Okay, you’re spending big bucks with big full size ads in the yellow pages, a FindLaw, Einstein or Lexus web site, television commercials and maybe some radio, billboards, etc. But are you creating name recognition that generates top of the mind awareness within your market? Do people recognize you or your name when you are out in public? If not, then odds are that your advertising is not promoting your law firm as a memorable brand.
The fact is that your services are basically the same as those offered by all the other advertising law firms in your market. So how do you make your firm stand out from the crowd? By using your most valuable assets: you, your partners, your reputation and your good name. Your advertising should consistently and prominently feature your firm’s name, logo and a likeness of you or your firm’s chosen spokesperson. Use your advertising to introduce yourself to potential clients, let them know a little about who and what you are.
Too many lawyers promote what they do instead of who they are. For example, I’ve viewed hundreds of attorney yellow page ads in most major markets and all too often these ads are dominated by large words such as “injured?”, “accident”, “we care”, “we’ll fight”, “we’re tough”, etc. Large pictures of accidents, doctors, emergency vehicles/personnel, victims in wheelchairs, courthouses, scales of justice and many other illustrations may also be prominent. Then way down on the page, past the mumbo jumbo, in a relatively small presentation is the name of the law firm and contact information. This is not effective branding and marketing.
Many attorney television commercials, especially generic ones, are similarly ineffective. For twenty-five seconds we may see various scenarios involving victims or grieving loved ones. Then a five second tag shows the law firm’s name and phone number. The law firm’s name is only mentioned once in that valuable 30 seconds worth of television advertising real estate. Now this type of ad may not be all that bad if it is part of a campaign mix that also includes other more personalized/customized commercials. But if these are the only type of TV spots you are airing, you’re not getting a very good bang for your buck.
Likewise, you might want to think before you leap at those “vanity” phone numbers and domain names. Relying on phone numbers such as 1-800-INJURED or 1-800-HURT911, to sell your services is not an effective means of branding. Neither are domain names such as victimlawyer.com or floridalawfirm.com. Memorable phone numbers and/or domain names may assist in your marketing efforts but they should not be the main focus of your advertising. A marketing plan that consistently promotes your unique good name and services as an established, trusted brand is far more likely to motivate and influence potential clients.