A funnel in your home might be the tool you use to put flour in a storage jar, or oil in your engine. A digital marketing funnel functions similarly, taking a large amount of input and narrowing it to a specific goal. This is a type of “sales funnel,” which is a general marketing term for the journey a potential customer goes through towards the goal of making a purchase.
In legal marketing, this means moving potential clients from the top of the sales funnel (TOFU), through the middle (MOFU), and to the bottom (BOFU). We inform those who are new to the idea of needing a lawyer, filter out the cases you don’t represent, and funnel the prime clients into conversion and that one call that could change their lives for the better.
If you want to discuss legal marketing solutions, contact Obu Interactive today by calling 800-619-5944. For more details on what kinds of content we produce for each stage of the sales conversion funnel, read on.
What Kind of Consumer Product Are Legal Services?
Consumer goods or products are categorized as Convenience, Shopping, Specialty, and Unsought. Convenience products are everyday goods like groceries, Shopping products are less frequently bought items like furniture and cell phones, while Specialty products are luxury goods such as high-end cars, art, or fashion.
Lawyers and legal services fall under Unsought products, along with life insurance and funeral services. The characteristics of this category include:
- An initial lack of consumer knowledge: Most prospective clients learn everything they know about court and lawyers from TV shows and sensational news. They are unsure of how to “shop around” for lawyers.
- An avoidance incentive: Legal services are usually purchased to respond to a difficult situation (“I’m getting divorced and need a lawyer”) or to prevent something worse (“The person who injured me won’t take responsibility, so I need to file a lawsuit”).
- Infrequently purchased: Some people go their entire lives without the need of legal services. In personal injury cases, prospective clients only need a lawyer after they’ve been hurt and need help.
Unsought products are also considered “undesirable,” not because they are without value, but because consumers don’t want to be in the situation that requires them. However, when someone needs a lawyer, they need you very urgently. Our job as legal marketers is to get them the information they require to contact you with confidence.
Download a copy of the “What Is a Marketing Funnel for Lawyers?” checklist here.
What Is a Marketing Funnel for Lawyers?
While this sales funnel is a general marketing concept, the details vary for legal marketing needs. What a lawyer is “selling” isn’t a retail product, and what their client is “buying” isn’t a common good or luxury purchase. In order to convert people into clients, we have to address the issues with Unsought products one by one, and we do so with these legal marketing funnel stages:
Top of Funnel (TOFU)
At the top of the funnel is the “awareness” stage: a person is aware that they may be in need of a lawyer, and they have questions. This is the big open mouth of the funnel where you have a general audience. For legal marketing, this means people who may be curious about a topical legal case, or who aren’t sure if their issue is worthy of a lawsuit.
Obu Interactive’s action: Inform.
Since many at this stage are not sure if they even need a lawyer, we create general interest TOFU content like:
- Practice area pages: These inform readers about questions like “What is personal injury?” and “Is hospital negligence the same as medical malpractice?” This can help assure them that their circumstance is worth at least calling a lawyer to discuss, which moves them further down the funnel.
- Social media assets: This includes eye-catching images for common questions and concerns like “Who is at fault in a car vs. motorcycle accident?” and “What is the average auto injury settlement?” When a person clicks through for more details, they are one step closer to conversion.
- Shareable video content: Videos are becoming a more common form of content because they are highly shareable. This means one person may see the content and send it to their friend or family member in need of legal help, essentially doing some on-the-ground marketing for you.
General TOFU materials help nudge those who will ultimately call your office towards more in-depth information. By increasing their confidence with basic knowledge, they gain comfort in hiring an attorney for themselves. Potential clients are also far more likely to choose your firm if you’re the authoritative voice they’ve learned from.
Middle of Funnel (MOFU)
The middle of the funnel is the “consideration” stage, where a person has more-or-less accepted that they need a lawyer, but they’re not committed to which one. This is where potential clients are actively seeking the solution to a known issue.
Obu Interactive’s action: filter.
It’s now time to filter the conversions that are specific to your firm’s services. For example, if your signature skill set is asbestos and mesothelioma cases, you don’t need phone calls about identity theft cases. Here is how Obu Interactive helps filter quality conversions for your needs:
- Blog posts: Whether you call them News, Updates, or Dispatches, blogs are a great way to explore specific topics. For firms with a limited practice area, local regulations and in-state statutes of limitations are great conversion material—they bring in nearby clients, and encourage them to call ASAP due to the limited filing deadlines.
- Process details: By this we mean content that explains in greater detail the step-by-step of how lawyers win cases, like the four elements needed to prove negligence. Another common MOFU consideration is the difference between a settlement and a damages award verdict.
- Case results: An excellent way to convince a prospective client that you can deliver for them is by showing that you’ve done it before. By creating and linking to a case results page, you give a client real stories and real dollar amounts they can imagine, prompting them to the final stage of the marketing funnel.
Once the reader realizes they have a problem, and that your firm offers the solution they need, the last hurdle is to get them to input their information online or pick up a phone.
Bottom of Funnel (BOFU)
At last we reach the narrow part of the funnel, the “decision” stage. People at this stage are the good leads—they’ve done their research, and they’re now ready for your expertise.
Obu Interactive’s action: funnel.
What would be coming on too strong in TOFU content now becomes appropriate at this stage of the conversion journey. More direct language emphasizes to prospective clients that the time is now, and daylight’s a-wasting. BOFU stage conversion tools include:
- Landing pages: A landing page (also known as a “lead capture page“) is a specific, single-focus webpage separate from your general website or blog. Landing pages are especially useful after sudden events like fires or mass casualty incidents, when it’s important to meet a rapid demand for information. These time-sensitive event pages catch people who are dropped quickly to the bottom of the funnel, delivering your contact info and a no-frills list of your best features right away.
- Calls to action (CTAs): When your client is ready to convert, a “call to action” means urgent or reassuring phrases such as, “A consultation is free and confidential,” or “Our firm has the proven experience you need.” Bold contact buttons and clickable phone number links are also vital at this stage.
- Testimonials: Gathering written or video testimonials from previous clients can be the tipping point in the decision-making process. This is due to the storytelling aspect of testimonials, which makes them unique from other service reviews. A testimonial shows someone who was once just like your potential client, and is now satisfied with their settlement. It gives people that final dose of conviction they need to call your office.
Once a prospective client knows they need a personal injury lawyer, they have to find you. Obu Interactive makes sure your firm is in the right place, with the right information, at the right time to catch their conversion.
While the marketing funnel is unique for lawyers and law services, the basic principles are still the same. You need content to meet your clients where they are in the process of hiring an attorney. If they’re ready to call, we put the number on their screen and in their hands. If they need more information before they decide, we help guide them down the funnel to the lawyer they’re looking for.
Wherever your clients are in their journey to hire an attorney, Obu Interactive is there to inform, filter, and funnel them to the solutions your services can offer.
How Can Obu Interactive Funnel Clients to Your Law Firm?
So why do you need TOFU in your marketing diet? Because you have to start somewhere, at the top of the marketing funnel. You can’t expect visitors to your website to make a conversion immediately—there is a whole process to conversion, and a skilled legal marketing team knows how to guide potential clients towards the “sale.” A sale is made the moment when your firm becomes their firm. This is a two-sided, win-win goal: you need to find your kind of client as much as those clients need their kind of lawyer.
Obu Interactive takes action to create content for each stage of the digital marketing funnel. Wherever your clients are in their journey to hire an attorney, Obu is there to inform, filter, and funnel them to the solutions your services can offer.
If you need a legal marketing firm to help match-make your excellent lawyers with expectant clients, contact us online or call us directly at 800-619-5944. Obu believes in changing lives, one lead at a time.