It’s Confirmed: Clients Use Lawyer Review Sites to Find an Attorney

Yelp is the most trusted online review site for lawyers. This powerful statement comes from a recent survey by Software Advice (an online evaluation company for legal software) that shows how prospective clients use online review sites before hiring a lawyer. Other notable findings:

  1. 58% of individuals surveyed would turn to Yelp first to find and/or research a lawyer.
  2. The most important information to prospective clients is quality of service and years of legal experience.
  3. 70% of prospective clients will travel further to see an attorney with better online reviews.

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5 Tips for Building a BIG Social Media Presence

Are your law firm’s social networks garnering the kind of attention that actually brings in new business / connects you with thoughts leaders / expands your referral network? Why not?! If you are devoting the time and expense to maintaining an active online presence, you want to see a return on your investment, don’t you?

Read on for 5 tips on how to make sure your law firm’s web presence is buzzworthy and profitable.

1. Understand Your Audience.

Understanding who your audience is and what they are looking for will put you leaps and bounds in front of your competition. While this tip is Marketing 101, many lawyers think like lawyers, not like their prospective client base.

Some questions to ask yourself when you’re tweeting, blogging, Facebooking, etc.. include:

  • What are the needs of my community?
  • What questions are they asking online and how can my content help answer these questions?
  • What types of content make the biggest impact with my audience: Text, video, images?
  • When and where are they most likely to be active on social media?
  • What types of content are they most likely to share?

2. Hit a Nerve.

Is your blog post touching on a hot legal issue? Current event or tragedy? Timely, relevant content is everything, especially to Google. Incorporate an element of analysis into your commentary and watch as people respond and relate to you.

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On-Page SEO Strategies for Lawyers Looking to Dominate Search Results

If you’re a lawyer interested in or involved in building your law firm’s online presence, you have probably heard something about Panda, Penquin, and/or any of the other recent Google algorithm updates. For most of us, these updates are good news. They promote quality content over quantity, and reward bloggers who have taken the time to write accurate, thoughtful content — on a regular basis (as always, consistency is key).

A few years ago, anyone could throw low-quality, keyword-rich (and ethically dubious) content on his website/blog and see an increase in page rank for weeks! No such luck today. Every major search engine’s focus has moved sharply away from short, overly-optimized content, and has moved toward longer, more comprehensive and in-depth articles.

But at the end of the day, all we really want to know is how to secure that premium placement on page 1 of a Google search. How does Google determine which content is high quality (and should therefore rank highly), and which isn’t? Keep reading for 4 on-page strategies every blogging lawyer should utilize to ensure Google recognizes the value of your content.

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Hashtagging 101 for Lawyers

You’ve set up your law firm’s Twitter account. Maybe you’ve even sent out a few tweets. But you’re just not getting the feedback — and followers! — you were hoping for. Your possible missing link? Hashtags (#). When used properly, hashtags can be one of the quickest and easiest ways for a lawyer to expand their online influence beyond their current pool of followers.

Using hashtags in your social media posts allows potential clients who are searching for those keywords to find your social media updates, and, therefore, find you. Once reserved for Twitter, hashtags can now also be used with Facebook and Google+. LinkedIn does not support the use of hashtags as a search tool.

Just hashtagging for the sake of hashtagging will not be effective. Read on for a few tips on how to research and discover relevant hashtags for your practice area(s).

1. What hashtags are the influencers using?

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4 Tips for Maximizing Your Legal Blog’s Content

For lawyers who are interested in capitalizing on the fact that prospective clients use the internet to find an attorney, search engine optimization, or SEO, is key. The goal of search engine optimization is to get your website to the top of the search engines for your target keywords; a process that takes time, a savvy understanding of what really works, and a consistent effort.

Among those efforts is content marketing optimization, or CMO. CMO is the practice of creating fresh, relevant content for search engines to pick up (generally through the use of a blog). SEO and CMO go hand-in-hand. If your web marketing team tells you otherwise, be very wary.

Read on for 4 tips to capitalize on your CMO and increase your SEO.

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Client References and Your Law Firm’s Online Presence

You may be convinced that your primary source of business is through word of mouth — and you may be right. However, recent research and online data tracking shows that your website is without question the number one resource for your potential client / media connection, referral source to learn more about you. In other words, before retaining your law firm’s services, your potential client is checking out your online presence… Your law firm website, your LinkedIn profile, your speaking engagements and article publications, and more.

If your website isn’t designed to draw prospective business in, or if your web presence isn’t geared to help potential clients find and positively evaluate you, you’re missing a huge opportunity.

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Kristen Marquis to Present at SDCBA on Business Development for Lawyers

If you will be in the San Diego area on March 26, 2014, stop by the San Diego County Bar Association for a great seminar on business development for lawyers! Or watch and learn on the live webcast. Click this link to learn more.

WebPresence, Esq.’s founder and practicing attorney Kristen Marquis will be one of five panel members sharing their experience and knowledge on how to build a successful law practice in today’s digital and competitive business climate. During Kristen’s segment, she will share tips on how to ethically and effectively use social media to expand your network, bring in new business, and masterfully enhance your online reputation.

Topics to be covered in the evening’s educational seminar:

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Can Your LinkedIn Profile Bring You New Business?

Let it be said again: LinkedIn is the must-use (and most used) social network for professionals. With over 200 million users, and 74 million of them in the US, there is no shortage of business development opportunities for the savvy lawyer. As with any marketing tool, LinkedIn is far more effective when you make the most of what it has to offer. In this post, we will explore “Who’s Viewed Your Profile” and it’s value to you as a practicing attorney looking to bring in new business.

Recently, LinkedIn changed the way Who’s Viewed My Profile displays in your settings (and if you are not regularly using this feature, start now!). LinkedIn has dramatically shortened the content shown in a Who’s Viewed My Profile shot. This means that, in about 8 succinct words, you need to explain what you do in a somewhat creative and eye-catching manner. Sound like too much to ask? Talk to us about updating your LinkedIn profile.

Professionals (your potential referral sources and clients) use LinkedIn to expand their networks. It’s up to you to — efficiently and without putting anyone to sleep — convince them that they should connect with you and potentially bring you their business. Your headline is your slogan. Make it count!

Below are a few examples of what doesn’t work for a LinkedIn ‘slogan’. Notice that headlines are cut off mid-sentence, leaving the guesswork up to the potential connection. In marketing, a brand (which is what you, the practicing attorney, are in today’s digital world) strives to avoid leaving the potential consumer with ambiguity as to the brand’s purpose or mission. Do not rely on your audience to accurately assume what you can do for them. Clearly, professionally, and creatively tell them.

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