In 2013, the entire legal sector was forced to rethink the ways it approached marketing and generated leads, as a result of the Jackson Reforms. Here we take a look at the impact the reforms are still having today, and the solutions to the problems they have caused to the legal profession.
What are the Jackson Reforms?
The Jackson Reforms came about as the result of a review into civil litigation costs, which was carried out by Sir Rupert Jackson, a senior judge at the Court of Appeal. One of the main reforms he made was to ban referral fees from being paid or received. Prior to the Reforms becoming law, if you had a car accident and took your car to a garage for repairs, the garage owner could have sold your details to a personal injury lawyer and received commission. Jackson outlawed this practice, saying, “I recommend that lawyers should not be permitted to pay referral fees in respect of personal injury cases.”
Previously, many law firms had relied heavily on cheap, risk-free leads such as these from third parties including garages, claim companies and online affiliates. These sources of regular income were effectively cut off overnight.
Another of Jackson’s reforms was to do away with the “no win, no fee” model. While this allowed law firms to avoid riskier cases, it meant that less people were willing to pursue claims, leaving law firms with a drastically reduced customer base.
Firms that had previously done little or no marketing were suddenly having to try much harder to attract customers, as they had to rely on their own efforts to generate leads and revenue.
The Challenges Law Firms Faced
Many law firms opted to try Google AdWords to bring in customers. However, this instantly became an extremely overcrowded marketplace, and Google were quick to spot an opportunity. “Lawyer” is now the sixth most expensive keyword category on Google AdWords, costing an average of £42.51 per click. That’s a large amount to spend when there is no guarantee of a click leading to a sale.
Legal firms were also left unsure how effective their online marketing efforts were, due to the nature of their business. Customers seeking a lawyer would be much more likely to want to discuss their cases over the phone, rather than filling in an online form and waiting for a reply. Without a means of linking inbound calls back to the online source that generated them, legal firms found it impossible to calculate the ROI of each of their online marketing efforts.
These issues are still prevalent for many legal firms and are still having negative effects on their business, three years after the Jackson Reforms became law.
The Solution Lies in Visitor Level Analytics and Call Tracking
Ruler Analytics software offers the answers to these problems by tracking visitors to your website on an individual level. This provides you with vital information including which ad campaign the customer clicked on or which keywords they used if the search was organic. It can also tell you exactly which pages of your website they visited, and whether they filled in an online form or made a telephone call.
Ruler Analytics has been proven to have many benefits for law firms wanting to get the most out of their marketing efforts, as those who have already adopted the software have found out. One such firm is Stephenson’s Solicitors LLP, who have offices nationwide and run both SEO and PPC campaigns online.
The firm wanted to demonstrate the ROI of their online marketing channels to each legal service department, in addition to assisting business growth by compiling more in-depth customer profiles. Sarah Boustouller, Partner and Head of Marketing at Stephenson’s, chose Ruler Analytics as it gave her and her team the ability to determine how leads were generated, which commercial businesses were visiting their site and which pages were being looked at, enabling them to improve the targeting of their marketing efforts.
Sarah says, “In one cost-effective solution, the product has managed to encapsulate elements of some of the leading solutions on the market. With this software, we are able to give credibility to each department and show return on investment more effectively.”
Ruler Analytics can Help your Law Firm Grow
Just like Stephenson’s, your legal firm can capitalise on your marketing efforts by using visitor level analytics and call tracking. Call the team at Ruler Analytics today to discuss your requirements and receive a FREE demo, so you can see the benefits of Ruler Analytics for yourself.