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How to Build a Lifestyle Law Firm

Posted in Rainmaker Retreat Boot Camp

How to Build a Lifestyle Law FirmThe ability to build a “lifestyle law firm” – one that enables you to do what you want, when you want to do it – is the key to financial independence for attorneys.

So how do you start building your own lifestyle law firm? By attending a Rainmaker Retreat.

You never know exactly what will resonate for each attorney who attends a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing seminar, but you can be sure that each and every one of them will take away something they can put to use right away in their legal practice.

Here are comments from attendees at our Rainmaker Retreat in Atlanta earlier this month:

“This is the absolute best seminar I have attended in 37 years.  Stephen is direct and clear at defining what needs to be done to succeed.  He knows lawyer marketing and has many personal results from successful lawyers all over the country.  I am on board to be one of them.  Thank you, Stephen!” -Tom Blackburn, Partner, Personal Injury, Fort Wayne, IN

“Amazing!  Tons of great information, I wish more of our staff members could have come.  We will be hosting a lunch and using the materials from the retreat to get all of our staff on board.”- Lauren Turner, Staff, Personal Injury, Fayetteville, GA

“Stephen Fairley and The Rainmaker Institute pack loads of valuable information in 2 days.  Stephen is informative, energetic and no doubt an expert to be listened to.  Well worth your money and time.” – David Rechtman, Partner, Workers Compensation/Personal Injury, Atlanta, GA

“The session on social media was so good I felt like it alone was worth the cost of attendance.”- Justin Taylor, Solo, Criminal and Personal Injury, Birmingham, AL

“As attorneys, we are focused on the daily grind that comes with our profession.  This retreat forces you to stop and take a serious look at the business.  After all, we all want to retire someday.  This retreat is invaluable.” -T.J. Roberts, Associate, Family Law/Criminal Defense, Angleton, TX

There are 7 key ways that a Rainmaker Retreat differs from other legal marketing seminars:

  1. Specifically designed for owners and managing partners at small law firms and solo practitioners. While Associates, Of Counsel, and Partners at large firms (50+ attorneys) are welcome to attend and will receive benefit from attending, the Rainmaker Retreat is specifically designed to meet the needs, challenges, and financial budgets of solo practitioners and small law firms.
  2. An advanced legal marketing workshop. We work very hard to make the material easy to understand and simple to apply, but please understand this is an advanced, in-depth, hard-hitting law firm marketing course!
  3. You will be taught how to track and measure every legal marketing effort! You will find a big emphasis on tracking the results of your attorney marketing efforts so if you are a numbers kind of person you will LOVE the Rainmaker Retreat!
  4. You will learn a proven lead conversion system. The biggest area attorneys overlook in their legal marketing efforts is how to convert more prospects into paying clients. You will learn the 5 numbers you need to track in your law firm.
  5. It is a working retreat. This means that several times each day you will be given specific marketing tasks to complete with step-by-step instructions. You not only come to listen, learn and discover, but also to practice and apply.
  6. There is a strong focus on return on investment (ROI)! Everything about this workshop is focused on one goal—helping you achieve the best possible results by finding more and better clients in the least amount of time using the least amount of money possible!
  7. 100% money back guarantee! We are so confident you will benefit from the Rainmaker Retreat that we offer a 100% money back guarantee. If you are not completely satisfied at the end of the first day, just let us know, turn your materials in and we will refund your money.

Whatever you learn at a Rainmaker Retreat will help you transform your practice. Here are the upcoming dates:

August 21-22, 2015 — Las Vegas, NV

October 2-3, 2015 — Miami, FL

You can register online for a Rainmaker Retreat or call 888-588-5891 for more information.  National Trial Lawyers members receive a discount. Please contact National Trial Lawyers at 866-665-2852 to receive the discount code.


The Key to Successful Lead Conversion for Law Firms: Fast Follow-Up!

Posted in Lead Conversion

The Key to Successful Lead Conversion for Law Firms: Fast Follow-Up!Those of you who have already attended a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing seminar, are familiar with the importance of fast follow-up when it comes to lead conversion.

I routinely cite a study that shows leads can go from hot to cold is just five minutes. In addition, a study on the lifespan of sales leads conducted by the Harvard Business Review found that leads contacted within one hour are 7 times more likely to be converted than if the contact was two hours later – and 60 times more likely to be converted than if the contact was 24 hours later.

Fast follow-up is a real stumbling block, especially for solos and small firms who usually rely on attorneys to return a call or email inquiry. This is the first mistake. NEVER have an attorney responsible for following up! You may want to, you may intend to, but it rarely happens because of your workload.

So what to do? Automate the process! You simply cannot be consistently good at lead conversion unless you have a process in place that sends your prospect an immediate message responding to their inquiry.

Every contingency can be planned for in advance with an automatic response system. A prospect calls in, a staff member gets an email address, enters it into the system, and that person is immediately sent an email. That email can encourage them to set an appointment, educate them further about your firm, include some testimonials from other clients, offer a free consultation, or whatever you want to happen next.

The same process can be put in place for leads that you capture through your website, blog or social media posts.

An automated systems also enables you to implement a drip email campaign that guides your prospects along the path to becoming a client. If they miss their initial appointment, this triggers a series of emails encouraging them to reschedule. If they don’t sign with you after the initial meeting, another series of emails prods them to take that step.

All of this can be done without any intervention from busy attorneys. We have implemented many lead generation email campaigns for law firms across the country that have yielded substantial increases in their lead conversion rates.

If you want to learn more about this process, we offer a free marketing strategy session for attorneys – see below for details.


tri-lecrpmvjphvkqdeacqwkgibjwtxkmmjz-v2FREE Law Firm Marketing Strategy Session with a Rainmaker Advisor

Want to discover proven marketing strategies that top law firms are using right now to generate more leads and referrals and convert them into paying clients?

Don’t understand social media or have time for it, but know that your law firm marketing program desperately needs to include it?

Please give us a call at 888-588-5891 or click here to sign up for a free one-on-one Strategy Session with a Rainmaker Advisor who will listen to your specific marketing challenges. 

The Rainmaker Advisors are handpicked and trained to identify marketing strategies that you can implement to grow your practice.


How Attorneys Can Stop Sweating Social Media

Posted in Rainmaker Retreat Boot Camp, Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

How Attorneys Can Stop Sweating Social MediaFear of the unknown is a basic human instinct, and we see it every day when it comes to attorneys and social media.  But with 74% of online adults using social media, it’s time to face your fears!

One way to face your fear is to learn all about proven social media marketing strategies attorneys have used to build their practices at a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing seminar.

Each Rainmaker Retreat session focuses on the unique problems facing solos and small law firms, providing advanced hands-on training for lead generation, lead conversion, legal marketing automation, and Internet and social media marketing strategies specifically designed to help attorneys generate more and better referrals for their law firm, and convert more prospects into paying clients.

Here are four of the most common fears I hear from attorneys at our Rainmaker Retreats:

“I don’t have enough time.”

You don’t have to spend a lot of time on social media for it to benefit your firm. Choose one or two social media networks where your target market is most likely to be found — for B2C attorneys, the #1 network is Facebook; for B2B attorneys, it’s LinkedIn. Then spend about 30 minutes a day — first thing is best — on creating a post about something of interest to your target market.

“I don’t know what my ‘voice’ should be.”

The voice in your posts should be yours. It should sound human, not corporate. Have your personality and opinions reflect your firm’s marketing strategy and values.

“I don’t know what to post.”

Think about the top 10 problems clients have that you solve, and create posts with solutions to those problems. You can then turn those posts into a free report. How-to articles and FAQs are great ways to showcase your expertise as well. Share interesting and informative articles you’ve found that your audience can relate to, and ask questions to start conversations.

“I’m worried about negative comments.”

Yes, there are some trolls out there who will leave a negative remark every now and then. If it has merit, then you’ve just learned something about how you can improve your service. If it doesn’t have merit, don’t worry — it’s an opportunity to respond professionally to show you care enough to engage. And if it’s just off the wall, no one will pay it any mind.

help meUpcoming Rainmaker Retreat dates include:

August 21-22, 2015 — Las Vegas, NV

October 2-3, 2015 — Miami, FL

You can register online for a Rainmaker Retreat or call 888-588-5891 for more information.  National Trial Lawyers members receive a discount. Please contact National Trial Lawyers at 866-665-2852 to receive the discount code.

How to Fix the Most Common Social Media Mistakes Lawyers Make/Part 3

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

How to Fix the Most Common Social Media Mistakes Lawyers Make/Part 3Over the past few days, I’ve posted solutions for the most common social media mistakes lawyers make:

1.  No social media strategy (see 7/21 post)

2.  Taking on too many social media platforms at once (see 7/22 post)

3.  Focusing on follower quantity instead of quality (see 7/22 post)

4.  Putting too much focus on your firm (see 7/22 post)

5.  Treating all social media platforms the same

6.  Ignoring the “social” part of social media

7.  Neglecting to budget properly for a social media marketing program

Here are tips on correcting the final three mistakes on the above list:

Mistake #5: Treating all social media platforms the same. According to the ABA, 78% of attorneys are on more than one social network. However, many law firms make the mistake of posting the same information in the same way across all social media networks. They neglect to take into account the unique attributes of each social media site, and their results suffer for it. Here’s what we’ve found works best on the top 4 social media networks for attorneys:

Facebook: the top destination for B2C attorneys, Facebook posts by lawyers get more shares and likes if they contain a personal anecdote or other human element. Bare-faced firm promotion is a no-go on Facebook; instead, add your spin to contemporary news or trends, share an inspirational quote, or post something about your charitable endeavors.

LinkedIn: works best for B2B attorneys who know how to work it. On LinkedIn, you have the opportunity to post more in-depth thought leader pieces and share them with your own followers as well as targeted LinkedIn groups whose members will find your topic of interest.

Twitter: immediacy is the watchword for Twitter; it is morphing into a news feed and lawyers should take the opportunity to hop on with insightful commentary on trending topics. You can identify those by checking the “Trends” column on the left side of your Twitter page. For example, a family law attorney can link their landing page for a free report on a divorce topic to the current trending topic of the Blake Shelton/Miranda Lambert divorce.

YouTube: if you have not broken into video marketing yet, you are missing a huge opportunity to connect with prospects searching for your expertise. Post informational videos on YouTube and load those videos with relevant keywords so they can be found in search. Google owns YouTube, so having a presence there will also help your search ranking.

Mistake #6: Ignoring the “social” part of social media. Social media is a 365/24/7 world, allowing you to engage with prospects at any time, and they with you. You must be vigilant about responding to posts and questions the same way you would in responding to a prospect that calls or emails you. Every point of contact is an opportunity to make a great impression.

By truly engaging on social media regularly, you strengthen your relationships with people you already know and start building new relationships with people you don’t know – your friends’ friends and followers.

Mistake #7: Neglecting to budget properly for a social media marketing program. While it won’t cost you a dime to sign up on social media networks, maintaining a robust presence on these sites does cost you – either time or money, it’s your choice.

Social media is the fastest way to build your sphere of influence, but it won’t happen overnight. Your sphere of influence is defined as how many people know (1) who you are, (2) who you help, and (3) why you are different.  If you only have 20 people who know enough about you to refer or hire you, then you are severely limited in how much you will be able to grow your practice.   Social media is a long-term play, and you need to commit to spending the time and money (either yours or hiring someone else) to achieve success.


newsletter emailGet More Proven Legal Marketing Strategies FREE from The Rainmaker Institute

One click of your mouse will take you to our website where you can see the current issue and subscribe to our complimentary monthly e-newsletter that will be delivered to your inbox every month.

Each issue is chock-full of legal marketing information you can put to use right away and share with your staff to maximize the effectiveness of your legal marketing plan. Click here now to subscribe to The Rainmaker Institute Law Firm Marketing Newsletter.

How to Fix the Most Common Social Media Mistakes Lawyers Make/Part 2

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

How to Fix the Most Common Social Media Mistakes Lawyers Make/Part 2My post yesterday introduced the topic of the most common social media mistakes lawyers make and focused on remedying the #1 mistake by learning how to develop a social media strategy for your law firm.

In this series of posts, I’ll be sharing with you the ways to fix all these common social media mistakes:

1.  No social media strategy (see 7/21 post)

2.  Taking on too many social media platforms at once

3.  Focusing on follower quantity instead of quality

4.  Putting too much focus on your firm

5.  Treating all social media platforms the same

6.  Ignoring the “social” part of social media

7.  Neglecting to budget properly for a social media marketing program

Mistake #2: Taking on too many social media platforms all at once. Many law firms make the mistake of jumping in to social media by putting up profiles on every network and then find they don’t have the time to maintain them all.

You don’t need to be everywhere. You just need to remember that the most important thing in identifying the right social media platform for your firm is to know your target market.   Once you know the demographics of your market, you can then focus on the social media platforms that do the best job of reaching that audience.

If your market is business-to-business, then you want to have a robust presence on LinkedIn.  If you market to consumers, then Facebook is your best bet.  If you want to go after a female clientele, then be sure you have some presence on Pinterest.

Once you have done the necessary homework on knowing your prospect inside and out, then it’s much easier to find the best places to reach them. You can find demographic breakdowns on the most popular social networks from the Pew Research Center’s 2014 Social Media Update.

Mistake #3: Focusing on follower quantity instead of quality. While it may boost your ego to have thousands of follower and fans on social media, it will do nothing to boost your ROI or user engagement if you are just counting heads instead of gathering users who have a real need for your services.

The key here is to use social media to build real relationships and you can start with the relationships you already have. Once you join a social media network, your first step should be to find all your contacts there and invite them to connect with you. Once you do, and they like or comment on what you post, that will spread to their networks as well.

LinkedIn has a great tool called Advanced People Search that allows you to leverage your current contacts to find potential prospects in their LinkedIn circles and groups. Just click on the “Advanced” link next to the search box at the top of the page.

Mistake #4: Putting too much focus on your firm. When crafting social media posts, remember the 80/20 rule — 80% of your posts should be about something of use or interest to your followers and only 20% should be about promoting your firm.

One of the goals of participating on social media is to spread your influence beyond the circle of people who already know you. This occurs when your posts are interesting enough to share. Here are the five types of posts that get the most social media shares:

How-to: These types of posts are perfect for attorneys since they pose a problem, offer a solution and detail the steps in-between.   For example, How to Create an Estate Plan for Your Blended Family or How to Document Your Car Accident.

Lists: Lists are very popular on social media because they’re easy to scan and, frankly, humans just seem to like lists! Examples: Top 5 Ways to Beat That DUI Rap or Top 10 Reasons You Need a Lawyer for Your Startup.

What: Many of these focus on a particular topic and sometimes make comparisons. Example:What Attorneys Used to Know About Social Media and What They Know Now or What the New Florida Spousal Support Law Means for Women.

Why: The “why” post gives people your reasoning for reaching a particular conclusion on a chosen topic. Examples: Why You Should Talk to a Real Estate Attorney Before You Buy or Sell Your House or Why You Need to Review Your Estate Plan Every 2-3 Years.

Video: Nothing works better than video to illustrate a point or legal concept, and to give people a feel for what it would be like to do business with you. Even videos that have nothing to do with your area of practice but just evoke a pleasant emotion are worthy of sharing on social media.


FREE Online Seminar:  How to Develop Your Law Firm Marketing PlanFREE Online Seminar:  How to Develop Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

Join Stephen Fairley for a free 60-minute legal marketing webinar: Develop Your Law Firm Marketing Plan, where you will learn…

A proven legal marketing system that has helped 15,000+ attorneys convert more prospects into paying clients.

Step-by-step actions you should take throughout the course of the next 12 months to substantially increase your revenues.

Effective strategies to win clients in today’s hyper-competitive online focused marketplace.

Creating a marketing plan for your law firm is the first step in building a foundation for a profitable future.  During this complimentary webinar, learn:

  • How to target market to get your ideal client
  • Why your firm is not getting more referrals and how to change it
  • How to select the right marketing tools that will work for your practice and personality
  • Effective online and offline marketing strategies
  • How to create a financial plan to fund your marketing budget
  • The 5 critical components of a Marketing Action Plan (MAP)
  • 4 ways to create a unique competitive advantage
  • What is critical to have in place for today’s hyper-competitive online focused marketplace

Stephen will lead you through the step-by-step actions you should take throughout the course of the next 12 months to substantially increase your revenues.

There are several sessions of this free webinar scheduled; you can choose what works best for you from the drop-down menu when you click on the following link to register online for our FREE Develop Your Law Firm Marketing Plan online seminar.



How to Fix the Most Common Social Media Mistakes Lawyers Make/Part 1

Posted in Social Media Marketing for Law Firms

How to Fix the Most Common Social Media Mistakes Lawyers Make/Part 1Few things are more annoying than being presented with a list of mistakes without any solutions to fix them.

We see many law firms making the same mistakes on social media over and over again. This discourages them from participating and reaping the true rewards that social media offers — engagement with an audience you may not otherwise reach on a broad scale you could never afford to purchase.

Here are some of the most common social media mistakes lawyers make and over the next few days, I’ll be sharing with you the ways to fix them:

  1. No social media strategy
  2. Taking on too many social media platforms at once
  3. Focusing on follower quantity instead of quality
  4. Putting too much focus on your firm
  5. Treating all social media platforms the same
  6. Ignoring the “social” part of social media
  7. Neglecting to budget properly for a social media marketing program

Mistake #1: No social media strategy. You should never begin any marketing initiative without outlining a solid strategy and that includes a social media program. When developing a strategy for social media marketing, you need to give serious thought to the “5 W’s and the H”:

Who is your target market

What you want to accomplish

Where you will be participating (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.)

When you will be posting for maximum benefit

Why you want to use social media

How you will execute and measure your plan

Here are 20 things you need to consider that will ensure you are developing a social media strategy that will actually help you achieve your overall law firm marketing goals:

  1. The reason you want to participate in social media.
  2. The overall purpose of your law firm.
  3. What you hope to achieve with social media.
  4. What your target market looks like.
  5. Which social media platforms your target market uses.
  6. What information is most important to your target market.
  7. What events are important to your target market.
  8. What problems you can help your prospects solve.
  9. The path your prospect takes from search to buy.
  10. Where social media fits within the purchase path.
  11. What your brand stands for.
  12. What tone you should take in your social media posts.
  13. What emotions you hope elicit through text and visuals.
  14. What types of content you should post on each platform.
  15. What types of content best support your marketing mission.
  16. What resources you have to devote to social media.
  17. Who should be responsible for running your social media program.
  18. How often you should post to social media.
  19. How social media integrates with other aspects of your marketing program.
  20. How you will define success and measure ROI.

Created and executed correctly, a social media marketing program can help you connect with prospects you may never have found otherwise and drive the engagement on to more richly rewarding places like your blog, website or newsletter. Just don’t start the journey without a map.


New FREE Report: 10 Steps to Jumpstart Your LinkedIn Presence & Get More Referrals FastNew FREE Report: 10 Steps to Jumpstart Your LinkedIn Presence & Get More Referrals Fast

LinkedIn may be the most powerful social media tool for lawyers and litigators!

In my new FREE report –10 Steps to Jumpstart Your LinkedIn Presence & Get More Referrals Fast — I’m going to show you how you can leverage LinkedIn to generate more and better referrals while connecting with clients in 10 simple steps.

What this free report has to offer:

  • Strategy: The exact strategy attorneys are using to get referrals from LinkedIn
  • SEO: How to optimize your profile for Google and other search engines
  • Avoid Common Mistakes: The biggest mistakes lawyers make and how to avoid them
  • Increase Profile Views: How participating in one feature can increase your profile views by 400%
  • Improve Profile Content: What to include and leave off your profile
  • Referral Sources: Where to find the best referral sources on LinkedIn

The ABA estimates over 90% of attorneys already have a profile on LinkedIn, but most of them have no idea of how to tap into the full potential of this powerful platform. To ignore it is the proverbial equivalent of sticking your head in the sand.

Learning how to use LinkedIn to your biggest advantage can take a lot of time and effort, but in this free report I’m going to cut to the chase and give you the exact steps you need to follow to tap into the vast resources on LinkedIn.

Whether you’re new to LinkedIn or you’ve been on it for years, I’m going to share with you the “paint-by-the-numbers” approach I’ve taught to thousands of attorneys who paid thousands of dollars to learn!

So why am I giving this away now for free?

I’m on a mission to double the revenues of 10,000 law firms in the next 5 years and if I’m going to achieve my goal, I need to get the word out fast and in a big way!

By giving you the tools to help you succeed on LinkedIn for free, I believe some of you will want to take the next step towards doubling your revenues and I’ll be the one you turn to for help.

Download your FREE report now on the 10 Steps to Jumpstart Your LinkedIn Presence & Get More Referrals Fast.

I also invite you to connect with me on LinkedIn at: Want immediate help launching a referral marketing campaign on LinkedIn? Call 888-588-5891.

Twitter Tips & Tweet Topics for Attorneys

Posted in Law Firm Marketing

Practical Twitter Tips & Tweet Topics for AttorneysWith 302 million active users every month, Twitter can be a highly useful law firm marketing tool for attorneys to promote their blogs and other thought leadership content. Since Twitter is essentially a micro-blogging site, the same rules apply: create unique, original content that adds value and your audience will respond.

To create attention-getting tweets, remember these tips:

Real-time rules – Twitter lives in real-time, so you not only need to keep it fresh, you also need to add your own spin on whatever topic you’re tweeting about. Simply retweeting links gets stale quickly.

Tease – hook your readership by teasing your topic and then linking to a more lengthy post on a topical news item on your blog or website.

Keep it positive – negative comments are generally disliked.

Avoid symbol clutter – Using too many hashtags (#), mentions (@) or abbreviations makes your tweets hard to follow.

Add to your retweets – when you retweet something, add your own spin so you are contributing to the conversation.

Use images — research shows that tweets with images result in significant increases in user engagement, including 150% more retweets and 18% more click-throughs.

The Twitter-verse is mobile — 80% of active Twitter users access their Twitter feed on a mobile device, so if you are directing traffic to your website or a landing page, be sure it is optimized for mobile.

Many attorneys struggle with what to tweet about so here are 15 simple ideas that will help you come up with an steady stream of tweets.  You can also use these to inspire updates on Facebook and LinkedIn:

  1. Share and link to your blog posts.  You can tweet about these more than once.
  2. Share and link to your informational videos.  If you’re not creating videos yet, it’s time to start!
  3. Share news stories that are relevant to your practice area.
  4. Link to another blog post that provides valuable content your readers will find helpful.
  5. Retweet another person’s tweet with your own spin.
  6. Share a recent press release.
  7. Share an upcoming event that your readers may be interested in.
  8. Share details about an event you will be speaking at or attending.
  9. Share a link to interviews, podcasts or online radio shows you have participated in.
  10. Promote client testimonials on your website (where permitted).
  11. Let people know that your latest e-newsletter has been published and provide a link to sign up if they are not yet a subscriber.
  12. Share a link to a book that your readers will be interested in.
  13. Ask questions that you can blog about  — then tweet the blog post with the answer.
  14. Share a joke about your practice area.
  15. Let people know about a new product you recently discovered that provides a work or life benefit.

The most successful marketers on Twitter never forget that Twitter is timely and topical, so be sure to craft your tweets with this in mind.


July 22: FREE MyCase Webinar on 10 Ways to Drastically Increase Lead ConversionJuly 22: FREE MyCase Webinar on 10 Ways to Drastically Increase Lead Conversion

MyCase, the leading provider of web-based legal practice management software, is sponsoring a free one-hour webinar on Wednesday, July 22,2015 at 11 AM PT / 2 PM ET entitled, 10 Ways to Drastically Increase Lead Conversion. I will be leading this webinar and you do not need to be a current MyCase member to attend.

Law firms spend billions every year on generating more leads, but pay little attention to how to convert more of those leads into paying clients.  There is absolutely no point in accumulating leads if you don’t know how to lead them along a path to becoming actual clients!

As part of our Rainmaker Intake University program, we have “secret-shopped” more than 1,000 law firms over the past year to gauge the effectiveness of their intake process. Unfortunately, very few pass our test. In fact, so few firms are making a positive impression on the initial call that there is huge opportunity to set your law firm apart by improving and focusing on your intake process.

To better understand the intake process and how it can benefit your law firm, register now for the MyCase free 60-minute webinar on Wednesday, July 22, 2015 at 11 AM PT 2 PM ET to learn:

  • How long it takes for a lead to go from hot to cold
  • 3 goals for your first call with a new lead
  • Tactics for signing up your leads at the initial consultation
  • Proven ways to get your appointments to show up
  • How one law firm tripled their conversion rate in 90 days

When it comes to law firms — especially personal injury or any kind of consumer law — there is an intensely competitive environment where consumers have hundreds, if not thousands, of choices. All of them are easily identifiable with the click of a mouse. This is just one reason why you need a sales-oriented intake team working for you.

One of the things we have learned in our intake process reviews is that the person or people responsible for the firm’s intake process are usually chosen based on a background in customer service, not sales. This is backwards.

You don’t want people handling your intake process who have a customer service background; you want people who have sold stuff over the phone. The purpose of having skilled sale personnel in place for your intake is to ensure you have rainmakers, not order takers. You don’t want a bunch of order takers in your law firm; you want rainmakers – people who are committed and dedicated to taking prospects from a potential client to a signed client.

Register now for the free 60-minute webinar on Wednesday, July 22, 2015 at 11 AM PT/2 PM ET on 10 Ways to Drastically Increase Lead Conversion. I look forward to helping you improve your lead conversion rates!

How Much Money Should Law Firms Allocate to Legal Marketing?

Posted in Law Firm Marketing

How Much Money Should Law Firms Allocate to Legal Marketing?Implementing an under-funded legal marketing plan is just as bad as not using any marketing plan at all. This is because it takes anywhere from 7 to 10 meaningful “touches” (getting your marketing messages before a prospect) to move someone through the sales process to get them to the point where they are ready to buy from you.

If your marketing plan only has enough money behind it to produce a couple of meaningful touches, it will be almost as if you never touched prospects at all because it won’t break through all the other marketing efforts made by other attorneys vying for that person’s time and money, including your biggest competitors.

So how much do you need to spend for marketing your law firm?

There are several things you need to consider when setting your legal marketing budget:

Your practice area. Some practice areas require significantly more time and money to market, like litigation and personal injury.

Your profit margins. The larger your margins, the more you can invest on marketing and new business development. Some practice areas have bigger profit margins (litigation) while others have notoriously low profits (insurance coverage and residential real estate).

Your annual revenues. It is not unusual for successful law firms to spend between 15% and 40% of their annual revenues on marketing and business development.

Your target market. Any time you are marketing directly to consumers, your marketing budget must be bigger because of the intense competition for consumer’s attention.

Your market area. For many professional service firms, like doctors, lawyers and accountants, it is usually limited to up to 25 square miles.

Your competition. Analyze your competition—are there lots of you vying for the same business or just a few? What kind of marketing strategies are they using? How are they positioning their firm?  If you have to compete with lots of other firms for the same target market, you will need a bigger budget.

Your systems. In general, the better systems you have in place for implementing the plan, the less money you have to use. For example, if you use direct email marketing as part of your plan, you can reach potential clients with greater frequency at a low cost.

The typical marketing cycle. How long does someone take to make a decision after they have gathered all the information they need? Is it measured in minutes, days, weeks, or months? The longer the marketing cycle, the more money you need to spend on marketing because after you have given them the information they need, you still need to stay in touch with them.

Your average sale. How much does your average client spend with you? $500? $5,000? $500K? $5 Million? Typically, the higher the price tag, the more you need to educate your client as to the benefits of your services and provide more evidence of your credibility.

The lifetime value of your average client. How much does your average client spend with you over a given timeframe? If they spend $1,000 a month with you annually, and the average client stays with you for three years, then the average customer is worth around $36,000 to you. If you know that, you know how much you can afford to spend on landing each client before it starts to negatively impact your profit margins. If your average client only makes one “purchase” from you and never comes back, then you will need to use lower cost marketing strategies to reach them.

Once you have figured all this out, you’ll have a good idea of what you need to adequately fund a marketing plan for your law firm.


Free On-Demand Webinar:  6 Key Numbers Every Attorney Must KnowFree On-Demand Webinar: 6 Key Numbers Every Attorney Must Know

There are 6 financial numbers every lawyer running and growing a business needs to understand and review every month. Unfortunately, many attorneys don’t have the systems in place to obtain these numbers or they don’t know which numbers are the most critical to their business.

If you don’t know your numbers you cannot build a financially successful law firm! This webinar will provide you with the tools you need to accurately gauge the financial stability and health of your business.

In this information-packed webinar you will discover:

  • The 6 key financial numbers you need to track
  • How to determine your cash flow position so you can plan for future growth
  • Core components of a solid chart of accounts
  • The true cost of Accounts Receivables and how to collect more of them
  • How to set up and live by a monthly business budget
  • What a budget variance report is and why you need one
  • The importance of your balance sheet and how to create one

Register online now to access the free one-hour webinar on the 6 Key Numbers Every Attorney Must Know.


How to Get Your Law Firm to Rank Better in Local Search

Posted in Law Firm Marketing

How to Get Your Law Firm to Rank Better in Local SearchWhen it comes to law firm marketing, local influence is key to obtaining qualified leads. Which is why it is critical that you become proficient at Local Search.

To realize the importance of focusing on Local Search, all you have to do is search for your area of practice on Google. Without even typing in your city or state, Google will serve up law firms that match your search query that are geographically closest to you.   Google knows that if you are in Chicago and are looking for a personal injury lawyer, it is highly likely you want one that is close to you. Hence the importance of Local Search.

Here are some tips law firms can use to rank better in local search results:

Use the proper keywords. You have to use the same words in your content and tags that your prospects are using when they search online. List 20-30 keywords you believe prospects use and then research them further using the Google Keyword Tool.

Use Google My Business. List your firm on Google My Business — it’s free and keeps your information consistent and updated across Google Search, Maps and Google+.

Use local terms in your content. Be sure you are using geographically specific words on your website. Include your company name and address as well as a geo sitemap on your site.

Beef up your law firm listings. Be sure to list your law firm on Google+ Local, Yahoo Local, Bing, Citysearch, Avvo and review sites like Yelp. You must ensure your listings on each of these sites are consistent — they must be exactly the same everywhere on the Internet in order for your website to earn citations, which is key to being found in Local Search.

Obtain reviews. Google has decided that reviews of local businesses are important, which means that you need to encourage clients who are happy with your services to review you on sites like Google and Yelp.

Optimize social network pages. Wherever your law firm is visible on social media — Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. — be sure you have posted your firm’s name and address information on those sites. Remember to keep it consistent with all your online listings!

Optimize your site for mobile. More than half of website visits are now made on a mobile device — tablet or smartphone — so your website must be optimized for mobile. The best way to do this is to use responsive web design for your main website, which guarantees that it will perform well no matter what size screen a prospect is using to find you.


Breaking the 7 Figure Barrier: An Explosive Interview with Small Business Guru Michael GerberBreaking the 7 Figure Barrier: An Explosive Interview with Small Business Guru Michael Gerber

INC Magazine has called Michael Gerber “The World’s #1 Small Business Guru,” and I recently interviewed him on how attorneys can take their firm to the next level of success.

As the author of a number of books on entrepreneurship, including the best selling Awakening the Entrepreneur Within and The E-Myth Revisited, Michael is arguably the most famous consultant for small companies. He coined the phrase “working on your business versus working in your business,” which has become the mantra for tens of thousands of business owners.

Michael has worked with over 70,000 small business owners over the last 40 years, teaching business owners who possess significant technical skills but few business skills how to transform their companies into world-class organizations.

The time I spent with Michael was transformative for my own business, and I know what he has to teach can transform yours as well. That is why we have created a new FREE audio interview that you can access at Breaking the 7 Figure Barrier: An Explosive Interview with Small Business Guru Michael Gerber.

In this exclusive interview, Michael discusses with me:

  • How the E-Myth Principles apply to law firms
  • The 4 stages of business and how to move from a job to a practice to a business to an enterprise
  • How to compete in an aggressive marketplace like legal
  • Why services don’t matter anymore and the power of differentiation
  • How to build a law firm that works without you
  • Why you must shift the conversations you have with prospects from money to value and how to do this
  • Tips to creating a lifestyle law firm

Sign up now to get this free interview and we will send you a link to download the audio interview as well as a PDF transcript.