CallRail, an Atlanta-based marketing analytics and business communications platform, recently released new research to better understand marketing priorities for law firms in their 2022 Marketing Outlook for Law Firms report. The study surveyed over 500 US-based individuals employed by law firms that commission fewer than 1,000 employees nationwide to determine what marketing challenges law firms face, where firms are allocating their marketing budgets, and which marketing channels are currently underperforming.
“With many different channels in digital marketing from print ads to social media, knowing which ones are bringing in leads can be tough,” said Mary Pat Donnellon, Chief Revenue Officer at CallRail. “Our research shows that law firms are turning to trusted marketing analytics and business communications platforms like CallRail for advanced insight into what keywords and campaigns are driving phone calls to their business so that they can allocate their budgets to the channels driving their best leads.”
Key findings from the research include…
Marketing is a priority for law firms, but it’s not without risks.
Marketing has emerged as a major priority for law firms. 71% of respondents said their firm is between “somewhat” and “very” involved in marketing strategy, with an average of 49% of the annual budget allocated toward marketing. 91% of respondents said their firm’s area of legal practice sees repeat clients, so, within that marketing budget, an average of 46% is allocated for remarketing. That said, marketing isn’t without its risks: In fact, 95% agreed that because marketing is a non-billable expense, the spending risk is greater, making it even more important to use marketing dollars effectively.
Social media is a major channel, but also a major concern.
Respondents to our study listed social media as the most valuable channel for providing leads—48% even said social media is the #1 channel through which potential clients find their law firm. But when asked to rank lead marketing channels that are underperforming, respondents listed social media as the #1 worst performer. CallRail found the average law firm currently allocates 17% of its online marketing budget for social media marketing efforts, with 60% of respondents saying their firm plans to increase its social media budget in the future.
Email marketing and other digital marketing efforts need some attention.
Email remains the tried and true method of digital marketing, with 61% of respondents saying their law firm uses email lists to keep in touch with unconverted leads. But there’s still work to be done: survey respondents listed email marketing as the #2 worst performing channel. Paid advertising and email marketing make up 18% and 16% of firms’ online marketing budgets respectively, and 48% of respondents said their firm plans to increase the amount of online marketing budget allocated to each of these channels.
Business website optimization is a challenge.
51% of respondents listed website optimization as the biggest challenge their firm faces when it comes to online marketing strategy, and respondents ranked their business website as the #4 worst performing channel. While the largest chunk of the average marketing budget—24%—already goes toward law firms’ websites, 66% of respondents said their firm plans to increase their website budget moving forward.
Outsourcing for marketing help is common.
83% of respondents said their law firm outsources marketing work, so they can focus on what they’re good at, which—not surprisingly!—isn’t marketing. SEO marketing is the most commonly outsourced channel (56%), with other paid digital advertising (51%) and paid search, pay-per-click, or PPC (47%) following closely behind. 41% of respondents said they outsource their social media marketing efforts, and 28% say they outsource business website optimization.
“Marketing a business is challenging, especially for small business owners whose budget and time is often stretched thin,” said Donnellon. “CallRail’s research shows that leveraging a simple, powerful marketing analytics and business communications platform like CallRail, lawyers can streamline their marketing spend and rest assured that they’re driving the highest-quality leads to their businesses.”
Want to read the rest of the report? Download the full report now for free.
To learn how CallRail’s platform can help law firms optimize their marketing spend, visit callrail.com and try it free.