Bilingual attorneys are an asset to their law firms. As in many other industries, firms benefit not only from the stronger communication factor, but also the cultural competence and understanding of bilingual speakers, particularly those with native fluency. For example, as the American Bar Association points out, counsel who speak the non-English language of clients and witnesses can better understand and interpret their testimony in depositions and trial. Bilingual attorneys can use their advantage to make quick, critical decisions based on their unique understanding.
The legal field knows how valuable bilingual attorneys are. A survey revealed that nearly half of lawyer respondents who were hiring saw a need for more bilingual attorneys, especially those who speak Spanish and Chinese. It’s no wonder these are the two languages that came to mind first in the survey. More than 37 million people in the U.S. speak Spanish at home, making it the most common non-English language in the country. Nearly 3 million U.S. residents speak Chinese at home, making it the next most common language.
If you have bilingual attorneys at your law firm, it’s important to showcase this special feature. There are several options for getting the word out, and they can work in conjunction to benefit both your law firm and your potential clients. These options include:
- Offering a second language option on your firm’s website as well as video captions and chat in multiple languages.
- Optimizing your website for organic searches centered around the second language available at your firm.
- Advertising your bilingual services.
Taking advantage of these options can improve your SEO ranking, broaden your website’s viewership, strengthen your firm’s brand, and open you to a larger group of potential clients.
Bilingual Law Firm Marketing: Getting Started
Below are a few steps to start benefitting more from the additional language(s) you firm offers.
Search Engine Optimization
Create a translated version of your website to help non-English speakers learn their legal options and contact your firm. You can also offer live chat in multiple languages, so users can get additional, immediate help from a representative who speaks their language.
Optimize your bilingual attorneys’ profiles for phrases like “Russian speaking divorce lawyer.” These terms tend to be far less competitive, which means you will likely benefit from the effort much faster than with more competitive keyword phrases. You can give this project a boost by including the attorneys’ profiles in community-centered websites, where non-English speakers may be searching for legal help, and linking to your website.
Social Media, Video, and Directories
Caption your videos in both languages. The benefits of multiple language captions are twofold. First, you will be helping to provide non-English speakers with helpful legal information online. Second, you will be able to better showcase your attorneys’ credibility and personality and your firm’s brand to those who do not speak English. If possible, consider shooting additional videos with your bilingual attorneys, staff, and/or clients in the second language.
Some legal directories, such as Martindale and NOLO, offer support for multiple languages. Attorneys can complete profiles in additional languages to expand their reach and promote their legal services to a larger community. Some of these directory websites will even translate the firm’s and attorneys’ profiles if the firm requests it.
Avoid limiting language targets in Google ads, especially if you know your potential clients speak different languages. For example, if there was a bus crash with victims from other countries and you are advertising your legal services, you will broaden your reach by allowing additional language targets.
In pay-per-click ads, advertise that your law firm has bilingual attorneys and translation services as needed for client representation. Follow up with a header on your website that reiterates that your firm offers consultations for non-English speakers and include a phone number.
Ready? We’re Here to Help.
There is a lot of untapped marketing potential when you have bilingual attorneys. But these efforts take time and expertise, and you have a firm to run. We can help. Contact Envoca today if you’re interested in optimizing your firm’s presence online to connect with more non-English speaking prospective clients.