COVID-19 is having a catastrophic impact on life and business globally. And law firms are no exception. This is a challenging time for the legal sector, with big law ultimately being forced out of the office.
Understandably, many law firms are concerned about what this means for business. At the time of writing some law firms, like Baker McKenzie, have already closed their doors temporarily due to the rapid spreading of the virus.
However, all is not lost. Many firms are finding that the digitalisation of their services is a very real and viable option. It is also important for firms not to abandon their marketing efforts. Instead they should invest in strategies that will allow them to seize opportunities in this new landscape.
Amid the chaos of Coronavirus, it’s important that firms do not lose their heads and abandon all of their marketing efforts to save cash. This is an irrational and potentially costly decision to make. It also completely ignores the gap in the market that is opening up.
Law firms should be increasing their online visibility instead of hiding in the shadows. This may initially seem like a risk, but in fact in the long-term they will reap the benefit.
However, it is also essential that firms don’t use this crisis as an opportunity to take advantage of clients by hiking up prices and fear mongering.
Firms should continue to promote their services respectfully and responsibility, and maintain their authenticity. Clients and customers will remember this when things return back to normal.
In the wake of COVID-19 normal marketing practices have been fundamentally disrupted. For many firms, this has had a devastating impact on the number of enquiries they receive. However, the answer to resolving this problem lies in marketing investment. This has been proven to generate enquiries both in the short term and the long term.
Investing in online advertising for your law firm can bring almost immediate results. For example, LawClick are able to run adverts for your legal services via Google, Bing and their legal network within 24 hours of subscribing to the platform which means your firm will be reaching potential new clients in no time.
While online advertising is a great way to generate new enquiries for your firm with fast results, you should also be thinking about where you want your law firm to be in 3-6 months time.
This is where search engine optimisation or SEO plays an important role. Your SEO campaign will take a minimum of 3-6 months to see results. So, setting all of this up needs to be done as soon as possible, if you want to benefit from this investment later in the year when things return to normal.
When life steps back into its normal pace, many people will be searching for legal services related to the impact that COVID-19 has had on their personal lives and the damage it has caused to businesses.
Experts have predicted that a spike in divorce rates is ‘very likely’ due to COVID-19. Similarly, later on there will be obvious employment law issues, property litigation cases, broken legal contracts, corporate law issues and more. These cases will all need to be resolved, but will your law firm’s visibility be good enough to be found at this crucial time via search engines?
There are many companies that provide SEO services to help your firm rank higher in the search engines but if you are looking for such a service you might want to consider one of LawClick’s search engine optimisation packages, as they specialise in online marketing for solicitors in the UK. They also do not have fixed minimum term contracts like other agencies so you are not tied for many months should funds become an urgent issue for your firm.
Clearly, COVID-19 means that law firms cannot act as if it is just ‘business as usual’ but they should not descend into panic either.
Functionality is still possible through making the most of online platforms, utilising remote working and implementing effective digital marketing strategies.
Many firms already have a pandemic preparedness plan or something similar in place, alongside internal crisis management teams to ensure that they’re ready when faced with a crisis like COVID-19.
That’s not to say there won’t be some challenges. Speaking about these challenges, Keno Kozie Associates Managing Director Eli Nussbaum said: “For organizations that follow the traditional legal model, getting licensing, getting hardware, getting users into this remote working model on the fly does present some issues.”
However one thing is clear, this pandemic may completely reshape the way that law firms conduct themselves, and the way they provide their services.