In this episode of the Legal Marketing 2.0 Podcast, Guy is joined by Elise Buie, Esq. Elise is a passionate, creative, problem-solving attorney and founder of Elise Buie Family Law Group, who creates family law and estate planning solutions, not obstacles, for clients. Elise opened her firm during a period of personal adversity. Now in a period of global adversity, Elise’s firm has experienced its most significant growth yet, which she attributes primarily to her driving force and mantra: “I can do it.” Elise joins us today to discuss how she grew her firm and overcame the challenges of the pandemic.
1. What have you learned about yourself as a lawyer and how do you deal with these difficult times?
I would say, especially after this COVID-19 situation, I now have such clarity around how I deal with a crisis. We had challenging, pretty traumatic things that have gone on, and you don’t see a pattern on how you deal with these things until you at least have enough of them to look for patterns. It was so helpful to me because when covid hit Seattle I was in the epicenter of everything. So, I immediately closed my office. We were already remote, but we did have an office in downtown Seattle that you could come and go from as needed. What I did from a disaster kind of preparedness was try on the worst-case scenario. I pulled out my whiteboard and ran all these scenarios of what happens if no money comes in trust; what happens if we’re not getting any clients? I had to look at my finances. I had a single mom who had two kids, and she was our receptionist, and I thought to myself, I’m not about to let this person go at the beginning of this pandemic to continue to put my son through private school. Thankfully it all worked out, and we didn’t have to do any of that, but it made me realize that we could survive the worst-case scenario.
2. Why did you decide to grow your marketing efforts during the pandemic when many people seemed to do the opposite?
There were two distinct reasons at the time. Before covid hit, we built most of our practice on word of mouth referrals and had not done anything in digital marketing. I’ve been involved in social media and various more groups and had a presence. So there we are at the beginning of the pandemic when everyone was at home; people were all on their phones doing social media. So I thought to myself, I was like, “Oh, this is the time to focus on digital marketing when everyone’s in a kind of panic, looking around just spending a lot of time online”. So I made two very pivotal decisions. One was to go into marketing and hire a social media marketing manager. The second thing I did was decide that I would do every single consultation that came into our office because I had the highest conversion rate. I thought, okay, now is not the time to contact leads that we already have. I needed to reach as many people as possible, but then I thought people were panicking everywhere, and if I talked to every person coming into the office. At a minimum, I can get them off the ceiling. I can provide them with resources, even if maybe we’re not a good fit, or perhaps they can’t afford it. I could be that person that is there for them. I did so many consultations for so many months, and I mean, many of those people did convert. Still, then, many of them have converted later but having all those people in your pipeline benefits you in the end. It allowed us to go from about 75 grand a month in February of 2021 to about 430 grand a month now.
3. What kind of things were you posting on social media that helped your law firm?
Our social media presence revolves around education and helping people understand you know how to co-parent successfully and how to put your children front and center rather than being caught in the middle of a nasty battle. There were a lot of family law clients with so much conflict and stress coming out of the pandemic, with parents not being able to agree on different things around vaccines. I also post a lot of various webinars I’ve done with multiple legal groups. In building that social media presence, people reached out to me, and I answered thousands of attorneys’ questions like what kind of software I use, and how do you build their law firm’s social media presence remotely. It allowed me to focus on the positive and not just on the negative part of code.
As leaders, we cannot control everything in our lives, especially when owning a firm. No matter how many times we plan things out, the future is uncertain. Thus, we must know how to handle and deal with uncertainty and stress during the most difficult times. If your law firm is going through a difficult time and you need a free consultation contact us and we’ll help you take the right steps to set your firm up for success through digital marketing.