Law Firm Marketing: The problem, the solution and the turning on a dime.

It was business as usual for law firms in BC until May 1, 2021, when ICBC enacted a new no-fault insurance model. Under this new model, being referred to as an “enhanced care” model by ICBC, individuals who have insurance policies with ICBC will not be able to sue for injuries sustained in a car accident. Individuals who are injured in accidents after May 1, 2021, may instead be entitled to coverage under their own insurance policy. Still, they cannot sue in court for any award against the at-fault driver. It does not matter how severe the injuries are or who is found to be at fault.

Insurance litigation took up a big chunk of law firms’ cases across BC, and this new insurance model means that this part of the business is going away for all legal firms that practiced personal injury law and provided support to clients in car accidents.

If you are one of these law firms that got affected by this new model, you might still be busy with hundreds of existing cases on your hands, but you also might be wondering what’s next. How will you be replacing this portion of the business that came from the insurance claims cases?

Law firm marketing is no different from other businesses, except for these types of regulations that might change your business almost overnight. Here are three ways to make sure your law firm keeps the business profile visible to potential clients and your revenue doesn’t dip in the coming years.

Review your marketing messaging

Even if your law firm was being marketed as the specialist in injury law in the past, you most likely, have been offering family law, real estate law or business law services to your clients as well. Maybe it was not the same file volume, but you have the staff and expertise in this area. One of the first things you want to do is review your marketing assets and ensure that your firm is clearly articulating all areas of practice you are offering to your clients.

Marketing is a great tool to connect the dots in your business when you research the demand patterns for certain services, you can anticipate the influx of requests for certain services, and you can adjust your marketing messaging to meet the needs of the market.

We love monitoring search term trends for our clients and discussing what we see customers are searching for online when we present these google search trends to our clients. The business patterns they see on their end click with marketing trends like a missing puzzle piece! When we work with our clients closely, collaborating on which trends we see in marketing, they are able to shift and meet the demand in a timely manner. Adjusting messaging on all marketing assets like the website and social media or client newsletter creates this amazing synergy in how marketing and business development teams work together, tapping into new opportunities for business growth.

Action Item:

Review your website and other marketing assets to ensure that you communicate clearly the services you are offering to your clients. Speak with your marketing team to ensure the advertising you are running supports your business focus for the coming years.

Diversify your marketing focus

As a marketing company, we might be biased, but we think digital marketing is a beautiful thing. Do you know why? Because of its ability to shift and change along with your business quickly. When I was buying a car a while ago, something the salesperson said stuck with me to this moment – he said the car could turn on a dime. I thought it was so cool! Same with digital marketing – if it were a car – it would totally be able to turn on a dime.

No matter what types of business changes are happening in your law firm, digital marketing can not only support you in this transition but can also offer new opportunities you didn’t know you had. That’s right!

It’s easy to get complacent when business is smooth and new legal cases are coming your way without much effort. I mean, that’s an amazing feeling, but we all know that no matter what type of business it is, all good things come to an end at some point, forcing businesses to innovate and stay agile (i.e. progress!).

Ok, I realize I might be sounding a bit dramatic here, but I will say that digital marketing has you covered. The best part about digital marketing is that you can meet multiple business goals within the same marketing campaign on a moderate marketing budget if that’s done consistently.

Consistency is key for multiple reasons here. One is that your target audience needs a constant reminder about your services in order to build that brand awareness and brand recognition.

Research shows that it takes humans five times to see an advertising message to really notice it and potentially take action. If you are posting social media content and running ads sporadically, it will be hard to build that consistent brand awareness with your customers.

On the other hand, marketing platforms like Google Ads, Facebook, or LinkedIn feed all work off a programmed algorithm that learns human behaviour and how your customers interact with your content. This allows for more targeted marketing campaigns that yield more targeted results. By not being consistent in your marketing, you are simply not providing enough information to marketing platforms to build a campaign that will work for you.

Action Item:

Create a consistent and diverse marketing program to build brand awareness and brand reach for the services you are offering to your customers.

Stay on top of your marketing progress

Running marketing campaigns is fun, especially when you first launch them. Traffic comes to the site, and you start getting first engagements on social media. Or not. This reminds me of a conversation I recently had with one of our marketing consulting clients where we designed a marketing program for them, and they were implementing it internally. On our catch-up call, they excitedly shared that they launched their first campaign and started posting content on social media. But no one was watching their stories on Instagram. They were excited about getting started with marketing (because they had never done it professionally), but they also sounded disappointed that no one was watching their content on social media.

Creating and launching marketing programs is fun, and with all the digital tools that we marketers have these days, it’s easy and quick to do. You can go from not having any marketing campaigns to having a real, strategic online presence within a couple of months. What is often missed, though, as we see when we onboard new clients and do marketing audits for them as the first step of working with them is monitoring progress, gathering marketing data and being able to understand and apply data to further make sure that their marketing programs are strategic all the way.

Make sure you are making smart marketing decisions while creating and constantly improving your marketing infrastructure to support your growing business, so when other changes come along for your law firm (or any type of business you are running, for that matter), similar to this no-fault model, you are prepared. No matter what.

Action Item:

Set up a reporting cadence for all of your marketing initiatives to review progress on a regular basis. Review your marketing programs monthly and filter them through your current business goals and projections to make sure your marketing is strategic and relevant.

In conclusion

Life is unpredictable, and business needs always change, even for stable businesses like law firms. Creating a clear and consistent marketing infrastructure that supports your business needs as your business grows is key, no matter what changes are happening internally or externally.

Are you looking for help with marketing for your law firm? Get in touch with our marketing agency, we are located in downtown Vancouver. We would love to set up a discovery call with you to share how we’ve been helping our cool clients grow since 2008. We have experience working with law firms and other industries, and we would love to help you organize your marketing processes to support your business’s vision. Thanks for reading and… keep it cool.

Helen Stepchuk, CEO