A Horse to Water: Evaluating Your Lead Generation Strategy

Lead Generation

The old saying states that you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. What that adage leaves out is that said horse will never take a single sip if you can’t get him to the lake in the first place. And the same principle applies to lead generation: there are never any guarantees that a client will choose your firm, but potential clients definitely won’t choose your firm if they never see or hear about it. Quality lead generation places you in clear sight of more potential clients and increases your chances of getting more calls, more emails, and ultimately more clients.

Lead Generation Is an Ongoing Strategy

While your firm likely already has a lead generation strategy in place in one form or another, this is not a “set it and forget it” marketing tool. Lead gen requires consistent maintenance as well as vigilant research to ensure that you’re staying on top of emerging trends and technology. It also requires regularly churning out top-notch content, but that content needs to be disseminated among appropriate, relevant, high-traffic web properties to generate high-quality leads.

With these requirements in mind, there are three essential components to effective lead generation:

  1. Capturing new leads
  2. Optimizing landing pages
  3. Implementing lead scoring 

You may be somewhat familiar with these concepts, but if you’re not actively engaging with your firm’s lead generation strategy, you’re missing out on pulling in highly qualified potential clients. To get you more acquainted with the nuances of lead generation and, subsequently, more enthused about your firm’s efforts at client acquisition, let’s review these three components in further detail.

1. Capturing New Leads

Garnering new organic traffic for your website or paid search visits to your landing pages is awesome! It’s proof positive that you’re creating quality content that is generating legitimate interest among your potential clients. However, if those visitors bounce from the site or the page before you are able to capture their contact information, their trip to the site has made no tangible impact on your law firm’s business goals.

While it’s important to build brand awareness and provide visitors with useful, edifying information, the primary purpose of every piece of content your law firm creates should be to elicit form fills, gain phone calls, or otherwise incentivize potential clients to contact your law firm and learn more about how you can help with their specific legal needs. While adding opt-in features on your site — in the form of calls-to-action (CTAs) — is definitely still a best practice for lead generation, many visitors are also looking to trade their contact information for a quality piece of collateral. So, you may want to consider creating an ebook or whitepaper that you can offer as a free download in exchange for a form submission. Just be sure to keep the elements of your form simple; you’d be surprised at how little information potential clients are willing to give up. Obviously you should ask for their email address, but beyond that information and their name, you’re likely asking too much, especially for first-time form fills.

2. Optimizing Landing Pages

If your law firm is not currently running a paid online advertising campaign (whether that be through search, display, remarketing, or social), you’re already behind. Even if you’ve been burned by paid search in the past, that is likely due to user error, a lack of maintenance, or unreasonable expectations, I would suggest that you give it another try with a trusted marketing agency with proven results like LaFleur Legal Marketing.

If you are running a campaign, you will want to make sure that your landing pages are reaching their full potential. Developing these web properties can be time consuming and is often seen as a mere after-thought, which it definitely is not. In fact, it’s fair to say that the design and information on your landing page are the most important elements of any paid campaign.

For starters, each individual campaign should be directed to its own dedicated landing page. Not only does this help track the analytics of the campaign, but it also allows you to specifically tailor your messaging to a unique set of potential clients that correlates with the stated goals, objectives, and strategy of the campaign. There is no “one-size-fits-all” version of a landing page, and law firms or marketing agencies who attempt to go that route always wind up with a busy-looking page with no clear direction and far too much text.

Your landing page should have one objective and one objective alone: to collect information from as many leads as possible. It should be a static, non-indexed page with zero navigation in the header and a clean, concise form fill positioned above the fold (i.e., visible before scrolling down). Some marketers like to provide a link to the main site when hovering over the logo in the banner, but as this disrupts from the stated purpose of the landing page, we advise against this practice.

As far as copy is concerned, landing pages are best created with a “less-is-more” approach. Think in terms of concise headlines, calls-to-action, and bullet points rather than paragraphs. Eliminate fluff and focus on delivering one crystal-clear message, whether that be highlighting your unique value, showcasing your experience, or summarizing whatever piece of marketing collateral you are offering in exchange for the form fill. Landing pages are not meant to illuminate the history or extol the many virtues of your firm; they are meant to provide a single message resulting in a single action.

3. Implementing Lead Scoring 

While it can get complex, lead scoring is exactly what it sounds like: assigning numerical values (a score) to various actions in order to determine the quality of a given lead. However, in order for these values to have real meaning, each variable you choose to add to your list should have an appropriate and realistic score. This means you must accurately prioritize your current and potential leads’ levels of engagement in order to properly assess their eagerness to work with your firm. For example, downloads (ebooks, infographics, pamphlets), email opt-ins, and website engagement (e.g., watching a video) are all examples of positive engagements that should increase a potential client’s score. Conversely, unsubscribing from an email list or failing to return a phone call should be viewed as negative engagements and decrease a potential client’s score.

Lead scoring is a great way to determine the interest of a current lead, as well as a good indicator of the strength of a potential lead. By gauging the viability of your potential clients, you can invest your time, money, and effort more effectively. There’s no sense in throwing valuable marketing dollars at a lead who doesn’t want to be caught, especially when those dollars could be put toward engaging with those who do. Higher lead scores also translate to increased confidence on the part of your staff and attorneys when they reach out to potential clients, which should make for a more self-assured and easy sales process.

LaFleur: Lead Generation Innovators

At LaFleur Legal Marketing, our marketing professionals have decades of experience creating, evaluating, and optimizing sound lead generation strategies that result in significant increases in client acquisition. Our lead generation tactics are comprehensive and effective, tracking potential leads from their very first data point through the completion of their legal issue and beyond.

Please contact us today by calling (888) 222-1512 or by completing the brief form on this page to learn more about our agency and how we can help your firm achieve even greater things.

References:

Badshah, A. (2015, July 24). 4 Mistakes you’re making with your lead gen strategy. Socedo. Retrieved from http://blog.socedo.com/4-mistakes-youre-making-with-your-lead-gen-strategy/

Lynch, R. (2015, February 3). The 4 L’s of a successful lead generation strategy. Hubspot. Retrieved from http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/lead-generation-strategy

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Kyle McCarthy

Kyle McCarthy is an experienced and skillful content strategist who earned his MA in English literature in 2012. Since then, he has worked with several national brands implementing marketing strategies and delivering compelling content.