Benefits of Marketing Automation

Published on April 13, 2023
7 minute read
<a href=''>Jan Hill</a>
Written by Jan Hill

Successful marketing is critical to attract new leads and remain profitable, but many law firms don’t have the time or the resources to create a dedicated marketing campaign. After all, most lawyers already have too much on their plate to focus on obtaining new clients – they’re usually knee-deep in managing the clients they already have! 

In addition, it often takes several consecutive follow-ups before a new lead is ready to hire an attorney. Law Firm Marketing Automation can help automate the marketing process to ensure that leads are nurtured and clients are maintained – with minimal administrative effort from lawyers and staff.  In this guide, we'll explore the answers to questions like: 

  • How does marketing automation work? 
  • What is the main purpose of marketing automation? 
  • What are marketing automation benefits? 

What is marketing automation and how does it work?

Marketing automation involves using software and other technologies to automate manual tasks and enhance the success of online marketing, including email, social media, websites, and content published by the firm. The tedious administrative work required to operate a law firm – including marketing the practice - can consume a considerable part of a lawyer’s day. However, the marketing must get done somehow as it is critical for attracting new clients and keeping up with the competition. 

Marketing automation software automates time-consuming tasks that don’t require an attorney’s expertise. For example, it might be as easy as developing an email marketing template that sends messages out automatically, allowing prospects to receive timely and personalized marketing information. Automation also enables lawyers to measure the success of their marketing efforts, thanks to visual analytics features built into the software.

Marketing automation software: a summary

Marketing automation is computer software that completes marketing tasks that do not require human interaction, including everyday marketing automation workflows like email marketing, lead prioritization, and tailored advertising. Marketing automation is especially critical for lawyers with multiple cases, numerous client meetings, and busy schedules. Although it can be incredibly challenging for a lawyer to find time to generate leads, with marketing automation, they can efficiently market their law firms while focusing on client cases. So, what is the main purpose of marketing automation? Simply put, to use available tools to provide the best possible client experience and, in turn, produce more revenue.

Benefits of automation in the workplace

“Too often, lawyers are trying to pilot the plane, and hand out the pretzels.”

— Wyoming State Bar

While delegation is a proven method for driving efficiency, law firms don’t always need to delegate work from managing attorneys to associate attorneys or staff; automating tedious tasks and processes is much more effective. For example, consider the numerous steps involved in new client intake: scheduling, emails, contact forms, chat or text communications, and contracting. All those steps in the intake process can be automated with online scheduling tools, messaging applications, e-signature capabilities, and e-payment systems. 

Because each step in that process automatically triggers the next, modern software can automate workflow without human intervention, so law firms can effectively manage time and make more money. When used appropriately, there are many marketing automation benefits for law firms, including:

  • Streamline communication - Workflow automation significantly improves communication between legal team members. Since employees frequently cite stress due to poor communication as a reason for leaving an employer, automation software can help reduce firm turnover. Workflow automation also improves communication by eliminating the need for team members to remind each other when something needs to be done – those reminders will be sent automatically.
  • Increase accountability - Firms that automate their workflow can assign responsibility to a team member for every part of the process, significantly decreasing the chance of something slipping through the cracks. When each step of the process is assigned to a team member, it not only helps ensure all of the work gets done but can also expose inefficiencies in your approach.
  • Save money - Workplace automation saves a law firm money by allowing it to avoid costly errors, streamline processes, and help team members perform more efficiently. It can also provide the ability to reduce labor costs since repetitive tasks will be completed automatically.
  • Engage employees - Because workflow automation help clarify employee roles and the tasks they are responsible for, allowing them to manage their work more efficiently and take accountability for whatever goes wrong. With automation, managers do not need to oversee every step of the process or micromanage employees.
  • Improve efficiency - Workflow automation software makes it simple to assign roles, parse out tasks, and grant responsibilities to the appropriate team members, accelerating processes that typically require manager involvement. 
  • Boost productivity - Workflow automation allows employees to devote their time to higher-value responsibilities. In client-facing industries like law, this can enable attorneys to serve more clients in a shorter period of time, boosting profit margins.
  • Produce higher quality work - When lawyers and key staff members have more time for the critical work they care about and were hired for because software handles the mundane and lower-value tasks, a higher quality output will generally result.

Workflow automation technology helps law firms improve communication, control costs, enhance efficiency, and empower team members via accountability and the time to focus on what matters.

What is database marketing?

Database marketing (also known as customer relationship management or CRM) is a form of direct marketing that systematically collects, consolidates, and processes consumer data. Data of both customers and potential customers are collected and maintained in a company's database.

Database marketing aims to target clients based on several factors, including suitable markets and proper channels, to maximize the chance they will respond to the contact and eventually become your client. As a result, database marketing is a highly effective way to find new clients and get more work from previous clients. Building your list (database) is an integral part of this process since the quality and relevance of your list will be critical to the success of your marketing efforts.

One type of database marketing is a personalized email drip campaign, an automated cycle of emails sent on a specific schedule. For example, if a client signs up for a newsletter or sets up a meeting, it will trigger a series of automatic marketing emails sent out over a designated period. The intent of a drip campaign is to keep clients engaged without having to manually engineer the process – the software does that. Meanwhile, legal teams can concentrate on what they do best—practice law.

Unlike traditional automated emails, drip marketing provides a more advanced and tailored message to the right person at the right time. From a welcome email to a promotional message offering more information about a firm a few days later, drip email marketing nurtures, engages, and leads prospects through the client journey using personalized content rather than generic messaging. Because it is Intuitive and time-triggered, email drip marketing makes a law firm stand out.

How customer databases help achieve marketing success

Customer databases help law firms increase insight into client behavior and can determine what’s next for their target market overall. To succeed in database marketing, they should:

  • Identify client groups. Separating clients into groups (from high-value clients to potential leads) is an excellent way to keep various groups organized within customer databases.
  • Create detailed customer segments. Audience segmentation based on demographics, behaviors, or personal interests helps deliver tailored messaging to custom groups of prospects and clients. 
  • Design highly personalized messages. Creating personal messages for both current and prospective customers can provide a favorable impression of a firm, increase brand loyalty, and increase engagement.
  • Determine when and how to engage customers. With a customer database, marketers can determine what types of content are the best fit for specific platforms to increase awareness and enhance customer engagement.
  • Improve marketing efficiency. Your time and money are precious. An updated customer database will help you avoid wasting time and money on marketing campaigns directly to those who are unlikely to respond.
  • Enhance customer service. Customer databases provide support staff with a broad perspective on customer interactions with your brand, allowing them to improve your firm’s customer service.

There are many ways to collect data. However, some tools designed to track information on marketing data can lead to fragmented systems within your firm. In the end, having an all-in-one, easy-to-use solution is generally best.

What is sales automation?

Sales automation, often a feature of CRM software, is functionality that automates the repetitive tasks critical to providing simple and profitable customer journeys. A range of digital tools exist to automate various parts of the sales process. From generating leads to automating follow-up emails, sales automation technology helps teams handle sales activities more proficiently so that they can allocate more time to revenue-generating tasks.

Every law firm needs to boost the number of leads in their sales pipeline because additional prospects translate into more clients and higher profits. However, firms need more than spreadsheets and Gmail to handle the amount of work that goes into nurturing leads. Automation sales tools allow law firms to manage a larger volume of leads in their sales funnel and create a standardized sales workflow that can be refined over time.

To grow your law firm, you must find a way to handle more leads without sacrificing responsiveness. Automated sales tools will allow you to contact more potential clients and guide them through your sales pipeline while providing personalized messages supporting your firm’s brand.

What are 6 benefits of automation?

Here are a few practical benefits of automation that can help your law firm scale productivity without increasing overhead:

1 Get more done in less time

Greater productivity is one of the chief benefits of automation. For example, legal teams spend far less time preparing and organizing documents when they can click a few buttons and have data auto-populate in their preferred template. In addition, document automation allows more time for billable tasks that increase profitability, which is especially critical if your law firm is pressured to get more work done with fewer resources. 

2 Gain a competitive advantage

Document automation can be a powerful marketing tool for law firms. Clients want to partner with law firms that use innovative technology to do work in the most efficient way possible. In addition, client confidence (and referrals) will surge when they observe how your firm delivers quality service on time. 

3 Create and process documents cost effectively

One of the prime reasons why law firms choose automation is to cut costs. With document automation software, you might not have to hire another paralegal to manage stacks of documents. Automation also allows law firms to save money on office supplies, giving firms the ability to invest in other more critical areas. 

4 Improve document quality and accuracy

Copying and pasting data from one spreadsheet to another is extremely prone to human error, frequently resulting in typos and mistakes that even the most careful proofreaders might miss, negatively impacting compliance and risk. Documents populated with essential information via automation instead of manual processes greatly reduce costly errors. 

5 Streamline responsiveness to clients

Another main benefit of automation is the ability to give clients the answers they need as quickly as possible. In addition, When preparing documents for clients, they can be delivered in a fraction of the time it would have taken with manual methods. A faster, more efficient response translates into happier clients and accelerated growth. 

6 Standardize document format and content

With document templates and custom fields, legal teams can easily standardize documents to improve consistency, keep everyone on the same page, and ensure everyone works from the same document library. 

Automation allows legal professionals to devote time to tasks that demand their expertise, such as developing strategies, providing advice, and completing billable tasks. By embracing automation, teams can get more work done in far less time.

Attract more prospects and win more clients with marketing automation

Automate the leg work of your marketing efforts to drive growth in your business while staying focused on your clients. Lawmatics law firm marketing automation helps you seize every new client opportunity with targeted messaging and impeccable timing. To find out how Lawmatics can help you set up powerful, automated workflows to delight your existing clients and win repeat business, request a demo today.

Jan Hill

Jan is a paralegal and freelance copywriter who spends most of her working hours in the law and legal tech space. When she’s not writing, Jan can be found playing with (and cleaning up after) her three dogs and one cat and enjoying the Southern California sun.
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