How Law Firms Can Generate Organic Coverage to Their Website Part 1: Creating a Story
- AuthorJoanna Cunningham
In part one of this two-part blog post, Digital PR Manager, Joanna Cunningham, explores six tactics you can use to create stories to gain organic coverage to your website…
Building organic coverage to your law firm website requires ingenuity, broad thinking, a lot of time investment, and a fair bit of money. In most cases, unless you’re offering a product that somehow goes viral and that people really want, you’re unlikely to gain links to your site overnight.
As a law firm, you’ll need to work that bit harder to source this coverage. The key to generating organic coverage is to provide journalists with something to talk about. In most cases, this comes from fresh data and a new perspective.
In this article – part one of a two-part series – we’ll be exploring six proven methods you can use to gain coverage for your website. Take a look…
1. Using Existing Data Sets
This is one of our favourite ways to gain coverage for clients, as it’s great if your firm doesn’t have an additional budget to spare. To do this, you’ll need to scour reputable data sources that can be found online to create stories of your own.
If you’re not sure where to begin, the Office for National Statistics is constantly releasing new data. Keeping abreast of the releases here could be a good place to start – any data sets that match your site’s topic are fair game.
Once you have the data, you’ll need to do a bit of outside-the-box thinking. You won’t have the story handed to you on a plate here, so being a dab hand at a good old spreadsheet will help you to sift through the masses of data to find a headline statistic.
Play around with the stats, create graphs, work out percentage differences, and you’ll no doubt find some way to craft a story people want to hear. It’s not easy work, but the satisfaction when you’ve found your story can’t be matched.
You’ll need to remember to jump on this data quickly, though. After all, it is accessible to every other PR and marketer in the world at the same time as yourself. Of course, everyone will pick out different stories from the data, but it’s important to move swiftly to be the first.
2. Creating Your Own Data Through a Survey
If you have a bit more budget to spare, you could always commission a survey to generate fresh data that no one else has. You can ask a chosen set of people the questions you want to know about a topic related to your niche. You’ll, of course, need to have a direction before you start but, once you have the idea, this is a great way to generate news stories that people haven’t heard before.
Survey companies, like OnePoll, are a great place to start – they’ll guide you through the process, help you craft your questions, and send them out into the field. They’ll provide you with the raw data, as well as the data broken up into various sets, including gender, age, location etc. Not only that, but they’ll also provide you with some graphs and tables with some of the key stats.
Depending on the type of audience you’re looking to target, the number of people you want to ask, and the niche nature of your questions, you should be able to get answers for around £5,000, give or take. This may sound like a huge amount of money but, if you have the right team at hand and are asking the right questions, the benefits of creating this data are boundless.
Our key tip for this? Always ask the survey participants where they’re based. Local newspapers are generally easier to gain access to than national newspapers, so having locally targeted data is a goldmine.
3. Using Your Own Internal Data
As a fully-fledged business, you’ll no doubt have your own customer data that could also be used to create a story. In a similar way to the methods above, you can collate this data to find stories that nobody else will have.
Of course, we don’t mean exposing sensitive client details like names and email addresses. We’re talking anonymous data that demonstrates key patterns and talking points.
For example, say you’re a conveyancing solicitor and keep a record of the enquiries you receive. Perhaps 60% of enquiries are from young couples? This sort of data, if available on a large scale, could provide you with story upon story.
Newsjacking is a term which essentially means piggybacking onto breaking news stories and conversations that are already happening in the world. This is a useful tactic, as it’s not as time-consuming as the above methods. It simply needs a team who can stay up-to-date with current news topics and jump onto the bandwagon quickly, and with a new angle.
A great way to achieve this is to provide an opinion or create a new angle on the topic at hand. Expert comments on current affairs can be really useful to journalists, as it can help them to flesh out a story they already have, or forge a brand new path for conversation.
As a law firm, you’ll have plenty of experts at your fingertips to call upon for these opinions. Make your thoughts known, contact journalists with these thoughts, and you may gain coverage if it’s what they’re looking for.
Some recent examples of newsjacking gone right can be found here.
5. Utilising Awareness Days
Similar to newsjacking is jumping onto Awareness Days and National/International Days with your own twist. Everyone loves a special day to celebrate one thing or another, be it raising awareness about a disability, a food item, or appreciating a person. Creating campaigns on these days might generate a huge conversation.
Some recent examples of campaigns like this going right were for International Women’s Day, back in March. The Drum has listed some brilliant brands that jumped onto this well-known day and turned heads.
As a law firm, you too can jump onto important days like IWD to generate buzz around your company. Although this may sound like a very commercial way to gain brand awareness, these sorts of campaigns stick in peoples’ minds and make businesses seem more approachable and human.
6. Using Search Data
Finally, another quick way to create a story is through search engine data. Perhaps you’re a divorce solicitor, and you discover that people in a certain area are searching for divorce search terms more than any other area. There we go – you have a story!
Marketing agencies often have a lot of tools at their disposal for something like this. For example, Ahrefs and Moz have in-depth search data which provide an understanding of the sorts of terms people are searching. However, as an in-house marketer or simply a law firm attempting to tell a story, you may not have these tools at your disposal.
Don’t worry, though, as there are budget options that can provide the same sorts of stories. Google Trends is a great one for this – this tool allows you to search any number of Google search terms, providing graphs and maps for search numbers and locations. You can even use these to compare multiple search terms.
Whatever you use, if you have a story in mind, you can generate statistics quite rapidly with a campaign like this.
Ready to Start Generating Organic Link Building Campaigns?
As you can see, there are plenty of methods for creating content, campaigns, and stories that people care about. Investing the time, money and energy into these campaigns can be highly beneficial for creating buzz around your business, and directing high authority links to your website.
Although this article is a great starting point in order to find your headline story, the job doesn’t stop there. There are plenty of steps required to generate links, even after you’ve found your story.
In part two/two of our series on generating organic coverage to your law firm website, we’ll be discussing seven steps to getting your story in front of journalists. Stay tuned next week for the details.
In the meantime, if you need help with gaining backlinks to your site, be sure to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about how we can help you.