A former client who is singing your praises always sounds sweeter than when you are tooting your own horn. But getting positive, thoughtful client reviews on online lawyer review websites is easier said than done. Essentially, you are asking a favor and giving nothing in return. How can you begin to increase your positive online reviews?
- Grow your herd of supporters and fans. Every time you send out a follow-up email to a past client, keep in contact with your social networking fans or send out a Tweet, you are growing your group of supporters and followers. Why? So that they can act on your behalf when you need them. There is perhaps no better example than asking your “herd” to take a few moments to leave you a positive online review, especially in the wake of an isolated bad review.
- Set up a page on your website. You want to make leaving a review as easy as humanly possible since you are asking your clients to go out of their way to do a favor for you. One way to do this is by having a page on your website that asks to leave a (not necessarily favorable) review and includes buttons to the most popular attorney review websites, such as AVVO, Yelp, and Google.
- Respond to negative reviews. Most review sites have an option in which you or someone in your office can respond to a negative review. You should take advantage of this tool as quickly as possible. In your response, take the opportunity to explain yourself without getting angry, defensive, or insulting. If your response is well-written, measured, professional, and rational, you have essentially added a positive review of your services in the place of the poor one.
- Ask nicely. Nothing works quite as well as asking clients nicely to leave a review, especially when they are expressing their thanks after your service is done. Direct them to your website page, send them a link, and remind them gently if they have said they would leave a review but did not.
Do not underestimate the power of a great review.