Social Distancing Marketing: Four Things Lawyers Should Be Doing to Market during the Pandemic

Apr 1st, 2020 | Law Firm Marketing, Legal Marketing in Brief

For anyone who knows me well, I’m not okay in isolation. AT ALL.  Please call, text, or FaceTime me regularly.  I thrive on social interaction and have an entire business built on the same ideals.  I help lawyers (many of whom are loving social distancing) to get out of their comfort zones to network, meet people, and connect.

This pandemic has forced all of us to stop and find difficulty in doing simple things like go to the office every day, meet with clients, or even to the grocery store.

In unprecedented times like this, it can be very challenging to remain calm and focus on what you can do to market yourself especially when firm collections may be a concern in coming months.

All of us are in unknown and uncharted territory.

I’ve always been told, and always said, never stop marketing. Even in good times, lawyers and law firms should continue to market and be seen regularly. The most successful rainmakers find ways to stay relevant even if they are in trial, finalizing a large deal, or in the middle of a pandemic.

So what can you do to help strengthen your marketing with these newly found hours?

Outside of spending time with 10 or less of your loved ones, here are a few things to consider:

  1. Database and contact cleanup. This is an excellent thing to focus on right now. Lawyers should be reviewing their contact list as if they were getting ready to send out holiday cards or gifts at the end of the year. Use the time you have now to go through the process of digging deep and evaluating your contacts to see who’s there, who you haven’t spoken to, and who may even need a holiday card at the end of the year. Most importantly, set yourself up to review your contacts so that you can reach out to them during this self-isolation time. Email them, set up “someday soon” meetings, or connect through LinkedIn to remain visible. It is also important to review your contact lists so you are able to send out email alerts from your firm about things that will affect day-to-day decision making for the reader when received.
  2. Content generation. Lawyers should take this time to develop content, articles, webinars, and other material for the website and social media that they were otherwise too busy to pay attention to while they had more billable work. Getting ahead of content is always a struggle in law firms, and this slower period presents an opportunity for lawyers to generate enough content that could last for months. Think about this, if every lawyer in a firm generated one piece of content in the next 60 to 120 days it would allow firms to update their blogs and social media multiple times a month for many months! Please consider this – your marketing team would really appreciate it too!
  3. Committing to LinkedIn. In-person networking may not be an option but online networking is absolutely approved. For years, I have trained lawyers on how to use LinkedIn and have described it as an online networking party. It’s the networking event that is happening with or without you. Now more than ever, you need to be there. LinkedIn is an easy way to stay in front of people by sharing your content, connecting with others, following up, and saying hello. I’m not telling you to go nuts on sharing things that don’t matter, such as your dinner plans, but educational and relevant content sharing is perfect. Take the time to learn how to leverage and use the platform so you can be a resource to your online network and remain active.
  4. Individual planning. The last piece of advice for lawyers looking to fill time with meaningful activities is to complete an individual business plan. I offer a form that is easy to use, but you can just as easily create your own.  Identifying your goals, what it will take to accomplish them, who you need to meet, and when you need to meet them are essential tactics to staying on track and accomplishing your business goals. Taking the time to plan now will not only get you in the habit of doing this in the future, but it lets you take time to look at what things you actually want to do. Do you like to speak?   Look for topics and opportunities for trade and industry groups and pitch your ideas to the group for 2021 planning.

Take this time to reflect on what your strengths are as a lawyer and what you want to offer to referral sources and clients. Spending time with family, taking on hobbies and self-reflection can be very powerful tools to identify what you like to do and what you want to do in your career.

So, bill every hour you can, and if you find yourself with extra time, look at cleaning up, trimming down, and implementing a few of the above tactics. Creating a focus and voice will only make it easier for you to come out of your homes stronger and ready to connect again.