The Sunshine State: one of the most litigious states in our union and the third largest by population. It’s estimated that Florida has over 80,000 practicing attorneys, making it one of the most competitive legal advertising spaces. While there are many things that make Florida unique, there are also universal lessons to be learned from a marketing standpoint.
Most people are under the impression that Florida only has one season – some kind of eternal summer. In reality, the four seasons are Tourist, Spring Break, Hurricane, and Snowbird…
All joking aside, the Florida legal market is a great example of how seasonality can affect your legal practice. Lawsuits surge and decline in relation to many factors. If you handle personal injury cases, there’s a steady rise in cases from the fall to the spring – this is when the snowbirds are in town. A personal injury attorney may also see an up-tick in accidents involving tourists during the summer months.
On the other hand, a workers’ compensation attorney might take on more cases in June to August due to heat exhaustion cases for outdoor workers. Understanding your own state’s seasonality and how it relates injuries and lawsuits will allow you to manage your marketing expectations more realistically.
An Aging Population
Typically, disabilities track with age, and Florida’s population skews a little older than other states. To account for this, many Florida firms will make their websites ADA compliant. Web accessibility can refer to someone with vision loss using a screen reader, keyboard navigability for claimants without the ability to use their hands, or text scaling.
A Social Security attorney stands to lose out on a lot of business by not making their website accessible and useful to the disabled and elderly. In fact, personal injury and workers’ compensation firms will also benefit from compliance, considering the large portion of elderly citizens in Florida. Even if your state has a younger median age, there are many cases you pass up on by not being ADA compliant.
Now, I’d be remiss to not acknowledge the Florida Man phenomenon. Whether it’s an alligator being tossed through a Wendy’s drive thru window, or a cohort of marksmen assembling to “shoot down” hurricane Irma, there’s no shortage of weird headlines coming out of Florida. The singular moral of these stories is, “crazy things can and will happen”. In a similar way, performance marketing can have its black swan moments.
You may spend $100.00 on Google ads and sign 10 clients. While a congratulations is in order, you may not want to build a marketing plan around those expectations. The PPC world works in mysterious ways, and a large sample size of leads, whether from a third party or your own efforts, is the only way to pin down realistic growth forecasts. On the other hand, Google algorithm updates are made quite frequently. These updates affect search engine rankings, and thus the traffic that your website receives. If you were previously on the first page for a few lawyer keyword searches in your territory, a particularly bad algorithm update could push you back to page five or six. Make sure you plan on the unexpected.
If any of these challenges are getting the better of your marketing team, Lead generation can be the antidote. Whether it’s planning on the unexpected, catering to an aging population, or being aware of your state’s seasonality, having a reliable funnel of case leads will pad your firm from losses you might otherwise incur.
In case you thought we were kidding: