clear what you want the reader to think or do. And don’t forget to put an easy-to-follow call to action at the end so your reader knows exactly what to do next.
Boring uninteresting content can prevent you from appealing to, securing, and retaining new clients. Legal marketers can get creative by producing insightful and interesting content that captures prospects and clients at each step along the buyer’s journey, appeals to the human experience, and utilizes applied knowledge. This type of content has the potential to generate leads and raise awareness of the services provided by your law firm.
Do you need help with content marketing for law firms? Are you struggling to develop a cohesive content strategy that resonates with your target audience? We can help.
This post has been edited and republished from Sep. 8, 2019.