Writing and Speaking

Joe Roosevans - How Much Does Working with a Marketing Writer Cost Your Law Firm?

Vaibhav Rai

October 05, 2018 04:06 PM

If you have considered working with a marketing writer, your next question may be what you need to budget. While it might be tempting to simply set a number and stick to it, the right writer should easily pay for themselves. Your legal firm should consider starting with what writing needs you have and working backwards to determine a budget.

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It may be best to use the example of a translation company with no existing marketing collateral.  Having been in business for 15 years, the savvy owner obviously knew what she was doing. What she didn’t know was how to grasp the power of the Internet to grow her business.  She had not set up social media profiles, her web site copy was a mess (by marketing writing standards, this means it was not clearly oriented towards her business goals) and only one piece of marketing collateral even existed.  She didn’t just need a marketing writer: She needed a marketing professional to develop a plan and execute it. Even in phases, her costs would have amounted to about 20 hours a month, an estimated $1,000 price tag.

Conversely, you can compare this to a large legal firm that already has a marketing department.  Marketing materials and websites are already in existence: They may just need to be tweaked and edited.  If the firm does not employ a marketing writer, they will just need someone to help with overflow or creative content on an as-needed basis.  To hire an administrator on a pre-established blog, responsible for 3 pieces a week as well as linking, Meta tagging and adding pictures, they will spend about $500.  If blog topics and outlines are provided, the amount may even be slightly less.

There are two types of law firm marketing needs: The pre-established law firm that just needs a little helps orchestrating their marketing plan and the law firm that, basically, needs a part-time marketing person.  The difference lies in the skills that you need your marketing writer to be capable of. If you are a technically savvy person and want to post the blogs yourself, you should have no problem finding a writer to efficiently provide suitable copy.  On the other hand, if you are simply too busy, you should invest in paying someone to take charge of the writing and posting for you. Either way, considers your billable hourly rate. Chances are it’s at least triple that of a marketing writer. Minimally, it is double that of an experienced marketing professional. That said, if you have a busy practice, you are better off hiring a marketing writer than trying to do it yourself.

Finally, you need to consider the expertise you need your writer to have.  If you are positioning yourself as an expert on a legal topic, it will behoove you to hire a writer with legal experience.  Typically, once a writer has created a niche for themselves, they may bill at a higher rate. If you simply need your marketing writer to educate your clients on topics such as asbestos cases, you will not need a legal writer to do so. If the voice of your blog and marketing collateral is focused on what a legal expert you are, make sure you choose a very polished legal writer to accurately capture your firm’s voice.  Clearly, someone who can explain manslaughter vs. first degree murder accurately is worth the extra cost.

At the end of the day, how much a marketing writer charges will vary greatly according to what you expect them to accomplish for your law firm.  If you have a limited budget, keep your needs basic. For a complete, well executed marketing person, double your budget. You will still spend less hiring a contract writer than you would spend hiring a marketing professional as a W2 employee.  Ultimately, whatever you do, make sure you make the right choice to get yourself more business.

“FRA Financial Group Founder Joe RoosEvans is an industry veteran who has built one of the nations’ most successful Independent Marketing Organizations – Financial Resources of America and its affiliated companies, including FRA Financial Group.”