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Always Consider Imperfect Tracking Data

The more marketing strategies a law firm implements, the more difficult it is to determine the success of individual campaigns.  For example, a firm that has strong organic search engine rankings, runs a paid ad program, and utilizes lawyer directory top spots will find it challenging to determine the true source of an “internet client.”

Skilled intake personnel can certainly add a layer of accuracy uncommon is most firms, but lead tracking is never an exact science. There are, however, some mistakes to avoid.  One is using incomplete data to assess ROI.

A short story will illustrate.

A long-time client of mine was recently reviewing dashboard statistics from one of the top 4 lawyer directories.  This included a list of phone calls via a call tracking number as well as emails that came directly from the directory website.  Unfortunately, only a portion of the phone calls included the caller’s name.  My client said, “looking through here, I haven’t gotten anything and want to cancel.”

His analysis missed the mark in two ways.  First, he did not consider that the calls without identification info could have produced a client.  More importantly however, he failed to consider the hundreds of visitors that the vendor’s directory was sending to his website, a number we could verify independently through Google Analytics.  i.e. a potential client who started on the vendor’s website but ended up calling from the firm’s website would not be included in the vendor’s caller data.  (The number of visitors in this case was 1,200+ for the year… very significant.)

Rather than assume a program is under-performing based on some data, it’s important to recognize where tracking tools fall short.  In this instance, the client was receiving a high enough volume of visitors from the third party web property to conclude that some would result in new clients for the firm.

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