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Advertising Your Law Firm: 6 Steps 

Grow your client base and elevate your brand with law firm advertising. Learn how to maximize ad ROI with targeted campaigns. 

Meredith Cunningham Published: January 17, 2024
Advertising Your Law Firm: 6 Steps  image

With more than 1.33 million lawyers in the U.S., being top of mind among those needing legal services is no easy task. This is where the art of advertising becomes a formidable ally, offering a strategic pathway for legal professionals to distinguish themselves and connect with those seeking their expertise. 

How should you get started? Let’s unravel the marketing and advertising strategies that can transform a law firm into a recognized and sought-after entity on the road to building brand fame.

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Why Should You Advertise Your Law Firm? 

Law firms engage in advertising for various reasons, including creating brand awareness, building credibility, connecting with new clients, and growing business. But advertising your law firm is not just about promoting services; it’s about creating a lasting and positive impression that sets your practice apart from others. In an environment where competition is fierce and attention spans are fleeting, strategic advertising becomes a cornerstone for success in the legal profession. A few of the motivations that drive law firms to advertise include the following: 

Building Brand Awareness 

This represents a consumer’s level of recognition, recall, and association with a particular brand. The ultimate goal of brand awareness – often achieved through consistent and strategic marketing efforts across various channels –  is to create a strong and positive presence among a target audience in the early stages of the consumer decision-making process, making the brand more likely to be considered and chosen when legal services are needed. 

Staying Top of Mind

Legal needs often arise unexpectedly, and potential clients may not immediately recall a specific law firm when in distress. Advertising ensures your firm is visible and top of mind, increasing the likelihood that individuals will remember and reach out to you when legal assistance is needed – especially if your brand is well-known in the community or if advertising has a relatable message, memorable jingle, or creates an emotional connection with the audience. 

Expertise, Trust, & The Halo Effect 

When potential clients repeatedly encounter your firm’s messaging across various channels, it instills a sense of reliability, professionalism, trust, and credibility. When done right, crafting targeted and informative content can position your firm as a go-to resource for individuals seeking legal guidance. 

Depending on where your advertising is placed, law firms can also experience a halo effect, which refers to a consumer’s positive sentiment toward certain brands, products, and services based on a consumer’s experience with the brand, an experience from another consumer with the brand (reviews, testimonials, word-of-mouth recommendations, social media presence), or an experience with the brand’s partners (a company it collaborated with, the channel in which it advertises). 

Attracting New Clients & Driving Business Growth 

Effective advertising is a proven method for attracting new clients and translates into increased visibility, client trust, and business growth. By attracting a steady stream of clients through advertising, your law firm can expand its reach and connect with individuals seeking legal assistance. 

Lawyer Advertising Rules To Remember 

All industries have marketing and advertising rules to follow, and the legal industry is no different. The American Bar Association lays out Rule 7.2: Communications Concerning a Lawyer’s Services: Specific Rules on its website and outlines specific rules that must be adhered to in advertising campaigns to maintain integrity and professionalism. These rules aim to maintain transparency, prevent misleading claims, and ensure responsible communication in legal advertising. 

Lawyers can use any media for such communication as part of the guidelines. However, they are prohibited from compensating individuals for recommending their services, except for reasonable advertisement costs. Lawyers cannot falsely claim specialization unless certified by an approved organization, with clear identification of the certifying body in the communication. Any communication under this rule must include the name and contact information of at least one lawyer or law firm responsible for its content. 

Advertising Channels for Law Firms 

As one of the country’s largest media companies, we’ve found that the most effective way to advertise a law firm is through the power of video. Video can introduce, educate, and emotionally connect an audience to your firm and be integrated into multiple channels – broadcast, streaming, and digital platforms – for maximum visibility and broad exposure. 

Linear and Broadcast TV 

Television continues to be a powerful medium for reaching a broad audience, employing captivating visuals and compelling storytelling in advertisements to make a lasting impact and boost brand awareness. The growing viewership of live events on broadcast channels, such as major sports events and award shows like the Super Bowl and Emmys offers significant opportunities for brand exposure. Consider these avenues when creating your media plan and choosing a media partner.  

Additionally, video ads broadcast on linear channels are not limited to the conventional 15 or 30-second formats. For example, showcasing your brand on a Lifestyle show like TEGNA’s Good Morning Texas allows you to collaborate with local news teams, enabling more in-depth discussions to educate and raise awareness about your company’s specialties. 

Over-The-Top (OTT) / Streaming 

With the growing popularity of streaming services, advertising on these platforms offers an effective way to connect with audiences who have shifted away from traditional television. Advertising via streaming services provides a means for national outreach and enables precise targeting of specific demographics, geographic locations, or viewer behaviors. 

Website Advertising 

Video marketing’s versatility extends to various digital channels, allowing integration into the company website, social media accounts, email newsletters, and deployment as display ads or digital banners. Online video performance can be easily tracked and measured, facilitating data-driven optimization decisions throughout the campaign to maximize efficiency. 

Cross-Channel Marketing 

Given consumers’ diverse media consumption habits, a cross-channel marketing approach becomes essential. This strategy leverages the strengths of different channels, including linear TV, streaming media, and digital platforms, to effectively reach a broad and omnipresent audience across various activities, from watching live sports to engaging with social media. 

What is the Best Form of Advertisement for Lawyers? 

The most effective form of advertisement for lawyers can depend on various factors, including the target audience, budget, and the specific legal services offered. However, we find that based on most firms’ goals, a cross-channel ad campaign leveraging the power of video through linear, broadcast, and streaming TV, as well as digital elements, is the best way to reach audiences and grow clientele. That’s because a cross-channel campaign offers: 

  • Diverse Audience Reach: Amid ever-changing consumer viewing habits, broadcast TV remains a powerful medium for reaching a wide audience, particularly during live events and popular shows. On the other hand, streaming services and digital platforms extend traditional TV’s reach with advanced targeting options and getting in front of cord-cutters and cord-nevers.
  • Comprehensive Storytelling: TV allows for captivating visuals and advertisement storytelling, creating a lasting impact. Streaming and digital platforms complement this by providing more in-depth and targeted content opportunities, allowing lawyers to convey complex legal information or showcase expertise fully.
  • Data-driven Insights: Tools like TEGNA Attribution for broadcast and streaming TV combined with digital measurement tools provide valuable data and analytics that can be used to measure the campaign’s performance, understand audience behavior, and make data-driven optimizations for better results.

How to Market Your Law Firm in 7 Steps 

In a landscape where consumer preferences, digital platforms, and industry trends constantly change, marketers and advertisers must navigate a dynamic environment to achieve optimal results. From defining your target audience, crafting a resonant message, and leveraging diverse channels, use the following steps to create a compelling ad or marketing campaign. 

1. Establish Goals & KPIs 

What are you trying to achieve with your campaign? Determining what success is and how you will measure it is a key step in creating an effective strategy. Many campaigns aim to acquire and retain clients, create brand awareness, and demonstrate thought leadership and expertise. The challenge, then, is measuring how these goals are met. Defining KPIs is the next step in assessing the effectiveness of the campaign. Commonly employed KPIs encompass ROI, client acquisition and retention rates, website traffic, conversion rates, lead generation, video views, social media engagement, and key email marketing metrics like open and click-through rates. 

2. Define Your Target Audience 

Identify your target audience — are they women, men, boomers, or millennials? Do they have a penchant for sports or tune in to local news? Assess the evolving demographics, attitudes, behaviors, and media consumption habits of those who derive value from your brand. Regularly review and update customer persona profiles to stay current. This understanding enables the creation of content that is both pertinent and relatable. Tailor your message to align with their changing needs, concerns, and preferences for maximum resonance.

3. Create a Media Plan and Set a Budget 

With your target audience defined, the next step is to create a media plan that involves a strategic approach to maximize visibility and reach the target audience. During this process, you’ll want to take the following steps

  • Research Media Channels: This could include linear and streaming TV, radio, online platforms, social media, or a combination. Consider the strengths of each channel in relation to your campaign goals.
  • Select Media Mix: Create a balanced media mix by combining traditional and digital channels. The media mix should align with your target audience’s media consumption habits outlined in your persona profiles.
  • Budget Allocation: Establish a realistic budget and allocate your budget across different channels, considering the reach and effectiveness of each.
  • Set a Campaign Timeline: Determine your campaign’s start and end dates. Consider any seasonality or specific times of the year that may impact the effectiveness of your ads.

By following these steps, law firms can create a comprehensive media plan that aligns with their goals, reaches the right audience, and optimizes the budget for maximum impact. 

4. Focus on Messaging 

Effective video advertisements require a blend of elements that resonate with the intended audience, effectively communicate key messages, and set the brand apart from competitors. Consider incorporating:

  • Follow Regulations for Law Firms and Attorneys: Different jurisdictions may have specific requirements regarding advertising, so it’s important to be familiar with and comply with local rules to ensure professionalism, protect consumers, and maintain the integrity of the legal profession.
  • Quality Control: To reflect positively on your firm’s image, be sure to invest in professional production to ensure high-quality visuals, clear audio, and polished editing.
  • Emotional Narratives: Consider highlighting real client experiences and authentic stories that humanize your firm, create an emotional connection, and build trust and credibility by showing them how you can help.
  • Showcase Wins: To build trust, consider discussing successful case outcomes, highlighting special skills or qualifications, and emphasizing what sets your firm apart. 
  • Call to Action: Integrate a clear and compelling call-to-action that encourages viewers to take specific steps, such as visiting a website, scheduling a test drive, or heading to the office.

5. Measure Results 

Evaluating the outcomes of marketing initiatives is crucial for law firms to establish responsibility, fine-tune strategies, and attain optimal results in acquiring clients, enhancing brand reputation, and overall business prosperity. Utilizing tools such as TEGNA Attribution can help identify those who viewed an advertisement and subsequently took action. Additionally, employ various tools to gauge website traffic, conversions, email open rates, generated phone calls, and other metrics specified in your media plan. 

6. Work with Experts 

According to the American Bar Association, 59% of attorneys conduct marketing activities. However, attorneys are busy, so it’s important to work with a partner who can help law firms get the highest return on revenue possible without taking additional time away from casework. With years of experience, TEGNA can help facilitate campaigns across station groups and digital platforms so that you can reach the right audience. 

7. Leverage Video

Lawyers using video marketing can make lasting connections with their target audience. Viewers retain up to 95% of information when it is presented in video format. Additionally, video marketing can help your law firm stand out. Only 24% of law firms are currently leveraging video in their campaigns.

Examples of Law Firm Advertising 

Why it Works: The Super Lawyer, Reginald Greene, teamed with the marketing experts at TEGNA’s WXIA to create an ad that grabs attention, elicits emotion, and includes the firm’s track record of wins by showcasing client testimonials. 


Why it Works: Jon Foy is another example of a firm teaming with a local news station to help build its credibility and showcase its expertise in the local community for client acquisition. 

Why it Works: Legal ads aren’t limited to traditional ads. Appearing on a Lifestyle show – such as TEGNA’s First Coast Living, seen in the example below – offers the chance to collaborate with your local news teams and go more in-depth to educate and bring awareness to audiences on everything your firm specializes in. 

Start Advertising Your Law Firm Practice with TEGNA 

By embracing the power of visual storytelling, legal professionals can improve awareness, establish credibility, and differentiate themselves in a competitive landscape. With the right strategies and a comprehensive approach, video marketing can become a cornerstone of a successful legal marketing campaign. 

At TEGNA, we have legal marketing experts at our 64 local TV news stations in 51 markets who can help you build a great campaign to bring in new clients and grow your business. With broadcast TV, streaming, and digital advertising options available with TEGNA, you’ll have plenty of valuable ways to stay top of mind when clients are in need of legal advice. Contact us today to learn how we can help elevate your law firm’s marketing strategy. 

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