In today’s digital age, the legal industry is not exempt from the transformative influence of technology. As law firms strive to stay ahead in an increasingly competitive landscape, embracing innovative tools and strategies is crucial. One such area that is transforming how law firms are marketing themselves is artificial intelligence (AI).
In our recent webinar, Chris Fritsch, Founder of CLIENTSFirst Consulting, and I explored the intersection of AI and marketing in law firms, and shed light on how it is revolutionizing marketing efforts, helping marketers with content marketing, enhancing client experiences and driving growth. We also covered important issues and concerns that come with using AI for various marketing and business development efforts like ethical concerns, plagiarism challenges and other limitations.
How Legal Marketers Can Use AI Tools
Believe it or not, law firms have been using AI for quite some time now. They use it in eDiscovery, legal research, document management and automation, to do their due diligence and even for litigation analysis. While these use cases aren’t necessarily new to anyone, the way we are using and applying AI has changed drastically and so have its capabilities allowing legal marketers to increase efficiency, streamline processes, improve client experience and more strategically target clients and prospects.
AI can be used to automate time-consuming and repetitive tasks, freeing employee time so they can focus on more high-value tasks and projects such as strategy development and client matters. Firms can also use AI to more efficiently target and segment their audiences. AI can analyze large amounts of data and can identify trends and patterns that can help law firms better understand their audience and create campaigns that resonate with clients and prospects.
Law firms can also improve the client experience by using AI’s analytical abilities to personalize interactions with their clients and deliver tailored experiences and relevant content. By using AI tools, law firms can gain a competitive advantage by staying ahead of industry trends and delivering a stronger client experience.
AI & Content Creation
For most people, the beginning of the content creation process starting with a blank page is always the hardest step to overcome.
Firms can leverage the power of AI tools to create content that resonates with their target audience. AI can analyze a law firm’s existing content and provide suggestions for new content and recommendations for how to repurpose older posts in ways that are most likely to be of interest to their target audience.
Of course, a qualified human should review all posts for accuracy and tone, and add specifics into them. For example, the free version of ChatGPT notes that it has limited knowledge of information after September 2021, so make sure to verify all information if you are using this tool.
Law firms can also utilize AI to optimize their content and identify areas for improvement such as sentence structure, grammar and readability. Some common tools currently using AI to optimize content that you may have heard of include Grammarly and Canva. AI can also analyze audience data and identify the most effective channels for distributing content.
I discussed creative ways law firms can use AI in their content marketing efforts, noting that AI tools can help with
- Content curation and research
- Content creation
- Social media engagement
- Email marketing
- Thought leadership and industry insights
I delved further into how marketers can use AI tools for specific functions, which include:
- Generate copy for your marketing assets
- First drafts of practice descriptions and bios
- Improve existing content for a goal (SEO, for example)
- Presentation outlines
- Repurpose content
- Social media posts
- Web copy
- Podcast show notes
- Synopses of videos
- Marketing plans
- Conference research
- Brochure copy
- Pitches and proposals
- Competitive intelligence
- Company research
- Survey creation
- Press release help
- Suggestions and recommendations on tools and resources
- Outlines for blog posts or client alerts
- Email copy help (subject lines, CTAs)
My recommendation is that in order to get the best results with these tools, be as specific as possible with your prompts and then use the responses as starting points only – as an outline to explore these topics further.
Overall, using AI for content creation and distribution can enable firms to provide higher-quality content through channels that are likely to reach your readers.
AI & eMarketing / CRM
AI is being integrated with CRM and email marketing systems in groundbreaking ways. The analytical power of AI has enabled law firms’ email marketing campaigns to become more effective and engaging for their readers with exciting new features like timing optimization, dynamic content optimization and subject line augmentation. By analyzing past engagement patterns and behaviors of your audience, AI can recommend the best times to send email campaigns that will result in greater engagement. It can also make suggestions on subject line improvements and dynamically alter content resulting in greater open rates and higher click-through rates.
Firms are also using the natural language processing power of AI to gather insights from email campaigns and other communications about clients and where they might be in their lifecycle stage which can then be fed into the CRM system. By analyzing client data and behavior patterns, AI can identify clients who may be interested in additional services or who may be at risk of leaving, allowing law firms to take proactive steps to retain them.
Limitations & Concerns Using AI
As law firms explore the potential of using AI in their marketing strategies, it is crucial to understand the boundaries and challenges that exist within this technology. The biggest limitation is that ChatGPT is unreliable for generating accurate information.
While it may seem all-powerful and knowing, it has limitations. ChatGPT and similar tools have limited knowledge, meaning some of the information it provides can be outdated or flat-out false. That’s why it is so important to always double-check the information it provides you with. The best marketing strategies for your business are going to depend on your unique goals and challenges as well as the resources you have – and the people on your team who can synthesize information and use their expertise and creativity to devise marketing programs and strategies.
As you may have recognized from this post, AI systems rely on large amounts of data, including personal information about clients and potential clients. Law firms have to ensure they are using AI tools in compliance with data privacy and confidentiality requirements and best practices.
Chris and I explored all this in much more detail and a myriad of ways ChatGPT and other tools can be used by legal marketers and provided suggestions and ideas for best practices and how you can use these tools ethically and implement safe use policies at your firm. You can watch a recording of the webinar here.
If you are interested in having Chris and I present to your firm on AI tools, let us know!