You know better than anyone just how competitive the legal field is. It’s hard to get clients and build a loyal base; once you’re there, it’s a fight to keep that base and grow it. A key part of any marketing strategy is to understand who you’re battling against. There are a number of competitor analysis benefits that your firm can’t afford to overlook.
It might be tempting to think that as long as you understand your own firm, with all of your unique selling points, that it would be unnecessary to spend too much time analyzing your rivals. While it’s true we’re not suggesting you obsess on what your competitors are doing, the reality is that understanding what they’re up to can help you better situate yourself in the market and reach the prospects most likely to want your services.
The first step to competitor analysis is to do a little role-playing. Think like a prospect. If you’re a personal injury law firm, have a few people in your office pretend they’ve just had an accident and start looking for an attorney.
That would entail entering key search terms, like “personal injury lawyer near me” into their phones, the way they might in the immediate aftermath of an accident. See which firms come up and you’ll know who is putting the time into making sure their local SEO is done right.
We’d certainly suggest browsing their website. Do they have a vibrant blog? Is the content on the pages describing their services really well put-together or does it look like a quick paragraph that a busy person slapped together just to get something online?
Is their “Contact Us” form in an easy-to-find place? Do you get a call back in a timely manner if it’s filled out?
Do they have a newsletter? If so, sign up and find out how often it gets sent out. You’ll also want to know if they have a social media presence, how often those platforms are updated and if icons for each platform are on the website to invite people to sign up.
As part of your website browsing, there are SEO things you can look for as well. Do a right-click on any page in the website and the HTML code that created the page will come up. You can now tell if they have Google Analytics installed, if each page has meta-titles and meta-descriptions and a whole lot more.
These are all fairly basic steps that can be done without a large investment of time. But the information you gather will tell you how seriously your competitors take digital marketing and whether or not there’s a marketplace vacuum that you can step into.