By: Nicole Bradick, CSO of CuroLegal

Your law firm has a great marketing website but are looking for newer and modern way to engage existing and prospective clients with new digital products.  What are some of your options? Here are a few to consider:

Launch a Special-Purpose Website.

You have your firm’s website that exists to market your firm, but consider the power of creating a substantive, practice-area specific site that gives away useful tools.  For example, several large firms have launched free websites for businesses that give away content as well as forms and other tools.  Goodwin Procter’s Founder’s Workbench provides free term sheet generators, capital calculators, and more.  Other large law firms have followed suit with similar sites, including CooleyGo and Wilmer Hale’s Launch.

Create Free Tools for Your Marketing Site.

No one ever said that your firm’s site has to be limited to the same old same old.  Think beyond the “about us” page, and include tools that would be useful for clients and prospective clients.  For example, one Arizona family law firm includes a number of free calculators on its site, such as a Spousal Maintenance Calculator and a Co-Mingled Property Estimator.  Similarly, The Rosen Law Firm, a firm specializing in divorce, has countless tools on its site to help facilitate divorce and also includes a ton of content, webinars, attorney locators, etc.

Create an app.

The possibilities here are pretty endless.  The best way to start in thinking about an app is defining a problem that you know your clients have that could possibly be solved via technology as opposed to going to a lawyer.  For example,a divorce lawyer in Massachusetts developed an app that offers people trying to get a divorce in that state the ability to calculate alimony and duration, among other things.  The firm Bracewell & Giuliani LLP created a free app called ShalePlay that provides news and resources related to shale gas and hydraulic fracturing.  Shaw Pittman developed a free app that provides corporate clients with information and checklists to use in crisis management situations.

One way that some firms have created valuable products for clients is by creating diagnostic tools –surveys that use logic to determine if your client is complying with a certain law or if they may be in need of legal advice.  A tool of this sort can be very powerful if  given away for free to clients or prospects as a loss leader for marketing purposes.

Create a whitepaper, toolkit, or other content available for download.

This form of digital product has the lowest barrier of entry and often does not require any assistance from a developer, so this is often where people start.  Because content is so ubiquitous, it may also not have the desired impact of a snazzy web application or slick tool.  But hosting webinars, creating videos, and developing engaging content can be an important part of any firm’s marketing strategy.

Sell or bundle forms.

Yes, yes,  your firm has always charged to create forms, but now major sites like Avvo and others now give away a variety of legal forms for free.  You need to convince clients that your value is more than just blindly filling out forms, so why not give the form away and sell your advice on top of it? There are other ways to creatively bundle forms with your services, so try to think outside the box.  For example, one firm in California offers a monthly subscription package that includes access to free annotated forms drafted by the firm. This can be very effective and costs your firm next to nothing.