An interesting article in the Legal Intelligencer caught the eye of my boss last week. The article discussed a lawsuit between a PI law firm out in Pittsburgh and the legal marketing company FindLaw where the firm said it paid nearly $300,000 for web development and social media marketing that did anything but bring in the clients.

According to the lawsuit, the law firm Friday & Cox had entered into multiple contracts with FindLaw in an effort to increase their online presence by optimizing its website and its Facebook page to gain more clients. Instead, Friday & Cox alleges FindLaw gave them a less than SEO optimized website with little content, blog posts that are used on many other FindLaw websites, and a Facebook page that has 68 likes.

Let me pause a moment to let this sink in. Over a seven-year period, FindLaw was given approximately $300,000 in an exchange of 68 followers, four-paragraph blogs that rehash national lawsuits, and an “optimized” website where the pictures don’t even show up half the time (trust me, I saw the site).

What is wrong with this picture?

Now obviously I don’t know the specifics of the contract and I don’t know how the workflow was between FindLaw and Friday & Cox, but I have heard plenty of complaints from former clients of these big legal marketing companies. Unoriginal content that doesn’t convert, less than informative blogs that no one reads, unattractive, blah websites do not cut it, problems that get ignored and takes forever to resolve. So many excuses after excuses, it is the same song and dance time after time after time.

And that’s the problem. With thousands of customers, it’s easier for a large company to slap together the same template text and design and ship it out and call it optimized. And the lawyers are either busy or don’t know enough to complain about the process or they are seriously too damn busy. That is why they hire an outside specialized company such as FindLaw.  And what happens? You owe hundreds of thousands of dollars on less than mediocre work.

As the main content writer and SEO specialist at ENX2 Marketing, I spend the majority of my time researching, analyzing, and writing for our clients. I see what people are searching for and what is missing on the site. I look to see what others are writing about the topic and then craft my material. I make sure the number of words exceeds the minimum length and the content is original. I put in a considerable amount of time of my work week handling this delicate matter. Good things take time. But most importantly, I send to the lawyer to check my work and sometimes they can’t get back to me right away, but that is ok because I will follow-up one more time before posting my content. My boss has a playbook she has and we all must play by the rules if we want to win in this competitive competition for the best placements online.

And that’s the name of the game. You need to check the work. All the time. Every time. And then check again. One more time? Ok, one more time.

You know that old saying, “The left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing?” It’s very easy to do in digital marketing, especially if you don’t know much about technology. The fact of the matter is it takes a lot of time to craft the right message. And it’s a group effort — my team edits my content, my boss approves my message, and THEN it goes to the lawyer. And only after all those people approve it will the internet get to see my work. It’s a process, one that needs to be done correctly and according to the ENX2 Playbook.

And unfortunately, not all legal marketing companies follow a process like this. And not only as the business owner but also the client, you need to know what your digital marketing company is doing for your business. Are they hurting it or helping it?

You don’t need technical know-how. Here are a few ways to keep your digital marketing company in check:

  • Reporting. This is a surefire way of knowing what your marketing company is doing every month. You need to look at these reports carefully. If you don’t understand some of the numbers, ask for clarification. When you don’t get it, ask again.
  • Contacts. Of course, the number one way of knowing your marketing is working is through how many contacts you’re getting in a month. Have they increased over time?
  • Social Media. You should always be looking at your firm’s social media profiles, not only to see what your marketing company puts up there but to see how users are interacting with the content. Are there likes? Comments? Reactions? Shares?
  • Communication. We’re in constant contact with our clients. Every day my inbox is filled with clients asking questions, wanting things posted on social, asking for a news article, or even celebrating a big win. And I make sure every question is answered, even on the weekends. If your marketing team is not communicating with you, you got a problem. A Big problem.

Hey, speaking of communication, if you’re not happy with your marketing team, let’s talk. Contact us today and let’s see how we can make you amazing.