Law firms looking to increase revenue, generate growth, and acquire new clients in an ever-evolving digital marketing paradigm must diligently keep pace with online technology, insights, and trends reshaping the industry to meet customer demands.
This is particularly true as the legal sector continues to contend with the aftermath of COVID-19. While some niche legal practices flourished, like those focusing on bankruptcy law, other firms struggled with diminishing profits.
In this digital era, customers are able to access all the information they need online. Most importantly, they can make well-informed decisions and have more choices based on peer reviews and data, all more conveniently and quickly available than ever before.
Moreover, a McKinsey report discovered that data-driven companies are 23 times better in the position to acquire customers.
Therefore, as a legal marketer, it is pivotal to adapt to the ever-evolving digital landscape to account for shifts in consumer demand, ensuring that prospective clients continue to need and trust your services. Ultimately, it’s the clients who dictate the adaptations and development of marketing campaigns. So, if you don’t listen to them, your practice will get left behind.
This article will expound on the rise of digital demand and how your law firm can be a part of this trend.
Legal Sector And Digital Marketing
Digital transformation has compelled the legal sector to adopt exciting new technologies, forever changing legal operations.
In a demanding marketplace, the requirement for law firms to differentiate themselves clearly and demonstrate the value they can deliver to their clientele is a necessity. There is an apparent need for law firms to engage with prospective and current clients by leveraging the variety of channels and media that they have at their disposal.
However, for several companies, this means overwhelming audiences with content – without any apparent thought on the ways they engage, lack of audience-centricity, and the messages they convey.
For a sector whose primary success depends on reputation and considering the significance of digital engagement and communications, law firms must deploy advanced techniques and technologies to give a seamless experience to all their clients digitally too.
It is pivotal to ensure that you utilize all the relevant digital technologies and channels to enhance your connectivity.
Moreover, having valuable content will help you prove credibility. However, without emphasizing how you can actively engage with your audience and create rewarding conversations, you may run the risk of being overlooked or hurting your brand reputation.
Digital technologies are key to building a better customer experience. For players in the legal industry, this means creating customer service frameworks that include video conferencing, digital documentation sharing, virtual documents that can be signed digitally, and live chat conversations.
From a professional standpoint, looking at current legal workflows and communication methods is paramount to gauge how law firms can transform the client experience in the best possible way.
Law firms that leverage digital tools successfully differentiate themselves in the progressively competitive legal landscape. Moreover, digital innovations can boost productivity, reduce workflow friction, and enable you to deliver more efficient, skilled service to clients.
Law Firms: How To Meet Client’s Digital Demand?
The legal industry has resisted digital transformation for as long as it can. Now it’s time to face the impact of the digital revolution and adapt to cutting-edge technology. Constant advances, particularly Artificial Intelligence and law tech applications, are evolving how law firms function and offer their services.
For the legal practice to grow and scale effectively in this environment, it is imperative to ensure that current and prospective clients have 24/7 customer support and on-demand everything, from online scheduling to video consultations.
With that in mind, let’s explore novel paradigms that, in the upcoming years, can transform the legal sector in terms of digitalization, online service provision, and technology trends.
Document automation facilitates you in organizing all the legal documents into a centralized system, letting you maintain various versions and generate tailored documents quickly.
It reduces the paperwork needed to create extended agreements and contracts while helping you cater to clients promptly. You stay organized and maximize your team’s productivity.
With document automation, you also help clients automate the process of complex contracts by creating sophisticated document templates that can be modified easily. Moreover, you can quickly generate and implement Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) without worrying about missing a clause.
Video Conferencing Tools
As technology advances, legal entrepreneurs have ample opportunities to build meaningful relationships with clients and stakeholders alike. Leveraging video conferencing tools for your law firm allows you to connect with your clients and employees seamlessly and quickly.
Lawyers depend on meetings for settling deals and face-to-face consultations to communicate with clients while improving their legal practices on the whole.
Moreover, video conferencing enables you to complete all these responsibilities at their ease, thereby boosting efficiency and productivity.
Also, since people have travel limitations amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, these tools can you’re your clients connect with you remotely, irrespective of their location. Also, you can integrate the APIs of video conferencing into your existing app or website to interact with your clientele quickly.
AI-enabled Chatbots/ Virtual Legal Assistants
Chatbots and virtual assistants are transforming almost every industry, and they can also benefit the legal sector, specifically law firms that leverage AI technology. Clients can initiate an online chat with a chatbot or virtual legal assistant and get responses promptly as they require.
Moreover, with automated legal chatbots, you can save the resources and time you spend in answering your clients’ queries. That way, you can better focus on your firm’s competencies, thereby offering improved service to clients.
For instance, an AI-based virtual assistant or legal chatbot can also help your clients automatically schedule meetings with your attorneys. Likewise, chatbots also allow you to generate more leads by ensuring intelligent conversations with the customer base and encouraging them to give their contact details.
A live chat solution is like a virtual staff of highly skilled and trained operators that are always on standby to serve your website visitors. Your site visitors can speak with your representative regarding their legal matters and get an immediate response. These AI-enabled chatbots can be trained to collect the contact information of the visitors. You get it, along with the conversation’s transcript, and follow up accordingly.
Online Scheduling And Electronic Signatures
Another way to offer your clients convenience is by providing them 24/7 accessible virtual scheduling, predominantly helpful in easing the scheduling tasks of your staff.
Recent research from LivePerson revealed that 65% of Generation Zs and millennials prefer to communicate virtually instead of in person.
An online scheduling option lets your prospective and existing clientele book an appointment. It also saves your client’s time and indicates that your law firm operates in an organized, professional, and advanced way.
The pandemic also accelerated and shifted many companies towards electronic signatures. As clients and lawyers stayed home and courts imposed physical restrictions, hard copy signatures had to be waived. And this compelled firms to e-sign, and it’s here to stay.
Leveraging electronic signatures is convenient for clients, enables quicker document processing instead of waiting on the mails, and prevents unnecessary travel.
Email Marketing Automation
The digital marketing of law firms can be classified into the following categories: paid media, earned media, and owned media.
Studies found that email marketing campaigns can significantly enhance qualified leads and conversions. To be precise, 66% of digital marketers say that emails deliver good or excellent ROI.
And email marketing, coupled with automation, can help you communicate with your clients and leads seamlessly. With an automated email marketing strategy, your law firm can reach out to prospective clients with tailored messages, helping them connect with you at their ease.
Also, even after the case is over and you are paid, you can keep in contact by email communications. This, in turn, increases the likelihood that they will contact your firm even in the future because you have stayed in touch with them.
Other Digital Tools
Electronic billing is another tool to streamline your law firm’s processes.
The digital market for legal services reached approximately 8.5 billion dollars in 2020 and was anticipated to grow 2.7% more in 2021—an expectation it has since surpassed.
These winning law firms make good use of virtual tools such as Google My Business, LinkedIn, Facebook for Business, etc. When marketing your legal entity, you can see engagement metrics and click-through rates (CTR) using digital tools, monitoring the efficacy of pay-per-click (PPC) ads online.
However, while deploying or integrating any tool, consider the security aspect as legal data is comparatively more critical and confidential. As a result, it is imperative to partner with the right tech associate who understands the details and helps you to provide a secure solution.
Digital presence is crucial for law firms, and it makes more sense as many people are shifting to virtual mediums to seek out attorneys.
Customer expectations are soaring upwards, and so are technological advancements. Deloitte research found that 60% of customer-oriented organizations are more successful than those not focusing on meeting consumers’ digital demands. It’s not adequate to offer legal services. Your firm must tailor it to the client’s preferences
In the legal paradigm, client retention is critical. Therefore, it’s vital to implement a customer-centric approach.
Digitally-mature firms have a customer-centric approach. They realize that brand loyalty is gained by providing transparency, easy access, a pleasurable experience, services/products that meet and surpass customer expectations, outstanding customer service, a personal touch, and helpful service tools.
By incorporating and investing in the techniques/tools mentioned above, a professional and experienced law firm can enhance its processes and better prepare for the future.