If you’ve researched how to market a law firm (or any business, for that matter) online, you have undoubtedly come across advice telling you to create and post more content. When I first got into this business more than a decade ago and was told that a website “needed content,” I assumed they meant images and other visual elements. I guess it had never occurred to me that someone was actually writing all of the words on the site and that those words had a significant impact on how well the site performed in searches for particular queries.
Generally, content refers to any media that conveys information, whether it’s written text, video, or audio. The internet has an insatiable appetite for it, and creating good content has the power to connect your legal practice with new clients and provide a substantial ROI.
The Right Content Can Improve Your Rankings in the SERPs
From a technical standpoint, content has the ability to get your firm in front of new clients by improving how well your website ranks in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Studies show that websites with more content tend to rank better, and the more pages and blogs you have, the wider you can cast your net for potential internet queries.
For example, it’s all well and good to have a “Motor Vehicle Accidents” page on your website, but if you drill down into car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrians accidents, etc., you have a better chance of appearing in searches made by injured clients.
Your Content Should Demonstrate E-E-A-T
While Google doesn’t make its search algorithm public, it is clear about what it wants from content. In order for content to rank well on the search engine, it needs to demonstrate experience, expertise, authority, and trust (E-E-A-T). This is especially true for pages that could have an impact on a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety – commonly referred to as Your Money or Your Life pages (YMYL).
How can your law firm content pages demonstrate E-E-A-T?
- Make sure readers can verify the information on your site. For example, if you discuss a statutory legal provision, link to an official .gov source.
- Create a robust About Us page that highlights the attorneys in your firm. Include information about where they went to law school, community involvement, notable case results (if permitted by your state bar), publications, and other biographical information.
- Make sure your content provides value to the reader.
- Create content for people first, not search engines. That said, be sure to follow SEO best practices regarding website content.
It’s Important to Keep Your Content Fresh
Importantly, you can’t just create a piece of content that initially shoots to the top of the SERPs and just rest on your proverbial laurels. Content “freshness” is a confirmed ranking factor, and I’ve personally seen our own pieces of content go straight to the top of the rankings for high-volume queries and drop over time as other pieces outrank it.
It’s important to regularly produce high-quality content of interest to your potential clients in order to maintain your SEO rankings. In addition, repetition of your message is key. That isn’t to say you should post the same content over and over again – in fact, Google will ignore it if you do. It’s also not about saying the same thing in hundreds of different ways. It’s about repeating the message – specifically, that you can help people with certain types of legal problems – within the context of providing useful information.
For example, if you are a DUI defense lawyer, you might want to produce blog content titled:
- Do I Need a Lawyer for My First DUI?
- What are the Penalties for a First DUI?
- Is a First-TIme DUI Serious? What are the Defenses to a First-TIme DUI?
- How Long Should I Wait to Call a Lawyer after a DUI Arrest?
- How Can a DUI Lawyer Help Me?
- DUI FAQs
This list could go on and on. While all of this content should be unique, it should also ultimately focus on why the reader needs legal counsel and how a lawyer can help. The more content you create, the wider the net you are casting to connect with your potential clients.
Content Can Establish Your Firm as a Thought Leader
While improving your site’s positioning in the results is certainly a worthwhile goal in and of itself, regularly creating content can also establish your firm as a thought leader in your practice areas. By positioning your website as a go-to source for information, you can increase your firm’s standing in your community and develop a reputation as a subject matter expert.
Doing so can lead to other forms of exposure, as well. An owner of a well-regarded PI marketing agency recently quipped to me that “talking about yourself is great, but having other people talk about you is better.”
When you create lots of content about things you know about, you increase the chances that you are going to be quoted in publications, asked to do an interview for your local news, invited on a podcast, or asked to speak at an event. In other words, content can turn into exposure, which in turn can lead to tons of new business and opportunities.
Put Your Content Out There
Relatedly, you should explore multiple channels in your content marketing efforts. Posting on your own site is great for your SEO and builds authority, but look for other places to publish things that you create. For example, I regularly publish in Attorney at Work and Attorney at Law Magazine and am always looking for new places where our potential clients may be lurking online to publish.
As a B2B business, we focus on publications that are read by legal professionals. For a law firm that works with individuals, you may consider publishing content on other law firms’ websites, local newspapers, news websites, or websites of interest to your target clientele.
Not only does publishing content on other sites increase its reach, but it also results in more backlinks, which can significantly improve your site’s SEO. You can think of backlinks as “votes of confidence” for your website, and the more you have, the more relevant your site is in the eyes of Google.
Creating Great Content Takes Time and Effort
It’s clear that a modern law firm needs to engage in regular content creation in order to stay competitive in the digital marketing space. Unfortunately, creating content takes a significant amount of time. And it’s not just the actual writing that takes time. In order to regularly create content that ranks, you need to:
- Engage in keyword research
- Come up with content topics
- Optimize your content for SEO
- Post your content and engage in on-site optimization best practices
- Promote your content on social media and other channels
As a busy practicing lawyer, there is a good chance that you simply don’t have the time to either learn how to be a content marketer or create the content itself. Fortunately, the attorney-led team at Lexicon Legal Content is available to help. We create optimized blogs, practice area pages, FAQs, e-books, video scripts, and other forms of content designed to improve your website’s rankings in the SERPs and get your potential clients to pick up the phone. Contact us today to learn more.