I’ve met my fair share of lawyers, solicitors and barristers and they’ll be the first to acknowledge that while they understand the power of legal services copywriting, few of them have the time, inclination or skill to write engaging customer-facing copy. Communicating sophisticated, authoritative messages across to potential clients in a simple, accurate and effective way is challenging. While a website or brochure may be full of helpful information, it’s often hidden under a mountain of legal jargon. Too often, legal services copywriting written by law firms and solicitors will put emphasis their expertise and reputation. This lacks engagement and can fail to win the confidence and trust of the reader. Legal services are usually a considered or distress purchase. Prospective clients rarely walk in off the street without searching online for legal assistance first. If they don’t like or understand what they read, it’s a missed opportunity. An experienced legal services copywriter can help attract potential new clients by creating up-to-date, thought-provoking and relatable content.
When copywriting for the legal sector. making a connection with the reader is imperative. While you must illustrate that you are professional, you are writing for a non-legal audience and need to show that you’re personable and relatable. While I would always recommend that legal services copywriting speaks with authority and clarity, I wouldn’t waste too many words on bluster. It comes across as though you’re talking down to the reader. Instead, legal services copywriting should focus on what the reader wants to know – do you understand their issue and can you help them. Likewise, legal services copywriting should also avoid too much technical information – it’s dull – and you can explain the intricacies of law once you’ve got a prospective client sat in front of you. The offer of useful legal knowledge within legal services copywriting often shows people that you are empathetic, willing to help and ready to listen.
It wasn’t that long ago that law firms and solicitors would insist that legal services copywriters came from a legal background or had a robust knowledge of the legal system. Often, what emerged was dry legalese that lost or scared the average person. Now, although there are still some ‘Rumpole’s’ around, law firms and solicitors have largely recognised the austere reputation of the legal sector and that what matters most is the ability to connect and relate to their target audience. Whether you’re updating your website, brochures, guides or advertising, you should always start with the reader and your unique value proposition. It’s vital that you get to the point early, making information accessible and avoiding dense, interrupted paragraphs. To help the reader quickly find what they’re looking for, consider dividing content into easily digestible chunks, using bullet-points to reiterate the important points or using clear and concise headings such as questions – ‘do you have experience in…’ and ‘are you looking for…’. In essence, your aim is to answer at least 75% of the most likely asked questions before they make an appointment or submit an enquiry.
Legal services copywriting that will do your company justice.
I’ve been crafting clear and compelling legal services content for law firms of all sizes and in every aspect of the law for over 20 years. If you would like to discuss your copywriting requirements for a brochure, website, white paper or annual report, please get in touch.