Content marketing is the best way to drive business to your law firm without wasting time or money.
But taking an unplanned approach to your content can be problematic. When you don’t plan your content, you may fail to address your target audience. If you’re writing your own content, it can be difficult to stick to a publication schedule without a plan. If you’re outsourcing your content, lacking a content plan can make it hard to delegate responsibilities to others.
Without a content plan, you may waste time trying to determine what topics you have or haven’t covered yet.
Having a strategic plan in place for your online marketing is important. Here are several points to consider as you begin planning your law firm’s website content.
Define your goals for your law firm’s website and who you plan to address with your content
Before you begin, you’ll want to clearly define your goals. What do you want to accomplish? Who do you want your law firm’s website to attract? Write down who your ideal clients are. What are they like? What are their most common issues and questions?
Knowing your goals and your audience are two things really worth articulating from the beginning — before you start writing or planning — because knowing who you’re writing to can inform the choices that you make about your content. What kind of clients do you want to attract? If you’re writing specifically to consumers of your legal services, if you’re in a consumer-facing practice, what does your ideal potential client look like?
What are other potential clients or referral sources you might want to engage with, what do they look like? What questions do they ask? How are they consuming this information? What demographic do they belong to?
To help you clearly articulate your ideal potential client and your goals for your law firm’s website, you may want to develop a client persona.
Brainstorm law firm website content ideas
Content marketing for law firms — when it’s done right — is basically translating your potential clients’ experience — and the questions that they ask — into the written content on your law firm’s website.
When you create rich, educational content around the questions that your potential clients are asking you and that they’re likely searching for, you make it much more likely that your firm will be found by potential clients when they conduct relevant searches. Potential clients are more likely to develop trust and confidence in you and your work before you’ve even met face-to-face.
When it comes to brainstorming ideas, we often recommend using what could be described as a cluster technique, because this method allows for a lot of future growth. As your site grows over time, your pages are likely to change and develop. Using a cluster technique lets you create more content without having to alter what you’ve written beforehand.
For example, an estate planning attorney might start with four basic pages:
- Advance Directives
- Frequently Asked Questions
A page on living wills could provide information about:
- The purpose of a living will
- Situations in which a living will might be used
- How to create a living will
- How your firm can assist in creating a living will
- The advantages of choosing your firm to do so.
Over time, the original page may expand to include more in-depth coverage of each topic. Or, you may create new pages to cover additional topics. For example, the original “Wills” page that covered the topic broadly might become the main page for several new pages with narrower scopes:
- Probate Process
- Statutory Requirements
- Testamentary Capacity
- A FAQ page for Wills
As you brainstorm ideas, consider moving from broad topics to narrow topics — that way, you can continue to build your library over time and keep a navigation structure that will make sense to both you and your potential clients.
Assign responsibilities and accountabilities for your website content
Regardless of whether you’re writing your own content or you’ve hired someone else to help you, assigning responsibilities and accountabilities for your content is critical to executing your content plan in a way that lets you continue to move forward with content creation. If you’re not holding yourself accountable for what gets written and when, it can become easy to put things off.
You’ll want to check in to make sure you’re meeting your goals and making any necessary adjustments.
Milestones can shift: if you’ve created a plan that’s a little too ambitious at first, you may need to push your milestones farther apart. If you’re getting more done than you thought you could, then you can move the milestones closer together.
Regular check-ins can help you celebrate your successes and make sure that you — or anyone else involved in the content process — are adding new content to your website.
In the next two blog posts in this series, we’ll discuss how to properly execute your content plan, as well as how to audit your content.
Learn more about creating content plans for your law firm’s website
For a more detailed look at creating a content plan for your law firm’s website, see the following resources: