There are many personal injury, medical malpractice, and litigation firms that advertise on television and in the yellow pages. We are seeing a real shift in the use of the Internet as a method for finding attorneys. Some personal injury firms can spend as much as $250,000 a year or more on yellow pages advertising. Those same ad dollars could create an Internet marketing plan that would dominate the major search engines for multiple keyword searches.
The best part about Internet marketing versus traditional advertising is the ability to track every visitor, every search term used, where they visited, how long they visited and to direct leads immediately to support staff and attorneys through their email and smartphones. These Internet leads are highly targeted people looking for a specific service and need to be called back or contacted, usually within 15 minutes of a lead coming through.
Personal injury firms and others who spend a great deal of their advertising budget on traditional methods could also benefit from sophisticated call tracking that only a website can offer. Dynamic content changes, the use of dynamic video in different pages and their headers, and other tools can only be utilized through the Internet.
We will begin to see a shift in the advertising budgets to the Internet. Make sure your firm is on the leading edge of this technology and contact us at www.vlawyerconsulting.com for a free law firm marketing review.Read More
Virtual law practices are under attack. Traditional attorneys and large firms with a heavy presence on ethics boards and Supreme Court Administrators are attacking the concept of virtual law firms. Why? money. They are seeing virtual law firms popping up at the courthouse and at pretrial conferences and they sit there and wonder quietly…”how did this guy get all these cases, and where is his office?”
Specifically, states like New Jersey are stabbing at the heart of the virtual law practice’s heart…the “bona fide office rule”. This is a blatant attack on virtual practices as it requires a lawyer to maintain a bona fide office, or brick and mortar physical office where clients can find their lawyer and drop off papers. Hello? These boards and ethics attorneys are not in the real world of today and the advances in technology.
My virtual law practice is a hybrid. I maintain an office in a professional office building where I get a physical address with mail service, a receptionist that answers my phone “McNeil Law Office”, and a nice office or conference room to meet clients in. They can stop by any time between 8 and 5 and someone is always there. In addition, they have my personal cell phone number and I check my email every 5 minutes on my iPhone. How is THIS not a bona fide office?
Lawyers are fond of putting signs up on their offices, “By Appointment Only”. That is my office…how is that any different. In addition, I am a happier lawyer and pass that on to my clients. Does a client really care if their legal work and mindless paperwork gets done in a stuffy office or out in the sun at a coffee shop? I would say NO.
The economy in many states for attorneys is dismal. It will become almost a necessity to operate a virtual law practice rather than harboring ridiculous overhead that comes due every month. Female attorneys in New Jersey have begun to attack back, saying that they do not want their home addresses published to their clients, especially if they have young children they are caring for on a part time basis.
These virtual hybrid offices are perfect for the part time lawyer/supermom. Even a state like Florida tries to implement a bona fide office rule through their advertising rules. However, a call to the ethics hotline will reveal that as long as you say some magic words…available for consultations at_______, then you are covered. How are magic phrases protecting the best interest of the client versus promoting better overall client service. I choose client service over abra cadabra any day.
Visit www.vlawyerconsulting.com for more tips on how to operate a virtual law practice ethically.Read More
Law firm marketing on the Internet is a “game” that can be won. Like any game there are rules that have to be followed and as in sports…there are no shortcuts. Many lawyers would love to think that they can beat a system like Google, Yahoo! and other major search engines. The only way to win the game is play for the long term.
You can play the short term game of PPC, or pay-per-click, but be prepared to spend upwards of 5 to 10.00 per click! This ads up very quickly and your conversion rate (sales game) better be stellar. Like the story of the tortoise and the hair..slow and steady wins the race.
A better Internet strategy is to build a solid foundation. Any foundation must include a content-rich website with a contact form on every so that no matter which page the potential client lands on they can ask for more information. Then, and only then, can you look at sophisticated Internet marketing like SEO (search engine optimization) and PPC. Be sure to hire a qualified web designer that knows the legal market and can help with content writing…otherwise it is likely to never get done.
Contact us at www.vlawyerconsulting.com for a free website need analysis.Read More
Law firm marketing is quickly becoming a “game” that can only be won on the Internet. The traditional marketing efforts by law firms, yellow pages, billboards, and print ads, are becoming obsolete in the digital age where clients want their attorneys “hot…fast…and now”. I call this the McDonald’s syndrome.
Clients are growing up with technology and feel almost more comfortable sending a text message then meeting their attorney in person…and they know it costs less! Our clients today demand that there attorney be available by email, text message, smart phone, internet fax and on social media. I have more and more of my clients sending me messages on facebook due to the fact that it is private and there is no spam.
I look at this as a huge opportunity versus some who look at it as the decline of the “profession” of law. We can use this tectonic shift to better serve our clients and break down the traditional attorney-client barriers that bred distrust and miscommunication. I can use video conferencing to replace expensive office visits and I can see their emotion and what they are feeling as we talk. I can also record the session and save it in their digital file. Text messages can be archived as well as email and provide a trail of communication.
The number one reason why attorneys are grieved is lack of communication with their lawyer. Embrace technology and the new era of law firm marketing that, if not used to our advantage, will bury us like an avalanche.
Visit www.vlawyerconsulting.com for more information on how you can utilize technology to better serve your clients.Read More
I get this questions a lot…especially from lawyers who simply cannot fathom operating a law firm from the Internet. I believe that an attorney operating a virtual law practice can deliver HIGHER quality legal services than one who sits behind a desk and plays solitaire all day. In my virtual practice, I maintain a physical office location to meet with clients, provide my personal cell phone number, and am accessible at all times through email on my iPhone. I know many law firms where you will get a receptionist, paralegal or legal assistant who delivers a message and then maybe you get a call back. All of my clients can reach me directly on my personal cell phone or ask me questions through text message or email. I utilize electronic fax programs that notify me on my iPhone of every fax that comes in…that way I never miss a fax from a client that is urgent. I am also able to pass along my overhead savings to my clients. I charge fixed fees and am able to accept payments through my website by credit card or paypal. All of this means quality client service and higher client satisfaction…shouldn’t that be the goal of every attorney?
If you would like to find out how you can operate a virtual law practice or have questions concerning law firm marketing , check out www.vlawyerconsulting.comRead More