Curious About a Great Legal Marketing Membership? Learn More Below!
Ben Glass and his team at Great Legal Marketing work with an elite mix of attorneys from virtually every practice area from personal injury to bankruptcy and beyond. We are not for everyone, in fact, while we attract many who "want" to get better we know that only about 20% of any population will do the work necessary. The difference in results has nothing to do with where your law practice is located or how much experience you have. This is all about the choices that YOU make.
By joining Great Legal Marketing, attorneys like you discover and implement proven marketing and management strategies that have transformed all kinds of practices. You will discover how to build better referral relationship, improve your internet marketing, expand into new markets, better manage your employees, and so much more – this really is a “club” for success-minded attorneys who want more than just an average practice. We take pride in having members who are ambitious, motivated, and determined attorneys who understand that their law practice is also a business.
We have an exceptional track record of changing the lives of our members. We frequently hear reports of double- and triple-digit growth from our members. And the goal achieved don’t stop there. Our members have told us that being with Great Legal Marketing has given them their lives back so they can do what they really love in life. The power of our programs has also been credited with regular month-long vacations, turning 70-hour work weeks into a highly efficient 40 hours, saving marriages, significant weight loss, countless jobs created and even improved golf scores.We want to help you create your own success story.
Below you will find answers to our top questions about a Great Legal Marketing membership. If you are interested in becoming a member, you can click the button below to purchase our introductory package.
How Does Great Legal Marketing Work?
Great Legal Marketing has three membership levels; Gold Marketers, Diamond Practice Builders, and MasterMind. Most attorneys start at the Gold Marketers level where they learn the basics of direct response marketing for attorneys. We provide our new members with templates, guides, and loads of other free materials to help them launch their very first marketing campaigns. After attorneys have achieved their first goal of getting more clients, they typically ascend to the Diamond Practice Builders membership.
Our Gold and Diamond programs are both monthly memberships that give you access to our materials and our marketing team. Gold members have access to our Chief Marketing Officer Charley Mann as well as access to the other Great Legal Marketing team for help with advertisements, marketing strategies, tracking, and other practice growth topics. Diamond members have more access to Ben Glass as well as access to the rest of our team.
Great Legal Marketing is NOT a done-for-you service. We are forever learners, and our members are as well. We help those attorneys who are ready to do the work needed to achieve the success they dream about for their practice.
Who Is Ben Glass?
Most people who meet attorney Ben Glass come to know him as a father of nine children (four of them adopted and five who still get on the school bus every morning), a small business advocate in Northern Virginia, a non-profit and charity supporter, and ex-marathon runner - in addition to being one of the most-reviewed attorneys in the area (see him on Avvo and Google).
Ben has spent his career practicing law in the courtrooms throughout Northern Virginia. He is a nationally recognized board-certified personal injury, medical malpractice, and disability insurance attorney in Fairfax, Virginia. He graduated from George Mason University School of Law in 1983 and has devoted his career to representing individuals against the insurance companies.
Through Ben’s experience in testing various marketing techniques for his own firm, he has discovered what truly works and has implemented his knowledge into the creation of Great Legal Marketing in 2005. Hundreds of lawyers in the United States and Canada have already joined Great Legal Marketing and are watching their practices take off.
How Do I Start A Great Legal Marketing Membership?
Great Legal Marketing's materials are not free. We have two monthly membership levels and one yearly membership level. The first step is to decide which membership level is right for you. Most attorneys start at the Gold Marketers level where they learn Great Legal Marketing's style of marketing. To start a Gold Marketers Membership, you need to purchase Practice Power Tools. Practice Power Tools is our introductory package that will kickstart your marketing journey and guide you through the first steps.
Attorneys who want a higher level of membership can start at our Diamond Practice Builder level. This is a good option if you are currently a gold member and want to enhance your membership, or you already own a successful law firm but need that extra edge. The process to start your Diamond membership is similar to starting our Gold membership. After you purchase our introductory toolkit, your Diamond membership will begin right away.
If you have been a Great Legal Marketing member before and already have our Practice Power Tools or Diamond Blueprint Package, you can reactivate your membership by calling (703)543-9677.
What is Included With a Great Legal Marketing Membership?
You can read the complete list of benefits that come with a Great Legal Marketing membership at PracticePowerTools.com. Practice Power Tools is our introductory toolkit that kicks off your Gold Marketers membership, and you can receive the benefits listed as soon as you sign up.
A full Gold Marketers membership includes:
- Monthly delivery of the Great Legal Marketing Journal: The Great Legal Marketing Journal is the monthly publication that all members receive. In the journal, you will find tips, tricks, and insight into new (and old) marketing topics and ideas.
- Member Toolkits: Every Great Legal Marketing member gets an introductory toolkit to start their marketing journey. The Practice Power Tools kit is designed to help you launch your very first marketing campaign and orient you with our marketing ethics and values.
- Monthly teleseminars with Charley Mann and Ben Glass: Each month Great Legal Marketing hosts three LIVE calls for members. Gold Members have access to the Gold Call with Charley Mann where you can learn about new, innovative strategies and rediscover old marketing ideas that will bring more leads to your law firm.
- The Ultimate Referral Letter: Charley Mann created the best, and easiest, way to grow your referral list within a few weeks. The Ultimate Referral Letter package is available to all membership levels, and when used this letter will immediately grow your referral network and start getting you better leads right away.
- Access to our many templates, guides, and tutorials: The Great Legal Marketing crew is always hard a work bringing you the latest and greatest in practice growth. We publish new guides and videos to help you achieve your goals.
- The Fast Action Boot Camp: The Fast Action Boot Camp is a members-only event where you get one-on-one access to the whole Great Legal Marketing crew. This event is popular among members, and many members attend more than once! This event is FREE with membership!
- Discount and Specials: Great Legal Marketing hosts a three-day Summit once a year in Washington D.C. You can learn more about the Great Legal Marketing Summit by visiting GLMSummit.com. Gold and Diamond members receive discounts on tickets and on any products available in our web store.
- Access to Our Exclusive Membership Website: We created a portal for our members to access all our materials. Everything we send you for membership can be found in digital form on the membership, plus other materials you can find nowhere else.
- ...Plus Much More!
How Do I Learn More About Great Legal Marketing and Membership?
You can learn all about Great Legal Marketing by browsing this website and by visiting PracticePowerTools.com. You can also fill out our contact form at the bottom of this page to ask a specific membership question. These messages are sent directly to the Great Legal Marketing team and we respond within 24 hours.
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I’m not a writer. How can I be sure the copy for my legal marketing materials is working?
This is a great worry for many attorneys. Since the first contact your customers will have is often with your website, you want to make it an informative and welcome environment for them. They should be able to click easily from one item to the next, feeling as if each article was written just for them.
Impossible? Not so. Here are a few guidelines that can keep you on the right path to great legal website copy:
- An interesting, provocative headline. Most people spend less than three seconds on a website before clicking away. You need to grab their attention quickly to draw them further into your site.
- Copy that enters the conversation in their mind. Your customers don’t care about you (at least, not yet). They care about what’s happening to them—and that’s what you should be talking about.
- The irresistible offer. In this day and age, people aren’t asking what you can do—they want to know what you will do for free (and your offer of a phone number isn’t going to cut it). Your book, CD, or DVD needs to offer information vital to your ideal client—so vital that they would be foolish not to ask for it.
Great website content is a must, but it’s only one component to your attorney marketing strategy. To learn how to take your law firm’s advertising to the next level, call 888-791-2150 today to have our tips delivered right to your inbox. You can also click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of our Great Legal Marketing book.
The other lawyers in my town say I'm “showing them up” with my marketing efforts, and they've hinted that they'll stop sending me referrals unless I let up. What should I do?
Well, that depends on how many referrals they send your way, and how many of these referrals wind up being long-term, loyal, paying clients. In the end, though, your improved and innovative marketing efforts will probably wind up bringing in more clients than could ever be referred to you by your fellow practitioners, and you should stay the course and not concern yourself with what the competition thinks!
The fact is that raising the bar of your marketing efforts is bound to ruffle the feathers of the other lawyers in your community. They have spent years sleepily doing the things all lawyers do: advertising in the Yellow pages, building cookie-cutter websites, producing generic 30-second spots that air on daytime TV. By doing something innovative—and being successful at it—you are forcing them to reconsider their own marketing efforts, and they resent you for calling attention to their own complacency.
This is manifestly not your problem; it's their problem, and they're the ones who have to deal with it.
And what if these other lawyers wind up adopting some of your successful law firm marketing techniques? That's not necessarily a bad thing; after all, the supply of potential clients in any given area is much bigger than you'd think, and as the saying goes, a “rising tide lifts all boats.” Look at it this way: you can consider yourself a cutting-edge thinker, and you'll still be more likely than your associates to come up with new marketing ideas.
Questions? Call the lawyer marketing professionals at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) to learn what we can do for you!
Who should I add to my legal database?
Your contact database is the most important asset of your law firm. It can be nearly ten times as expensive to market to new clients as it is to bring back repeat customers, so you should update and flesh out your contact list as often as possible.
Roughly speaking, the list comprises names and addresses of everyone who has ever expressed any interest in hearing anything you have to say. It should include a wide variety of people, all of whom have given you their permission to market to them.
Here are some examples of people who should be on your list:
- Customers. Everyone who has raised his or her hand to request any of your information should be added immediately.
- Referrals. These potential clients may have come from a source other than your website.
- Vendors. The people you are in business with need attorneys, too.
- Local friends and relatives. You would no doubt want to represent a friend in need of an attorney. As a bonus, many will offer free feedback on your marketing materials.
- Other local attorneys. Your list doesn’t just sell your services, it should network as well. Add attorneys who do not compete in your area of expertise (they are likely to refer those clients to you).
- Other professionals. These should be people whose advice you respect and who you can learn from, whether or not they are in your field.
For more insider information on starting a legal marketing campaign, call 888-791-2150 to get insider emails delivered to your inbox or click the link above to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
How can my legal marketing help me handle “problem clients?”
All attorneys, after they’ve been in practice for a while, will have one or two stories about “nightmare clients.” These may be people that irritated your staff or were disrespectful to you, but they are also usually the ones who took up a lot of your time and were not very profitable.
Your ideal legal marketing system can handle problem customers before they even walk in the door—by letting them know what kinds of cases you take and which would be better handled by someone else. This saves both you and the client a lot of time and money, and lets both of you off the hook without any hurt feelings.
A few guidelines to ensure you attract only the clients you want:
- Have a clear vision of your perfect client. Share that vision with your staff and marketing team.
- Direct your marketing only toward your perfect client. Your ideal client should feel as if your website was written specifically for him.
- Do not feel pressured to represent everyone. Your problem client will likely go to a competitor—and that’s fine. Letting her take up his time is a lot better than wasting your billable hours—which means other clients will come to you.
- Do not fear that “you will never get another client” if you do not market to everyone. By letting your difficult clients go, you’re making room for the ones you really want.
The biggest step you can make toward success is making a plan before you act. To learn which media outlets are best for your law firm, download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book or call 888-791-2150 to get our insider emails delivered to your inbox.
How can I possibly identify the ideal key phrase for my law firm's website, when we have so many specialties and so many potential kinds of clients?
This is a common dilemma faced by lawyers, who usually don't restrict themselves to one specific area of the law, or who work at multi-partner firms with a broad range of specialties.
The fact is that it may well be impossible to devise one effective, all-in-one, targeted key phrase for your practice's home page, For the vast majority of firms, you'd wind up with an unwieldy monster like “Chattanooga personal injury, car accident, medical malpractice and birth injury lawyers”—which won't impress Google's search algorithm, and certainly won't resemble any of the search phrases typed into Google by prospective clients.
This is part of the reason why the most effective law firm websites consist of multiple pages, rather than a stand-alone home page that tries to be all things for all people. If your website consists of 40 or 50 pages, you can afford to use a less specific key phrase for your home page, say something as simple as “Chattanooga law firm.” Then, for each of your subsidiary practice pages, you can deploy key phrases like “Chattanooga personal injury lawyers,” “Chattanooga medical malpractice lawyers,” etc., which have a fair chance of matching the queries typed into Google by Chattanooga residents in need of a lawyer.
Coming up with the right key phrases—especially for a large, varied law firm—is as much an art as a science, and requires the proper feel for what the average individual would search for in any given situation—not what you would enter in Google yourself, armed with your law degree.
Questions? Call the law firm website targeting experts at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) to learn more today!
Can you give me a “quick fix” solution to get more clients in the door?
We get this question a lot at Great Legal Marketing. Attorneys want to know the one thing, that mythical “magic bullet” that they can use right now to bring a flock of new clients to their door.
The reality is, it doesn’t exist.
Disappointing? Maybe. A lot of people think that there is only one key to successful law firm marketing—a change in their phonebook ad or a few lines of code on their website that will bump them up 50 places in the search engine listings. But think about it: if it were that easy, wouldn’t everyone know it by now?
The truth is, good legal marketing isn’t easy—especially not at the beginning. But that’s actually good news for you. Since web marketing is a complex problem, it has a complex solution. All of those other attorneys who are looking for the magic bullet are going to wander around, wasting their time, trying to find something that doesn’t exist.
You, on the other hand, accept that this is a multi-step process. You outline your goals, learn about social media, and constantly try new things to reach clients. You use many different outlets to reach your clients and funnel them back to your website, and you continually follow up with your rolodex of contacts.
Those other attorneys—the ones who are still searching for the “easy” button—are doomed to repeat their mistakes. Their ads will all look alike, they will waste hundreds or thousands of dollars on media buys in less effective markets—and their prospective clients will hear about you way before they hear about them.
To get started building your legal web marketing campaign, call 888-791-2150 today or click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
Why should I bother spending money on advertising? Aren’t all law firms basically the same?
It’s amazing how many attorneys assume that all of their advertising dollars will be wasted because there is no way to tell one law firm from another. Frankly, the idea is pretty insulting. After all, did you go through law school just because you wanted to be like everyone else? Of course not!
What most of these people don’t understand is that not all vendors are created equal just because they offer the same services. For example, think of all the fast food joints that sell hamburgers. There are a lot to choose from, about three that are the most popular, and one that’s dominating the market. It’s the same with electronics, coffee shops, and any other product you can name—the only difference is what they offer and how they market it.
There is a reason your clients will choose you above your competitors: you just need to figure out what that reason is. Once you find that selling proposition, you can create an interesting and educational system to market it—one that will keep your customer base informed and growing. When your strategy is fully developed, people will even come to know you by your marketing, giving you a brand name that future clients can flock to (and that your competition will struggle to emulate).
To get our legal web advertising tips delivered right to your inbox, call 888-791-2150 today to join our ranks. To read more on improving your marketing campaign, click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
Isn't it enough to concentrate on my website's home page, rather than all the subsidiary pages? How many visitors ever make it past the home page, anyway?
Not to answer a question with a question, but—have you ever heard of a “Potemkin village?”
In the Soviet Union—back when there was a Soviet Union—Communist functionaries used to lead foreign fact-finding missions on tours through representative Russian villages, which were in fact constructed for this exact purpose. That Russian Orthodox Church may have looked impressive from a distance, but it was just a two-dimensional facade, as were the well-kept peasant homes and the community hall.
That is the effect you'll be creating if you devote all of your resources to your law firm's home page, without investing anything in the pages “behind the front door” (frequently asked questions, practice areas, news items, etc.)
Yes, it may well happen that a prospective client will be impressed enough with your home page that he'll choose to contact you then and there, either via email or a pop-up IM window. But it's far more likely that that person will poke around a little bit behind the scenes first, and when he comes up empty he'll wonder if you really have anything to offer beside the attractive promotional copy on your front page.
That's not the only reason to back up your home page with well-rounded content. The way Google works these days, the websites that receive the best search placement are those that have multiple pages and a steady stream of constantly updated content. A placeholder (or Potemkin) page may have worked five or 10 years ago, but today it will be quickly buried in the Google SERPs.
Do you have questions about how best to design your law firm's website? Contact the law firm website marketing professionals at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) for a free consultation today!
How will limiting the types of cases I take build my practice? Won’t it mean less business?
Only if you measure “business” by the number of clients you have. Many attorneys do just that, and wonder why they never have time for their families and friends—and their bottom line isn’t even stable to make up for it.
Having fewer clients does not mean less business—in fact, it means quite the opposite. You will be building a better, more successful, and hopefully more lucrative practice.
Stop thinking about how you can pull in more cases and ask yourself:
- Whom do you enjoy representing?
- Which clients have cases that you have a great track record winning?
- Which past clients made you feel proud and honored that you were able to help them solve their legal problem?
- What types of clients (or cases) do you hate?
- Are there cases you would rather not take on sitting on your desk right now?
These questions aren’t irrelevant: they directly impact your relationship with your customer. After all, you didn’t become a lawyer to help people you don’t like, for a paycheck that won’t let you enjoy the little free time you have. You should like your job, not dread coming into the office every day—and if you’re taking cases that are personally unfulfilling, your clients are going to see it in every interaction you have with them.
There are perfect clients out there for you, and once you find them, all of your legal marketing efforts should be focused only on them. If you do it right, your law firm’s web marketing campaign will make your perfect clients feel as if it was designed just for them. At the same time, all those other cases will realize you’re not a good fit for each other (which is really best for you both).
To get more insider marketing tips, call 888-791-2150 today or click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
How important is it to update my law firm's website?
Well, it's a lot more important than it used to be! The days are long gone when a law firm could slap up a bare-bones website, with minimal functionality, and leave it untouched for years as it maintained its high placement in Google search rankings.
The search algorithm Google uses today is much more sophisticated than it once was, and one of the things that it tracks is the frequency with which your website is updated—and whether these are minimal changes (say, fixing typographical errors) or more substantive additions and overhauls.
There are two kinds of updating, one of which is more important than the other. You can pretty much leave any existing content on your site alone, especially if it's performing well, though you should take care to update it with links to your newer content when necessary (this sends a strong positive signal to Google).
What's most important is to constantly post new pieces of content to your site—blogs, frequently asked questions, news items pertaining to your practice areas, etc. The more well-written content your website has, and the more frequently this content is added, the better the “quality” signal you wind up sending to Google—and the result is that you will climb in search engine results, from which exalted position it will be harder for your competitors to dislodge you.
Do you need help deciding on the right mix of content for your website, and deciding how (and when) that content should be updated? Call the Internet marketing mavens at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) so we can get you pointed in the right direction!
Can I really attract clients to my law firm by doing the opposite of what my competition does?
If you ask most people why they chose an attorney, the top answer would be “I knew the attorney personally.” The second is “someone recommended him.” The third is the thing that brings people to you: why would someone hire you to do an important job above all other qualified individuals?
This is why it is so important to stand out. Think about all those attorney ads in the phone book, pages and pages of names with no personal details attached. If you’re thinking about placing an ad there, would you want it to look just like everyone else’s? What does that say about you? “Hire me, I’m just like everyone else here?”
People need a reason to choose you, and you need to give them that reason. Look through those pages again, and pretend you had to choose one of them based only on their ads. Which one stands out the most? Are any of them funny? Do they make any offers to the client? Or would you simply close your eyes and place your finger on a random name?
If you want to be successful, you have to see all of your competition as the “industry norm.” Your business is different, and you want to be better than the average. If the best way to stay average is by doing what everyone else has already done, than the best way to stand out is by doing the opposite.
To learn more about the best legal advertising tactics for your firm, call 888-791-2150 today or click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
My associate likes to write dense, scholarly blogs on our law firm's website, in the hopes that this will establish him as an expert and make him more attractive to clients. Is this a good strategy?
Well, it might be, if your practice specializes in patent law or corporate mergers and acquisitions—for the simple fact that the potential clients most likely to contact you are other attorneys who are already familiar with the language you're speaking. But if you handle car accident or personal injury cases, the fact is that your associate will be writing strictly for himself, since no one in need of your services will be interested in the finer points of tort law (or will necessarily even understand the legalistic phrases being tossed around).
As practicing lawyers, what you and your associate have to realize is that your website doesn't exist to demonstrate your prowess, or to impress your friends or family, or to show how creative you can get with web-building software. The sole function of your website is to attract potential clients—and the way to attract potential clients isn't with long-winded blog entries that no one will ever read, but with “action items” (a free book or DVD offer, an invitation to a free phone or email consultation) that will cause them to either pick up the phone or enter a message into a pop-up IM window.
Of course, if your partner insists, he can still go on writing his blogs; they should not be the first thing a potential clients sees when he lands on your website, but they can certainly be hidden behind an unobtrusive link, if anyone is interested enough to explore your services in depth.
Building a better law firm website is one of the key topics in our Great Legal Marketing book. Download your free sample chapter today, if you have not already done so. Then, if you have further questions, turn to the website marketing professionals at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) to learn how we can help you!
How does legal web marketing work? Won’t people see through my ads and realize I just want them to hire me?
Maybe, but that’s not really a problem. When you go to the supermarket, you fill a cart up with groceries, pay for them, and leave—and you probably didn’t think that the store was just interested in your money. You were thinking about all the things you needed while you were there.
And that should be what your marketing achieves: fulfilling your customer’s needs.
For example, imagine your TV is on the fritz. It’s about fifteen years old, and you’re thinking about getting a new one. A few days later, someone comments on the poor picture quality and suggests a particular brand that you might like.
So where did you go next? Online, to look up that TV your friend suggested. But then you clicked on another brand, and another, and now you’re comparing TVs to see which one you like best. When you go to your friends’ houses, you suddenly notice which TVs they have when you never cared before. You ask them about why they chose the model they did, and what they like about it—and of course, how much it cost.
And now the marketing comes in. You start to “see” ads for TVs everywhere—although of course, they have always been there; your brain just ignored them until you actually started shopping for one. This is the moment where you will choose which model to buy and where to buy it; the moment you are ready to move from shopper to customer. That is where all of your legal clients are the moment they click on your website.
Of course, there are many ways you can make the customer take that leap. To learn more about how your law firm’s advertising copy can affect client conversion, call 888-791-2150 today or click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
I'd like to install automated client-management software, but I'm worried that the system might go haywire and send the wrong emails to the wrong people. Is this a valid concern?
Unless you're implementing your client follow-up system on a Cray supercomputer, probably not.
We all know about the HAL computer that malfunctioned in 2001: A Space Odyssey and tried to assassinate the crew of its ship—but the fact is that, aside from the way they're depicted in movies, computers and computer programs operate pretty much as they're designed to. It's not as if your law firm’s client management software will be sending death threats rather than follow-up messages to people who have expressed interest in your law practice, or that it will somehow reveal confidential information by emailing one person the details of another person's ongoing or impending lawsuit.
What you may have in mind is the not-uncommon situation where a person's name becomes “stuck” in a bureaucracy's computer, and he winds up receiving multiple jury questionnaires or notifications about unpaid parking tickets. Even if this happens to a prospective client, the worst that can happen is that that person receives multiple copies of the same email, or continues to receive email after he unsubscribes from the service or even calls your firm to get his name off your list. This is unfortunate, but it's not very common, and in the end it's easily rectified—hopefully with a minimum of hard feelings.
Of course, it helps to purchase a client management system that performs as advertised, rather than a cheap software package riddled with annoying (and impossible-to-fix) bugs.
Questions? Call the lawyer promotion experts at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) to learn more today!
How important is my logo to my legal web marketing campaign?
There most used graphic on a website is, unsurprisingly, a logo. It doesn’t matter if the site is selling pizza, jewelry, or baby food, that logo will be on every page. And that’s fine, since it reminds a customer where they are (your site) and what they want (a lawyer).
Since having a logo is nearly unavoidable, it must be optimized to work as an advantage to the site, instead of merely taking up real estate on the page. Make sure that your logo:
- Is attractive and easy-to-read. This is for human readers, since the eye is drawn to pictures and shapes. You may have to go through a few drafts to find a logo that gets attention. Have a professional design company develop something tasteful.
- Is optimized with a file name. When you upload the picture of your logo to your site, you must make sure that the filename is optimized for search engines. Search robots read the names of all images, so “SmithandSmithLawFirm.jpg” will benefit you much more than “Smith1.jpg.”
- Does not take up too much room. Logos are fine for branding, but they should not be the main focus of your web design. No matter how famous your firm is, you should always focus more on the needs of the client (free offers and information) than obvious attention-grabbing for your firm.
To get our law firm web marketing tips delivered to your inbox, call 888-791-2150 today or click the link on this page to download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book.
My partner says a website can never have too many photographs—and now ours is so cluttered that visitors can barely find any information. What should I do?
Well, that depends on how many cold, hard facts you have at your disposal. If you're adept at using webmaster tools, you can show your partner that the photographs he loves so dearly are barely getting any “hits,” which is almost certainly the case.
The fact is that people don't visit legal websites to browse through picture galleries; there are other, far more popular sites that provide this service, such as Pinterest and Picasa. What people are looking for from your practice's website is information and answers—and while a picture may be worth a thousand words, those “words” are virtually useless to a person who needs to know whether or not he has the grounds to sue his doctor.
This isn't to say that your website should have no photographs at all. While the main focus of your page should be to provide information, this information is best digested in small servings, and the judicious use of pictures can guide visitors from one “course” to the next. A site that consists of nothing but text and headlines, no matter how well written, will simply not engage a visitor's interest, because the visual field needs to be broken up in order to be engaging. This is why newspaper and magazine articles are accompanied by photographs and other breaks in the text, such as pull quotes.
Still don't think your partner will be convinced? Have him call the website marketing experts at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150). We will lay out the case, in clear, persuasive language, why the main function of your law firm's website should be to answer a visitor's questions, not to offer a visual feast for his eyes!
Is there an easy strategy for designing my legal website?
There are quite a few of them. For instance, many attorneys believe in a “shotgun” approach to web marketing, making the mistake of trying to force a sale out of their customers. Their websites attempt to do too much: introduce the firm, lay out its credentials, and run through its specialties all before the airtime runs out.
Unfortunately, this method will be costly—and probably will not net you any new business.
Our strategy for building a great legal website is fairly simple, and relies on four steps that bring the reader closer and closer to your door:
1. Attract your customers’ attention. There are thousands of competing attorneys and law firms out there. Your content must be original and provoke the reader’s emotions, prompting him to respond.
2. Keep their interest. Customers will start their search for an attorney by researching their legal problem, so a variety of articles and blogs will keep them on your site.
3. Get them to start a conversation with you. Everyone offers a free consultation nowadays, so that’s not enough incentive to call you. A free book, however, allows the customer to get more information without making the leap from customer to client (at least, not yet).
4. Stop their search for another attorney. When they raise their hand for information, go the extra mile. Send an immediate email thanking them for their interest and let them know their package is on its way. When it arrives, it should have everything they asked for, plus newsletters and other promotional materials.
To learn which legal promotional materials you should include in an informational packet, download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book or call 888-791-2150 to get insider emails delivered to your inbox.
My partner doesn't want to invest in upgrading our website, because he says most of our referrals come via word of mouth. How can I convince him to change his mind?
In one respect, your partner is absolutely right. The fact is that when people want to hire a lawyer, the first thing they do is ask their friends, family or coworkers for a recommendation—if, that is, they don't happen to have a lawyer already, who can refer a colleague with the suitable specialty.
In another respect, though, your partner is dead wrong. Look at it this way: If nine out of your ten existing clients have found you via referrals, does that mean the tenth client is completely unimportant? That person represents (roughly) 10 percent of your business, and 10 percent often means the difference between a a profitable and an unprofitable practice. Also, the client who found you via your website or Yellow Pages ad also has a network of friends, family and coworkers, and if he drops out of the books you'll be losing all those potential references.
Your partner seems to be operating under a false premise, which is that upgrading your website requires a significant investment. The fact is that turning your website into a “winner”—by upgrading its graphics and improving the headlines and copy you post there—may require as little as a few thousand dollars, an investment that's well worth the potential return.
While you're at it, you should also convince your partner to place an ad in the Yellow Pages or upgrade the one that's already there. Yellow Pages referrals will still be a small part of your business, but can you afford to turn down a potentially lucrative client who comes to you from that source?
Marketing your law practice in the current competitive environment takes a lot of skill, tact and patience. Questions? Call the lawyer advertising experts at Great Legal Marketing today (888-791-2150) to learn more!
I'd like to inject some personality into my monthly newsletter, but I'm afraid of turning off potential clients. What should I do?
Well, ask yourself this question: would you prefer that potential clients not read your newsletter at all? Because if you send them a dry, drab, humorless newsletter about your law firm, they will idly scan the first item and then delete it. You haven't exactly offended anyone, but you haven't enticed them to pick up the phone, either.
Of course, a lot depends on what your definition of "personality" is. You're allowed to reveal to clients that you have a family, that you take occasional vacations, and that you find some news items amusing. What you shouldn't do is:
- Share off-color jokes
- Express your views about politics or religion
- Denigrate, or make fun of, an existing client, even if it's not by name
- Boast about what a successful, smart, wealthy guy you are
- Criticize other lawyers by name
If you do any of the above things, you may well wind up alienating potential (and even current) clients—who will respond by "unsubscribing" themselves from your newsletter. And once that happens, your odds of getting them to subscribe again to your newsletter are pretty slim.
Questions? Call the law practice newsletter promotion mavens at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) to learn more!
What is the best response to a customer requesting more information?
This is a great question, because many attorneys miss a great opportunity to hook clients who initiate contact. Some will email a few days later, or send a form letter with the requested information—neither of which is personal or memorable enough to guarantee further contact.
In order to keep your firm in the forefront of the customer’s mind, you must follow up at least twice, providing different information each time.
Your customers should immediately receive an automated “thank you” response that includes:
- An electronic copy of the requested material (or a related document)
- Links to top articles in the practice area they were reading
- A link to past issues of your newsletter
- An imbedded or linked You Tube video introducing yourself and your firm
- A few handpicked testimonials from clients with similar cases
- A call to action with contact information that assures your clients that you are constantly available for questions or concerns
The second package is sent via postal mail, and it can contain any or all of the following:
- A printed copy of the book they requested
- An additional printed material, such as a guide to choosing the right attorney
- A short DVD in which you speak directly to the prospective client, covering the ins-and-outs of a typical case and the necessity of hiring an attorney
- Press releases, paper newsletter, and other interesting and informative items
- A small free gift, such as a bottle opener, pen, or key ring
Seem like overkill? Not if you want to bring in more legal clients. To learn which legal promotional materials will work for you, download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book or call 888-791-2150 to get insider emails delivered to your inbox.
Can you explain more about keywords? I’m not sure I’m using the right ones.
Sure! Key words and phrases are essential to improving your legal website, so you will want to choose the most effective words as well as their placement. After all, your words must work for two different audiences: the search engine robots who will index your site, and the human readers who need your services.
The key to writing effective content for your legal website is to make your pages keyword-rich, but place your words carefully. Organic search is the largest driver of web traffic, meaning the words you use and how often you use them are equally important.
When choosing your legal website keywords, remember the three P’s:
- Phrasing. Sit down and consider the kinds of cases you want. Make a list of all the possible ways someone looking for your services would search for it. Ask friends and family what they would type into a search box to find you. Remember, you’re targeting laypeople, not lawyers.
- Placing. Once you have a list of strong keywords, you must integrate them into your content in a way that is suggestive, but not off-putting. One key phrase per 200 words is a good density to aim for; any more and it is likely to distract from your message.
- People. There are a number of writers, website designers, and other providers who can help you craft compelling and search-oriented content. A good designer will know about “behind the scenes” optimization, while good copywriters will be able to appeal to your reader’s emotions on the page.
Want more insight on how to improve your legal website? Call 888-791-2150 to get insider emails delivered to your inbox, or download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book today by clicking the link on this page.
My partner insists on storing all of our client information in a basic Excel spreadsheet. How can I convince him that we need to upgrade to client management software?
It might help if you download (or otherwise obtain) a free trial version of a database program and let your partner play with it!
With all due respect to Microsoft, Excel is far from the most intuitive program ever invented, although it does have its uses when it's wielded by a master (and employees who excel at Excel are increasingly thin on the ground these days). Sure, you can store your basic client information in this format, but you probably won't be able to access it at the touch of a button—and you certainly won't be able to sort it without consulting the manual (or, at the very least, summoning one of those Excel masters).
The fact is that, if your partner is of a certain age, and has grown up with the wonders of Excel, he may simply not be aware that there are better, more targeted, and more user-friendly client database systems out there. For example, a program called InfusionSoft can handle the database needs of not only your law practice, but of any side businesses you may happen to be involved in. With this program, not only can you easily gather contact information, but you can create a multi-step, multimedia follow-up campaign to turn potential clients into satisfied customers.
Even if you don't like InfusionSoft, there are literally dozens of other databases out there that can do a better job for your law firm than Excel.
Questions? Call the law firm database experts at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) to learn more!
I want to write a press release for my firm. Is it the same as writing other content?
Absolutely not. A bad press release can seriously hurt your credibility, so you want to make sure you do it right. Here are a few guidelines to follow when writing a press release for a legal website:
- Stick to an actual announcement. Press releases should only be used when something major has happened, like you have added a partner to your firm, or you won a major case. These should be treated like breaking news: include the who, what, where, when, and why.
- Use key phrases sparingly. Less is more in a press release. Choose one or two key phrases, point the links back to your site, and make sure they read well within the context of the article.
- Subtly include company information. Instead of scattering your firm’s information throughout the article, write a short hyperlinked paragraph as the by-line, such as “Contributed by Jones and Smith Law Firm of Dayton, OH.”
- Optimize for humans. Leave your obvious marketing tactics at the door. Reporters and editors are wise to the public relations practice of “ads as news,” so you want this to be news first, marketing second. Keep a clear and even keel as you write, sticking to the facts and avoiding glowing phrases. You can’t be unbiased (after all, you do want people to go to your firm), but you have to write without bias.
To get more great SEO tips for your legal website, download your FREE chapter of the Great Legal Marketing book today by clicking the link above, or call 888-791-2150 to get insider emails delivered to your inbox.
I rejected a client who came to me with a small case. Does this mean I have to permanently delete him from my database?
Well, the answer to that question will have a lot to do with how you got your message across. If you talked down to the potential client, telling him you have better things to do with your time, then no, there's no point in keeping him in your database, because you have permanently burned that particular bridge.
If, on the other hand, you nicely explained to the client that you don't have the time to devote to his case because you're currently juggling three big lawsuits, then not only will he not be offended, but he may even be impressed that you're such a busy and successful lawyer.
Assuming that you haven't permanently offended the client, you can certainly keep him in your marketing database—and what's more, you needn't hesitate about sending him your newsletters, marketing materials, etc., on a regular basis. It may take months, it may even take years, but if you keep your name fresh in this potential client's mind he may choose to call on you when he has that “big case” that he now knows you specialize in.
But if you turn down his minor case rudely, not only will he never call you again, he'll tell all of his friends and business contacts that you have a Napoleon complex and they should never avail themselves of your services.
It's never easy to turn down a potential client—after all, that's money right out of your pocket, however small an amount. Do you need some effective strategies? Call the law firm marketing mavens at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) for a free consultation today!
What is pay-per-click advertising, and will it work for my firm?
Simply put, pay-per-click advertising is when you pay for a group of keywords so that when someone searches for those words, your site will show up first. You may have seen this happen before: when you searched online for a movie and the first three results were “sponsored links,” or saw ads targeted toward you on Facebook.
As to whether it will work for you: it all depends. Luckily, you don’t have to jump in with both feet. You can start with a small pay-per-click campaign as a test. Consider purchasing two or three different keyword terms from a pay-per-click program (offered by Google, Yahoo, or other third-party sellers). These phrases can range from broad terms such as “Houston divorce attorney,” to wordier and more specific terms like “no-contest divorce in Texas.” A range of terms will help you gauge the quantity (and quality) of customer responses.
While this is an effective way to appeal to your customer market, it can also be expensive. The broader term, “Houston divorce attorney,” will likely cost more than the specific terms, as more searches will be done on those phrases. Specific or lesser-used key phrases are more of a sniper approach: that may not catch many customers, but they are likely to land you the ideal client you’ve been targeting.
Before you start buying up all the legal marketing keywords you can afford, keep in mind that you will be paying for each click—and just because a customer clicks over to your site is no guarantee you will sign his case. To learn how to effectively turn your website readers into clients, call 888-791-2150 today to join our Great Legal Marketing team.
I'd like to send a potential client a big package containing my book, my analysis of his case, and a few legal reference articles, but I'm afraid he'll just throw it in the trash. What do you think?
In order to answer this question, it helps to put yourself in the shoes of the "average" lawyer who you imagine you're competing with for this client's business.
Many lawyers, surprisingly, take a dim view of their prospects for landing a major medical malpractice or personal injury case, and aren't willing to make much of an effort beyond sending a simple letter, followed up (perhaps) by a single phone call.
Now look at your strategy from that perspective. Sure, the potential client may be a bit puzzled, or even put off, by having to sign off on the delivery of a five-pound parcel that contains all the documents you think are pertinent to his case. But people who are thinking of filing a lawsuit tend to be voracious consumers of information, and during an idle moment at home this person may well rip open your package and start browsing through its contents. Assuming the information you included is relevant to his case, you've already won half the battle; the other half is when your name sticks in his mind ("Wait a second, he's that guy who sent me that big box") and he actually decides to call you up or visit your office.
The fact is that by going the extra distance—sending "too much" material instead of an easily disposable and easily forgotten letter—you've already set yourself apart from the other lawyers in your area, who aren't willing to make the same investment on what they consider to be a very tenuous proposition.
Interested in learning more? Contact the lawyer marketing mavens at Great Legal Marketing (888-791-2150) for a free consultation today!
Who, what, when, where, why: What does that mean?
You’ve probably heard of the five “W”s before. These questions are a general pattern that reporters use to write an article. All of these questions should be answered in the first paragraph of a news item in order to give the reader accurate information as quickly as possible.
Your law firm’s website content should likewise answer all of these questions. After all, people search for what they want, where they are, and then choose who they want it from. If you tailor your content and keywords to reflect these search terms, you will have a website that appeals to both readers and search engines:
- Who? Who is your ideal client? What information would he want to know?
- What? What specifically is he looking for? The odds of someone finding your site from “New Jersey car accident” are much slimmer than someone who searches for “Parsippany turnpike crash.”
- Where? Your geolocation keywords must direct customers from your area to your site.
- Why? You may think that “why” speaks for itself: because this person needs an attorney. But considering the specific reasons she came to your site (her husband was injured in a construction accident, her child suffered a birth injury) will guide your practice area page content.
- When? The answer to “When?” is always NOW. Your customers need help immediately—and you should not hesitate to tell them that time is of the essence. Create a sense of urgency in your prospective client, and he will not spend time trying to contact other lawyers.
- How? This is your call to action. What can you offer to connect with that customer and follow up with him in the future?
If your keywords answer all of these questions, you’ve taken a big step toward converting readers into clients. For more great tips on perfecting your legal website, call 888-791-2150 today to join our Great Legal Marketing team.
I try to be available to potential clients 24/7, which is wasting my time and running me ragged. Is it time for me to reconsider my strategy?
Yes! Let's look at this situation from the point of view of the potential client you're so eager to impress. Say you've been diagnosed with a serious medical condition, and you need to undergo major surgery. Would you rather use the services of a doctor who:
Answers the office phone himself on the first ring, listens patiently to your story, and then says, "Well, my schedule is free this afternoon! Let's set up the procedure at the hospital and get this over with!"
Has his nurse carefully screen callers—who listens to your story patiently and politely before saying, "Well, Dr. X is completely booked for the next three weeks, but we can tentatively schedule your surgery on a day when he's free."
Unless your liver is literally trying to wriggle free from your torso, you'll probably be much more comfortable with doctor #2. After all, how good can doctor #1 be if (a) he has enough leisure time to pick up the phone himself and chat with you for half an hour or so, and (b) he has so few patients that he can schedule the operation as quickly as Pizza Hut can deliver an extra-large with anchovies?
At Great Legal Marketing, we can tell you that it is a big mistake to make yourself too available to potential clients (and this may not be such a great idea with your existing clients, either). Not only is your time valuable, but also by being too liberal with your availability, you may be sending the unintentional message that you're not a very effective lawyer.
Questions? Call our attorney marketing mavens today at 888-791-2150 for a free consultation!
I'd like to take a novel approach with our law firm's newspaper ads by incorporating some humor. My senior partner is putting up stiff resistance. What can I say to put his mind at ease?
Lawyers take themselves very seriously, sometimes to our detriment. When you insert some humor into your advertisement, newsletter, or other marketing tools you set yourself apart and make you seem more approachable. There is nothing wrong with being a little silly, as long as you are tasteful. Knowing this, many attorneys are hesitant to create a "funny" ad.
If you want to create a humorous ad, but you are getting kickback from other attorneys at your firm, the first thing you might mention is that most people completely ignore the ads when they're reading the newspaper. So, it's not as if you're putting your firm's reputation on the line by taking a lighthearted approach—and you may even attract the notice of readers who ordinarily wouldn't give a legal advertisement a second thought.
But the argument that will get you the most traction is that, by hewing to commonly accepted practices for legal ads in newspapers, your firm will get completely lost in the mix. If the headline, body, and small print of your advertisement look exactly the same as everyone else's, why should an interested reader call your number (except because he chose your firm completely at random?)
The fact is that the most commonly accepted practices in lawyer advertising and marketing don't exist because they're particularly effective—or, rather, they may have been effective when only a few lawyers were following them, but now are almost completely ineffective because literally everyone is doing the same thing. The key to a successful advertising and marketing campaign is differentiation: you have to show that your law firm is different from, and better than, the competition, and a touch of originality doesn't hurt, either.
Are you at a loss about how to effectively market your law practice, given that everyone else in your vicinity is doing the same thing? Read through our article library to find more tips about lawyer marketing.
How can I “appeal to my reader’s emotions” when I don’t know who the reader is?
It may seem strange that the best way to attract readers is to talk to them as if you know them—when, obviously, you don’t. However, you’ll get a lot farther with your customers by talking about them than you will by talking about you—as long as you are informative, interesting, and genuine.
For example, imagine that you are a family attorney and your ideal client is a woman who is considering filing for divorce. What would her concerns be? Would she be worried about getting a fair split of her shared assets, alimony payments, or child support? Is she thinking that she will lose her home or her car in the divorce? Address these specific issues in blog posts and articles that will inform her of the difficulties and outline her options. She will begin to trust you as a knowledgeable and caring attorney.
Now imagine the same woman coming to your site, only to find a static page of your case logs, your awards, and your phone number. How does she know that you are capable of handling what she is going through? Why should she trust you? Even if you say you have twenty years of experience winning cases, you haven’t shown her how you specifically intend to help her.
The truth is that reader-friendly content is just as important to your law firm’s online presence as your keywords or video—in fact, probably more so. You only have three or four seconds to attract a reader’s attention, keep him interested, and get him to click to another page or request a consultation. There is a lot of ways to do this—and some surefire ways to get them to close the page.
To find out more, call 888-791-2150 today to get our Great Legal Marketing tips delivered right to your inbox.