This digital marketing company wants to be part of your team
Seth Winterer was playing one of the top performers at a major marketing firm when he decided there had to be a better way.
He realized that the price for growth is often paid by customers, so he founded Digital Logic in Shreveport, Louisiana, a digital marketing company less concerned with scaling and more concerned with bring its proven methodology to small law firms in the most integrated way possible. .
As numerous case studies show, Digital Logic’s approach delivers results.
For example, WeedenLaw, a two-lawyer criminal defense firm in Denver, increased organic website traffic by 400% after becoming a client.
Above the Law recently spoke with Winterer, CEO of Digital Logic, about his vision for the ideal marketing firm.
ATL: Tell us about your background.
SW: In 2004, I became one of the first employees of an online marketing company that had about 2,500 people. In 2010, we went public on the Nasdaq. The company is still in operation today.
When the company was smaller, I could make more of a difference for my clients and get things done quickly. We had a nice ride, but I decided to switch gears. I left because there were so many situations where a client had specific needs and I felt the company had lost its ability to truly personalize its services. Everything should go through a long approval process. With more and more silos within the different divisions of the company, the process was becoming longer and longer. I always told myself that if I wasn’t having fun anymore, and that I wasn’t offering the necessary level of performance to my clients, I would do something else.
It was also a new chapter in my life, my first son had just been born and I wanted to be there when he started walking. It meant a lot to me to have this time with my son.
When the time came, I looked at a few corporate job postings. They involved a lot of traveling and still required you to hit your numbers. I said, “I did this job for 12 years. It would be just as easy to do it myself and take whatever approach I want to take that would best serve the interests of my clients. I wanted to use what I had learned about successful marketing and customer service models to create something new that would succeed and grow, without sacrificing ethics or the best interests of customers.
ATL: Did the business climate make you believe you had a good chance of succeeding?
SW: Well, I was by far the top performer in the last company, for a long time. Not just in sales, but also in customer and team member retention. I didn’t consider it a gamble or a risky decision for me to start my own business, where I would be doing a lot of the same things I had done before.
ATL: What was your central vision for Digital Logic in its early days?
SW: I love creating jobs in our local economy because it’s a positive impact on the local community. We do not outsource our work. We only have 14 people in our company, but everyone works in the office. We focus our hires on people who are eager to learn and like to win. Our proven methodology gives us an advantage, but our people give us an advantage.
My vision was to help law firms grow and expose them to what’s possible with content marketing, SEO, and paid online advertising.
ATL: Having worked in large and small marketing companies, what do you see as the main differences?
SW: I think any time you work with a company that has tens of millions of dollars in funding, it’s easier to hire faster and grow at a rapid pace. The challenge of this growth is that silos are forming within the company, which separate the company from the customer and create a machine.
This can limit your relationships with customers and prevent you from becoming as connected to your customers’ businesses as you can with a small business. The challenge with starting a new business is that you have to look far enough and get even more creative with your marketing.
It was a big challenge for us, but it forced us to focus on business results for our clients rather than task completion.
ATL: From the perspective of a small law firm and an independent practitioner, what do you think is the relative advantage of each model, large marketing versus small firm marketing?
SW: Just like in law, people are constantly weighing whether to choose a large firm or a small firm and, of course, there are advantages to both. For now we have chosen to operate as a small marketing company, but with the results people often assume that only a large marketing company can achieve. In fact, the opposite is true. A small marketing business brings more than one growth model together.
If Digital Logic has the opportunity to work on a certain type of case, we can move quickly to create bespoke content. We are competent enough to take immediate action and we are nimble because we are small. We can change in no time when we need it. Which happens all the time with small law firms.
We have clients dealing with MDL cases, so if a new class pops up, we can deploy campaigns within 24 hours instead of having to schedule it for the next month.
We can talk to the customer and say to our employees, “Hey, we need to do X, Y, and Z for this customer. Drop what you’re doing and put it live tomorrow.
ATL: Do most of your clients hire you for low-key projects, or are you more of a full-service marketing firm?
SW: Certainly full service. Usually, we will start by rebuilding the client’s website. We prefer to build all of this in WordPress. That way, if we need to make an update, post something, or change pages, anyone on our team can use our tech stack in WordPress to make sure the product is consistent across the board.
Our monthly marketing services are where we publish content for search engine optimization (SEO), for online business discovery. We also run lots of Google ads for law firms, which quickly gets the phone ringing.
ATL: Creating a good Google ad takes effort. Is this another component of your service? To ensure ads are designed effectively?
SW: Yes. We run many ads for law firms on Google and Bing. It goes far beyond just writing an ad. This includes keyword selection, auction prices, ad testing, landing page testing, and campaign optimization over time once you start collecting the data. Our clients have had great success with running paid search ads on Google.
Also, just over a year ago, Google Local Service Ads was released. The model is a guaranteed cost per qualified lead and this has been a game changer for our clients.
It was amazing to see where some of these solo people started compared to where they are now. In their first year, before they worked with us, they were charging us maybe $100,000. We have a criminal attorney in a decent sized town. She ended the year with $1.3 million in billings after we started working with her. With her, we can take some credit, but she’s one of the best lawyers I’ve seen.
ATL: Would you say your approach is more holistic as opposed to the task-based approach?
SW: Yes, it’s holistic, but it’s also a proven methodology. I know with some big marketing companies, they do four blogs for law firms and put out a couple of social media posts. It’s a to-do list with no strategy behind it.
Everything we do is more intent-driven than task-driven. The work revolves around business results for clients instead of posting five blog posts with no real goals.
ATL: Who is your ideal client? What can you do, concretely, to help them be more successful?
SW: It depends on the categories of practice and the opportunity. We have a few independent practitioners as well as practices with up to 25 or 30 people.
Even with our straightforward approach, our client profiles, we’re really not going after those 200+ person law firms. We are not chasing them, but if someone came to us, we would assess the situation.
With small businesses, we can have a much bigger impact compared to their past earnings.
A recent study by the Hinge Research Institute shows what digital marketing can do.
In 2020, when everything came to a standstill, the companies that managed to grow were the ones that accelerated their marketing efforts. One had a marketing budget that was 27% of revenue, about 48% more than low-growth companies. And the majority of these high-growth companies have focused their marketing budgets on law firm SEO and paid search ads.
These things work, and at Digital Logic we try to over-deliver to our customers. When I started working at this company in 2004, we had to convince clients that people were using Google. Now it’s like, “Okay, everyone uses Google. Right?”
If you want to help your law firm or business grow and studies indicate that successful businesses spend 27% of their revenue on marketing activities – and the most profitable marketing opportunities are SEO and ads paid search – then you’ll probably want to put your money here too.