Law firms must have an effective marketing strategy to stand apart from competitors. An important part of a 21st-century marketing strategy is a content marketing funnel. Continue reading today’s post to learn more about content marketing funnels and how your law firm website can benefit from them.
What is a Content Marketing Funnel?
A content marketing funnel is a customer-based marketing plan attracting possible clients through different forms of web content. Prospective clients are funneled through specific marketing campaigns and eventually converted into actual clients. A content marketing funnel is based on organizing web content, contributing to a potential client’s buying journey. Content should be organized in different stages, from when potential clients search for initial information to eventually contacting your law firm.
There are three stages to a potential client’s journey. The three stages are:
- Awareness: when a potential client notices a problem and searches for information to solve the problem.
- Consideration: when the potential client considers different solutions, including hiring different law firms.
- Decision: when the potential client chooses a provider to solve their problem, such as a particular law firm.
How Does a Content Marketing Funnel Work?
This digital marketing strategy works in all industries, especially law. For law firms, the goal is to guide potential clients on their potential client’s journey. Many users visit a law firm’s website, but only a few will become clients. The number of potential quality leads dwindles as the funnel moves through stages, to the ones that will actually hire your law firm for their legal services.
Stages of a Law Firm Content Marketing Funnel
There are usually four stages of the content marketing funnel, and they follow the potential client’s overall journey. The four stages are:
1. Awareness – The prospect becomes aware of the legal matter. They realize they need legal help. They search online for information about the issue they are experiencing. Law firms attract potential clients by publishing content that answers common legal questions.
2. Evaluation – Potential clients are aware of their legal issues and have found possible solutions. They know they can hire a lawyer who specializes in their specific issue. The content in the evaluation phase, or the middle of the funnel, is used to build a relationship between the law firm and the client. The law firm tries to build trust and demonstrate authority and expertise. The content will discuss specific legal issues that potential clients may face because of their situation. This stage allows the law firm to show clients its skill, knowledge, and experience.
3. Conversion – This is the bottom of the funnel stage, and it begins when a potential client decides to hire an attorney but is still choosing which law firm to hire. The content in this stage should be designed to persuade the client to hire your law firm. This is the conversion to client phase. Some conversion strategies include free consultations, call-to-action links or buttons encouraging contact with the law firm, live chats, click-to-call buttons, and online contact forms.
4. Advocacy – This stage converts qualified leads into new clients. Advocacy is not the end of the funnel because these new clients will now advocate for your law firm, spread the word, and recommend your law firm to friends and acquaintances.
Each stage of a content marketing funnel should have specific and different content. Some content will be the same, but there will be variations. Content for each stage must be useful to your target audience to encourage engagement.
Content for the Awareness Stage
The awareness stage is at the top of the funnel. Content should answer common legal questions. Some content to consider for this stage include:
- Long-form blogs provide comprehensive answers to common questions potential clients may have. Long-form blogs should be well-written and researched. Longer blogs can demonstrate credibility and expertise.
- YouTube videos are a popular trending platform. Videos can provide informative tutorials and demonstrate your law firm’s brand. People learn from watching, so videos may appeal to visual learners instead of written content.
- Social media platforms can expand on articles and blog posts and be seen by friends of friends, ideally getting more clicks. High-quality content will build social media followers and, in turn, improve a law firm’s brand and reputation.
- E-books can provide in-depth information and content. They can explain complicated legal processes and issues. Businesses often give away E-books in exchange for subscribing to email lists.
Content for the Evaluation Stage
Content is written for people who need to hire a lawyer and are searching for the right one. A law firm needs to demonstrate its expertise and explain why its firm is the best choice. Content for the evaluation phase may include the following:
- Blogs that discuss common legal issues and the merits of legal representation. At this stage, blogs can also provide introductory information about the law firm.
- Case studies can present your law firm’s record of success. Case studies normally state the client’s issue, how the law firm handled the problem, and the outcome of the case.
- Testimonials or reviews are a great way to demonstrate client satisfaction. Ask previous clients to provide positive reviews or feedback to help recruit new clients. Testimonials often describe why a client chose your law firm, how your law firm handled their case and the outcome.
Content for the Conversion Stage
At this stage, your prospective clients are ready to hire a lawyer. Law firms need to convert prospects into new clients. A call to action is a key piece of content and can be buttons, links, and photos urging the website user to contact the law firm. Online contact forms and follow-up emails are also valuable conversion tools.
Law firms looking to increase clients and revenue must have a marketing strategy with a well-planned content marketing funnel. There are numerous other marketing methods to assist your law firm in obtaining new clients, but content marketing is a must to stay competitive in today’s digital marketplace.
Digital Marketing Next Steps
A content marketing funnel is a great tool for law firm websites in securing new clients. However, you need to have a strategy in place before putting the funnel in place. Consider looking at your competition, working on a content strategy plan, or visiting with an experienced legal digital marketing agency about your ideas for a content marketing funnel and how you can improve your law firm’s website.
Annette Choti, Esq. graduated from law school 20 years ago, and is the Founder of Law Quill, a legal digital marketing agency focused on small and solo law firms. Annette wrote the bestselling book Click Magnet: The Ultimate Digital Marketing Guide For Law Firms, and hosts the podcast Legal Marketing Lounge. She is a sought-after keynote and CLE speaker throughout the United States and Canada. Annette used to do theatre and professional comedy, which is not so different from the legal field if we are all being honest. Annette can be found on LinkedIn or at at email@example.com.