A Law Firm’s Call to Action

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Your law firm has developed a multi-faceted law firm marketing campaign, including a website full of rich and interesting content.  However, the clients are not coming.  The reason for this strange phenomenon may be in the message that your law firm is sending, or not sending, to potential clients.  One of the most important aspects of your law firm’s marketing campaign is its call to action.

A call to action is essentially a message that is part of an ad or on your website that motivates potential clients to do something.  What the “something” is will be decided on by you and the members of your law firm.
 
In today’s society we are all bombarded with information.  Much of this information is sales oriented.  Most of us have become accustomed to tuning out what doesn’t matter.  Every now and then, when an ad actually speaks to a need that we have as consumers, we are often too overburdened to take the necessary steps to get in touch with the company or firm.
 
This is where a call to action comes in.  A call to action is a way of giving potential clients a reason to do something now.  A good call to action should spell out what action you’d like to see your potential clients take.

Suggestive Calls to Action

Law firm calls to action range from general and somewhat subtle to the very specific and detailed.  A few examples of rather subtle law firm calls to action are: “Don’t wait, call us today” or “Don’t put off settling your account with the IRS for even one more day.”  Firms who use these types of messages are encouraging the client to contact their office, without providing them with a specific deadline.  However, it is implied that their situation will improve if they get in touch with the firm soon.
 
In corporate America, calls to action will often use humor or contests as part of their call to action.  However, attorneys must always remember that their potential customers are probably dealing with something that is no laughing matter.  Choose a call to action that acknowledges the concern that potential clients might be experiencing.
 
Logo Based Calls to Acton

Some law firms choose to incorporate their call to action into their logo.  Two examples would be “work with the best” or “settle for nothing less”.  Both of these statements encourage the potential client to decide that they will not settle and that they will use your firm for their legal needs.
 
Logo based calls to action can have their drawbacks.  If you do an extensive ad campaign, potential clients may start to tune out the message.
 
Another drawback is that potential clients may become more familiar with the phrase than with the actual name of the firm.  This becomes a problem if at some point you decide to rebrand your firm.  You may have to remove the phrase that consumers recognize the most when they think of your law firm.

On the other hand, if you are having such strong name recognition, you might not be in the position where you need to rebrand anytime soon.

Deadline Driven Calls to Action

Some law firm calls to action use specific deadlines to motivate potential clients to act.  For example, lawyers who are pursuing a class action lawsuit will often have a deadline by which time people will need to contact them in order to be a part of the suit.  Another example is a one hour free consultation for all potential clients who call before the end of the month.

Deadline driven calls to action can be the most powerful and also the riskiest.  They are powerful because it is crystal clear to the potential client that if they want to get something they must act now.  It is much stronger than “call our office today”.  Potential clients may just decide that they’ll call tomorrow.  But if there is a deadline, they are more likely to make the call immediately so that they don’t forget.

The downside to deadline driven calls to action is that they can make potential clients feel manipulated.  They may sense that your firm is creating a false sense of urgency for your own gain.  Since lawyers are in the service industry, this can signal the end of a client relationship before it even begins.  Use deadline driven calls to action sparingly and only when you believe that it can be done tactfully and with integrity.

A well crafted and well placed call to action can mean the difference between getting new clients and sitting around twiddling your thumbs.  Don’t let potential clients pass you by.  Use the simple ideas outlined in this article to get the most out of your law firm’s marketing dollars by incorporating a call to action into your advertising plan.