The life of an attorney is a busy one.
In the whirlwind of tending to client needs, preparing for trial, prepping contracts, and fretting over billable hours, it’s easy for even well-intentioned firms to lose sight of the bigger picture.
However, taking the time to engage in community service initiatives can have a significant impact, both on your firm’s marketing efforts and your overall sense of fulfillment. By giving back to your local community, you can not only help those in need but also showcase your firm’s commitment to social responsibility and differentiate yourself from your competitors.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of community involvement for law firms, and how it can help you stay grounded, build relationships, and give back to society.
Why is Community Service so important?
It attracts socially-conscious clients
According to recent studies, 87% of consumers will purchase a product because a company advocated for an issue they cared about. As consumers become increasingly aware of social and environmental issues, they are looking for businesses that support the same causes they do.
By engaging in community service initiatives, law firms can not only showcase that they are actually a part of the community they’re serving but demonstrate their alignment with clients’ values.
It helps your firm’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO) efforts
From an SEO standpoint, community service can help improve a law firm’s search engine rankings by generating backlinks to their website from community organizations and local news outlets. These backlinks can increase the firm’s domain authority and make it easier for potential clients to find them online.
To be more specific, Google’s helpful content update to its algorithm reinforces Google’s #1 long-standing advice: create content for people first. In other words, create content that adds value. Instead of drowning a page with links and keywords just for the sake of it, it’s best to create content your specific audience wants to see.
Additionally, community service initiatives can provide valuable, locally-focused content that can drive organic search traffic to a law firm’s website. For example, if a law firm sponsors a local charity event, they can create blog posts, social media content, and other digital assets that highlight their involvement in the event. This content can help the firm rank higher for relevant local search terms.
It’s good for recruitment purposes
Here’s a little secret: attorneys who are job searching are paying close attention to your law firm’s website, looking for clues about your firm’s values and identity. Basically, job seekers are searching for your firm’s humanity in-between the lines of your website.
In an industry where many law firm websites can feel like faceless corporations, filled with vague corporate-speak, community service initiatives can make your firm more relatable and approachable.
By participating in community service, you can demonstrate that your firm is more than just a business – it’s a group of individuals who care about their community and want to make a positive impact. This can help attract job seekers who are looking for a firm with a strong sense of purpose.
It’s just what you should do
Let’s put aside the bottom-line benefits of community service for a minute. Without any other incentives, you should try to give back to your community simply because it’s the right thing to do.
As attorneys, we made a commitment to use our talents and resources to help society. And, many of us are in a fortunate enough social and financial position to give more than the average person might be capable of.
So for attorneys, community service isn’t just a clever marketing tactic – it’s a way for us to uphold our ethical obligations as legal professionals and show that we care about more than just our own interests.
How can you get involved?
If your firm has never engaged in community service as a whole firm before, it’s important to start by identifying your firm’s core values. What values do you want to uphold through your community service efforts?
This can be a collaborative process involving the entire firm, allowing everyone to contribute their ideas and opinions. Only after you’ve reflected on your firm values should you begin considering the different community service opportunities that align with those values.
You should also consider looking to peer firms and explore how they approach firm-wide community service. For example, one of our clients is particularly engaged in charitable community activities. They showcase their extensive involvement under a section on their website entitled “Giving Back”. Their involvement is extensive, ranging from community no-kill shelters to local college scholarships to other national foundations. You might be able to glean inspiration from similarly socially-conscious peer firms near you!
The possibilities are really endless. Find a cause (or a few causes) that resonate with your firm, and dedicate yourselves to them.
Are you in need of inspiration right now? Let’s see how other law firms are giving back.
Law firms that go above and beyond to serve their communities
Law firms are not only dedicated to providing legal services to their clients, but many also prioritize giving back to their communities. Here are two law firms giving back beyond the courtroom.
Fine, Farkash & Parlapiano, PA takes immense pride in supporting the charitable and community activities that contribute to the livability of Gainesville and North Florida. For example, they established two enduring scholarships to commemorate the lives of two young women who were victims of wrongful death cases the firm resolved, in an effort to ensure their legacies endure in the community. They also host a number of other initiatives and one of their latest ones is FFP Law Hall Pass Initiative, where they donate to underfunded public schools, non-profit organizations, and summer programs in Alachua County for the academic year.
Another firm, Disability Law Group, hosts a free community event where locals can receive free legal advice, free health screenings and more. What a way to extend a helping hand, take a look:
And thanks to the fact that everything is trackable – it doesn’t end after campaigns are launched. This brings us to the next section, one of the most critical parts behind community involvement: tracking and measuring success.
Reminder: You can track your metrics!
Did you know that you can measure the marketing success of your community involvement? That’s the beauty behind legal digital assets.Through back-in plugins like Google Analytics, it’s possible to track metrics such as website traffic, page views, and engagement rates to evaluate the impact of your community involvement on your marketing efforts.
By monitoring these metrics, law firms can gain valuable insights into whether their community service initiatives are gaining SEO traction.
Ultimately, community service is a valuable way for law firms to give back to their communities, build meaningful connections, and enhance their marketing efforts at the same time. So, if you haven’t already, consider making community service a part of your firm’s culture and watch the benefits roll in. After all, this could be the key differentiating factor your firm has been needing to not only acquire more clients but ultimately, retain top talent within your law firm!
If you’re interested in learning more about the legal marketing tools available to you, remember: we’re here to help.