While we’re still in the midst of a long, seemingly never-ending pandemic, there is still work to be done. At the beginning of the coronavirus crisis, courthouses around the country closed their doors, and many wondered what would happen to “business as usual” for clerks and lawyers.
Today, not only are courthouses back open, but the majority of law firms have stopped working remotely, and many are eager to get clients back in their doors.
Expanding your business during the pandemic is hard but not impossible. The routes of action you’ve grown used to, namely business development through socializing, are likely on hold.
Instead, many law firms build their brands online and try to reach potential clients through legal advice and informative articles.
Building a Brand Through Online Blogging
Today, all online content lives by the bible, that is ‘SEO Best Practices.’ SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and if you haven’t heard of this term, you’re not prepared to start blogging.
It can seem easy when you’re just searching and scrolling through legal profiles in your area. Maybe you stumble upon a poorly written article and think, “I can do this better.” Well, maybe you can, but the fact that you “stumbled upon” that article in the first place is perhaps even more important than the content within it.
When you begin publishing content, there are a few basic rules you should follow to optimize your work:
- Write a clear title and meta description
- Use Relevant Tags
- Keep your slug simple.
The title of your article is what will pop up in a search engine’s results. This is the first glimpse readers have into what your article will be about, so make sure to keep it clear and catchy.
Your meta description will be the small description underneath the title. Readers will sway towards a streamlined, straightforward sentence that promises to answer the question they searched for. For this reason, it’s more important to write a description that seems relevant to possible searches than to simply summarize the article.
Tags & Slugs
From here, depending on the website builder or blogging platform you use, you can embed “tags” in your post. These tags make your article searchable on your own website and help search engines choose what content to present to users online.
“Hashtags” were born from the invisible “tags” that websites rely on, and you can use either to separate your content into different sections, columns, or even forums on your website.
Finally, your “slug” is simply the tail end of your article’s URL. For example, in www.indoormedia.com/blog, the slug is “/blog.” Instead of listing a string of nonsense after your domain name, try to select a short, descriptive slug that ranges no more than 3-6 words. This will help search engines find your articles when users search for them, and readers are more likely to share articles with short URLs.
Understanding these SEO basics is the first step towards blogging. Once you know how to get your content ranked in search results, you can start writing those awesome articles you’ve been thinking about to help prospective customers learn about your business.
A New Take on Classic Business Development
Whereas SEO may be a lot to wrap your head around, you probably already know what we mean by “business development.” Socializing in one’s community has always been an easy way for legal teams to get a leg up in their neighborhood, especially because clients want to go with someone they trust.
ABA law firm suggests several strategies to ensure your law firm’s growth, but chief among them are:
- Harness the ideas of your best and brightest team members
- Find ways to share this knowledge regularly
- Never leave anyone out.
For long-established law firms, this is an obvious way to train new hires and encourage older staff to review and build upon their current knowledge.
When you’re working locally, this is especially important, as team members can share the events where they’ve picked up the most clients, opportunities they’ve found to work with other law firms, and establish connections with legislative officials and leaders.
From here, your firm can brainstorm how to attend events remotely and meet with clients safely to ensure you’re building an extensive and expanding referral network. This will help you position your firm in the most important social and professional circles around your business.
Yet, other problems persist. Namely, how do you remain a high profile law firm in the midst of a lockdown?
At their core, both legal content blogging and business development focus on building your law firm’s brand in your community. The first works to reach potential clients in the hopes that through trusting your legal advice online, they may come to trust you with their business. The latter helps your business excel amidst your competition and establish the professional connections you’ll need to keep expanding.
So how do you reach both of these groups at once? And how do you reach people who aren’t looking for your business at all? One way is to design an advertising campaign around your legal team to build brand awareness. Reaching people who don’t yet need legal aid, but keep your business in the back of their mind, will ensure a slew of new customers when the moment strikes.
In that way, a hyper-local advertising campaign can help you quickly establish your business — even in the pandemic. While your team may not be able to attend as many events or house calls as they could before, getting your names and faces out there can ensure you remain the high-profile brand you set out to be.
Where to Advertise?
With the threat of another lockdown on the horizon, many advertisers are unsure of where to plant their campaign. There’s no way of ensuring where online advertising will hit, and local-targeting is often the easiest way to secure relevant impressions. With so many venues for this kind of advertising closing, many are turning to grocery store advertising.
IndoorMedia has long partnered with grocery stores to help local businesses build a name for themselves. Through Cartvertising, your campaign could reach the 20,000 customers that visit grocery stores every week, several of which visit every few days. Supermarket advertisements are one of the safest outlets for pandemic advertising, with thousands of guaranteed impressions every week.
The repetition these ads receive, with customers glancing down at their cart every few minutes, is unheard of in any other print or online medium. With shopping cart advertising rates remaining affordable and so many pandemic shoppers paying more attention to grocery store advertising, the right supermarket advertisement will be an excellent complement to your online blogging and business development tactics.