Marketing During COVID-19: Practical Ideas to Grow Your Practice

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Answering Legal Banner

In a call I had yesterday with a lawyer, I heard an amazing statement. First let me paint the picture.  We are talking via videoconference (of course). His two adorable little daughters are “participating” in the call by waving and tickling his beard. Such a fun dynamic! As we were getting ready to sign off, he said, “You know, once we finish a lot of the work we are doing right now for clients, we will have MORE time to focus on marketing activities.” He’s right. No commute time fighting traffic. Having more control over your day.

Because of the profound sentence he spoke, I thought it would be smart to put a list together for clients about what you can do with any extra time you may have to help and benefit your marketing efforts. Use it as a reminder of the many things you can do during the pandemic to ensure the strength of your relationships, and of your practice.

  • Create a Virtual Business – Now is the time to get creative about how you deliver your services.
  • Look into Appointlet – We use this tool to demonstrate our commitment to being accessible to our clients. The program is FREE and syncs with your Outlook or Google calendar so people can proactively schedule time with you.
  • Create a Virtual Conference Room – It only makes sense to offer your customers and clients the ability to meet with you in a safe and secure virtual conference room. You can use Whereby.com, another FREE resource, to create your own personal conference room.
  • Ask Contacts for a Google Review – Google reviews are beneficial for many reasons. They provide the third-party credibility that you and your company REALLY are great, and they help to boost your SEO.
  • Spend Time on Writing Content – One way to boost your SEO is to continue adding content to your social media profiles, in client communications, and on your website.
  • Phone a Friend – Think of a client or referral source you haven’t talked to recently. Pick up the phone to offer a friendly hello, to see how the person is doing during the pandemic. Find out how they are keeping the wheels on their business bus.
  • Develop a Proactive Communications Plan – Now is the time to be proactive in the communications you have with your clients. Reassure them that you are there for them to help them maintain their clients. You want your clients to know you are part of the solution!
  • Spend Some Time on Social Media – You heard me! You have permission to spend more time scrolling news feeds and engaging with your online network of friends and contacts. The key is engagement! Reach out to people – say hello. See if they want to meet you in your new video conference room for a virtual happy hour.
  • Support Your Local Community – Now is the time to do what you can to support your local businesses during COVID-19. It is also a great time to provide additional support to local schools in your area by supplying them with a supply of grocery cards for families in need.
  • Make a Social Media Post– Find a link to an article you find interesting and post it on LinkedIn and Facebook with your message about why you think your friends and contacts would like the piece.
  • Ask a Referral Source to a Virtual Coffee Meeting – Make a list of your top five referral sources. Reach out to one of them to schedule coffee, lunch or drinks after work – all from the comfort of their home office using your virtual conference room.
  • Make a Referral – Think of two people you know who should meet. Write a quick email introducing them to one another and include links to their LinkedIn profile or their website biography.
  • Elevator Speech – Write down your elevator speech and practice it a couple of times out loud. The more you practice, the less rehearsed it will sound. Focus on the unique solutions you offer your clients, why they choose you, and how you are part of the solutions everyone is facing during the pandemic.
  • Show your Appreciation – Remind your assistant and paralegal(s) how much you appreciate their role in helping you serve clients. Especially since these important resources are working from home, make it a point to continue to build your office’s morale. Be genuine. It will make their day!
  • Meet for a Virtual Lunch – Pick someone you want to learn more about and offer to schedule a virtual lunch meeting for purposes of learning more about them and their business.
  • Review your Website Biography – Check to make sure it is current and not missing any of your recent articles, presentations, awards or case summaries. Now is a great time to make sure your website bio accurately reflects your highest-level expertise.
  • Client Focus – Call a client for whom you have recently completed work just to see how well the firm met their expectations. It’s likely 70 – 80 percent of your clients come from referrals.  Maintaining contact with past clients keeps you top of mind.
  • Create a Rough Outline – Think of a topic you have a higher level of knowledge in and what type of audience would be interested. Create a rough outline. Use the outline to pitch an article to a publication, do a webinar-based presentation, write a blog post or self-publish on LinkedIn.
  • Learn your Strengths – Learn your inherent strengths; take the Gallop Organization’s Strengths Finder assessment. Taking the Strengths Finder Assessment will take approximately 40 minutes and will cost $49.99.
  • Your Email Introduction – Create a one paragraph introduction of yourself you can send to a LinkedIn connection willing to make an introduction of you to someone you want to meet. Save and reuse.
  • Association Involvement – Now is the time to look at the associations you are involved in. What are they doing to offer virtual meeting options?
  • Sales Pipeline – Review your sales pipeline. Look at one of your hottest prospects and take action to move that relationship forward (email, phone call, private message on LinkedIn). Do you want our Sales Pipeline Tool? Contact me and I will email it to you!
  • Engage with your Contacts on LinkedIn – Go to your LinkedIn Home page and scroll down the list of content and activities your contacts have posted. Engage with a couple of them (nice article, congratulations on your promotion, etc.).
  • Share Firm Social Media Posts – View the firm’s LinkedIn and Facebook company pages share posts the firm has made. If you share your firm’s posts, you will be disseminating them to all your contacts too
  • Proactive Client Status Update – Think of one client you can update on the status of their project or case. Call or email them with a proactive update (even if something is in a holding pattern).
  • Find a Nonprofit Board – Nonprofit boards are always looking for dedicated volunteer board members. What are you most passionate about? See what boards are out there supporting your interests and reach out to the executive director, or search LinkedIn to see who you may already know in the organization.
  • Thank a Referral Source – You just received a referral. Stop what you are doing and send a hand-written thank you note to the person who thought highly enough of you to send a client to you.
  • Time Entries and Invoices are a Marketing Tool – Look at the time entries you make, or the invoices you send to your clients. If you were the client, would you see the value in your work? Write time entries and invoices from the client’s perspective by including more detail.
  • Be Efficient for your Clients – Look at what you’re working on. If an associate or paralegal can do the drafting or research for you, delegate, delegate, delegate!
  • Get Back to Marketing Basics – Reflect on what has led to your success to-date. If you found yourself with no clients, what would you do first? Revisit the marketing behaviors that have led to your success.
  • Market with a Referral Source – Think of a referral source or two that you could partner with to deliver a webinar. What could the topics be? Who would you invite? Contact this person and discuss how a joint marketing program could benefit both of you!
  • Why Hire Me? – You’re sitting in front of a prospective client with a huge opportunity for you. How would you respond to, “Why should I hire you?” Write these messages down and incorporate them into your elevator speech.
  • Focus on your Niche – Identify one thing you can do to further your marketing efforts within your primary niche; the area of practice you would most like to grow, and where you have significant expertise; more than your competitors.
  • Target a Client – Pick one individual or company you would like to have as a client or customer. Go online and search for them. Look at their social media activities. Start a mini dossier on clients you would like to attract and keep adding to it.
  • Write a Blog – Pick a topic that interests you right now. Identify what the topic is, who it affects, and what people need to know. Add, “In Conclusion…..” You have just written a blog post! This can be shared on your LinkedIn profile or on your company website. Want more tips?
  • Send a Hand-Written Note – We know someone has done something thoughtful or considerate for you in the past few days. Let them know how much you appreciated it by sending a hand-written note.  You will stand out.
  • Be a Mentor – Take some time to reach out to someone you know who is 10 – 15 years behind you in business. Offer to meet with them in your Virtual Conference Room and be willing to help them move their career or business to the next level.
  • Research a Prospective Client – Interested in a specific prospective client? Do some research on them by reviewing the client’s website, the biographies of key executives, do a Google search for any recent media coverage or industry news, and do an advanced search in LinkedIn to see if anyone in your network can introduce you to the prospect.
  • Set-up Google Alerts – Google Alerts provide email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your queries. Google Alerts can be used to monitor a developing news story, or to keep current on a competitor, company or industry. Go to google.com/alerts and set up alerts with keywords and client names.
  • Pitch a Story Idea – Brainstorm article and interview ideas to pitch to relevant publications and other media. Has there been a significant development in your industry? Think creatively about what you are involved in that impacts others in a significant way.
  • Update Your Contacts – Do you have a stack of business cards sitting on your desk or at the bottom of your briefcase that you’ve collected at recent networking and client events? Gather them together and add their information to your Outlook contacts, and to your e-database (MailChimp, ConstantContact, ConvertKit).
  • Create a Case Study – Have you recently worked on a project that would make a great addition to your website? Remember that prospective clients want to SEE that you have DONE what they NEED.  Include type of project, client’s issue, your approach and the results.
  • Read a Publication of Interest to Your Client – Find and subscribe to a client or customer’s trade publication to stay up to date on news that may affect your client and his or her industry.

I want you to print this article and use it as a list of activities you can pursue if you find yourself with extra time during COVID-19! If you have any questions, you can book a meeting with me using Appointlet, send me an email at [email protected], or call me at 651-295-5544. And remember how important it is to be accessible to your clients, friends and networking contacts.

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