2010 08 26_webinar - online law firm marketing belgium 2010
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2010 08 26_webinar - online law firm marketing belgium 2010

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Online Law Marketing in Belgium, 2010. Online Presence, Strategies and Effectiveness of Belgian Law Firms.

Online Law Marketing in Belgium, 2010. Online Presence, Strategies and Effectiveness of Belgian Law Firms.

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  • CASE (see: http://adriandayton.com/2010/05/big-law-gives-it-away-lcmo/) “ At the Law Firm Business Development Forum, Anne Chwat , General Counsel of Burger King, told the story of being surprised with a class action suit for violating an anti-trust rule she didn’t know existed.    What did she do? She did a search for it. One name came up with the right content right on topic, and that ultimately led to an engagement.” In this new era of Google search, a law firm website can no longer be the glorified business card that it once was. Instead of an online presence , law firms need to develop a strategic online marketing programme, that helps firms connect to prospects, convince them, and ultimately convert those prospects to paying customers.
  • Voorbeeld business card website: Until a few years ago, most professional services website had about 5 navigational tabs with titles like “ABOUT US”, “SERVICES”, “TEAM”, “CONTACT”. Sites of this type were typically small (10 to 50 pages). Updates were mostly concerned with making the look and feel of the site more contemporary
  • Variables: - presence of metadata on website - presence of headings - Presence of sitemap - # of indexed Google pages # of inbound links While each of these variables in itself says little about a site’s search engine performance, together they give an accurate image of the care that was taken to make sure that websites would be easily found through online search. Search engines punish sites that load slowly, for example. Websites should be built to be fast. Also, Google likes to know exactly what a site is about. The firm’s webmaster should use the correct meta tags, headers, alt image tags, etcetera.   On a less technical level, Google also seems to prefer large sites over small sites. Large sites are more likely to attract inbound links, which is hugely important to Google in ranking sites. It is in your best interest to have a lot of content online. Preferably, content that other people link to. The best way to do this, is to just post interesting content online: news, knowledge, opinions.
  • SITEMAP: most search engines prefer sites with a sitemap to assist them in indexing web pages. METADATA is essentially a short abstract of what a page is about. The abstract is not visible to users of the site, but it is read by search engines, who use it when presenting search results. For instance, on a page that lists the awards and listings of a law firm, a meta description could read: “Firm X is recommended by Legal500, Chambers and won the 2010 Legal Award for Best Tax Firm”. This meta description will be listed in search engine search results. HEADINGS help search engines understand what website pages are about.
  • Variables: - presence of metadata on website - presence of headings - Presence of sitemap - # of indexed Google pages # of inbound links While each of these variables in itself says little about a site’s search engine performance, together they give an accurate image of the care that was taken to make sure that websites would be easily found through online search. Search engines punish sites that load slowly, for example. Websites should be built to be fast. Also, Google likes to know exactly what a site is about. The firm’s webmaster should use the correct meta tags, headers, alt image tags, etcetera.   On a less technical level, Google also seems to prefer large sites over small sites. Large sites are more likely to attract inbound links, which is hugely important to Google in ranking sites. It is in your best interest to have a lot of content online. Preferably, content that other people link to. The best way to do this, is to just post interesting content online: news, knowledge, opinions.
  • Only 14 % of Belgian law firms blog; only 1 or 2 actually call their blog a ‘blog’. Most prefer to present their blog under the title ‘info’, or even ‘news’. 60 % of Belgian law firms offers firm ‘news’, announcements of new partners, new publications, seminars, etc. Unfortunately, the news section is often not updated frequently. Also, like we said, the ‘news’ is not terribly interesting to clients, because it adds no value. ‘News’ will not forge, nor cement a relationship with an existing client or a prospect. Only 46 % of law firms show evidence of newsletters on its website. This number might appear lower than it actually is. Some firms mention newsletters, but don’t give access to them or don’t offer possibilities to subscribe to them. Just over one third (34 %) of Belgian law sites offer deep analysis on important legal problems in the form of whitepapers of research. Only 12 % offers references or case studies to show how the firm operates and thinks. Only 1 firm features client testimonials on its website. Video blogging is a very marginal phenomenon. A few firms (6 %) have tried their hand at video seminars, where a lawyer offers insight and analysis on screen.
  • Variables: - presence of metadata on website - presence of headings - Presence of sitemap - # of indexed Google pages # of inbound links While each of these variables in itself says little about a site’s search engine performance, together they give an accurate image of the care that was taken to make sure that websites would be easily found through online search. Search engines punish sites that load slowly, for example. Websites should be built to be fast. Also, Google likes to know exactly what a site is about. The firm’s webmaster should use the correct meta tags, headers, alt image tags, etcetera.   On a less technical level, Google also seems to prefer large sites over small sites. Large sites are more likely to attract inbound links, which is hugely important to Google in ranking sites. It is in your best interest to have a lot of content online. Preferably, content that other people link to. The best way to do this, is to just post interesting content online: news, knowledge, opinions.
  • Voorbeeld CONVINCE: - Nautadutilh: eigen videokanaal, Twitter, newsletter
  • Wijffels, Geuens, De Paep are remarkable for two reasons: the green color of the firm website (it’s reminiscent of ‘The Hulk’), and more importantly their subscription magazine “Europees vervoerrecht” (159 €/year).   The firm essentially becomes a publisher instead of a professional services provider. One cannot but wonder if the firm wouldn’t generate more billable business by offering the content of the magazine for free on the firm’s website.
  • We distinguish between firms who have a conversion form (usually “subscribe to our newsletter”) and firms who have a conversion form on every page. Belgian law firms seem to be unaware of the importance of list building. Almost 70 % of the firms that offer newsletters do have some kind of conversion form, somewhere on the site. But it often takes quite a while to find it. Only 8 % of the firms that offer newsletters (2 sites) actually offer a subscription form on every single page. Other, newer ways of connecting to prospects, such as Twitter and Facebook, remain marginal. Only 4 of the researched firms have a Twitter account that is connected to their website. Again, two foreign firms warp this score: NautaDutilh and Holman Fenwick Willan have Twitter accounts. The other two are Elegis and Publius (Tim Vermeir).
  • Variables: - presence of metadata on website - presence of headings - Presence of sitemap - # of indexed Google pages # of inbound links While each of these variables in itself says little about a site’s search engine performance, together they give an accurate image of the care that was taken to make sure that websites would be easily found through online search. Search engines punish sites that load slowly, for example. Websites should be built to be fast. Also, Google likes to know exactly what a site is about. The firm’s webmaster should use the correct meta tags, headers, alt image tags, etcetera.   On a less technical level, Google also seems to prefer large sites over small sites. Large sites are more likely to attract inbound links, which is hugely important to Google in ranking sites. It is in your best interest to have a lot of content online. Preferably, content that other people link to. The best way to do this, is to just post interesting content online: news, knowledge, opinions.
  • Voorbeeld CONVERT
  • Van Bael & Bellis Van Bael & Bellis are producers of a DVD (in collaboration with Michelin): ‘Complying with EU competition law’. The film won the International Prize for “Training & Education”, June 2005 at the Film Festival du Creusot.   From the website: “This DVD presents four scenarios which illustrate situations which are the most likely to constitute very serious infringements of European competition law. The scenarios are preceded by a video-clip describing a dawn raid by European Commission’s competition officials at the business premises of a company suspected of infringing European competition rules.” For sale at 250 € + VAT on the firm’s website.
  • Claeys & Engels Positioning itself as an opinion leader in the domain of labor law, Claeys & Engels offer an online calculator to calculate the so called “formula Claeys”. Unfortunately for the firm, it chose to host the calculator on a different domain ( www.formuleclaeys.be ) instead of the firm’s main domain ( www.claeysengels.be ). The online marketing value of the firm’s website would increase greatly by moving the calculator from its dedicated domain to the main Claeys & Engels domain.
  • Celes Celes is the only one of the studied law firms that offer service bundles, the LexPack (in three scales: LexPack 10, 20 or 30). It is cleverly presented as a form of insurance or maintenance against enterprise risk.
  • Philippe & Partners Philippe & Partners are quite innovative when it comes to their online presence. It has an online shop (“e-store”) with standard contracts, waivers, etcetera at very attractive prices (39,90 € for a confidentiality agreement, an agency contract, etc.). It also offers syllabi at 25 €. Like Wijffels Gueens De Paep, the firm adds a new business model to its existing business model, and one wonders if the benefits to the firm wouldn’t be greater in terms of legal fees if it offered the syllabi for free. Philippe & Partners also hosts a legal forum that shows little activity.

2010 08 26_webinar - online law firm marketing belgium 2010 2010 08 26_webinar - online law firm marketing belgium 2010 Presentation Transcript

  • WEBINAR: online law firm marketing Belgium 2010 ‘ online strategies, presence and effectiveness of law firms’ 26.08.2010 Kristien Vermoesen Managing Partner www.FINN.be [email_address]
  • CONTENT ONLINE PRESENCE VS. ONLINE MARKETING FINN STUDY RESULTS CONCLUSIONS 26.08.2010
  • ONLINE PRESENCE VS. ONLINE MARKETING FINN STUDY RESULTS CONCLUSIONS
  • CASE: BURGER KING GOOGLE TO SCAN THE MARKET “ FREE SAMPLE” KNOWLEDGE, INSIGHT, ANALYSIS 26.08.2010
  • “ ONLINE BUSINESS CARD” 10 to 50 PAGES TRADITIONAL NAVIGATIONAL TABS OLD COPY NO LINKS 26.08.2010 ONLINE PRESENCE VS. ONLINE MARKETING “ ONLINE SEMINARS” CONNECT CONVINCE CONVERT
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  • SEO: NO NEW CONTENT, NO INBOUND LINKS NO WAY TO CONVINCE VISITORS NO CONVERSION 26.08.2010 DISADVANTAGES ONLINE PRESENCE
  • ALL PROSPECTS VISIT WEBSITE COST OF PUTTING CONTENT ONLINE = 0 COST OF KEEPING ONLINE = 0 QUALITY PF SERVICE = NOT ENOUGH. Studies (Eversheds, Shultz): “50% of law clients inclined to shop around” 26.08.2010 WEBSITES SHOULD BE FOCAL POINT OF MARKETING EFFORTS
    • “ ONLINE SEMINARS”
    • Give knowledge and insights away about problems that prospects are faced with. EXPERTISE
    • CONNECT
    • CONVINCE
    • CONVERT
    26.08.2010 HOW SHOULD ONLINE MARKETING WORK?
  • 1. CONNECT : how well does the site perform on variables that increase the chance of being found? - SEO 2. CONVINCE : how well does the site perform on variables that increase the chance of convincing readers of the expertise of the law office? - blogs, whitepapers, newsletters, case studies, client testimonials, video channel 3. CONVERT : how well does the site convert readers into prospects, by trying to get them to subscribe to newsletters, RSS or Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn accounts? - newsletter, RSS, LinkedIn 26.08.2010
  • ONLINE PRESENCE VS. ONLINE MARKETING FINN STUDY RESULTS CONCLUSIONS
    • 50 BELGIAN LAW FIRM WEBSITES
    • B2B
    • 10 – 200 employees: growth oriented
    • “ Best in class”
    • Selection: LinkedIn
    • 19 VARIABLES (CONNECT, CONVINCE, CONVERT)
    26.08.2010 METHODOLOGY
  •  
  • 1. CONNECT: STATS & FACTS
  • AV. BELGIAN LAW SITES = 266 (top: Loyens & Loeff 4140, Holman Fenwick Willan +1600, NautaDutilh +1600) MED. BELGIAN LAW SITES = 43 26.08.2010 INBOUND LINKS
  • AV. BELGIAN LAW SITES = 258 (top: Loyens & Loeff, Holman Fenwick Willan , NautaDutilh ) MED. BELGIAN LAW SITES = 60 20% HAS 0 INDEXED PAGES 26.08.2010 NUMBER OF INDEXED PAGES
  • 44% OF BELGIAN LAW SITES HAS NO SITEMAP 38% OF BELGIAN LAW SITES SHOW METADATA 46% OF BELGIAN LAW SITES USE HEADINGS 26.08.2010 SITEMAP, METADATA, HEADINGS
  • 2. CONVINCE: STATS & FACTS
  •  
  • NEWS = ANNOUNCEMENTS BUSINESS NEWS & EVENTS BLOG = EXPERTISE, OPINION, ANALYSIS WHITEPAPERS = IN-DEPTH STDIES BY THE FIRM 26.08.2010 MORE INBOUND LINKS MORE UNIQUE VALUE MORE HIGH-QUALITY LEADS
    • “ SHOW, DON’T TELL”
    • + EXPERTSTATUS
    • + inbound marketing
  • 2. CONVINCE: EXAMPLE(S)
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  • 3. CONVERT: Stats & facts
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  • NEWSLETTER SUBSCRIPTION FORMS RSS FEEDS TWITTER FACEBOOK LINKEDIN … -> LIST BUILDING 26.08.2010 CONVERSION SHOULD BE THE END GOAL OF ALL ONLINE MARKETING
  • 3. CONVERT: EXAMPLE(S)
  •  
  • ONLINE PRESENCE VS. ONLINE MARKETING FINN STUDY RESULTS CONCLUSIONS
  • LOOK OVER CONTENT (copycat) 26.08.2010 NOT STRATEGICALLY EMBEDDED
  • ‘ INTERESTING LINKS’ 26.08.2010 5 avoidable mistakes
  • PUBLICATIONS: no links, just titles 26.08.2010 5 avoidable mistakes
  • SMALL FONTS: hard to read (bounce rate, stickiness) 26.08.2010 5 avoidable mistakes
  • NO NEWS UPDATES 26.08.2010 5 avoidable mistakes
  • PDF INSTEAD OF HTML 26.08.2010 5 avoidable mistakes
  • REMARKABLE BELGIAN LAW MARKETING INITIATIVES
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  • ABOUT FINN
    • FULL SERVICE FOR LAW & PROFESSIONAL SERVICES
    • Strategy
    • Market research & analysis
    • PR (offline, online, events, seminars...)
    • Corporate communication
    • Online marketing (online strategy & web development)
    • Project management for communication & change projects
  • FINN SERVICE PACK ‘keynote’ FINN Public Relations is specialized in the positioning of professional services providers as an expert. (References: Lydian Lawyers, Projective, Ambos NBGO,...). Approach: Strategic coaching P romotion of marketing values and message, strategic advice, advice networking events… Content coaching Quick wins: which “stories” already exist within the organization? What relevant knowledge for prospects is ready to be externalized? Long term: which stories need to be developed? Choice of channels Is a story better suited as an interview subject or as an opinion article? Which ideas can be developed into a newsletter, blog, whitepaper? Execution Prepare and sending of communication to journalists & stakeholders, edit press dossiers, newsletters. Advice & guidance through implementation software. Professional “look & feel” of communication. Training & coaching Media training, presentation skills, … Relations Introduction to potential clients. Social media stewardship Training for use of social networks, monitoring & adjustment of social media use, deliver ideas for social media, partly execution (writing blogs/whitepapers based on interviews) Project management Transparent execution of complex en long term projects in collaboration with client.
  • FINN service pack ‘Socialize’
    • ‘ SOCIALIZE’ is a 6 month program that consists of:
      • 1. Analysis with marketing & communication manager
      • 2. Goals & strategy
      • 3. Creative concept & social media mix
      • 4. Project management technical implementation (website, blog, etc.)
      • 5. Tailored-made training social media for employees (values, creative concept,
      • tone, opportunities...).
      • 6. Monitoring of social media (deliver & execute ideas)
      • 7. 3-month evaluation
      • 8. Report
    • References
    • www.finn.be
    • http://www.finn.be/klanten-cases
  • Questions? Feel free to ask them now, or send an e-mail to: [email_address] Twitter: @kris10vermoesen RSS feed: http://www.finn.be/finn.rss