5 Surprising Law Firm Marketing Statistics & Marketing Costs
According to the American Bar Association (ABA), many law firms in the U.S. feel moderately confident about their marketing performance. However, 72% of those surveyed plan to continue marketing in the same way or even increase their marketing budget in the coming year.
Despite this, solo lawyers and law firms with 2-30 associates are lagging in adopting effective digital marketing techniques. To better orient legal marketing strategies, Top Marketing Agency presents five legal marketing statistics. For instance, 54% of law firms in the US don’t have an annual marketing budget. Additionally, when searching for a lawyer, 57% of consumers researched on their own, 59% asked for a referral, and 16% did both. Top Marketing Agency notes that law firms must be present on multiple channels, have a strong online presence, and handle phone calls in a friendly and timely manner to connect with more clients during their research process.
These five legal marketing statistics can help guide your legal marketing strategy to effectively attract and retain more law firm clients with confidence.
1. An annual marketing budget is absent in 54% of law firms.
The ABA’s 2020 Websites & Marketing Report revealed that a significant portion of law firms in the U.S. lack an annual marketing budget. Specifically, 54% of all law firms don’t have a budget for marketing, and this percentage is even higher for solo attorneys and small firms (2-9 associates). Medium-sized firms with 10-49 associates aren’t doing much better, as only 63% of them have a marketing budget. Without a budget, these firms often resort to haphazard or non-existent marketing strategies, known as “random acts of marketing.”
How this impacts a law firm: Considering the aforementioned data, law firms that allocate resources to develop and execute a marketing budget are likely to have an advantage over a significant number of their rivals. This translates to more possibilities for acquiring leads, enhancing client retention, and ultimately improving the financial performance of your firm.
For additional information on establishing a marketing budget for your law firm, contact us to learn more about the most effective methods for allocating a marketing budget.
2. Out of consumers who looked for a lawyer, 57% conducted their own online search, 59% asked for a referral, and 16% did both, according to data.
According to the 2019 Legal Trends Report by Clio, when searching for a lawyer, there was a near equal split between consumers who conducted their own research (57%) and those who sought a referral (59%). Only 16% reported doing both.
However, Martindale-Avvo conducted a similar study that revealed that even though 46% of people received a referral when searching for a lawyer, they still went online to research the referred lawyer’s or firm’s website and read online reviews before reaching out.
Martindale-Avvo’s research shows that when it comes to researching lawyers and law firms, the top channels used by consumers are:
- Online review sites such as Google, Yelp, Avvo, and Lawyers.com, which were used by 46.5% of consumers
- Referrals and Google search engine were tied at 43%
- 36% of consumers reported visiting an attorney or law firm website
- Only a small percentage of consumers rely on print advertising (9%) or TV and radio (5%) for their research
What does this mean for law firms?
In today’s marketing environment, law firms can’t depend on a single marketing channel to succeed. As shown by these marketing channel preferences, your firm needs to have a strong presence on multiple channels, including a robust online presence through your website and online reviews. This will enable you to engage with more clients during their research process and enhance your chances of connecting with them.
For busy lawyers, it can be challenging to monitor the performance of each marketing channel. However, using tools such as Top Marketing Agency’s Call Tracking and Dashboard Reporting can provide valuable insights into which of your marketing channels, both online and offline, are generating the most promising leads for your business.
3. When reaching out to a lawyer or law firm for the first time, 68% of consumers choose to make first contact via phone.
The manner in which your firm handles phone calls can have a significant impact on your ability to retain clients. According to a study, 68% of consumers choose to make their initial contact with a law firm via phone, as opposed to only 25% who opt for email or an online form. The study also revealed that while consumers typically speak with three to four lawyers before making a decision, 42% will retain the first lawyer they speak with if they leave a positive first impression.
If a lawyer leaves a “good first impression,” 42% of consumers are likely to choose them as their legal representation, according to the same study.
What constitutes a good impression? The factors that consumers consider crucial in evaluating a lawyer or law firm, ranked by importance, are:
- Timely communication (82%)
- Clear communication of next steps (80%)
- A clear indication of the expected cost of their case (76%)
- A clear understanding of the entire process involved in their case (74%)
- A favorable tone from the lawyer (64%)
Despite the ongoing digital transformation of the legal industry, the majority of consumers still prefer to use traditional phone calls as their primary mode of communication with law firms. This underscores the importance of having a reliable and dedicated business phone system that can handle incoming calls in a friendly and timely manner. By investing in a high-quality phone system, your law firm can build a strong reputation for customer service and improve your chances of converting leads into clients.
With the help of Top Marketing Agency’s tools like Call Recording and Conversation Intelligence, you can gain valuable insights from your phone calls that can inform and improve your marketing strategy. Call Recording enables you to evaluate your call quality score and quality assurance by allowing you to review your calls. Conversation Intelligence utilizes AI to analyze your calls, qualify sales leads, identify keywords, and detect commonly asked questions. Armed with this data, you can enhance your firm’s content marketing approach by creating targeted materials, such as blog posts about how your firm handles billing or social media videos highlighting your firm’s unique benefits. Additionally, you can use the keywords you discover to refine your pay-per-click (PPC) advertising strategy.
4- In response to web leads & email inquiries, 60% of law firms failed to reply, and 27% did not answer the phone or return the call.
Clio conducted a study by sending emails to 1,000 law firms and making 500 phone calls to the same group to determine the average response rate of law firms. The results revealed that 60% of the firms did not respond to the inquiry email, while 27% did not answer the phone or return the call.
It is evident that failing to follow up with a lead can lead them to seek representation from another law firm. Additionally, the duration taken by a law firm to respond to an initial inquiry also affects a consumer’s choice of which law firm to retain.
As per the Lead Response Management Study, if you respond to a lead within five minutes of their initial contact, you significantly increase your chances of retaining them. There is other compelling data that highlights the significance of prioritizing timely responses:
- Responding to a lead within five minutes makes a law firm 100 times more likely to establish a connection compared to a 30-minute response time.
- A law firm is four times more likely to qualify a lead within the first five minutes of contact than in 10 minutes, and 21 times more likely to qualify them within five minutes compared to a 30-minute response time.
What does this mean for law firms?
Timely response is crucial for your law firm’s success. Prioritize prompt follow-ups and clear communication of next steps with potential clients to improve your chances of retaining them.
Using an automated response system such as an email or text message is an effective way to reduce lead response time. These short messages confirm and follow up on client inquiries, demonstrating that you’re attentive to their needs regardless of the time they contacted you.
Using a CRM that organizes all your business communications such as calls, form submissions, and live chat into a single inbox can help make sure your law firms leads don’t fall through the cracks. This tool helps you manage client communication and facilitates prompt follow-ups, thereby streamlining your workflow.
5- 62% of attorneys do not have access to their website analytics or are uncertain if they do, and 40% of those who have access do not check them.
The 2019 Website and Marketing Report by the ABA revealed that 41% of lawyers lack access to marketing analytics, and 21% are unsure whether they have access to this data.
Out of the 62% of lawyers who have access to marketing analytics, 41% never review them. Additionally, among lawyers and law firms that utilize external marketing agencies, only 17% receive routine reports on their website and marketing performance.
Understanding the impact of digital marketing on the bottom line is crucial for law firms. However, the majority of law firms lack a comprehensive understanding of how to optimize their digital marketing efforts to achieve better results. As the famous business management consultant Peter Drucker once said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.” This statement is especially true in the legal industry, where marketing costs can be quite high. By measuring their marketing effectiveness, law firms can invest their time and money into high-conversion channels, reduce marketing confusion, and eliminate wasteful advertising spending.
Build confidence in your law firm marketing strategy with Top Marketing Agency!
There’s no need to settle for a mere sense of confidence in your marketing endeavors. The significance of establishing a budget, maintaining a presence on multiple channels, adopting a dedicated phone system, and measuring your marketing results cannot be overstated, as each of these legal marketing statistics indicates. By doing so, you can enhance your performance and eliminate guesswork.
By utilizing Top Marketing Agency’s Website Analytics, Call Tracking & Dashboard Reporting, you can easily track the performance of 100’s of unique marketing channels in one convenient dashboard. This report provides a detailed analysis of the channels that generate the most calls, texts, form submissions, and live chats, including Google and Facebook Ads, websites, web forms, phone calls, and offline marketing. With this information, you can make informed decisions on which channels to invest in and which to eliminate from your marketing budget.
To further streamline and improve your marketing efforts, it’s worth considering a comprehensive marketing strategy consultation. Call us today at (888) 843-9840 to schedule your FREE website audit and marketing consultation.