A Guide to Personal Injury Lawyer Marketing
Despite the lawyer’s ability to engage with their target audience, competition among big United States law firms, niche practices, and boutique firms remains tough. Promoting the legal services of a personal injury lawyer is challenging in a country with over 1.3 million active lawyers.
As a niche practice, marketing the services of personal injury lawyers should allow greater specificity and hyper-focus on cases. Yet, this doesn’t give them the monopoly of search engine results. Nor does it allow them to become the king or queen of landing pages.
- Personal injury lawyers need to hone in on the principal elements of legal marketing and use them when developing a solid marketing strategy.
- Many personal injury lawyers suffer from marketing challenges that range from lack of exposure to zero visibility on traditional and popular platforms.
- Marketing challenges present an opportunity for firms to focus on finding the best marketing partner for the fitting marketing tactic (e.g., digital marketing, media buying, and SEO).
Rules of Legal Marketing
When looking for a suitable marketing partner, a personal injury lawyer should focus on something other than the Google Ads campaign or marketing ideas. The most important question to consider is: How deep is the agency’s working knowledge of the rules of legal marketing?
Rule 7.2: Communications Concerning a Lawyer’s Services doesn’t limit lawyers and law firms to any form of media. In addition, any ad for legal services must include the contact information of at least one lawyer.
The rules also specify that lawyers can only claim to be a specialist if certified, and the certifying organization is stated clearly. Lastly, lawyers aren’t supposed to give anything of value to the referrer. A potential marketing agency must comply with these rules when developing marketing strategies for personal injury attorneys.
The Four Elements of Legal Marketing
Lawyers working with an agency to nail down their marketing metrics will encounter four elements in most marketing approaches. Hence, it would be helpful for personal injury lawyers to familiarize these elements because they are specific to legal marketing.
1. Curating different types of content
Legal content doesn’t have to be stiff or too technical. Often, your injury clients aren’t familiar with the legal process. So the most fitting tone for legal content is helpful—the kind you find in how-to articles and other educational sources.
You can offer your readers a range of content on the law firm’s website. Some have taken to creating short-form videos. Content visuals are another opportunity for carving brand awareness. For blogs, you can publish content based on a client’s questions:
- What constitutes a personal injury case?
- When is another driver liable for personal injuries?
- How much can you get for your injuries?
- How can personal injury law firms help you?
You can also take your content marketing to curate thought leadership. This type of content caters to the broader legal industry but serves as a “signal” of authority that clients would see as they search and read more about you and your firm.
Potential clients perform research and read testimonials before calling any law firm or reaching out to lawyers. You can use content to help them navigate a legal process to arrive at actionable options (e.g., filing for a claim) even under stress due to current injuries.
Your content can also be an opportunity to correct assumptions about law practice, often shaped by movies and pop culture. As an element of legal marketing, offering clients diverse content can help personal injury lawyers distinguish themselves from other lawyers within the same practice area.
2. Standardizing the legal marketing process
Lawyers and law firms often promote their brands, and that’s it. When they want to try another campaign, say pay-per-click, they let their marketing partner execute it and wait for outcomes.
Personal injury law firms must work beyond that. While letting the agency fully reign in the campaigns, they must also establish a legal marketing process that evaluates them before and after implementation.
By standardizing this process, lawyers will benefit through:
- Finding marketing strategies that fit their marketing budget and goals
- Discovering tactics that need to generate more ROI or only require some tweaking
- Discouraging them from trying out various marketing campaigns on a whim
- Switch to marketing tactics that work without further delay or loss in ROI
With standardized legal marketing, firms are less likely to consider marketing that has yet to be tried and tested. They will only be tempted to test social media marketing if they see the number of clicks and conversions that these clicks bring (or do not bring).
Ultimately, a legal marketing process should encourage personal injury lawyers to develop an open eye for different marketing approaches. Standardization is critical for consistently assessing the efficiency of other personal injury lawyer marketing.
3. Adapting to new marketing technologies
Marketing technologies are familiar, but some lawyers need to count them in. With the unique functionalities personal injury lawyers require, finding some still resistant is unsurprising. Experts from the monthly digital publication of the American Bar Association (ABA) advise taking one step at a time when looking at marketing technologies.
Some argue against this gradual momentum. After all, innovation for legal marketing has been going at a snail’s pace, as the findings of the 2022 Websites & Marketing report suggest:
- About 33 percent of lawyers used a client portal to communicate with clients.
- About 64 percent said they did not offer clients updates on cases online or through their websites.
- Around 41 percent offer invoicing and bill payments online or via the law firm’s website.
If lawyers can’t embrace marketing technologies, they should at least recognize a select number of approved legal tools. For instance, marketing channels or platforms like Twitter have helped find new leads.
4. Developing client relationships
Marketing the services of a personal injury lawyer can be challenging. For one, navigating the legal process and going to court are associated with many economic burdens.
In the case of personal injury clients, recovering from the injury and then going after insurance companies or reckless drivers can exacerbate their condition. Also, it can take a toll on their mental health. But if a prior experience listening to the lawyer speak in a podcast made a strong impression, they could also choose to talk to the lawyer.
Some victims’ first encounter with their personal injury attorney had been in an online legal forum. Such meetings allow lawyers to share their phone numbers or ask interested people to subscribe to a lawyer’s newsletter (email marketing). These engagements help foster relationships with clients.
Strangers evolve into new clients through multiple impressions. Personal injury lawyers come into the clients’ radar many times. As an element of legal marketing, lawyers and marketing agencies work to create high-quality interactions with clients.
The quality of these engagements is essential because more is needed to be remembered. You’d want clients to feel like they can trust you to take on their legal struggles involving:
- Slip and fall
- Car accident
- Medical malpractice
- Injury due to a defective product
- Wrongful death
All lawyers’ north star is for people to think of their personal injury practice when they or their loved ones suffer from these personal injury cases.
End to End Solutions for
Low Budget and Lack of Exposure
According to the 2022 ABA report cited earlier, only 57% of lawyers had an annual marketing budget. With strong ROI, lawyers and firms can justify launching specific campaigns.
Without a marketing campaign, how will firms create client engagements that support client relationships? Furthermore, can law firms launch effective marketing campaigns with a low budget? To address this, personal injury lawyers and firms must recognize that their marketing efforts aren’t an expense.
Yes, developing a clear content strategy, generating leads, or boosting keyword rankings require time and resources. But rather than consider it an expense incurred, firms must upgrade their views to see marketing as an investment.
Also, remember that a great marketing agency can help you choose legal marketing options: free, paid, or a combination of both.
Digital Marketing Solutions on a Budget
Contrary to popular belief, a good marketing plan starts with something other than a sophisticated website design or the latest marketing app. Instead, law firms state the digital marketing goals they want to achieve for a campaign. It involves a precise method of assessing whether or not the goals are achieved.
In other words, firms also need to consider if they need to look at increased ROI or other metrics, like cost per acquisition. Should they expand that marketing strategy to scale its impact across other legal services if they succeed? Or if the campaign isn’t working, what level of documentation should be placed to learn why a campaign didn’t work?
Only by asking thoughtful questions can lawyers consider which digital marketing options to leverage. Besides marketing goals, firms may consider their options by placing them in budget-size buckets, like low-budget and medium-budget.
For low-budget marketing, agencies often introduce firms to pay-per-click (PPC). PPC ads have become popular in the startup space because many startups tend to kick off with zero-to-low marketing budgets. Standard PPC campaigns include:
- Facebook ads: This social media platform offers businesses, including law firms, a convenient and smooth approach to running ads on its platform. Its campaigns connect small businesses with 1.6 billion Facebook users.
- Google ads: These PPC ads work by placing ads right when personal injury clients do their Google Search or check firm locations on Maps. These ads are optimized for searches done on a desktop or mobile device.
Setting up PPC ads may take time because there are many variations, and defining the audience for each ad is essential. Also, low-budget ads like these are subject to the platform’s quirks. You can best track their effectiveness for Google ads by adding UTM codes to your site’s landing page URL.
Digital Marketing on a Medium-high Budget
Online and printed legal directories are another go-to marketing option for personal injury lawyers. Despite the average cost ($2,550 in 2018), directories can help lawyers with lead generation.
Online directories have been one of the frequent routes for expanding a firm’s online marketing reach. These listings have been valuable in getting quality backlinks and collecting testimonials or reviews from satisfied clients.
An essential pointer for this expensive marketing tool is to check clicks and leads regularly. Your marketing agency should be able to track and report its conversion rate to justify the marketing efforts for directories.
Some agencies have developed proprietary software to reinforce their ability to monitor marketing outcomes, such as brand mentions. So when looking for a marketing partner, make sure to ask how they track ROI. Having proprietary software versus a third-party tool can show remarkable differences in the speed, regularity, and depth of marketing reports that law firms can use to improve their marketing strategies.
Legal forums and other platforms
Creating many interactions can be challenging, but many lawyers already find their groove. Some people have been participating in legal forums and podcasts. Other attorneys have designed interactive webinars. This online presence allows them to put their contacts for people to keep.
Some people use this access to a lawyer’s contacts to raise legal questions in private. To reinforce the lawyer’s branding, they don’t only have to answer questions or provide free consultations. They also need to demonstrate that they can listen to clients’ problems.
Rather than speeding through the process, attorneys must allow these questions to lead them to legal solutions organically. More than the answers themselves, the manner of exchange is essential. So that when a stressful time like a car accident happens, people don’t just think of the lawyer, but they recall the person they can trust and rely on.
Addressing Low Visibility With Media Buying
A personal injury law firm doesn’t only have to rely on digital marketing to boost its visibility online and offline. Some marketing agencies offer firms the option to appear on TV (cable or broadcast), radio ads, and outdoor placements, such as billboards and bus wraps.
Despite the severe scenarios surrounding personal injury cases, lawyers and firms can still make the most out of media buying. On the other hand, some firms were highly dissatisfied with the purchase due to too few qualified leads and low ROI.
This can happen when firms fail to select suitable media, choose the right time for running their injury ads, or focus on their audience. When buying media, firms and marketing agencies also need to look for tools that track impressions, click-through rates (CTRs), and feature analytics. These features help firms determine which ads are performing well or not.
Did you know?
Lawyers who want a marketing approach that targets a specific audience or segment use programmatic advertising. Powered by automation and machine learning, programmatic advertising creates effective ads based on relevant customer information.
Combining media buying with social media
Some marketing agencies use a combination of social media and media buying in their personal injury law firm marketing. While this approach may require more marketing efforts, it also does a great job of expanding the exposure for personal injury content.
For instance, an attorney has written a blog post that answers the question: How much can you get for your injuries? Some of the estimates they’ve cited in the blog can be used to create striking trivia-like ads, which they can use for billboard ads.
That ad can also include a LinkedIn handle for the personal injury firm. Then they can initiate critical questions as a LinkedIn post and add a link to their website’s blog. People may engage on the thread, while others may want to learn more and click the blog link instead.
Of course, people only concern themselves with personal injuries sometimes, so you need to learn how to diversify your posts. Ultimately, partnering with a media buying specialist should help your firm to expand its reach and earn quality leads and a rich network of users to pump engagement.
Search Engine Optimization To Improve Rankings
In 2023, the growth of the U.S. legal services market is estimated to reach $397 billion. The tough competition has pushed firms to abandon traditional marketing approaches and use efficient tactics, including search engine optimization (SEO).
Your SEO strategy will likely touch on these primary criteria: relevance, location, and authority. As cited many times over, content can highlight the relevance and authority of the website.
Location or local SEO involves using Google’s free tools, including the Business Profile (formerly called Google My Business) and Google Maps. Together, these tools help ensure that personal injury law firms like yours appear on the results page when clients do a Google Search.
Signing up and creating a profile is easy, but the best thing is it allows the search engine to show the essential links to a firm’s website and enables lawyers to answer client reviews. A great marketing agency can help you create an appealing business profile and curate high-quality website content that could boost the firm’s ranking on the search engine results page (SERP).
Get Your Clients To Reach You With Grey Smoke Media
A lack of budget and low online and offline visibility often hold back law firms. But there are digital marketing solutions that could work, starting at a low budget and then more. Media buying and SEO also allow law firms to expand their client reach in Google searches or outdoor billboards.
To increase the ROI of your personal injury lawyer marketing, you need to familiarize these legal marketing elements: content, legal marketing process, technologies, and client relationships.
FAQs on Personal Injury Lawyer Marketing
There are six types of web traffic: organic, paid search, direct, referral, organic social, and paid social traffic.
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