You’ve been in business for a few years now, and you’ve managed to get by without a marketing plan.  Why take the time and effort to create one now?  Will it really make a difference in your business?

I can say with absolute certainty that it will.

I always compare a marketing plan to the flight plan that an airline pilot uses.  Without one, there is a pretty good chance you’ll get to your destination.  But you also risk flying into the side of a mountain.

I want to avoid big mistakes like that with my business! So I take the time to plan ahead and you should too.

The plan you create is your roadmap to successfully promoting and growing your business.  It will help ensure that you’re using your resources in the most efficient way possible.

This is especially important if you’re planning to implement a digital strategy.  The online landscape is changing rapidly, and your plan will help keep you focused on what matters most.

Here are the three reasons why you need a law firm marketing plan.  Let’s dive in.

  1. You’re aimlessly promoting your firm
  2. You ultimately want long-term success
  3. You don’t want to waste time and money

#1 – You’re aimlessly promoting your firm

A scattershot approach to your marketing will generate leads and clients, I won’t deny that.  But are they the types of clients and cases you want? Probably not.

Before the internet, casting a wide net with your marketing worked (relatively) well.  A generic advertisement might capture the attention of someone looking for legal services.

But those days are gone.  Consumers are looking for a more personalized experience with marketing.  They want marketing messages and content that appeal to them, and solves their specific problem – the follow-up suggestions on Amazon.com are a great example.

If your marketing doesn’t do this (address their problem) your message will get lost in all the “noise” we hear every day and will be utterly useless.

You need to stop throwing out ideas just to see what sticks and what doesn’t.  A marketing plan will help you get clear on who you need to target, what message you should deliver, and what tools you should be using.

If you do implement a digital strategy, you’ll be better able to target an audience (or what we call buyer personas) based on many characteristics – things like the websites they visit, personal interests or organizations they belong to, etc.

#2 – You ultimately want long-term success

I firmly believe that if you want to grow your law practice into a thriving business, you must plan ahead.

You’ll probably start by putting some general business systems in place.  Systems that help with client intake, billing, invoicing, and actually delivering the firm’s legal services efficiently.

All of these are extremely important, but don’t forget about the marketing.  Many business owners don’t think you can streamline the marketing, but you can.  With the use of marketing automation, and committing to a schedule, this is possible.

It’s not necessary to waste hours and hours (or dollars) on your marketing when you have a good system in place.

#3 – You don’t want to waste time and money

Speaking of time and money – marketing seems scary because the thought of investing resources with little to no guaranteed return on investment is risky.  But having a plan helps mitigate some of those risks.

Your plan will outline many important items like buyer personas, key messages and tools that will be most effective.  You’ll have a very clear vision of what you need to accomplish and what you need to achieve your goals.

One of the biggest questions/concerns with digital marketing tends to revolve around how rapidly things evolve, and if you need to pursue these new opportunities immediately.  With a plan in place, you can use it to sanity check these new opportunities.

I can’t tell you how many times advertisers reach out to clients with a “great opportunity to reach potential customers.”  But when we evaluate the opportunity in relation to our buyer personas and goals, we find it’s not worth the investment.

Sometimes it is and that’s great.  But having that plan in place to guide us makes sure we’re not wasting time or money on marketing that won’t work.

Final thoughts

Creating a marketing plan does take some time and effort, but it will be time well spent if your goal is to build a thriving law practice.

5 danger signs