The Solo and Small Firm Perspective on the Goal of Social Media

Last week Kevin O’Keefe (@kevinokeefe) and I had an interesting discussion on Twitter about the goal of social media for law firms. Nancy Myrland (@NancyMyrland) and Jabez LeBret (@jabezlebret) graciously joined in. Then Kevin posted a good article summarizing our discussion and explaining his perspective that the ultimate goal of social media for lawyers should be to build relationships. I disagree with this perspective.  

Since it's a little difficult to fully articulate one’s thinking on any topic in 140 characters, I thought a follow up post was in order. Kevin’s article was very thoughtful, but I believe it is wrong in several of its conclusions. I believe two of the reasons why he takes his positions come from his background as a litigator and his current work as CEO of LexBlog.

From an outsider’s perspective, it seems like most of LexBlog’s clients are attorneys in mid to large law firms, some of them in the largest law firms in the nation. Indeed, reading LexBlog’s client list is similar to a “Who’s Who” in the legal industry. The majority of our clients are small law firms with 2-25 attorneys in them. The pressure on attorneys in many larger law firms is, “If I don’t bring in new clients, I won't make partner some day.” The pressure on our clients is, “If I don’t bring in new clients, I don’t make payroll,” or, “If this marketing doesn’t pay off soon, we won't be able to afford a family vacation this year.” They can't afford to “join a country club or coach youth sports” with the hope that it some day might result in a new client. They need a specific plan of action that directly results in more and better leads.

In addition, many attorneys in those larger firms are corporate attorneys who work with large clients. Industry recognition and credibility are of utmost import to them. About half of my clients are consumer attorneys (personal injury, criminal defense, family law, estate planning, SSDI, and workers’ compensation) who are more concerned about their current cash flow.

From my client’s perspective, the goal of social media is lead generation and business development, pure and simple. How you get there is by building targeted relationships, providing solid content, and consistently adding value. At my company, The Rainmaker Institute®, we specialize in working with attorneys and regularly receive 100-250 new leads every month just from our efforts on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. That’s the point!

We don’t use social media because it makes us feel good or because we want to impress our peers or provide free marketing advice to attorneys. We do it for the express purpose of generating new leads and ultimately new clients! The way we achieve that goal is:

  • By providing excellent content on legal marketing every day of the week
  • By connecting with attorneys in our target market
  • By engaging with others in the legal industry on topics of interest to us
  • By liking posts by our clients so they know we are thinking of them
  • By commenting on posts made by prospective clients so we can better engage with them
  • By inviting interested prospects to visit our blog or website to download a free report or sign up for one of our free webinars
  • By nurturing those relationships with regular, targeted communication

Both Kevin and I would agree that selling on social media is not helpful and will usually result in turning people off rather than attracting them to you. Where we part ways is on the next step to take. Based on his article, I believe Kevin would say once he has developed the relationship on social media that’s as far as he will go. If the person wants his help they can always look him up. I take it one step further and use the opportunity to directly invite the person to:

Back when I lived in Chicago, I had a very well-connected business partner. He had deep roots in the business community and was formerly the CEO of a multi-million dollar business. In fact, the primary reason I brought him into my company was specifically because of his knowledge and his connections. I ultimately found out that those connections did very little in landing us new business because he saw relationships as the end goal, not new clients.

While some may be tempted to misread me and believe I am being manipulative of my relationships, I can assure you that would be missing my point. I have relationships specifically focused on friendship (both on and off of social media). I have relationships specifically focused on mentoring others and being mentored, but I am clear in my goal with the relationships I develop via social media on behalf of my company—it's for the purpose of developing new business or referral partners.  

“The best lawyers get their work via relationships and word of mouth. Always have and aways [sic] will. The Internet and social media did not change that,” wrote O’Keefe in his blog post. Really? I could not disagree more! Outside of rural America, there has been no more powerful force in transforming how attorneys get clients than the Internet and more recently social media.  For many small law firms the Internet is the great equalizer. They cannot compete on television with the mega-firms and their 7-figure budgets and they certainly can't afford to wait 5 years for a relationship to evolve into a new client. They are looking for the most direct route to reach and connect with clients who are looking for an attorney right now.

Many of the best lawyers do not get most of their work from relationships and word of mouth. It is outdated and inefficient views like this that keep attorneys from fully achieving the potential of social media. By the way, just because some attorneys get some of their business from word of mouth does not disprove the rule. Exceptions actually go to prove the rule. The sheer number of attorneys out there today, especially in consumer law, make it virtually impossible to just grow organically by word of mouth. You must be much more proactive and intentional about your business development efforts than just sitting back and letting your work speak for itself.

The Internet and online marketing (including social media) are the fastest growing ways consumer attorneys are finding new clients. Perhaps this is not true of AmLaw 200 attorneys, but it is why more and more small to mid-sized law firms are turning to the Internet and social media as a cost effective tool to grow their business. How do I know this? Because of my experience working with over 10,000 attorneys nationwide and because social media is the #1 topic I get asked to speak on by State Bar Associations. It is also one of the fastest growing parts of our “done for you” marketing services that we offer law firms.

For the majority of attorneys in small to mid-sized law firms, online lead generation and lead conversion has dramaticaly changed over the last decade. Perhaps it's time for the rest of the legal industry to catch up. 

5 Steps to Use Social Media Effectively for Business Development

One of the best reasons for attorneys to use social media is that it is a very cost effective business development tool. Here are 5 steps you can take to harness the effectiveness of social media for your law firm marketing efforts:

1. Set up a targeted landing page. Your landing page is separate from – but can be connected to – your website. It should feature content that addresses the specific needs of your target market and have one compelling call-to-action that gets them to connect with you.

2. On the landing page offer them something of value.  Offer visitors a free special report, audio CD or white paper on a topic of interest to them.  Again, it must address a specific need of your target market.

3. Drive traffic to your landing page by promoting it via your social media outlets. You can announce your free special report on your Facebook fan page, post a Tweet or promote by including the link to your LinkedIn account.

4. Visitors to your landing page can only obtain your valuable information if they give you their contact information (name, phone and email address) and by agreeing to opt into your database and be contacted by your law firm for further follow-up.

5. Use their contact information to follow up with them. When you connect with visitors to your landing page, you qualify them to see if they are a good prospect for you and then offer them a complimentary consultation, if that's part of your business model.

At The Rainmaker Institute, we have successfully used this exact process with attorneys across the country for almost a decade.  During this time we have generated thousands of qualified leads, for our company directly from our social media efforts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter!  

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

NEW Free Report: How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn

With over 238 million members in over 200 countries, LinkedIn has quickly become THE ‘go to’ business-to-business directory and the most popular social networking platform dedicated to professional business development.

To ignore it is the proverbial equivalent of sticking your head in the sand.

Learning how to use LinkedIn to your biggest advantage takes time and effort, but it is time well spent.

If you are new to LinkedIn, it can be confusing, much like any new software that you need to learn to grow your business.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • What LinkedIn can help you accomplish
  • Valuable LinkedIn features that can increase the power of your network
  • Smart ways top attorneys use LinkedIn
  • What your profile needs in order to be effective
  • How to make people want to know more about you
  • And much, much more!

Click here now to receive your free report on How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn.

How to Choose the Right Social Media Networks for Your Law Practice

One of the most common questions I get from attorneys is how to identify the right social media networks for their practices.  Frankly, it’s not that hard.

The most important thing in identifying the right social media platform is to know your target market.   If you don’t know that, then any marketing you are doing anywhere is just a shot in the dark. 

Once you know the characteristics of your market, you can then focus on the social media networks that do the best job of reaching that audience.  Here are demographic breakdowns on the most popular social networks from the Pew Reseach Center from their 2013 Social Media Report:

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. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE Online Seminar:  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 10,000 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.

Are You Overlooking a Great Social Media Marketing Tool?

Many law firms have a LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter profile and the savvy firms are actually publishing some great content and engaging with audiences of prospects and referral sources.  When someone Googles your firm, those social media sites are likely to be among the first results that pop up.

But remember, people buy from people they know, like and trust.  So it’s even likelier that instead of Googling the name of your firm, they could be searching under one of your attorney’s names or another person at your firm.

And that brings us to an often overlooked social media marketing tool: your employees!

No matter what the roles of the people at your firm, all employees should be mindful of how they are representing your firm online.  While you can’t really dictate what they should put on their profiles, you can encourage them to:

Create quality profiles.  Hopefully your employees are proud of where they work, so letting them know how they can help the firm by maintaining a high quality profile on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social networks makes sense.  Offer them consistent language to use in their profiles that reflect your firm’s branding strategy, and ask them to include links to your firm website and blog.  Have them post professional photos, especially on LinkedIn.

Share valuable content.  You and your employees should always be engaging your connections with valuable content, whether that is a position paper from your firm or something relevant to your clients and prospects from a third party source. 

Keep building your networks.  When you take on a new client, ask to connect with them online.  Do the same with referral sources and prospects, but be sure you actually know them.  Relevance matters when it comes to your connections, even more than size.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Proven Strategies to Win More Clients for Family Law, Personal Injury and Estate Planning Attorneys

Does this sound like you?

You spend thousands of dollars and countless hours trying to generate more business for your law firm. And still you end up with less business than you hoped. You’ve put “get more clients” at the top of your list, but have no time to do anything about it.

If someone calls your office and doesn’t make an appointment, what happens to them?

What if they don’t show up for the appointment?

What if they show up and don’t retain you?

What if they want to retain you and you never hear from them again?

If you answered, “I don’t know” or “We leave a message,” then this on-demand seminar is for you. Register online to receive the Proven Strategies to Win More Clients seminar, where you will learn:

  • 3 major areas to examine when analyzing your law firm
  • 5 numbers every law firm must track to increase their conversion rates
  • A simple diagnostic tool you can use to track your leads and fix your follow up
  • 3 steps for turning more leads into appointments
  • 5 ways to increase your “show up” rates
  • 4 ways to get more appointments to sign up this week
  • What to do when a prospect doesn’t sign up at the initial consultation

Lead Conversion is one of the most overlooked areas at consumer law firms. You spend tens of thousands of dollars every year trying to generate more leads…yet virtually nothing to ensure you convert the maximum amount of those leads into paying clients!

Lead conversion is the 5-stage process of converting more prospects into paying clients and turning more browsers into buyers. Over the last decade, The Rainmaker Institute has become a national leader in assisting consumer law firms to rapidly and dramatically increase their conversion rates.

We have worked with all types of consumer law firms to help them double and even triple their conversion rates within 3-6 months.

If you want to double your revenues this year there are 2 ways you can do it: either double the amount of leads you get each month or double your conversion rates!

Click here now for this on-demand seminar and discover how attorneys just like you are doubling their revenues by converting more of their costly leads into more paying clients!

How to Drive the Snakes Out of Your Social Media Marketing

Today is St. Patrick’s Day, and legend has it that this 5th century Irish missionary and bishop drove all the snakes out of Ireland after they attacked him while he was undertaking a 40-day fast.

However, this interesting legend has largely been disproved by modern-day science that shows Ireland most probably never had any snakes in the first place!

If your social media marketing program is not performing to your standards, perhaps it’s time for you to drive out a few snakes.  These mistakes can be poisonous to any social media plan:

No social media brand guidelines.  Have you established guidelines for how your law firm brand will be controlled online?  You need to determine who will be responsible for updating, posting and monitoring all your social media platforms, how often you will post, what kind of content you will post, the types of images to be used and a distinct voice for your brand online.

No engagement.  Do you broadcast your social media messages rather than engage directly with your friends and followers?  Social media is a conversation, and if it’s all one-way (your way), no one will be compelled to follow you.

No schedule.  You need to create a regular schedule for your posts and stick to it.  Social media is a habit, and if you don’t feed this habit, your followers are likely to forget about you.

No strategy.  You need to establish social media goals and use those to drive your messaging, rather than relying on a “spur of the moment” posting strategy.

No response.  You should respond to everyone who asks you a question or posts a comment, and you should do it quickly.  This is another reason it is imperative to have a designated person actively monitoring the social media networks where you are active.

No tracking.  There should be business reasons why you are participating in social media, and you should be tracking against these goals to see if you are reaching your desired outcome.  Remember a key rule of marketing in any medium: if it matters, it should be measured.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

New On Demand Webinar:  How to Create Leads and Referral Sources on LinkedIn

The Rainmaker Institute’s business development specialist Alec Borenstein is featured on this online webinar that is now available on demand:  From LinkedIn to Lunch: How to Create Leads and Referral Sources on LinkedIn.

Most attorneys already have a profile on LinkedIn, but very few know how to effectively use it to build a powerful referral network. With over 238 million professionals on LinkedIn, it has become one of the easiest ways to rapidly identify strategic contacts and build relationships with them!

In this advanced, information-packed 60-minute webinar you’ll learn:

  • How to generate targeted connections using LinkedIn
  • How to join and create LinkedIn groups to target your key referral sources and clients
  • Tools to land 2-4 lunches every month with your connections and referral partners
  • What to say during these meetings to ensure prospects remember you
  • How to follow up after your LinkedIn lunch

Click on this link now to access the one-hour webinar, From LinkedIn to Lunch: How to Create Leads and Referral Sources on LinkedIn.

 

New Social Network for Attorneys Now Online

A new social network for attorneys – Foxwordy – has now launched and is offering any lawyer who is “an innovator and influencer in the legal industry” a free three-month membership to what its founder is calling an “invitation-only private social-networking platform brings together relevant top-tier legal colleagues to efficiently collaborate in real-time.”

Forbes ran a story on the Foxwordy launch today, and it appears that this new site is aimed at creating a new attorney-to-attorney referral platform.  Foxwordy founder Monica Zent said that the site provides a way for attorneys to gain a peer validated reputation and encourages collaborations that would normally happen via the phone, in person or by email.

Some of the site’s features include:

  • Real-time collaboration with other lawyers working on common issues
  • Ability for attorneys to share best practices and language for legal documents
  • Listing of job opportunities similar to LinkedIn

Zent says there are currently 1,000 members on the website that is now out of beta.  The network will not be available to the public; it is designed solely as a website for attorneys to share information and collaborate, and membership is by invitation only.  You provide your name and email address on the home page to request an invitation.  

It was unclear on the site how you are vetted for membership; since the site’s revenue model is based on subscriptions alone ($10 per month), I was guessing that the bar isn’t set too high.  And I was proven right after I had one of my non-attorney staff members enter her name and Gmail address, and she received a congratulatory email minutes later on her acceptance.

I’d be interested to hear from attorneys who sign up and participate on this new social network for lawyers – what are you finding of most value for your practice from this new social media tool?

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE Report on Building Relationships With Strategic Referral Sources

When it comes to the different kind of leads that attorneys can generate for new business, referrals are the gold standard.  They come to you pre-qualified and ready to “buy” from a source they trust – and with a trust transference to you that is built-in.

If you do nothing else with your law firm marketing this year, make it a priority to cultivate more referral sources.  Cultivating referral sources is low-cost and high-reward, and should be at the top of your list when it comes to new business development for your law firm.

This new free report by national law firm marketing expert Stephen Fairley can get you started.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • How to identify the referral sources who have relationships with the people you want as clients.
  • How to start the relationship
  • How to build a referral network
  • How to make your referral network successful
  • …And much, much more!

Click on this link now to get your free report on Building Relationships With Strategic Referral Sources.

Nielsen Report on Digital Consumer: All Social, All the Time

Nielsen has just released a report called The Digital Consumer that examines how Americans are consuming content across multiple digital devices.

According to Nielsen, a majority of U.S. households now feature multiple devices – high definition TVs, computers, tablets and smartphones – and Americans spend an average of 60 hours per week consuming content on these devices.

Other highlights from the report:

Daily social media use is now standard practice – 64% of social media users visit sites at least once a day, and almost half (47%) access those sites on smartphones.

Hispanics are higher than average content consumers on smartphones, and spend more time consuming online videos than the national average.

Americans own an average of four digital devices.

Time spent consuming online content has decreased on computers and TVs, and increased on PCs and smartphones:

Americans spend an average of 6 ½ hours per month on Facebook vs. only 18 minutes per month on LinkedIn and 36 minutes per month on Twitter.

86% of smartphone and tablet owners use those devices while watching TV at the same time; a majority of those use these mobile devices to surf the Web.

This Nielsen report demonstrates a major shift in how content is consumed online, moving away from PCs and toward mobile devices.  Here are six savvy mobile marketing practices you should be considering as part of your law firm marketing strategy:

Have a mobile-optimized website.   If your website is not optimized for viewing on a mobile device, you are losing more prospects every day as the majority of smartphone owners use their mobile devices for local search for products and services. 

Make messaging relevant. Don’t ever send a message to a prospect or client without a good reason. Email from firms need to be useful and relevant, not random and annoying.

Keep on top of technology. Changes in technology can have a significant effect on your customer base. Firms that use advanced technology stay ahead of competitors.

Give sharing options. Make sure you include social media sharing buttons on all your mobile messages as well as an option for recipients to share via email. This will help you spread the word about your firm or promotional offer.

Use texting. Texting is now widespread enough to be considered a new marketing medium. Communicating with clients via text allows you to share time-sensitive material with prospects and current customers.

Use email. Be sure your emails are mobile friendly, include direct clicks to your phone number and include links to mobile-optimized websites. A majority of mobile users check email more often on their mobile device that they do on a PC.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

How to Overcome the 5 Biggest Objections Attorneys Hear

Your price is too high! I can’t afford that.”

“Why should I hire you? I think I can handle this by myself.”

Have you heard any of these objections lately?

How did you respond?

What are the most effective ways to overcome these objections?

How do top Rainmakers reply?

If you’re like many attorneys you hear these objections every day…yet you aren’t sure your responses are effective. We can help you change that!

Over the course of this pre-recorded 60-minute webinar you will discover:

  • The top 5 biggest objections attorneys hear and how to overcome them
  • An easy 2-step process to effectively turn a “No” into a “Yes”
  • How to answer the question, “Why should I hire you?”
  • The #1 reason you are not converting more prospects into paying clients
  • How to get past “price” and uncover the prospect’s true objection

Click on this link now to access the How to Overcome the 5 Biggest Objections Attorneys Hear webinar now.

LinkedIn Intros New Tool: How You're Connected

Last week, LinkedIn introduced a new visual tool that shows you exactly how you may be connected to someone who could be a great prospect or referral source for your law firm.

This is what it looks like:

This new degree of transparency allows you to see who in your existing network may already be connected to someone or some company you want to get to know better.  It also shows you how they know each other so you can make an informed decision on the best contact to help you with that introduction.

Visuals are playing an increasingly important role in how we portray ourselves successfully online and are a great way to engage with prospects.  You now have the capability to upload your videos or a slide deck from your latest presentation to your LinkedIn profile, so don’t waste this powerful persuasion method by failing to include visuals on your page.

Whatever you are doing online these days all goes toward building your professional brand, and there is no better place to do this for lawyers than on LinkedIn.   Learning how to use LinkedIn to your biggest advantage takes time and effort, but it is time well spent.

If you are new to LinkedIn, it can be confusing, which is why we’ve developed a free report on How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • What LinkedIn can help you accomplish
  • Valuable LinkedIn features that can increase the power of your network
  • Smart ways top attorneys use LinkedIn
  • What your profile needs in order to be effective
  • How to make people want to know more about you
  • And much, much more!

Click here now to receive your free report on How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn.

Why Legal Marketers Need to Get Obsessed with Social Media

Even though I have been talking to lawyers about social media for several years, I am still amazed how much pushback I get from attorneys who swear their prospects and clients are not on social media.

Excuse me?  The only way your clients would not be on social media (as a group) is if they are dogs or cats or some other nonhuman species. 

What I have come to realize is that attorneys who don’t “believe” in social media are really just afraid of what they don’t understand.  These are usually people who themselves are not on social media, so they don’t think any of their clients are there either. 

Please remember, you are not your client.

One of the leading voices on all things Internet, the Search Engine Journal, recently produced the infographic below that charts the growth of social media.  Looks across all the age groups and you will see that participation continues to grow, and is really picking up among the older demographic (45-54 and 55-64).  For many, it has become an obsession.

Deny all you want, social media is not going away.  So you can either embrace it and reap the benefits or continue to ignore it and keep placing those good old Yellow Pages ads.  There are so many resources out there for you to explore and learn how to harness social media for marketing your law firm – our Rainmaker Retreat is but one – that you can quickly alleviate your fear through knowledge.

Make 2014 the year you do something really great to grow your law firm.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Rainmaker Retreat Unplugged DVD Set 50% Off!

Of all the seminars and speeches and presentations I have made to attorney groups throughout the past 12 years, nothing has proven to be more impactful than our two-day legal marketing seminar, the Rainmaker Retreat.

We schedule a session every month around the country and spend two intensive days teaching the principles and strategies of what works when it comes to legal marketing for small law firms and solo practitioners.

But I get that not everyone can leave his or her practice to attend a seminar.  Which is why we recorded a live session recently and created a six-CD set that we’re calling Rainmaker Retreat Unplugged.

Watching Rainmaker Retreat Unplugged on your own schedule will still provide you with an incredible opportunity to learn:

  • Over 65 proven online and offline legal marketing and business development strategies tailored specifically for small firms and solos;
  • Lead generation techniques that will teach you how to generate more leads from your website, social media and blogs;
  • Proven strategies for converting leads to clients and ways to increase your conversion rate so you don’t have to spend so much time and money generating new leads;
  • Ways you can double your referrals over the next 90 days.

Order your copy of Rainmaker Retreat Unplugged online by midnight ET on Friday, Jan. 31 and receive this incredible legal marketing tool for 50% off the regular price.

3 Surefire Ways to Fail at Social Media Marketing

A Search Engine Journal article recently took marketing agencies to task for failing clients in three major ways when it comes to social media marketing, providing some cautionary tales for law firm marketers.

At the Rainmaker Institute, we have spent the last decade working hard to provide legitimate social media marketing strategies to more than 10,000 attorneys nationwide and it always pains me to see law firms hire help that hurts instead. 

Just like many things in life, there’s a right way and a wrong way to do things when it comes to social media.  And since the landscape is ever changing, marketers that don’t keep on top of the latest trends can do themselves and the clients they serve no small harm when they do it wrong.

The three surefire ways to fail at social media marketing include:

Set it and forget it.  Social media is just that:  social!  Which means you have to participate.  Just like you wouldn’t attend a networking function and sit in a corner saying nothing to no one, you can’t just throw up a page on Facebook or LinkedIn and call it a day.  At the Rainmaker Institute, we add new content to our social media pages and blog every day, respond to those who make a comment and always strive to engage our followers in a conversation.  This is what it’s all about.  If you just have a social media page for your law firm that is devoid of relevant, recent content, you are NOT engaged in social media marketing.  In fact, you are basically telling prospects you have nothing to say.

Post and hope.  As I’ve always said, hope is not a business strategy.  Simply putting up a post on your social media pages and hoping for the best means you have no goal for your social media marketing.  And with no goal, you have no program.   

Lack of meaningful goals.  The purpose of any marketing program is to deliver measurable results, whether that measurement is in terms of increased leads, sales or even improved SEO.  Too often, marketers fall in love with their number of “likes” and “+1s” without discerning if these really add anything to the bottom line.  We see social media as a means to an end, not as an end in and of itself – and the end should be more leads delivered through engaging on these forums.  It takes time and effort, but don’t most good things in life?

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

New!  FREE Report on Building Relationships With Strategic Referral Sources

When it comes to the different kind of leads that attorneys can generate for new business, referrals are the gold standard.  They come to you pre-qualified and ready to “buy” from a source they trust – and with a trust transference to you that is built-in.

If you do nothing else with your law firm marketing this year, make it a priority to cultivate more referral sources.  Cultivating referral sources is low-cost and high-reward, and should be at the top of your list when it comes to new business development for your law firm.

This new free report by national law firm marketing expert Stephen Fairley can get you started.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • How to identify the referral sources who have relationships with the people you want as clients.
  • How to start the relationship
  • How to build a referral network
  • How to make your referral network successful
  • …And much, much more!

Click on this link now to get your free report on Building Relationships With Strategic Referral Sources.

Social Media Demographic Profiles Help Attorneys Find Their Prospects

The Pew Research Center recently released its Social Media Update 2013 and included in the findings were clear demographic profiles of who is frequenting the five major social networks, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Reporting on these findings, MarketingCharts.com released this chart that details those demographic profiles:

Based on its survey of more than 1,800 U.S. adults, the Pew Social Media Update reports that 73% of online adults use at least one social media site, with Facebook the clear choice (71%), followed by LinkedIn (22%), Pinterest (21%), Twitter (18%) and Instagram (17%). 

In addition, Pew reports that 42% of online adults use two or more social networks and 36% of online adults stick to just one social media site.  Here are some additional highlights by social network:

Facebook

By far the largest preferred social network, Facebook has shown a significant increase in usage by online adults over the age of 65.  Pew reports that 45% of this age group now uses Facebook, an increase of 10% from the prior year, and that 63% of Facebook users visit the site every day.

Since Facebook is the proverbial 800 lb. gorilla when it comes to social media, it has a place in every law firm’s social media marketing strategy.  However, with the most growth occurring in the baby boomer demographic, it makes sense for attorneys whose practice areas target this age group – especially estate planning and family law (currently, more seniors are divorcing than any other age group) practitioners.

LinkedIn

One key finding from the Pew report is that LinkedIn is the only social media site whose usage among those over the age of 50 is greater than those aged 18-29.  As noted in the demographic profile chart above, LinkedIn also skews male, college educated and higher income.  According to Pew, 13% of LinkedIn users visit the site daily, while 34% use it every week.

Twitter

Pew reports that Twitter usage grew about 2% in 2013, and is a social media platform that is particularly popular among younger adults (18-29) and African-Americans.  Pew says that 46% of Twitter users visit the site every day.

Pinterest

If your practice targets higher income women, then you should be looking for ways to leverage Pinterest – a site whose users share content by “pinning” images, videos and other content to a pinboard -- to promote your practice.  Pew found that 33% of online women frequent Pinterest, compared with just 8% of men. 

So what would attorneys “pin”?  Not pleadings or office photos or the courtroom, but rather things that are of interest to you as a person – your hobbies or collections, for example.  This is simply another opportunity to network.

Instagram

Instagram, the photo and video sharing site, saw its usage among young adults (18-29) grow almost 10% last year and usage among African-Americans grew 11%.  If you are a younger attorney whose practice targets younger adults, then you should consider Instagram.  The Pew research shows that 57% of Instagram users pay daily visits to the site.

While attorneys do not need to be on every social media network, you do need to choose at least one – and your choice should lie with where your target market can be found.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

NEW Free Report: How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn

With over 238 million members in over 200 countries, LinkedIn has quickly become THE ‘go to’ business-to-business directory and the most popular social networking platform dedicated to professional business development.

To ignore it is the proverbial equivalent of sticking your head in the sand.

Learning how to use LinkedIn to your biggest advantage takes time and effort, but it is time well spent.

If you are new to LinkedIn, it can be confusing, much like any new software that you need to learn to grow your business.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • What LinkedIn can help you accomplish
  • Valuable LinkedIn features that can increase the power of your network
  • Smart ways top attorneys use LinkedIn
  • What your profile needs in order to be effective
  • How to make people want to know more about you
  • And much, much more!

Click here now to receive your free report on How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn.

9 Steps to Develop a Social Media Strategy for Your Law Firm

If you have not yet focused any of your legal marketing efforts on social media, you are already behind the times.

Don’t let another year go by without utilizing powerful social media marketing strategies to attract prospects and improve your search engine ranking results.  Here are 9 steps to create a social media strategy for your law firm:

Mission.  Whether you want to generate more leads or merely enhance your brand in the social media world, you must first set your goals.  Be specific.

Market.  Define your target market and then research their habits, needs and social media activities. 

Message.  Craft the message that will best appeal to the needs of your target market and find the keywords that reinforce that message.

Media.  Decide which social networks are best for attracting followers and readers who are in  your target market.

Medium.  Decide what kind of content will help you reach your target – blogs, videos, photos, etc.

Mix.  Mix in your social media marketing with your current marketing efforts, adding links to your website, blog, e-newsletters, etc.

Management.  Decide who will be responsible for posting , how often you will post, who will manage replies and other management tasks so your social media marketing campaign doesn’t flounder.

Measurement.  Measure your stats to see if your audience is growing and what messages and strategies are paying off for you.  Then do more to build on that success.

Money.  Budget for your social media marketing effort and measure your ROI.  If you need to hire outside help, that costs money. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

The 12 Days of Legal Marketing Infographics (4 of 12)

I am taking some time off over the holidays and hope you are too.  We all need some time away to refresh our brains and prepare ourselves for the challenges of a new business year. 

While I’m away, I thought I would share 12 of my favorite infographics from this blog in 2013.  Each one of them can help you improve your legal marketing in 2014.

Everyone at the Rainmaker Institute joins me in wishing you the happiest of holidays and a most prosperous New Year!

***********************************************************************

A Holiday Gift for Our Attorney Friends and Fans

As we get ready to close out the year, it's time to take stock of a lot of things, and one of them should be your law firm.

One of things that all attorneys should be thinking about is how to make 2014 your most successful year ever. To build and create a 'lifestyle' law firm, one that is professionally satisfying, but allows you the time to do what is important to you; to live a self directed life with plenty of money to do it with.

The Rainmaker Retreat, our highly successful 2-day law firm marketing boot camp, has been the catalyst for hundreds of attorneys to re-invent their law firm and create automatic systems that consistently deliver a steady stream of new leads and clients. 

My Rainmaker In A Box, Volume 1 is a consistent best seller at the Rainmaker Institute. It's 4 DVDs and a data DVD that pulls back the curtain of our closely guarded Rainmaker marketing system with color-by-the-numbers systems you can use now to rapidly get new leads and clients. We sell a boatload of these every year for $397.

This DVD set is a quick-start guide to the best marketing strategies used by our top clients, filled with the secrets to building a referral-based practice, powerful on-line marketing strategies, and an 8 step system to creating your law firm marketing plan.

It's yours FREE when you register for the next Rainmaker Retreat.

For dates and locations, please click the link below:

www.RainmakerRetreat.com/Events

We only have a limited quantity of the free gifts, so please act now as they will all be gone soon.

All of us at The Rainmaker Institute wish you and yours a joyous holiday season, and we look forward to seeing you at the Rainmaker Retreat.

Happy Holidays!

The 12 Days of Legal Marketing Infographics (7 of 12)

I am taking some time off over the holidays and hope you are too.  We all need some time away to refresh our brains and prepare ourselves for the challenges of a new business year. 

While I’m away, I thought I would share 12 of my favorite infographics from this blog in 2013.  Each one of them can help you improve your legal marketing in 2014.

Everyone at the Rainmaker Institute joins me in wishing you the happiest of holidays and a most prosperous New Year!

The 12 Days of Legal Marketing Infographics (5 of 12)

I am taking some time off over the holidays and hope you are too.  We all need some time away to refresh our brains and prepare ourselves for the challenges of a new business year. 

While I’m away, I thought I would share 12 of my favorite infographics from this blog in 2013.  Each one of them can help you improve your legal marketing in 2014.

Everyone at the Rainmaker Institute joins me in wishing you the happiest of holidays and a most prosperous New Year!

Becoming a Rainmaker: Business Building Strategies for Lawyers

Based on Stephen’s highly successful seminar series by the same name, this 3-audio CD program covers dozens of practical recommendations and step-by-step sales and marketing techniques for solo practitioners and small law firms.

More than 10,000 attorneys from law firms all over the country have experienced powerful results from attending the Becoming A Rainmaker seminar. It has been sponsored by more than 22 of the largest state and local bar associations.

In this information-packed audio program, you will discover:

  • How to generate more leads by using education-based marketing
  • The relationship between credibility, visibility, tangibility, and consistency
  • How to position your small firm as an industry leader
  • The importance of being perceived as a specialist
  • Why most advertising is a waste of your money
  • What to expect from a Yellow Pages ad
  • The 3 marketing strategies that will produce 80% of your results
  • How to influence the Know, Like and Trust factors
  • Common marketing mistakes lawyers make and how to avoid them
  • How to answer the question, "Why should I buy from you?"
  • Specific ways you can set yourself apart from low-cost lawyers
  • What to do with the 15% of the population that always buys on price
  • Ways to attract your Ideal Target Market
  • The 6 stage sales process you must follow for maximum success

 

Click to order Becoming a Rainmaker: Business Building Strategies for Lawyers.

Google+ for Lawyers: How to Get Started

Attorneys need to claim their law firm marketing turf on Google+ business pages for two key reasons:

Google+ is now the #2 social media site with over 540 million monthly active users, and has grown 58% in the last six months alone.

Google is fully integrating Google+ with search results...so if you’re not on Google+, think about what that means for your SEO.  In fact, it has been reported that Google+1’s (which are analogous to Facebook “likes”) are now the #2 search-ranking factor.

Setting up a Google+ business page for your law practice could not be easier – seriously, it takes just a few minutes. Here are 5 steps to set up your Google+ business page:

1. If you already have a personal Gmail account, do NOT use that address – instead, create a new Gmail account that other people who may be administering your Google+ page can access. For example, ABCLaw@gmail.com.

2. With your Gmail address, go to http://www.google.com/+/business/ to create your page – just follow the Google+ wizard, which will give you classification options for your practice.

3. Populate your Profile with your logo and a tagline if you have one.

4. Optimize your Page with bios, photos, links and other content (like from your blog) so when you promote it there is something to interest people.

5. Promote your Page to contacts and your other social networks. One of the great features of Google+ is Circles, which allows you to group your followers are you wish – so if you practice more than one area of law, you can segment by interest and market to them accordingly.

Google+ is here to stay, so get a jump on competitors who may not be as savvy as you are when it comes to realizing the importance of social media networking and start generating leads.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

NEW “Rainmaker Retreat: Unplugged”
DVD Set Now Available!

The 6 DVD set is a live recording of the Rainmaker Retreat, a 2-day legal marketing intensive led by legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley that covers over 65 proven online and offline marketing and business development strategies for law firms.

You will discover:

  • Lead Generation Techniques: how to generate more leads from the Internet, social media and blogs.
  • Lead Conversion Techniques: a proven system to track incoming leads and improve your conversion rates to turn more of those prospects into paying clients.
  • Client Retention Techniques: specific tools to double your referrals and to help you with “Building a Lifestyle Law Firm®”
  • Engaging activities to help you identify your ideal target market so you can powerfully market to them.
  • Over 65 PROVEN online and offline legal marketing strategies.

Click here now to order Rainmaker Retreat: Unplugged.

10 Tips For Making Your Law Firm Stand Out on Google+

A recent post at LawMarketing.com provided 10 tips for lawyers to get more visibility on Google+, sharing a good infographic (see below) originally posted by Denise Wakeman.

As we have mentioned here many times, participating on social media can really help boost your ranking in search results as well as build your authority online.  While more and more attorneys are participating on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, there are still not that many who have taken advantage of Google+ -- which means more opportunity for those of you who are early adopters to reap the benefits.

LawMarketing.com is a great resource for legal marketing, with actionable articles from a wide range of nationally recognized marketers just waiting for you to access.  I encourage you to click on this link to sign up for their free newsletter so you can get this valuable information delivered to your inbox every week.

More Americans Turning to Social Media to Get Their News Fix

A new study from the Pew Research Journalism Project examines how many social network users depend on those sites for their news consumption. 

Here are the social media networks that rank as news sources:

Some of you may be wondering about Reddit, which is a source for what is popular in real time on the Internet.  People post a link to a story and there are up and down arrows that appear next to it.  Users vote on how interesting it is to them; the most popular appear at the top of the feed.  It’s news via community.

OK, so what does this mean for legal marketing?  If you examine the general profile of the social media news consumer below, you will see that they skew older (30-64) and upper income ($75K+). 

Digging a little deeper into the demographic data, note that Facebook skews more female while LinkedIn news consumers tend to be male.  Reviewing this data closely with your ideal target client in mind will help point you toward the best social media network for posting news your prospects can use.

The fact that Americans are becoming more accustomed to consuming their news online would also seem to indicate that there are opportunities for attorneys who maintain a news-filled blog to have their content read and shared across many different platforms.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

Most Effective Ways to Get Facebook Fans and Twitter Followers

A couple of weeks ago, I posted about the most effective ways to grow your email list, which was based on the latest Audience Growth Survey from ExactTarget, a digital marketing company.

The survey also provided feedback from more than 400 marketers on the tactics that worked best for attracting Facebook fans and Twitter followers.

According to the data, the two most used tactics for Facebook were not considered by marketers to be the most effective.  In fact, some of the highest rated tactics in terms of effectiveness have the lowest user numbers, including:

  • Sponsored Stories/Facebook Ads
  • Facebook Display Ads
  • Offering FAQs and how-tos
  • Answering customer questions

Here is a chart that summarizes the most used/most effective Facebook tactics:

The findings for Twitter tactics were similar to those for Facebook in that the most used were not the most effective in attracting followers.  Here is the data on Twitter tactics:

This survey points up the necessity of examining your tactics to determine if they are actually working to support your marketing goals.  Just doing something for the sake of doing it is a waste of your time and money.  With built-in metrics available for social media networks, there is no excuse for not measuring the effectiveness of your efforts and discarding the things that clearly don’t work for you.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get 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.

Social Media Anxiety: How to Get Over It

Fear of the unknown is a basic human instinct, and we see it every day when it comes to attorneys and social media.  But with 72% 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 small law firms and attorneys in mid-sized practices, providing advanced hands-on training for lead generation, 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.

In the meantime, this Huffington Post infographic does a good job of providing some basic knowledge you need to get over your fear of social media and get on the road to engagement:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get All the Law Firm Marketing Strategies You Need to Create A 7-figure Law Practice with Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2!

Newly released!  Rainmaker in a Box: Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media.

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

My interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

***For Blog Readers, Facebook Friends, Twitter Followers and LinkedIn Connections – we are offering you a $50 discount for Volume 2 and a $100 discount for both Volume 1 and Volume 2 because of your social media presence with The Rainmaker Institute.

Click here now to order!

 

 

 

15 Things Attorneys Can Tweet About

Today’s guest post is by Cindy Greenway, editor-in-chief at LawMarketing.com. This article originally appeared on that site and has some good tips for attorneys who want to engage on Twitter but aren’t sure how to get started. -- Stephen

"What Should I Tweet About?" is a common question attorneys ask when they decide to implement Twitter into their law firm social media marketing plan.

The first thing to remember is that your tweets should be valuable and informational.   You have 140 characters to make a statement, which may not feel like enough, but within no time you will find it easier to create short posts.

Here are 15 simple ideas that will help you come up with an steady stream of tweets.  You can also use these social media tips 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 creating videos yet, it's time to start!
  3. Share quotes 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.
  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 your own upcoming live or virtual event.
  11. Let people know that your e-newsletter has been published - tell them to read it or provide the 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 tool you recently discovered or tested.

When you consistently post and engage via social media, you will see an increase in others also retweeting and sharing your posts.  This allows you to get in front of a broader audience who may start following you and also engaging with you on social media.

NOTE: LawMarketing.com is offering a free report, 15 Strategies to Increase Google Rank, Control Online Reputation and Maximize Content.   Just click on the link to get yours today.

 

Legal Marketing Strategies in a Social Media World

I’m in Chicago today and tomorrow, making two presentations during the Illinois State Bar Small and Solo Conference. 

In a couple of hours, I will be speaking on Law Firm Marketing Strategies in a Social Media World: Connecting with Clients, Prospects and Referral Sources on LinkedIn and FacebookOne of the tips I will be sharing with the group is a relatively new LinkedIn feature called InMaps which offers a visual representation of what your LinkedIn networks look like.

InMaps can show how your LinkedIn connections form groups, displaying very clearly how your connections are related to one another. Not only is this a great way to understand the relationships between you and all your LinkedIn connections, it will help you identify links within your professional associations you were not aware of, giving you the opportunity to expand your connections.

InMaps is very easy to use; simply visit the InMaps website (http://inmaps.linkedinlabs.com) and grant it permission to connect to your LinkedIn account. InMaps will sort through your contacts and present you with a map of your affiliations. You will see different clusters of closely linked colleagues, and classmates and friends will appear as similarly colored groups. For example, the names of law school classmates may be in red, people in another group may be in green, etc.

Within these groups, contacts whose names appear larger represent those who have the largest number of connections within the cluster, so by clicking on a contact within any circle, you can see their profile and how they are connected to your other contacts!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

What Social Media Users Like to Share

A new study out from market research firm Ipsos reveals that 70% of Internet users have shared content on social media sites in the past month. 

So why is this important?

One of the main reasons attorneys participate in social media is for lead generation, and having your posts shared with others boosts the popularity of that post and gives an implied endorsement to what you have to say.

So it would behoove you to be aware of the type of content that is more likely to be shared. Here it is:

The next time you find yourself stuck on what to post on your social media sites, refer to this list – and include a picture!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

New Free Report! The 4 Keys to Becoming a Recognized Expert in 180 Days: Key #1-Press Releases

One of the best ways to get you on the road to becoming a recognized expert is through the use of press releases.

A press release is simply a short announcement about your law firm that may be of interest to the public or news media.

A press release that not only targets the audience you want to reach, but intrigues the editor and/or publisher, will gain free media coverage that surpasses any response you could hope to gain from any of your company’s paid advertising campaigns.

In addition, Google search engines love press releases! 

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • What constitutes an effective press release
  • Ideas for press release content
  • How to format your press release
  • Where to submit your press release
  • Best days to send out your press release
  • …And much, much more!

Click on the following link to get your free report on The 4 Keys to Becoming a Recognized Expert in 180 Days: Key #1-Press Releases.

 

Why Tweeting Doesn't Make You A Twit

This article originally ran in The Record Reporter, an Arizona newspaper and website that covers legal business news:

I recently presented at the American Bar Association annual conference in San Francisco on “Why Tweeting Doesn’t Make You a Twit!”
 I was shocked and amazed at the number of attorneys I spoke to who still don’t believe that using social media is an effective way to acquire more clients, establish credibility and get a steady stream of referrals.


More often than not I heard comments such as:

                  “Social media is for younger generations;”

                  “People don’t use the Internet to look for attorneys;”

                  “I know firms that spent money on social media and never saw a return;” or

                  “The type of people who I want to do business with aren’t on social media”

These statements are categorically not true. In fact, believing these statements can be detrimental to the success of your law firm. Actively and appropriately engaging in social media is no longer a “nice to have” it is a “must have” if you truly want to build a successful firm.

Think about your own experience. If you are considering buying a new product or service, and you go onto the Internet and can’t find information on a website, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Amazon or any other number of social media platforms, your enthusiasm and interest in that particular company or product begins to diminish.

You may even find you trust the company less, are more skeptical of the product or service and begin to seek out competitors who offer the same product or service.

When people search for legal help the process is no different. It’s human nature to want to avoid making bad decisions that cause us financial or emotional harm.

Our fears are calmed and our skepticism is lessened when we can read and learn about the product or service we are about to invest in. When we read or watch third-party reviews we feel safer. When we see that a company is actively offering valuable and powerful information to those who may need the product or service, we believe we are mitigating the risk of a bad decision.

You must always remember that people buy emotionally and justify logically.

That’s why Twitter is one of the fastest growing online social media platforms. When used correctly and ethically it is a powerful part of a firm’s overall online marketing strategy.

Some basic and impressive statistics about Twitter easily demonstrate why this platform must be utilized.

  • There are 200 million active users;
  • 20 percent of individuals who “follow” a company on Twitter do so to give feedback and share ideas;
  • 71 percent of individuals who positively review a company on Twitter (with a Tweet, Re-Tweet) go on to suggest the company to his/her peers;
  • 56 percent of consumers would be more likely to encourage friends and family to try new products from a social brand than in person or over the phone;
  • 63 percent of consumers agree that social experiences make them more interested in a brand’s product;
  • 64 percent of consumers have made a purchase decision based on social content;
  • 67 percent of 18-34 year old consumers prefer to do business with social companies;
  • 91 percent of 18-34 year olds using social media are talking about brands.

If the above reasons don’t compel you to jump on Twitter and actively use it to grow your firm, here are three additional reasons to use Twitter.

With Twitter, you can build a massive platform:

A platform helps you effectively grow the number of people who know who you are, know what type of people/companies you are qualified to assist and know how you are different than every other law firm out there.

Twitter helps you establish credibility:

People do business with people they know, like and trust.

Being active on Twitter helps you establish yourself as a thought leader.

You can effectively position yourself as the “go-to” attorney for your practice area and geographical region.

You offer followers powerful, relevant and helpful information that begins to build a relationship and positions you and or the firm as a valuable and credible source of information.

Drive traffic to your website:

You can engage people on Twitter with powerful information and then direct them to your website. It is your website’s job to educate, engage and compel the viewer to take action and call or email the firm and/or set up an appointment with an attorney.

On your website you can showcase who you are and how you are different from other firms. If you do not actively display how you are unique and different from all your competitors out there, people will begin to make decisions based on price. This is the single worst position you can find yourself if. You never want to get business because you are the “cheapest attorney out there.”

There you can also give viewers the opportunity to: Learn about you and the firm, hear about others’ interactions with you through testimonials (when permitted by state) and case studies (demonstrate expertise), and discover how you can help them navigate their pressing legal issue.

Twitter of course, must be used effectively and ethically. Marketing is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. You must invest either the time or money into these strategies consistently so your efforts can gain traction and eventually give you a return on your investment.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Sept. 12 LawMarketing.com Webinar: 5 Must-Haves Your Website Needs to Convert Visitors to Prospects

Are you aware that you have all of 6 seconds to connect and make an impression with a visitor to your website? Although attorneys as a group are historically slow to adapt to new technologies, I’d venture to say just about every lawyer today has a website.

But is your website working for you or against you?

Join Cindy Greenway, editor in chief at LawMarketing.com, and Tanner Jones, marketing director for Consultwebs.com, for a free webinar next Thursday, Sept. 12 at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT on 5 Must Haves For Your Website Conversion Tool Kit.

During this complimentary webinar, you will learn:

  • Five top items you MUST have on your website to convert visitors to prospects
  • How to design for human eyes:  ensuring you are approachable
  • Proven ways to maximize your website conversions
  • Which data is worth tracking and how it impacts your bottom line
  • The top conversion tools that are critical for today's Web browsers

If the timing of this webinar doesn’t work for you, don’t worry – go ahead and register online and you will receive an audio recording of the full webinar so you can listen and learn at your convenience.

Click here to register online now for the 5 Must Haves For Your Website Conversion Tool Kit webinar on Thursday, Sept. 12 at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT, compliments of LawMarketing.com.

 

NEW Free Report: How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn

With over 238 million members in over 200 countries, LinkedIn has quickly become THE ‘go to’ business-to-business directory and the most popular social networking platform dedicated to professional business development.

To ignore it is the proverbial equivalent of sticking your head in the sand.

Learning how to use LinkedIn to your biggest advantage takes time and effort, but it is time well spent.

If you are new to LinkedIn, it can be confusing, much like any new software that you need to learn to grow your business.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • What LinkedIn can help you accomplish
  • Valuable LinkedIn features that can increase the power of your network
  • Smart ways top attorneys use LinkedIn
  • What your profile needs in order to be effective
  • How to make people want to know more about you
  • And much, much more!

Click here now to receive your free report on How Attorneys Can Make the Most of LinkedIn.

 

Determining Which Social Media Platforms Work Best for Your Law Firm

When you consider the overwhelming number of people who are now using social media, the question you should be asking is not, are my prospects, clients, and referral sources using social media? The question you should be asking is, which network are they using most often?

Don’t make the mistake of thinking you are your client.  Just because you don’t actively participate on Facebook or other social media platforms don’t mean your clients and prospects aren’t.   Very few law firms are aggressively going after these platforms; it’s an opportunity to get ahead of the curve. Plus, search engines now rank social media pages, so it’s very important for SEO.

Depending on the demographic of your clientele, you may have more success with one social media platform compared to another. The infographic below, based on the latest social media usage data from the Pew Research Center, can help you determine which platforms can work better for you, depending on the profile of your ideal target market:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

On-Demand Seminar: 5 Biggest Reasons Why Law Firms Fail

With the spectacular announcement of the biggest bankruptcy in law firm history, Dewey & LeBoeuf stunned the legal community. Now comes the work of dissecting what went wrong and how their competitors can avoid a similar fate.

When you order this new on-demand seminar, you will watch nationally recognized law firm marketing expert Stephen Fairley interview Donald Scarinci, Managing Partner of Scarinci Hollenbeck, one of the fastest growing mid-sized law firms on the East Coast and a nationally recognized thought leader on law firm management. They discuss:

  • The 5 biggest reasons why law firms fail and how you can avoid a similar fate
  • How fast growing firms can avoid the pitfalls that brought Dewey & LeBoeuf to its knees
  • How Scarinci Hollenbeck went from relying almost entirely on “word of mouth” marketing to being featured in the Wall Street Journal for their cutting edge approach to social media in less than 6 months
  • What Managing Partners and law firm administrators need to know now to compete
  • Marketing and managing your firm in today’s roller coaster economy
  • A “behind the scenes” case study of how Scarinci Hollenbeck has adapted to the new realities
  • Effective tools multi-attorney firms can use to market a variety of partners and practice areas

Order the on-demand seminar on Lessons From Dewey & LeBoeuf: 5 Biggest Reasons Why Law Firms Fail , watch it at your convenience and share it with your partners and associates.

 

Join Me Tomorrow for Free Avvo Webinar on Top 5 Strategies to Drive Traffic & Generate Leads from Social Media

Tomorrow – Thursday, Sept. 5, 2012 – I will be leading an Avvo webinar on the Top 5 Strategies to Drive Traffic & Generate Leads from Social Media. The live webinar, sponsored by Avvo at no cost to attorneys, is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT.

Social media is the fastest growing marketing strategy top attorneys are using to develop new business.

  • Over 75% of adults with Internet access have already joined Facebook.
  • 50% of small law firms with a blog have already generated clients from it.
  • LinkedIn recently announced they have over 225 million active members.
  • 56% of consumers who search for an attorney use social media.

The question is why do many attorneys not get the results they anticipate when using social media? We have found there are three major reasons: they don’t have a realistic game plan; they don’t implement consistently; and they expect instant results.

In this fast-paced legal marketing webinar, I will cover which practice areas benefit most from social media, how to understand risks of using social media and share actual case studies and real world examples of how top law firms use social media.

Lawyers who attend this webinar will learn:

  • The six major social media tools every lawyers must use.
  • 8 steps to jumpstart your referral efforts on LinkedIn.
  • Unbelievable ways to target your exact perfect client on Facebook.
  • Measuring the return on investment of social media.
  • The Rainmaker Social Media Blueprint: A How To Guide for Marketing Your Law Firm on Social Media.

Click on the following link now to register for tomorrow’s free Avvo webinar -- Top 5 Strategies to Drive Traffic & Generate Leads from Social Media -- at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT.

 

Creating the Perfect Post for Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter

It’s Labor Day weekend and perhaps you have a little more time on your hands that you’d like to dedicate to brushing up on your social media marketing skills. 

Inbound marketing giant HubSpot is a great resource for “how to” information, and has created the SlideShare show below to help you conquer the “Big 3” social media networks: Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

As I’ve noted many times, you need to be on the social media networks that your prospects frequent, and chances are they are populating at least one of these, if not all three. So spend some time going through the slides below this weekend (it’s not labor-intensive!) and learn to craft the perfect post for your prospects:

 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Labor Day Special: 50% Off Rainmaker In A Box, Volume 2

Can all the strategies to create a 7-figure law practice get stuffed into one box?

They CAN, if it’s The Rainmaker Institute’s Rainmaker In A Box, Volume 2!

If you know anything about online marketing and the Internet, you know that nothing stays the same for very long. Things that were effective last year now don’t work at all. Tricks that got your website on the first page of Google search results 6 months ago are old hat and ineffective.

Fortunately, you have The Rainmaker Institute staying on top of the trends and cutting edge strategies for you. We have one aim in mind – to teach you how to use these little known strategies so you can get more and more qualified leads and dominate your marketplace; to help you create the law firm of your dreams.

Discover how top attorneys are growing their top line revenues, generating leads from social media and the Internet, and increasing the quantity and quality of their referrals!

Rainmaker In A Box, Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

Rainmaker In A Box, Volume 2 usually sells for $397, but from now until midnight on Monday, Sept. 2, 2013, you can order it online for only $198.50!

Click on this link now to get 50% off Rainmaker In A Box, Volume 2!

 

ABA Survey Says Lawyers Getting Clients Via Social Media

A hat tip to my friend Larry Bodine, editor-in-chief of Lawyers.com, who reports on findings from the newly published 2013 ABA Technology Survey in his LawMarketing Blog today as follows:

27% of US law firms now have blogs, up from 22% last year, 15% in 2011, and 14% in 2010. Only 9% of lawyers maintain a personal, professional blog outside the firm. Solo attorneys are the most likely to have a professional blog, as are those between the ages of 40-49.

59% of those surveyed indicated their firms maintain a presence in a social network such as LinkedIn or Facebook, up from 55% last year, 42% in 2011, and 17% in 2010. Of those firms with a presence, the breakout of channels can be seen in the chart below. LinkedIn and Facebook are the most used, but legal-vertical network use remains low.

Individually, 81% of attorneys report using social networks for professional purposes, up from 78% last year, 65% in 2011, and 56% in 2010. LinkedIn usage is nearly universal (98%), with Facebook usage actually falling from 38% in 2012 to 33% this year.

19% of law firms now use Twitter, up from 13% in 2012. Individual Twitter usage by attorneys reached 14%, up from 11% last year. Twitter usage is more common in solo and small firms.

How effective is maintaining a presence in social media? When those utilizing any type of social media/networking were asked if they ever had a client retain their legal services directly or via referral as a result of their use, 19% indicated “yes” (compared to 17% last year and 12% in 2011). Solo and small law firms reported better results than larger firms.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

How Your Practice Can Benefit From Twitter

Twitter has released the results of a survey conducted by global research firm Market Probe International on how small businesses can benefit from having a presence on Twitter. The survey was split among U.S. and UK adults who currently follow small businesses on Twitter and found that these followers are much more likely to make a purchase from businesses they follow as well as recommend them to others.

Followers also have an emotional connection with the businesses they follow, and use Twitter as a way to provide their feedback and share information. This infographic from Twitter details the key takeaways from the survey:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Becoming a Rainmaker: Business Building Strategies for Lawyers

Based on Stephen’s highly successful seminar series by the same name, this 3-audio CD program covers dozens of practical recommendations and step-by-step sales and marketing techniques for solo practitioners and small law firms.

More than 10,000 attorneys from law firms all over the country have experienced powerful results from attending the Becoming A Rainmaker seminar. It has been sponsored by more than 22 of the largest state and local bar associations.

In this information-packed audio program, you will discover:

  • How to generate more leads by using education-based marketing
  • The relationship between credibility, visibility, tangibility, and consistency
  • How to position your small firm as an industry leader
  • The importance of being perceived as a specialist
  • Why most advertising is a waste of your money
  • What to expect from a Yellow Pages ad
  • The 3 marketing strategies that will produce 80% of your results
  • How to influence the Know, Like and Trust factors
  • Common marketing mistakes lawyers make and how to avoid them
  • How to answer the question, "Why should I buy from you?"
  • Specific ways you can set yourself apart from low-cost lawyers
  • What to do with the 15% of the population that always buys on price
  • Ways to attract your Ideal Target Market
  • The 6 stage sales process you must follow for maximum success

Click to order Becoming a Rainmaker: Business Building Strategies for Lawyers.

 

From ABA Annual Conference: Tweeting for Attorneys Q&A

I was privileged to serve on a panel last Saturday at the American Bar Association’s Annual Conference in San Francisco to address the subject, Tweeting Won't Make You a Twit: Effective Twitter Marketing and Networking for Lawyers.

I wanted to share some of the most common questions I usually get asked when I talk about social media marketing for attorneys at our Rainmaker Retreat events. I’ve included links to past posts here that provide the best answers:

1.       Do people and companies really use social media to find attorneys?

How Social Media Figures Into Consumer Search for a Lawyer [INFOGRAPHIC]

How Companies Use Social Media to Hire Attorneys

Social Media Usage Now Mainstream for In-House Counsel

2.       I’m nervous about my state Bar thinking I’m advertising -- how can I protect myself?

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: A Question of Time vs. Money

3.      I don’t have anything to say that’s interesting in 140 characters.

Law Firm Marketing: How to Get Your Posts and Tweets Shared on Social Media Sites

What New Twitter Profile Page Means for Branding Your Law Firm

4.       What types of things should I tweet about?

5 Social Media Rules Every Solo Should Know

5.       Can I mix personal and professional on Twitter?

Twitter Best Practices Guide for Attorneys

If you’re looking for ways to use social media to boost your referrals and attract new prospects, you should attend an upcoming Rainmaker Retreat; here are the dates:

  • August 16-17: Las Vegas, NV
  • Sept. 20-21: San Francisco, CA
  • Oct. 25-26: Chicago, IL
  • Nov. 15-15: New York City
  • Dec. 6-7: Los Angeles, CA

You can get more information and register online for any of these sessions at RainmakerRetreat.com.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

About Jessica Johnson, Project Coordinator, The Rainmaker Institute

Jessica comes from a background of business coaching, sales training, public speaking and spent five years as a Director of Operations. She has experience in running a franchise, coaching international companies, running a medical practice and conducting dozens of personal and professional development workshops and mastermind groups to ensure her clients get optimal results.

VIDEO: Why Google+ Is a Must for Legal Marketing

There’s an informative video interview just posted over at LawMarketing.com with Tanner Jones, marketing director for Consultwebs.com, an online law firm marketing consulting firm, about why Google+ is a must for law firms.

If you have been wondering how Google+ should fit into your social media marketing strategy, listen to what Tanner has to say:

Here’s another bonus from LawMarketing.com: click on this link for a great free report on 15 Strategies for Attorneys to Increase Google Rank, Control Online Reputations and Maximize Content.

 

10 Social Media Stats That May Surprise You

Still need some convincing that your law firm would be well-served to participate in social media? Here are 10 surprising social media stats pulled together by social media blogger Jeff Bullas:

1.  189 million of Facebook’s users worldwide are mobile only.

2.  Twitter is the fast growing social network in the world by active users: 44% growth from June 2012 to March 2013.

3.  The fastest growing age bracket on Twitter is 55-64 (up 79% since 2012). 

4.  The fast growing age bracket on Facebook is 45-54 (up 46% since 2012).

5.  The fastest growing age bracket on Goggle+ is 45-54 (up 56% since 2012).

6.  YouTube reaches more adults between the ages of 18-34 than any cable network.

7.  Google+ has 359 million active users; up 33% between June 2012 and March 2013.

8.  Each Facebook user spends on average 15 hours and 33 minutes per month on the site and monthly active users have surpassed 1.1 billion.

9.  There are now 665 million daily active Facebook users.

10.  30 billion pieces of content are shared on Facebook every month. 

The two key factors driving social media growth in 2013 are the rapid adoption by older users (45+) and the use of mobile (smartphones and tablets) to access the Internet. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

Adult Use of Social Media at All-Time High

The most definitive study of Internet usage by Americans – the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project – reports that social media usage by U.S. adults is at a record high: 72% of online adults report using at least one social networking site, up from 67% in December 2012:

And while growth occurred in every age group, the biggest increases were found among older adults:

43% of Internet users over the age of 65 reported using social networking sites as of May 2013, a big jump from 32% at the end of 2012

60% of Internet users aged 50-64 used social networks as of May 2013, up from 52% in December 2012

Other findings from the Pew Research study:

  • 78% of Internet users aged 30-49 use social networking sites
  • 89% of Internet users aged 18-29 use social networking sites
  • Social media adoption is highest among Hispanics (80%), followed by African-Americans (75%) and white non-Hispanics (70%)
  • More women (74%) than men (70%) use social media
  • 71% of adults with a household income above $75,000 use social media

When Pew Research started this survey in 2005, only 8% of online adults used social media – just 8 years later, that number is now 72%

You get where this is going, right?

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

Forrester Study Shows Social Media Use "Ubiquitous" Among B2B Decision-Makers

A new study from Forrester Research has found that social media use is ubiquitous among B2B decision-makers in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

According to coverage on the new study at marketingcharts.com, the results indicate that visits by these decision-makers to various social media platforms each serve very different purposes – Facebook is rarely used for business while LinkedIn is used for both business and personal reasons. Other findings:

85% visit brand-agnostic communities or forums at least monthly, with 18% doing so primarily for business purposes, and another 63% for business and personal purposes;

81% visit LinkedIn with that frequency, with 26% doing so primarily for business purposes and another 48% for mixed reasons;

81% also visit Facebook at least monthly, but only 2% do so primarily for business purposes, as opposed to 42% who do so primarily for personal purposes;

80% use vendor support forums or discussion forums on vendor or brand websites (for that specific vendor or brand), with 23% doing so primarily for business reasons;

62% visit Twitter at least monthly, but only 6% do so mainly for business, as opposed to 20% mainly for personal reasons;

Google+ monthly usage stands at 49%, with primarily personal (15%) usage outweighing primarily business-related use (4%); and

32% use Pinterest at least monthly, but only 2% do so primarily for business reasons.

In addition, a vast majority of those surveyed – 98% -- visit social media networks as spectators, reading blogs watching videos, etc. Will any of them find you there?

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

How to Use Social Media for Lead Generation

If you are still struggling to find the sweet spot when it comes to using social media to generate leads, there’s nothing wrong with following in the footsteps of marketers who have proven to be successful in doing just that.

Using data from several leading social media marketers, Wishpond has created this new infographic demonstrating how others have used social media successfully to generate leads. Follow the leader!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

How to Get More Likes on Facebook

Everyone wants to be liked...but for business users on Facebook, getting liked is critical to creating real engagement with prospects. This infographic by online marketing firm KISSmetrics walks you through the steps you should take to get more likes on Facebook:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

Report: Social Media May Soon Eclipse Search Engines in Driving Traffic to Your Website

A recent report by Forrester Research says that social media may soon drive more traffic to websites than search engines, according to a story at Entrepreneur.com.

The shift is being driven by younger Internet users, who typically use social media as their go-to source for research. According to Forrester, half of Internet users ages 18-23 and 43% of Internet users ages 24-32 used Facebook, Twitter or other social media platforms to search.

Other highlights from the report include:

Direct marketing works. In 2012, 26% of users reported typically finding websites through corporate and branded emails, an 11 point jump from the previous year.

Sponsored search results surge in popularity. Last year, 18% of Internet users said paid search results helped them find what they were looking for. That's up from 8% in 2011.

Links keep users engaged. Roughly 28% of all Internet users, regardless of age, discover new sites from links on websites they're already visiting.

The Forrester research highlights the importance of having social media as a key component of your legal marketing strategy. While a majority of consumers still use Google and other search engines to discover a product or service, more and more are turning to social media to get trusted input from the people they know.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

5 Social Media Rules Every Solo Should Know

I am in Long Beach today for the State Bar of California Solo & Small Firm Summit, giving 4 separate talks today and tomorrow on creating a lifestyle law firm and social media marketing strategies for law firms.

Here are five rules that every solo practitioner and small firm should know about social media; use them to guide your efforts:

Put out great content. The quality of the content you provide is directly reflective of the quality of your law practice. When you put something out on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter, it needs to be something your prospects and followers find valuable. If you’re posting or retweeting another’s content – which is perfectly fine – make sure it meets your criteria for providing value as well.

Engage.  If someone posts or comment or response, be sure you respond in kind. You have to give as well as you get.

Focus. Specializing in your area of practice helps you build trust and authority, so focus in on messages that reflect what your practice is about.

Be real. Write for those you want as clients, not for other attorneys. Let your personality come through in your posts.

Learn the culture. Each social media network has a different culture, and the most successful marketers know how to use it to their advantage. In general, focusing in on two social media networks is generally a good idea for most practitioners – figure out where your target market spends most of their time and be there.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

The Social Media Platforms That Marketers Say Deliver The Best Results

The 5th annual 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report from Social Media Examiner looked at how marketers are using social media to grow their businesses today and how they plan to use it in the future.

The top 5 social media platforms used by marketers in the study were Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogging and YouTube:

These platforms were virtually unchanged from 2012. One point of interest for solos is that self-employed marketers were significantly more likely to use blogging than larger firms (64% vs. 48%). 

This data seems to correlate with our experience that blogging helps solos and small firms distinguish themselves better at a very low cost.

There were also differences in platforms chosen by B2C and B2B marketers:

By a significant margin, Facebook outweighed all other platforms as the preference of B2C marketers. The verdict was split between Facebook and LinkedIn for B2B marketers.

Click on the link to download the full 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

How Time Spent On Social Media Marketing Translates Into Benefits

The 5th annual 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report from Social Media Examiner looks at how marketers are using social media to grow their businesses today and how they plan to use it in the future.

Not surprisingly, the data reveals that those companies that invest more time in social media marketing reap better results, including:

More than half of marketers who have been participating in social media for more than three years report increased sales.

92% that invest 6+ hours per week in social media increased exposure for their businesses.

More than half of those investing as little as 6 hours per week in social media were able to build new partnerships. Marketers selling to other businesses were more likely to achieve this benefit (58%) than those selling to consumers (51%).

64% that spend 6+ hours per week on social media saw increases in lead generation.

Almost half of those that spend 6+ hours per week on social media saw a reduction in their marketing expenses.

62% of those who have spent at least two years using social media realized improved search engine rankings.

78% that spend 6+ hours per week on social media saw increased traffic to their websites.

B2C marketers (71%) were much more likely to develop a loyal fan base through social media than B2B marketers (58%).

Time invested makes a difference. Of those spending at least 6 hours a week, 69% found benefit—compared to 49% of those spending 5 hours or fewer per week.

Tomorrow we’ll examine the most effective social media platforms marketers say deliver the best results.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD Set

The Practice Made Perfect CD set and manual applies Stephen Fairley’s unique High Impact Marketing System to the practice-building challenges faced by solo practitioners and partners at small law firms.  

It includes dozens of specific marketing and sales recommendations that can be easily and quickly applied to your firm, including:

  • The only 7 sure-fire ways to get clients in your door NOW
  • Why advertising doesn’t work for most small law firms
  • The 7 reasons why people don’t buy from you           
  • How to market and sell with USP’s (Unique Selling Proposition)           
  • Using audio logos to attract immediate attention for your business
  • Using low-cost, high impact marketing strategies           
  • Strategies for achieving maximum results from all of your marketing efforts           
  • How to discover your Ideal Target Market
  • 3 critical factors to remember when looking for new clients
  • The NEW sales cycle for professional services
  • How to retain your best clients

Click here to order your Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD set and manual now.

 

How Marketers Are Using Social Media to Grow Their Businesses

The 5th annual 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report is now out from Social Media Examiner, delving into the data that shows how marketers are using social media to grow their businesses today and how they plan to use it in the future.

Over the next few days, we’ll be doing a deep-dive into this report and plucking out the more interesting and relevant bits for law firm marketers to benchmark their own efforts against.

One thing attorneys are concerned about is the time commitment for social media marketing. The report found that the time marketers are spending on social media has increased over the past year, with 62% of marketers spending six or more hours per week on social media marketing:

Tomorrow we’ll post about how time spent on social media marketing translates into measurable results.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

How Social Media Figures Into Consumer Search for a Lawyer [INFOGRAPHIC]

The Rainmaker Institute recently commissioned a survey by The Research Intelligence Group to find out how consumers use social media in their search for an attorney. I blogged about the details of the survey on Friday at Survey Says Majority of Consumers Use Social Media When Looking for Lawyers.

This infographic was created using the results of that survey; feel free to pass it around:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

Survey Says Majority of Consumers Use Social Media When Looking for Lawyers

A new survey by The Research Intelligence Group has found that 56% of consumers who looked for an attorney in the past year used social media in some way to conduct that search.

The survey of 1,000 U.S. adults was conducted in March by the international market research firm on behalf of The Rainmaker Institute. It found that 25% of those surveyed said they had sought an attorney in the past year. 

Among those who looked for an attorney, 56% said they used social media during their search. The use of social media was higher among males (71%) than females (38%) and highest among younger adults. In the search for a lawyer, social media was used by:

  • 81% of 18-29 year olds
  • 73% of 30-39 year olds
  • 57% of 40-49 year olds
  • 30% of 50-64 year olds
  • 25% of those 65+

In addition, 72% of minorities who sought an attorney used social media. 

How Social Media Is Used to Search for an Attorney

According to the survey, here is how consumers used social media during their search for an attorney:

21% of those searching for an attorney checked out the social media pages of lawyers or firms and 17% indicated that the information they found on the social media pages made a difference in their final selection

Nearly one-quarter used a social media channel such as Twitter or Facebook to ask their friends for recommendations of lawyers or firms they have used for similar matters

20% used social media to create a ‘short list’ of lawyers based on referrals and recommendations received through social media

Almost 20% vetted the names of lawyers they were considering with their social media contacts

Nearly one-quarter made a final selection of a lawyer based in part on what they learned through their social media contacts

Social Media Now a Part of Everyday Life

Judging from the verbatim commentary from the survey, researchers found that consumers use social media to search for an attorney because it is now a part of everyday life and a natural place to turn to for information gathering. 

This is especially true for younger consumers, who have grown up using social media and trust it for helping them make decisions. As one survey respondent noted, lawyers that are visible on social media “show that they are informed about the world and they are willing to communicate with potential clients through new and varying ways.”

It is becoming increasingly clear that simply having a website is not enough to attract new clients in 2013; an attorney’s online presence must extend to social media and outreach efforts like blogging to remain relevant to prospects under the age of 50.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

 

How to Get More Shares on Facebook

When it comes to marketing your law firm on Facebook, sharing is not just a good thing, it’s the key to making this social media network work for your practice.

So how do you get more shares? This infographic does a good job of aggregating the latest tips on how to get your followers on Facebook to pass your wisdom around:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

How to Boost Your SEO with Social Search

If you want to obtain higher rankings for your website and blog on Google, Bing and other search engines, there are some things you should be doing online to optimize your sites for social search:

Add original, high quality content to your blog and other social media networks.  As I’ve said many times, Google loves fresh content!  However, it’s not enough for it just to be fresh – it also needs to be original and relevant, and you need to post frequently, at least 3-5 times a week.

Add social sharing to all your online activities.  Adding a “Share” capability to your E-newsletters, website, blog and social networking profiles will help boost your visibility in social search.

Establish a Google+ Profile.  Set up a Google+ profile and create links to all your social content.  You’ll need a profile on Google in order to use the new Google+1 button, which is Google’s answer to the Facebook “Like” button.

Use videos and photos.  Video and photo files are more likely to be shared online than text, so be sure your website, blog and social pages contain lots of these files.

Understand the importance of the now.  Google has decided that real-time information is more relevant and rewards content posted on real-time networks like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn with higher search rankings.  If you are a Twitter user, activate your Twitter Location and use social check-ins on Facebook.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

Improve Email Click-Through Rates with Social Share Buttons

A new study from GetResponse shows that emails including social share buttons have a click-through rate (CTR) that is 158% higher than those that do not. 

This infographic illustrates the results from the new GetResponse survey:

While the evidence clearly shows a propensity for email recipients to share on social networks, the GetResponse study says that only 29% of email marketers include social share buttons in their emails.

As Mom always said, it’s good to share!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

How to Measure Your Social Media ROI

However you choose to measure social media, it is imperative that you have a success metric in mind before you begin. Without some sort of benchmark, determining your ROI is impossible. 

Here are 7 steps to master the measurement of social media ROI:

1. Establish clear marketing goals for your product or brand, and then identify social measurements that directly support those objectives.

2. Organize your measurements and metrics in a logical framework.

3. Take a long-term outlook with social media interactions and measurements. It's a commitment, not a campaign.

4. If hard ROI metrics are difficult to track directly, consider a range of softer metrics that can be linked back to desired business outcomes. (See my previous post on 10 Ways Social Media Could Be Benefitting Your Law Firm.)

5. Determine a dollar value for clients who choose to opt in and engage with your brand via social networks.

6. In your ROI calculations, don't overlook the value of cost savings that can result from ongoing social listening and tracking.

7. Build the technological capabilities to measure your prospects’ complete digital footprint in real time.

One of the hardest ones for most attorneys to grasp is #3 - it's a commitment, not a campaign.  Building a social media presence takes time.  You can't expect to throw up a few blog posts and have prospects knocking down your doors.  Create content that is relevant to your targeted prospect, keep pumping it out there, and they will come.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. According to HubSpot, B2B marketers with a blog generate 67% more leads per month and B2C marketers generate 88% more leads per month than those without a blog.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

How to Handle Your Social Media in 30 Minutes a Day

If there is one common complaint I hear from attorneys when I am speaking to a group about social media, it’s the time demands that mastering this important marketing function entails. 

As I always respond, you do have a choice: you can either spend time (yours or a firm employee’s) or money (by hiring it out). 

Of course, ignoring it all together is also a choice. But it’s a bad one.

I got this infographic in my inbox the other day from Pardot that shows how you can whittle your time investment in social media down to 30 minutes a day. That is, IF you do the work beforehand in identifying your target market and zeroing in on the social media channels they frequent. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Proven Strategies to Win More Clients for Family Law, Personal Injury and Estate Planning Attorneys

Does this sound like you?

You spend thousands of dollars and countless hours trying to generate more business for your law firm. And still you end up with less business than you hoped. You’ve put “get more clients” at the top of your list, but have no time to do anything about it.

If someone calls your office and doesn’t make an appointment, what happens to them?

What if they don’t show up for the appointment?

What if they show up and don’t retain you?

What if they want to retain you and you never hear from them again?

If you answered, “I don’t know” or “We leave a message,” then this on-demand seminar is for you. Register online to receive the Proven Strategies to Win More Clients seminar, where you will learn:

  • 3 major areas to examine when analyzing your law firm
  • 5 numbers every law firm must track to increase their conversion rates
  • A simple diagnostic tool you can use to track your leads and fix your follow up
  • 3 steps for turning more leads into appointments
  • 5 ways to increase your “show up” rates
  • 4 ways to get more appointments to sign up this week
  • What to do when a prospect doesn’t sign up at the initial consultation

Lead Conversion is one of the most overlooked areas at consumer law firms. You spend tens of thousands of dollars every year trying to generate more leads…yet virtually nothing to ensure you convert the maximum amount of those leads into paying clients!

Lead conversion is the 5-stage process of converting more prospects into paying clients and turning more browsers into buyers. Over the last decade, The Rainmaker Institute has become a national leader in assisting consumer law firms to rapidly and dramatically increase their conversion rates.

We have worked with all types of consumer law firms to help them double and even triple their conversion rates within 3-6 months.

If you want to double your revenues this year there are 2 ways you can do it: either double the amount of leads you get each month or double your conversion rates!

Register online now for this on-demand seminar and discover how attorneys just like you are doubling their revenues by converting more of their costly leads into more paying clients!

 

 

4 Game-Changing Ways Social Media Works for Lawyers

Earlier this week, I wrote about the 10 Ways Social Media Could Be Benefitting Your Law Firm, which were above and beyond the more tangible reasons attorneys invest in social media. Here are four game-changers that social media provides lawyers who participate:

Directly impacts your organic search results – search engines now rank social media presence higher in organic search results. When someone likes your Facebook page or retweets a post on Twitter, it tells the search engine that your site has authority for that subject. The more people who interact with you on social media, the better you show up in organic search results.

Allows you to control your image online – as stated above, Google and other search engines are ranking social media presence higher. By actively participating in social media, you maintain control over your online image and help establish your expertise in your area of practice.

Distributes your content – your blog and website content gets a lot more traction when you retweet or repost on social media sites. This gets your content into the hands of people who may be your target audience – and if they like it or retweet it, it also goes to their spheres of social media influence, people may not know you yet – thereby extending your reach to potential new business.

Gives you clout and visibility – even if you don’t think your target market is on social media, other people of importance to your practice – colleagues, potential business partners, industry thought leaders – probably are. Social media allows you to make connections that can help build your practice, especially if your competitors are conspicuous by their absence.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get All the Law Firm Marketing Strategies You Need to Create A 7-figure Law Practice with Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2!

Newly released! Rainmaker in a Box: Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media.

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

My interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

***For Blog Readers, Facebook Friends, Twitter Followers and LinkedIn Connections – we are offering you a $50 discount for Volume 2 and a $100 discount for both Volume 1 and Volume 2 because of your social media presence with The Rainmaker Institute.

Click here now to order!

 

How to Use Your Law Firm Blog to Generate Leads

Attorneys are compensated (generally speaking) for their expertise in solving problems. Breaking off little bits of that expertise and posting it on your law firm marketing blog is creating something of value, for which you hope to be compensated for one day (via new clients, industry recognition, etc.).

Which is why it is important that your law firm marketing blog have a strategy behind it and a way to measure results. Your time is money, so you really shouldn’t be wasting either, right? 

Here are some tips on building a blog that can deliver qualified leads for your firm:

Address the interests of your target market. If you’ve been practicing law for awhile, you should already know the problems that face your target market. Each problem becomes a database of ideas from which to draw your blog subject matter. Sprinkle your posts with your insights and experience and you create something of value to potential clients.

Add other voices. Many of the most popular blogs have multiple authors. If you have partners and associates, ask them to contribute. If it’s just you, seek out other experts --- perhaps strategic referral partners like CPAs, accountants, bankers, etc. – who would be willing to contribute to your blog. If you view your blog as a publication for the benefit of your target market, you begin to see more possibilities for adding valuable content from others.

Include social sharing. In order to grow your law firm marketing blog, you need others to help spread the word, and social sharing is how you enable that process. Be sure your blog has embedded social sharing buttons that let your readers share your posts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other sites.

Capture email addresses. Email is still the #1 marketing tool for lead generation and will help you nurture repeat visitors to your law firm marketing blog. We have a standalone email sign-up form on our blog encouraging visitors to sign up for our monthly email newsletter and you should, too.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

10 Ways Social Media Could Be Benefitting Your Law Firm

When it comes to marketing, I believe in measuring everything. The conundrum many marketers have when it comes to social media is how to measure it since social media delivers as many if not more intangibles than it does tangible things like clicks, likes and visits.

If your law firm is already participating in social media, you may want to consider these 10 ways that your firm could already be benefitting:

1. Brand building. Since social media is your unfiltered voice, you have a great opportunity to build your brand.

2. Community. Social media is all about cultivating a community and engaging in a dialogue with prospects and clients who will tell you what they need and want from your firm. This is a great way to gather meaningful market research.

3. Exposure. I talk about the Law of 7 all the time – it takes a minimum of 7 exposures for a prospect to decide to make a purchase. Social media gives you a number of different avenues for getting repeat exposure.

4. Authority. Social media helps you establish authority in your area of practice.

5. Influence. As you build your authority, your influence grows – and the larger the audience, the greater the influence.

6. Traffic. Social media drives traffic to your website or blog, giving you an opportunity to gather contact information so you can engage directly with prospects.

7. Relevance. Prospects and clients are already checking to see if you are represented in social media whether or not you realize it. You risk being viewed as behind the times if you are not engaging them on major social media sites.

8. Mindshare. You will probably never know how you are affecting people on social media, but you can bet you won’t have any chance of gaining mindshare if you don’t engage at all.

9. One-up your competitors. There are lots of lawyers who are still not participating in social media, which provides you with a great opportunity to stand out from the crowd.

10. Big wins. If a social media contact refers you on a big case or you get a call from a major media outlet to comment on something you’ve posted, that’s a big win. They don’t happen often, but when they do, they make your social media investment incredibly worthwhile.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

Blogs Rank Highest for Influencing Purchase/Hire Decisions

Social media ad network Technorati Media just released its 2013 Digital Influence Report, which found that blogs rank higher than other forms of social media in influencing consumer purchase decisions:

This report seems to parallel last year’s In-House Counsel New Media Engagement Survey, which found that 76% of in-house counsel respondents said they attribute at least some level of importance to an attorney's blog when deciding which firm to retain.

So we now have two very credible research reports showing the blogs can directly influence decisions by consumers and outside counsel in making a purchase (hire) decision. 

If you’re not blogging yet, I have no idea what you are waiting for.

If you’re looking for a way to kick start your social media marketing program, including blogging, I suggest you do so by attending one of our upcoming Rainmaker Retreat sessions. 

Over two days, you will not only learn how to use social media to market your firm, you will leave with a written plan to implement once you get home.

Here are our upcoming Rainmaker Retreat intensive workshops:

March 15-16, 2013 – Newport Beach, CA

April 5-6, 2013 – Dallas, TX

May 3-4, 2013 – Scottsdale, AZ

May 31-June 1, 2013 – New York City

July 19-20, 2013 – San Diego, CA

August 16-17, 2013 – Las Vegas, NV

September 20-21, 2013 – San Francisco, CA

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Becoming a Rainmaker: Business Building Strategies for Lawyers

Based on Stephen’s highly successful seminar series by the same name, this 3-audio CD program covers dozens of practical recommendations and step-by-step sales and marketing techniques for solo practitioners and small law firms.

More than 8,000 attorneys from law firms all over the country have experienced powerful results from attending the Becoming A Rainmaker seminar. It has been sponsored by more than 22 of the largest state and local bar associations.

In this information-packed audio program, you will discover:

  • How to generate more leads by using education-based marketing
  • The relationship between credibility, visibility, tangibility, and consistency
  • How to position your small firm as an industry leader
  • The importance of being perceived as a specialist
  • Why most advertising is a waste of your money
  • What to expect from a Yellow Pages ad
  • The 3 marketing strategies that will produce 80% of your results
  • How to influence the Know, Like and Trust factors
  • Common marketing mistakes lawyers make and how to avoid them
  • How to answer the question, "Why should I buy from you?"
  • Specific ways you can set yourself apart from low-cost lawyers
  • What to do with the 15% of the population that always buys on price
  • Ways to attract your Ideal Target Market
  • The 6 stage sales process you must follow for maximum success

Click to order Becoming a Rainmaker: Business Building Strategies for Lawyers.

 

How to Tell If Social Media Marketing Will Work for Your Law Firm

The latest report from the Pew Research Center says that 67 percent of adults online currently use social networking sites – an impressive statistic when you consider that less than a decade ago, Pew reported that only 5 percent of adults online were involved in social media.

So what does this mean for your practice and law firm marketing efforts?

Should you step up your social media efforts or jump in if you haven’t already? The answer is, it depends. 

And what it depends upon is your Ideal Target Market (ITM).

Identifying your ITM is absolutely critical to the success of your law firm marketing plan. If you don’t target the right market, nothing else you do will matter. To be successful as a legal marketer and attorney, you have to start with a clear picture of your ITM.

Take a look at the demographic breakdown of who is using social media:

If you are a personal injury attorney or DUI lawyer, you should know that 62 percent of accidents in the U.S. involve drivers who are 18-49. Social media makes sense for you.

If you are a bankruptcy attorney, you should know that the average age of a U.S. bankruptcy filer is 40 (the #1 age category is 35-44). Social media also makes sense for you.

You get the idea. Social media marketing is just one tool in a law firm marketing arsenal at your disposal. If it fits with your ITM, then you should be using it. 

If you don’t know how, then I invite you to attend a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing boot camp where you will leave with a comprehensive marketing plan for your practice that incorporates your ITM and the strategic marketing initiatives you’ll need to reach them. 

Here are the upcoming dates:

March 15-16, 2013 – Newport Beach, CA

April 5-6, 2013 – Dallas, TX

May 3-4, 2013 – Scottsdale, AZ

May 31-June 1, 2013 – New York City

July 19-20, 2013 – San Diego, CA

August 16-17, 2013 – Las Vegas, NV

September 20-21, 2013 – San Francisco, CA

You can register online at www.RainmakerRetreat.com or by calling 888-588-5891.

 

How to Create a Successful Blogging Strategy

Blogs are one of the best ways to get to the top of Google for targeted search results. Google loves fresh content and when done right, a blog is the best way to push fresh content into the search engines.  

In addition, social media research indicates companies with blogs generate 67% more leads than companies that do not have a blog!

There is no denying the value of blogging when it comes to law firm marketing.

Blogs hold a unique position in the online media landscape because they have become an accepted source of information.

When used properly, a blog becomes a clear, consistent voice for your practice. It entices prospects, referral sources, colleagues, clients and thought leaders to engage you in dialogue.

It keeps you top of mind. It builds visibility among your target clients. Ultimately, it earns you more of the kind of client you most desire.

So, are all blogs successful?  No, and I will tell you why- The problem arises when you begin blogging without a clear strategy behind you. 

Blogging should be a part of, but not your entire law firm marketing strategy. It is your forum to connect with the community at large and to make it clear that you are an expert in your field.  But to make it the highly effective medium you need it to be, your law firm marketing and promotion strategy should include:

  • A topic list designed to engage your target audience;
  • A list of social media (such as Facebook and Twitter) to promote it;
  • A list and schedule for article marketing services to add visibility and to feed it to reporters and thought leaders;
  • An up-to-date blog that you write articles for at least 2 to 4 times per week;
  • A search engine optimization formula to increase your page rank.

When you have all these things in place, you will be well on your way to creating a blog that will enhance your overall law firm marketing efforts.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

How to Monitor Your Online Reputation

Reputation is everything for attorneys. A good reputation gets you more clients through referrals; a bad one pretty much dooms your practice. So it’s no surprise that lawyers tend to pay close attention to cultivating a reputation as effective, ethical counselors.

But is all your hard work toward that goal reflected in your online reputation?

What do prospects see when they type your name into a search engine? If it’s not much, that can often be as harmful as something negative.

This infographic provides some tips on monitoring your online reputation:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get All the Law Firm Marketing Strategies You Need to Create A 7-figure Law Practice with Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2!

Newly released! Rainmaker in a Box: Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media.

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

My interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

***For Blog Readers, Facebook Friends, Twitter Followers and LinkedIn Connections – we are offering you a $50 discount for Volume 2 and a $100 discount for both Volume 1 and Volume 2 because of your social media presence with The Rainmaker Institute.

Click here now to order!

 

Twitter Best for B2B Lead Generation?

In the category of “Things that make you go, ‘Really?!?’” comes this latest study from B2B digital marketing software maker Optify that says when it comes to B2B lead generation, Twitter outperforms Facebook and LinkedIn by a staggering 9-to-1 ratio.

Optify’s 2012 B2B Marketing Benchmark Report extracted data from more than 600 small and medium-sized B2B websites in the U.S. with 100 to 100,000 monthly visits. This infographic highlights the key findings in the report:



2012 B2B Marketing Trends

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

On-Demand Webinar: The 5 Best Strategies to Beat Your Competition in 2013

Are you tired of seeing other attorneys land all the good clients?

Have you noticed how tough it’s become to market your law firm?

Are you ready to do something to make this a bigger & better year?

Knowing which legal marketing strategies are working in today’s economy gives you a huge advantage. Implementing the correct business development strategies allows you to spend less money and get better results faster!

View this one-hour webinar on The 5 Best Strategies to Beat Your Competition in 2013 to discover:

  • Why you can’t afford to dismiss social media any longer (Google is forcing you to use it)
  • 3 major ways to triple your website traffic in the next 90 days
  • How to use online tools to generate more offline referrals
  • 3 keys all the best law firms are using to turn more website browsers into buyers
  • 2 critical numbers you must track every month to measure your success
  • Specific ways to jump-start your marketing efforts fast…even if you’ve stumbled before

Last year many of our clients experienced their best year ever! How is that possible when we are in the midst of the biggest recession our generation has ever faced?

It’s simple, they developed a game plan based on best practices and proven strategies and then they consistently took massive action! Notice I said it was “simple” not “easy.” The only “easy button” I have is sitting right beside my magic wand (I’ve found both of them work about the same).

There is no “easy” way to build a million dollar book of business, but if you’re willing to do the work we can show you the right path to take.

Click on this link now to access The 5 Best Strategies to Beat Your Competition in 2013 webinar.

 

7 Business Benefits of Google+

Google+ is one of those social media networks that many attorneys are still not sure what to do with...but with more than 500 million members now making it the fastest growing social media site ever, it’s worth your time and attention.

This infographic explains 7 benefits Google+ provides for business:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Getting to the Top of Google: The Power of Link Building for Lawyers

Getting to the top of Google for any term related to the legal industry is highly competitive! Now you can get a recording of this recent webinar that will tell you how!

Attorneys spend millions of dollars every year on Pay Per Click (PPC) and banner advertisements, trying to drive more traffic to their website. Far too often it comes down to how much money a law firm has to spend on PPC to outbid their competition.

How are small law firms and solo practitioners supposed to compete when attorneys are spending $20 to $100 per click for keywords?

If you’re thinking, “there must be a better way!” then this webinar is for you!

You will discover a little known secret of how hundreds of attorneys are rapidly increasing their website rankings in 90 to 120 days through building targeted links back to their websites.

Join us and discover:

  • What an “inbound link” is and why Google loves them
  • One of the fastest ways to get your website blacklisted by Google (make this mistake at your own peril)
  • Link building on the low down-building links on a shoe string budget
  • The benefits of being at the top of the search engine rankings
  • The ongoing debate between “quality” and “quantity” links
  • Selecting the right keywords to go after with your search engine efforts
  • Which directories are worth paying for…and which ones are not
  • The top 5 questions you must ask before you hire any link building company

When you register, you will receive access to the recording of the webinar. Click on this Getting to the Top of Google link now to get full access to this webinar!

 

WSJ Survey: Small Business Says LinkedIn Works Best

A survey by the Wall Street Journal says that 60% of small business owners believe social media is valuable, and that LinkedIn is the most useful of all the major social networking sites:

The WSJ surveyed 835 small business owners for the survey, and published an article about it earlier this week. The survey found that only 40% of the business owners surveyed had employees dedicated to social media efforts; half said they spend 1-5 hours per week on social media and one-third spend no time at all.

One respondent credits social media for increasing his website traffic from 800 to 12,000 visitors per month in the past two years. He says LinkedIn has been the dominant traffic driver for his B2B business.

Small businesses that benefit from social media have figured out what works and what doesn’t. They have a target audience they know well and know where to find. Not all social media networks will work equally for law firm marketers; you need to create a profile of your ideal client then find out which social media sites they are most likely to be found. Create a concise message and be consistent. Engage with relevant content. And keep at it. 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Hosting Social Media Panel at LegalTech New York 2013

I am in New York today hosting a featured panel on social media marketing for attorneys at LegalTech New York 2013, the top annual legal technology event on the planet.

Joining me for the session today are Larry Bodine, editor-in-chief of Lawyers.com and martindale.com, as well as LexisNexis chief marketing officer Steve Mann. 

Our topic is Taming the Wild West of Social Media: The Secrets of Social Media Success in the Legal Profession, where we explore:

  • The state of social media in the legal industry today and an update to guide attendees through the year ahead.
  • New and improved social media best practices in specific online channels (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, blogging, etc.).
  • The various ethical and legal considerations about which law firms must be aware, including an update of key decisions and guidance issued by various state bar associations.

While it may seem like the Wild West at times, social media does have a very real role to play in both the business and practice of law.

According to the 2012 Attorney Selection Research Study by The Research Intelligence Group (TRiG), 26 percent of American consumers used one of the major social media sites when gathering information about a legal issue and more than one in five (22 percent) said they turned to a social media site to actually find a lawyer they felt might be able to help them with their legal need.

If you were not in our audience today, you can still access this knowledge by attending one of our Rainmaker Retreat law firm marketing boot camp sessions. Here are the dates for upcoming Rainmaker Retreat sessions in the first quarter of 2013:



February 15-16, 2013 – Orlando, FL

March 15-16, 2013 – Newport Beach, CA

To register, call 888-588-5891 or visit www.RainmakerRetreat.com.

 

12-Point Checklist For Evaluating Your Law Firm's Facebook Page

It’s not enough to have a Facebook business page for your law firm; you want to be sure you have all the bases covered and are maximizing the opportunities for engagement and exposure.

Luckily, ShortStack has developed a great infographic that enables you to easily evaluate your Facebook business page so it is optimized for full fan engagement:

Note: the 70/20/10 rule mentioned under #8 refers to the type of posts on your page, which should be 70% valuable and relevant content, 20% shared content (others’ ideas and posts) and 10% promotional.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get All the Law Firm Marketing Strategies You Need to Create A 7-figure Law Practice with Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2!

Newly released! Rainmaker in a Box: Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media.

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

My interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

***For Blog Readers, Facebook Friends, Twitter Followers and LinkedIn Connections – we are offering you a $50 discount for Volume 2 and a $100 discount for both Volume 1 and Volume 2 because of your social media presence with The Rainmaker Institute.

Click here now to order!

 

Will the New Facebook Search Engine Deliver for Legal Marketers?

Facebook announced yesterday that it is unveiling a new search engine called Graph Search that will allow us to search our social circles for things we want to know about. 

It’s not a Google-type search engine; it doesn’t scour the entire Web for results. It only returns the results that are popular within your circle of friends on Facebook. And that can be pretty compelling, since we tend to care more about what our friends think or recommend than strangers.

For example, you can search for how many of your friends like to play tennis if you’re looking for a new partner, or eat sushi if you’re looking for a great sushi restaurant. Basically, the new search engine takes all the information you have shared or that has been shared with you, and makes it searchable.

So is this a big deal for law firm marketing? 

It could be, if people use it to search for legal services. As I’ve noted before, I’m not sure many people ask for attorney recommendations on Facebook for sensitive issues like divorce or if they’ve been charged with a crime. But they probably do ask for recommendations from friends for other specialties – creating a will, drawing a contract and so on.

Graph Search, which is powered by Bing, focuses on four areas: people, photos, places and interests. This also includes shared content, so if you post free reports and articles on your Facebook Business Page that are being shared, you will more likely turn up in the new Graph Search.  

While we wait to see if “the dogs eat the dog food” (Graph Search is in beta now and you have to sign up for it), you should go ahead and take a leap of faith by ensuring your firm not only has a robust Facebook Business Page, but that it is full of great content that you are actively marketing to your connections.

If you need help setting up your Facebook Business Page, here is a step-by-step video guide courtesy of HubSpot:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

7 Guidelines for Measuring ROI for Law Firm Social Media Marketing

Although many law firm marketers are still struggling with how to successfully measure their ROI on social media marketing investments, most realize the importance of having a success metric in mind. Without setting a benchmark, it is impossible to determine your ROI.

Here are 7 guidelines for successfully measuring ROI on your social media marketing efforts:

1.  Set clear and defined marketing goals (generate more website traffic, opt ins, leads, etc.) and identify the social measurements that support those goals.

2.  Create a logical framework for your measurements and metrics (exposure, engagement, outcome).

3.  Since social media is about fostering relationships, take a long-term approach – treat your social media marketing as an ongoing commitment, not a campaign.

4.  Don’t be afraid to use “soft” metrics that can be directly linked to your marketing goals.

5.  Determine how much a customer who opts in to your database is worth to you.

6. Don’t overlook the value of cost savings that can result from ongoing social interactions that provide insights and information.

7. Use technology to create the capability to measure your customer’s complete digital footprint, in real time.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD Set

The Practice Made Perfect CD set and manual applies Stephen Fairley’s unique High Impact Marketing System to the practice-building challenges faced by solo practitioners and partners at small law firms.  

It includes dozens of specific marketing and sales recommendations that can be easily and quickly applied to your firm, including:

  • The only 7 sure-fire ways to get clients in your door NOW
  • Why advertising doesn’t work for most small law firms
  • The 7 reasons why people don’t buy from you           
  • How to market and sell with USP’s (Unique Selling Proposition)           
  • Using audio logos to attract immediate attention for your business
  • Using low-cost, high impact marketing strategies           
  • Strategies for achieving maximum results from all of your marketing efforts           
  • How to discover your Ideal Target Market
  • 3 critical factors to remember when looking for new clients
  • The NEW sales cycle for professional services
  • How to retain your best clients

Click here to order your Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD set and manual now.

 

 

Resolve to Do Things Differently in 2013

Is your law practice letting you down? Not enough clients? Revenues stagnating or going south? Spending too much time on building frustration rather than building your business?

Then consider this:

If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got.

I don’t know who said that – it’s been attributed to the likes of Albert Einstein, Henry Ford and Mark Twain – but it is so very true.

The problems you are having can likely be attributed to doing things the same way they’ve always been done. Challenge yourself to break from your past in 2013 and do things differently.

The answer to building a successful law practice that satisfies you both financially and emotionally can be obtained through effective law firm marketing. 

If you don’t have a blog, start one.

If you don’t have a presence on social media, get one.

If your website is old and tired, fix it.

If you have scant prospects, start using email and inbound marketing practices to fill the funnel.

There are abundant resources for you to learn how to effectively do and manage all these strategies. Our Rainmaker Retreat is but one of them. Sign up for a webinar. Attend a workshop. Start reading marketing blogs and learning about all the low-cost ways you can effectively market your practice.

The worst thing that can happen is not failure. It’s doing nothing.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE Webinar: How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle

When it comes to law firm marketing, it is truly a jungle out there! Mastering social media, SEO and Internet marketing strategies – and making sure your efforts align with legal marketing rules – can give even the most eager attorney pause.

In his new one-hour webinar, Stephen Fairley 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. You will 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 today’s hyper-competitive online focused marketplace

This FREE webinar will also give you a preview of the 65 different marketing techniques and strategies taught at our 2-day legal marketing boot camp.

Click on this link to register now for the FREE How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle webinar.

 

For Engaging on Facebook, Pictures Speak Louder Than Words

According to two new studies, posting photos on Facebook greatly increases engagement for your posts.

One study by inbound marketer HubSpot found that photos on Facebook Pages received 53% more Likes and attracted 104% more comments than text posts alone.

Another study by Socialbakers analyzed 90,000 Facebook posts from 24,000 brand pages during the last week of November and found that of the top 10% posts receiving the most Likes and Comments, 89% of those included photos.

HubSpot furnished these tips for how to engage Facebook fans with images; the ones that will apply to attorneys include:

Change up your Facebook cover photo to reflect changes in season or hot topics

Showcase employees to give your firm a face

Feature photos of events you sponsor or attend

Show photos of your partners and associates at work in the community or doing something they like to do, to humanize your profession

In addition, remember to include relevant links with your images – to your blog or your website – that helps you drive traffic and generate leads.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

2012 Nielsen Social Media Report: It's All About Mobile

Nielsen has released its 2012 Social Media Report and says that when it comes to accessing social content today, it’s all about mobile, especially apps.

Compared to 2011, consumers increased their mobile web usage 82% over last year. The report found that people continue to spend more time on social networks than any other category of website – 20% of their time on PCs and 30% of their mobile time is spent on social networks.

Here are the most visited social networks and year-over-year change:

As the Nielsen report notes, social media has fundamentally changed the consumer decision journey. Consumer decisions and behaviors are increasingly driven by the opinions, tastes and preferences of an exponentially larger pool of friends, peers and influencers.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

16 Social Media Stats You Should Know

It’s the end of the year and you know what that means: lists. I’ve been digging through some of the more interesting year-end lists and found the one below of particular interest, as it summarizes all the reasons attorneys should be participating in social media and blogging.

Consider this imposing factoid: The most powerful influence on Google search rankings is now Facebook shares

Or how about this: 81% of U.S. online consumers trust information and advice from blogs.

Check it out:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Report: Digital Media the Key to Reaching the Rich

A study out this week from SEI, Scorpio Partnership and Standard Chartered Private Bank says the wealthy are much more likely to use the Internet, mobile apps and other digital media communications tools.

The study, titled The Futurewealth Report: The Digital World of the Futurewealthy, surveyed 3,477 respondents with an average $1.9 million in assets on their digital habits and found that a majority are early adapters of technology, crediting technology for a valuable role in helping them create and manage their wealth.

The report’s author notes that, “Advisors must embrace and share the passion for technology and digital media tools with these futurewealthy if they want to truly engage and grow relationships with them.”

While the wealthy may be first on board with new technologies, others are not far behind. And attorneys who do not utilize digital communications in their law firm marketing are fast going the way of the dinosaur.

So how do busy attorneys grasp the concepts and strategies of digital marketing? They attend a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day intensive law firm marketing boot camp that is guaranteed to bring more new and qualified clients into your law firm and provide you with everything you need to know to embark on a robust social media and Internet marketing communications program.

Here are the upcoming dates:

December 7-8, 2012 – Los Angeles, CA

January 18-19, 2013 – Las Vegas, NV

February 15-16, 2013 – Orlando, FL

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE Rainmaker Retreat Preview DVD – Learn Before You Go!

If you want to learn more about the Rainmaker Retreat and why it is a proven legal marketing system that has helped over 8,000 attorneys find more and better clients, then click here to receive a free DVD of your colleagues (and even your competitors) describing their experiences at our 2-day law firm marketing boot camp, the Rainmaker Retreat.

Instead of us telling you how these 2 days will transform your practice, listen to your peers describe their experiences in their own words by clicking here to order your complimentary Rainmaker Retreat Preview DVD right now.

 

VIDEO: Top 4 Reasons Why Social Media Matters

The holy grail of law firm marketing is to build your word-of-mouth referrals, and social media gives attorneys a way to build a massive platform quickly and cost effectively.

Lawyers.com editor-in-chief Larry Bodine and I talk about why social media matters for building a strong law practice during a LexisNexis webinar entitled, “"Join the Conversation: Social Media Strategies for Your Law Firm." Click on the link to download the entire conversation for free.

Here’s an excerpt from that webinar:

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: Are Questions the Answer on Facebook?

If you have a social media marketing program for your law firm, you have probably heard that your posts should contain questions to foster engagement.

But the question is, do questions really work for that purpose?

Inbound marketing firm HubSpot studied a large data set of more than 1.2 million Facebook posts and came up with these findings:

Posts with questions garner more comments, but fewer “Likes” and “Shares” – so if you are simply using Facebook to answer questions, you will be missing out on two important components of engagement.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

Law Firm Marketing: How to Avoid Empty Suit Syndrome

Why do so many attorneys fail at marketing their practices? It all comes down to one simple truth: with a product, the customer can see it, touch it, taste it or feel it. The senses combine to help the customer decide to make the purchase.

But what does the customer have to go on when purchasing a service? Generally speaking, only your words in various forms of law firm marketing, and the words of your satisfied clients.

Specifically speaking, a service purchase cannot be fully evaluated until after the service has been performed. Unfortunately for the consumer, there are no money-back guarantees on legal representation.

Once you understand these differences, you are in a better position to develop the kinds of marketing strategies that work.

Do not falsely assume the client will use rational parameters to evaluate your services before purchasing. The client is as likely to pick you because of your office décor as any other rational reason.

The average client is ill-equipped to use your credentials, education and experience to evaluate your suitability, mostly because the average client does not see a difference from one lawyer to the next.

The legal services field is becoming intensely competitive and will continue on that path, and consumers are likely to carry on as they always have, choosing attorneys for all sorts of reasons that have nothing to do with skill.

Therefore, it is very important to effectively market your services in ways that are actually related to the way your typical prospect buys your services.  

According to the LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® Attorney Selection Research Study released in September, 76% of consumers use online resources to search for an attorney. They use search engines, visit online legal forums, use online directories, visit law firm websites and blogs and use social media sites.

So if you’re not there – if you are not effectively marketing your legal services -- you simply do not exist to prospects looking for a lawyer. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD Set

The Practice Made Perfect CD set and manual applies Stephen Fairley’s unique High Impact Marketing System to the practice-building challenges faced by solo practitioners and partners at small law firms.  

It includes dozens of specific marketing and sales recommendations that can be easily and quickly applied to your firm, including:

  • The only 7 sure-fire ways to get clients in your door NOW
  • Why advertising doesn’t work for most small law firms
  • The 7 reasons why people don’t buy from you           
  • How to market and sell with USP’s (Unique Selling Proposition)           
  • Using audio logos to attract immediate attention for your business
  • Using low-cost, high impact marketing strategies           
  • Strategies for achieving maximum results from all of your marketing efforts           
  • How to discover your Ideal Target Market
  • 3 critical factors to remember when looking for new clients
  • The NEW sales cycle for professional services
  • How to retain your best clients

Click here to order your Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD set and manual now.

 

Social Media Metrics Every Law Firm Should be Measuring

To accurately measure social media ROI, you should be using both quantitative and qualitative metrics. Both measurements are important because social media is really about two things: engagement and influence.

Quantitative measurements are those counted in quantity – it’s the “show me the numbers” part of research that can determine how your social media program is performing on the engagement level. There are a number of different quantitative measurements for social media, including:

  • Number of visitors
  • Number of fans, followers
  • Total traffic
  • Search engine rank changes
  • Leads generated
  • Comments posted
  • Sign-ups for e-newsletters or freemiums
  • Reviews

Qualitative measurements are those relating to or concerning quality and measures how your social media program is performing on the influence level. Some of the ways leading law firm marketers are using qualitative measurements for social media include:

  • Increase in communication with prospects and clients
  • Strengthening existing relationships with clients
  • Increase in referral relationships
  • Increase in brand visibility
  • Increase in client retention

As you develop your social media marketing plan, take the time to determine what you want to know.  Your plan should be able to identify all of your target audiences, the key influencers to those audiences, and your effectiveness in reaching them.  You should be able to track the conversion rate of prospects to clients, the response percentage to your marketing messages, and who is responding to your messaging.

However you choose to measure engagement, it is imperative that you have a success metric in mind before you begin. Without some sort of benchmark, determining your ROI is impossible.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: 8 Reasons Small Firms & Solos Should Publish an E-newsletter PLUS 3 Steps to Get Started

In less than a few hours a month, you can produce an effective electronic newsletter, also known as an “E-newsletter.”

An E-newsletter is a customized electronic newsletter that is commonly used in business, but rarely in the field of law. If you are truly interested in the long-term success and sustainability of your practice, you need to learn how to leverage technology and the Internet to build it.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • The cost benefits of an e-newsletter
  • How to incorporate your e-newsletter with your social networking
  • How an e-newsletter supports your marketing efforts
  • How to get started right away with your e-newsletter
  • And much, much more!

To get your free report now, click here.

 

Easy Guide for Finding Your Target Market on Social Media Sites [INFOGRAPHIC]

The first step in any law firm marketing plan is to identify your ideal target market (if you have not yet taken this step, see my post on Law Firm Marketing: 9 Keys to Discover Your Ideal Target Market).

As I’ve said before, if you don’t target the right market, nothing else you do will matter. Yes, it’s that critical.

For those of you who have a good idea of your ideal target market, this infographic will provide you with some guidance on which social media sites you should focus on:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

NEW On-Demand Webinar: Business Development Strategies for Litigators

Business development is especially difficult for litigators, who often work for months on a case and bring it to a successful conclusion, only to find they have a gaping hole of billable time to fill!

Are you or your litigators building the referral network you need to bring in litigation business?

In this new on-demand webinar, nationally recognized business development expert Stephen Fairley and featured guest Larry Bodine, editor-in-chief of Lawyers.com, help you develop a practical plan to grow your litigation practice. Learn:

  • Which strategies you need to put into place in order to obtain repeat business from former clients
  • How to build a referral network to build your practice-even while you are prepping for a trial
  • How to get more referrals from mega-firms who are conflicted out of a case
  • How to identify small firm transactional lawyers who can send you litigation referrals
  • How to focus on the “hottest” areas of practice, as identified by market research
  • Methods our clients use to attract larger clients with bigger cases
  • How to ethically promote your “big wins” to the media and via the Internet
  • How to apply one of the most effective marketing techniques for litigators
  • How to position yourself as an industry expert that attracts highly profitable clients

To get this on-demand webinar, simply click here to access the recording of Business Development Strategies for Litigation Attorneys webinar.

 

Why Lawyers Should Love Inbound Marketing

Just when most lawyers got used to traditional marketing – print ads, Yellow Pages listings, billboards, radio and TV ads – along comes a discipline called inbound marketing that turned everything you thought you knew about law firm marketing on its head.

Here at The Rainmaker Institute, inbound marketing is about all we do, and what we have done for years. Traditional marketing may have its uses, but it doesn’t do what we like to do – generate qualified leads. Traditional marketing is all about the push – pushing your message out to a mass market in hopes of finding those needles in a haystack.

Inbound marketing pulls people in who are interested in what you have to offer. It consists of social media marketing, SEO, blogging, e-newsletters, videos, free report offers on landing pages, email marketing and other strategies that attract consumers naturally.  

Inbound marketing allows you to nurture relationships with potential leads all the way along the various stages of the buying cycle. You can automate your messaging early in the cycle for the shoppers, then spend your resources more carefully on interacting with those who are in the later stage of ready-to-buy. 

This infographic from The Whole Brain Group, a Michigan-based inbound marketing agency, explains it simply and succinctly:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE Webinar: How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle

When it comes to law firm marketing, it is truly a jungle out there! Mastering social media, SEO and Internet marketing strategies – and making sure your efforts align with legal marketing rules – can give even the most eager attorney pause.

In his new one-hour webinar, Stephen Fairley 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. You will 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 today’s hyper-competitive online focused marketplace

This FREE webinar will also give you a preview of the 65 different marketing techniques and strategies taught at our 2-day legal marketing boot camp.

Click on this link to register now for the FREE How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Junglewebinar.

 

Study Finds When It Comes to Content Marketing, Size Matters

A marketing benchmark study by online marketer HubSpot studied results from more than 7,000 B2B and B2C businesses, analyzing the relationships between inbound marketing activities and the volume of website traffic and leads those activities generated.

Here’s a synopsis of those findings:

Companies with 51-100 pages of website content generated 48% more traffic than companies with less than 50 pages.

Companies with 101-200 pages generated 2.5 times more leads than companies with less than 50 pages.

Companies that increased their number of landing pages from 10 to 15 saw a 55% increase in leads.

Companies that blog 15+ times per month get 5 times more traffic than companies that don’t blog.

Companies that increased their blogging from 3-5 times per month to 6-8 times per month almost doubled their leads.

B2B companies that blog only 1-2 times per month generate 70% more leads than companies that don’t blog at all.

Companies that increased their total blog articles from 11-20 to 21-50 articles saw a 45% increase in traffic.

Companies with more than 200 articles on their blog have more than 5 times the leads than companies with less than 10 articles.

Companies with 51-100 Twitter followers generate 106% more traffic than those with less than 25 followers.

Companies with more than 1,000 Facebook “likes” saw an average 185% increase in traffic.

These findings remind us that consistency is key when it comes to executing online law firm marketing strategies. In other words, you can’t just launch it and leave it.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Don't Turn Back the Clock on Your Law Firm Marketing

Did you remember to turn your clocks back one hour last night? If you forgot and have someplace you need to be today – like church – you’ll find yourself pretty much alone for about an hour.

Attorneys who are still doing the same old-same old when it comes to law firm marketing will likely find themselves in the same boat – pretty much alone with few new clients. Don’t believe me? Here are some of the latest statistics regarding Internet and social media marketing:

  • 91% of online adults use social media regularly
  • Internet users spend 22.5% of their online time social networking
  • 80% of active Internet users visit social networks and blogs
  • 57% of marketers acquired customers via blogging
  • U.S. Internet users spend three times longer on social media and blogs than email
  • 93% of U.S. adult Internet users are on Facebook
  • 87% of the Fortune 100 uses social media
  • Every minute of the day:
    • 100,000 tweets are sent on Twitter
    • 684,478 pieces of content are shared on Facebook
    • 2 million search queries are made on Google
    • 48 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube
    • 571 websites are created

If you’re not taking action because you don’t know where to start, I urge you to consider attending a Rainmaker Retreat, our two–day law firm marketing boot camp that will give you a comprehensive education on marketing your law firm in today’s tech-savvy world.

We have two more sessions before the end of the year:

November 16-17, 2012 – New York City, NY

December 7-8, 2012 – Los Angeles, CA

You can still get in on our Early Bird Discount for our upcoming Rainmaker Retreats, so be sure to register now to receive the $200 discount. 

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

How Much Time and Money Do Small Businesses Spend on Social Media?

VerticalResponse, a marketing services provider for small businesses and non-profits, recently did a survey among almost 500 small business clients about how much time and money those businesses currently spend on social media.

They published the results in the infographic below; it’s worth taking a look to see how your law firm marketing measures up:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

How to Capture New Clients in Today's Tech-Savvy World Webinar on Nov. 8

New independent research has discovered that 58 million consumers in the United States sought an attorney in the past year. You could be one of those attorneys if you understand the changes in how consumers look for lawyers today. The traditional method of asking friends, coworkers and neighbors to recommend a lawyer is fast going the way of the dinosaurs.

Join me and Larry Bodine, Editor in Chief of Lawyers.com on Thursday, Nov. 8 at noon ET for a law firm business development webinar on how you can capture new business in today’s tech-savvy world.

Research shows that today:

76% of consumers seeking an attorney in the past year cited using online resources at some point in the process. If you’re not capitalizing on all the available internet-based strategies, you won’t be found.

Most consumers (65%) start by going online to gather information about their legal issue. Attendees will learn how to market themselves to be found at this early point in the process.

39% of consumers turned to search engines when gathering information. Find out which one is the No. 1 choice of consumers so that you can optimize your website.

After Google, consumers used a well-known online legal directory. Attendees will learn which one stands out above all the others, and how to perfect your profile so that it generates new revenue.

Social media is so prevalent that it now affects consumer buying choices. 26% of consumers used social media to research and find a lawyer. Find out which one is the top choice for lawyers who want consumer clients.

Legal blogs are an important online resource for lawyers. 29% of consumers read a lawyer blog when they were searching for a lawyer. Attendees will learn the best practices in lawyer blogs.

Websites were most commonly used in the “finding a lawyer” stage of the process. Attendees will learn which elements of a website pull in new clients.

34% of respondents visited online legal advice forums at the beginning of the search process. Find out how to sign up for an “Ask A Lawyer” forum that is widely read by consumers.

With the popularity of Yelp.com and other review websites, lawyers should know that online ratings make a big difference. 57% of respondents used an online resource to check and compare ratings and reviews of a lawyer or firm. Find out how to tune up your profile to produce new clients.

The live webinar will take place on Thursday, Nov. 8 at 9 a.m. PT/Noon ET. If that time doesn’t work for you, you can still register to receive a recording of the webinar to watch at your convenience. The cost for the webinar is $97.

Click on the following link now to register online for How to Capture New Clients in Today’s Tech-Savvy World webinar.

 

Major Shift to Mobile Should Shift How You Market Your Law Firm

Last month, web searches on desktop computers were down by four percent for the first time...ever. And searches on mobile devices were way, way up. In fact, more people search for directions on mobile devices than any other computing device now. 

Are you feeling the shift?

comScore released this graphic last week showing how our society is moving to mobile:

For the top 10 websites on the Internet, mobile now accounts for 35% of their usage. The transition is clearly here.

The NPR On Point program last night interviewed several experts on the shift in platforms, and the consensus seems to be that desktops will remain for work and we’ll do all our other computing on mobile devices – tablets and smartphones. 

Whatever you may think, the evidence is clear that the future is multi-platform and all your law firm marketing efforts need to be optimized for viewing on multiple devices.

For information on mobilizing your law firm marketing, read my previous post: If You Lack a Mobile Website, You're Turning Prospects Away.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: 8 Reasons Small Firms & Solos Should Publish an E-newsletter PLUS 3 Steps to Get Started

In less than a few hours a month, you can produce an effective electronic newsletter, also known as an “E-newsletter.”

An E-newsletter is a customized electronic newsletter that is commonly used in business, but rarely in the field of law. If you are truly interested in the long-term success and sustainability of your practice, you need to learn how to leverage technology and the Internet to build it.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • The cost benefits of an e-newsletter
  • How to incorporate your e-newsletter with your social networking
  • How an e-newsletter supports your marketing efforts
  • How to get started right away with your e-newsletter
  • And much, much more!

To get your free report now, click here.

 

Content Marketing Tactics That Work for Attorneys

The Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs just released their second annual study on B2B content marketing trends and found the following tactics most prevalent among B2B marketers:

The top five tactics – articles, social media, blogs, e-newsletters and case studies – should be in every law firm marketing toolkit and a major focus of your content marketing initiative. 

The number of B2B firms that blog rose almost 30% in the past year, from 51% to 65%, with companies that blog reporting an average 55% increase in web traffic.

Not surprisingly, the study also found that the greatest challenge facing marketers is “producing the kind of content that engages prospects and customers.” Perhaps this is why more marketers are outsourcing content production – the survey of more than 1,000 B2B marketers found that 62% now outsource a portion of their content production, up from 55% just one year ago.

Content marketing is an especially effective way for attorneys to demonstrate expertise and gain trust from prospects in a cost-effective manner – it’s the sweet spot for solos and small firms who can’t compete on budget alone.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

30 Ways to Promote Your Blog Posts

To build and maintain a successful blog, you need to do much more than just post to it on a regular basis – you need to promote those posts so you can draw traffic and prospects in to see what you have to share.

This infographic does a good job of listing the various ways you can promote your posts online and on social media:

30 Ways to Promote Your Blog Posts

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

Social Media Marketing 101 for Lawyers

If the attorneys who attend our Rainmaker Retreats are any indication, there are still plenty of you out there looking for information on how to start a social media marketing program for your firm.

Just like with any legal case, it all starts with strategy. Here are the steps you need to take to create a social media marketing strategy for your law firm:

Mission. Whether you want to generate more leads or merely enhance your brand in the social media world, you must first set your goals. Be specific.

Market. Define your target market then research their habits, needs and social media activities. 

Message. Craft the message that will best appeal to the needs of your target market and find the keywords that reinforce that message.

Media. Decide which social networks are best for attracting followers and readers who are in your target market.

Medium. Decide what kind of content will help you reach your target – blogs, videos, photos, etc.

Mix. Mix in your social media marketing with your current marketing efforts, adding links to your website, blog, e-newsletters, etc.

Management. Decide who will be responsible for posting , how often you will post, who will manage replies and other management tasks so your social media marketing campaign doesn’t flounder.

Measurement. Measure your stats to see if your audience is growing and what messages and strategies are paying off for you. Then do more to build on that success.

Money. Budget for your social media marketing effort and measure your ROI. If you need to hire outside help, that costs money. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

NEW On-Demand Webinar: Business Development Strategies for Litigators

Business development is especially difficult for litigators, who often work for months on a case and bring it to a successful conclusion, only to find they have a gaping hole of billable time to fill!

Are you or your litigators building the referral network you need to bring in litigation business?

In this new on-demand webinar, nationally recognized business development expert Stephen Fairley and featured guest Larry Bodine, editor-in-chief of Lawyers.com, help you develop a practical plan to grow your litigation practice. Learn:

  • Which strategies you need to put into place in order to obtain repeat business from former clients
  • How to build a referral network to build your practice-even while you are prepping for a trial
  • How to get more referrals from mega-firms who are conflicted out of a case
  • How to identify small firm transactional lawyers who can send you litigation referrals
  • How to focus on the “hottest” areas of practice, as identified by market research
  • Methods our clients use to attract larger clients with bigger cases
  • How to ethically promote your “big wins” to the media and via the Internet
  • How to apply one of the most effective marketing techniques for litigators
  • How to position yourself as an industry expert that attracts highly profitable clients

To get this on-demand webinar, simply click here to access the recording of Business Development Strategies for Litigation Attorneys webinar.

 

Social Networks That Perform the Best for B2B and B2C Legal Marketing

A new report from Webmarketing123 shows that social networks perform differently depending on whether you are a B2B or B2C marketer when it comes to generating leads.

It may not surprise many legal marketers to learn that Facebook performs best for B2C law firms and LinkedIn works better for B2B firms. What you may find interesting is how large the gap is in some areas:

Even though LinkedIn outpaced other social networks for B2B marketers in terms of generating leads and sales, Facebook also made significant contributions for lead generation and sales for B2B – 39% of B2B marketers said that Facebook generated leads and 19% reported sales directly from their Facebook efforts. Twitter ranked third.

For B2C marketers, Facebook and Twitter performed best, followed by LinkedIn.

What this latest data shows is the importance of maintaining a presence on all social media networks for generating leads and sales. But you also need to realize how people are using social networks – the fact is, social networks are now being used as personal search engines for people looking for reviews and recommendations on products and services. 

Instead of viewing social networks as a time-suck, law firm marketers need to realize that social media sites are evolving into referral engines that can deliver prospects and clients quickly and affordably. 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD Set

The Practice Made Perfect CD set and manual applies Stephen Fairley’s unique High Impact Marketing System to the practice-building challenges faced by solo practitioners and partners at small law firms.  

It includes dozens of specific marketing and sales recommendations that can be easily and quickly applied to your firm, including:

  • The only 7 sure-fire ways to get clients in your door NOW
  • Why advertising doesn’t work for most small law firms
  • The 7 reasons why people don’t buy from you           
  • How to market and sell with USP’s (Unique Selling Proposition)           
  • Using audio logos to attract immediate attention for your business
  • Using low-cost, high impact marketing strategies           
  • Strategies for achieving maximum results from all of your marketing efforts           
  • How to discover your Ideal Target Market
  • 3 critical factors to remember when looking for new clients
  • The NEW sales cycle for professional services
  • How to retain your best clients

Click here to order your Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD set and manual now.

 

Law Firm Marketing: How to Get Your Posts and Tweets Shared on Social Media Sites

I ran across the infographic below the other day that breaks down the mechanics of social sharing by B2B or B2C target markets and wanted to share it with our readers.

I find it fascinating how seemingly small things like adding a question or exclamation mark to your messages or timing your posts just right on social media sites can impact whether or not they are shared – an important goal for all of us. Check it out:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get All the Law Firm Marketing Strategies You Need to Create A 7-figure Law Practice with Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2!

Newly released! Rainmaker in a Box: Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media.

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

My interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

***For Blog Readers, Facebook Friends, Twitter Followers and LinkedIn Connections – we are offering you a $50 discount for Volume 2 and a $100 discount for both Volume 1 and Volume 2 because of your social media presence with The Rainmaker Institute.

Click here now to order!

 

Law Firm Marketing: How to Use Social Media for Business Development

One of the best reasons for attorneys to use social media is that it is a very cost effective business development tool. Below is a description of the steps you can take to harness the effectiveness of social media for your law firm marketing efforts.  (This is how we are using social media to build our business): 

1. Set up a targeted landing page. Your landing page should always discuss the specific need of your target market. 

2. On the landing page offer them something of value.  You could offer web visitors a free special report, audio CD or white paper on a topic of interest to them. For example,

The Top 10 Questions to Ask Before You Hire a Divorce Attorney

The 7 Deadly Mistakes That Can Wreck Your Personal Injury Case

The 5 Reasons Why Business Owners Get Sued and How to Avoid Them

3. Drive traffic to your landing page by promoting it via your social media outlets. You can announce your free special report on your Facebook fan page, post a Tweet or promote by including the link to your LinkedIn account.

4. Visitors to your landing page can only obtain your valuable information if they give you their contact information (name, phone and email address) and by agreeing to opt into your database and be contacted by your law firm for further follow-up.

5. Use their contact information to follow up with them. When you connect with them, you qualify them to see if they are a good prospect for you and then offer them a complimentary consultation, if that's part of your business model.

Here at The Rainmaker Institute, we have successfully used this exact process with attorneys across the country for over 5 years.  During this time we have generated thousands of qualified leads, for our company directly from our social media efforts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter!  

In fact, if you would like to see a few of our landing pages and get one of our free marketing reports, click on the links below:  

4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice

5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan                 

Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them

 

How to Follow - and Even Be - the Leader on LinkedIn

Yesterday, LinkedIn announced that you will be able to follow what it calls “the most influential thought leaders on LinkedIn” – people like Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington, President Obama, Gov. Mitt Romney and more (you can see the full list here) – in addition to the news you already follow through industry, companies and groups.

You’ll be able to add your two cents as well, with an ability to comment on their posts and engage the influencers in your area of expertise. You can even share insights you like with your own network.

Think you have what it takes to be an influencer on LinkedIn? You can submit a request to join LinkedIn’s thought leader group or, if they have already noticed you have a following already in groups, blogs and on social media, you may receive an invitation from LinkedIn to join.

LinkedIn is migrating from the simple act of connection to a deeper, richer way to connect and share information on their site – a welcome evolution for this leader in business-oriented social media.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money!

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

Law Firm Marketing & the Growing Mobile Landscape

Today, the Pew Research Center released a report on how Americans consume news on their mobile devices, finding that half of all U.S. adults now use a smartphone or tablet device to connect to the Internet – and 66% of those use these devices to get their news.

This is a huge sea-change in how we consume news! And its ramifications for attorneys who blog, engage in social media and market themselves online has never been larger. 

We are not just checking headlines, either – 78% of mobile device users read more than one in-depth article during a sitting and the articles they are reading are mostly (90%) for personal use:

Consumption of news articles on mobile devices usually comes from content that was shared on social media sites or via email. A majority (60%) use a browser to acquire their news, which increases the need for attorneys to step up their SEO game even more than ever before. Your content needs to be mobile-friendly, meaning no PDFs or content that is not formatted properly for mobile devices. 

The consumption of all information is moving rapidly to mobile, and your law firm marketing must follow to remain relevant.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

NEW On-Demand Webinar: Business Development Strategies for Litigators

Business development is especially difficult for litigators, who often work for months on a case and bring it to a successful conclusion, only to find they have a gaping hole of billable time to fill!

Are you or your litigators building the referral network you need to bring in litigation business?

In this new on-demand webinar, nationally recognized business development expert Stephen Fairley and featured guest Larry Bodine, editor-in-chief of Lawyers.com, help you develop a practical plan to grow your litigation practice. Learn:

  • Which strategies you need to put into place in order to obtain repeat business from former clients
  • How to build a referral network to build your practice-even while you are prepping for a trial
  • How to get more referrals from mega-firms who are conflicted out of a case
  • How to identify small firm transactional lawyers who can send you litigation referrals
  • How to focus on the “hottest” areas of practice, as identified by market research
  • Methods our clients use to attract larger clients with bigger cases
  • How to ethically promote your “big wins” to the media and via the Internet
  • How to apply one of the most effective marketing techniques for litigators
  • How to position yourself as an industry expert that attracts highly profitable clients

To get this on-demand webinar, simply click here to access the recording of Business Development Strategies for Litigation Attorneys webinar.

 

Using Social Media to Accelerate the Referral Process

Social media has become a fundamental shift in the way we communicate and find information -- or rather, the way information finds us.  

When you consider the overwhelming number of people who are now using social media, the question you should be asking is not, are my prospects, clients, and referral sources using social media? The question you should be asking is, which network are they using most often?

A survey last year by the American Bar Association's Legal Technology Resource Center found that 56% of attorneys are already using a social network. This means for you skeptics out there, if you are not maintaining a presence on at least one social network you are already behind the curve. Of those networks, LinkedIn is the most popular, followed by Facebook – however, Facebook is still the social site favored by prospects.

For attorneys who are looking to connect with consumers (versus business owners), like criminal defense, personal injury, bankruptcy, estate planning, and family law just to name a few, Facebook should be your primary focus because of the sheer number of people that can be found there (over 950 million registered users and growing).  

Depending on the demographic of your clientele, you may have more success with one social media platform compared to another -- but it is important that you have a presence on them all.  For example: Business oriented attorneys, like business litigation, securities, and intellectual property, should focus more of their efforts on LinkedIn. However, LinkedIn also has the highest number of attorneys who use the network so it's a little more difficult to stand out as compared to Facebook or Twitter.

What many people fail to understand is how people are starting to use social media.  Social networks are more and more being used as personal search engines mainly because Google has become too generic and they often don't trust what they find there.  

This trend is especially true in the under-30 age group. In fact, many social media experts are starting to point to Facebook as the new Google! Tens of thousands of searches are conducted every day on Facebook for resources and reviews of products, services, and service providers.  

The long-time phenomenon of asking your friends and colleagues for a referral has simply gone viral and online. Social networks are quickly multiplying the number of connections a person can ask when seeking a referral to a trusted advisor.  

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

How to Build Referrals in the Age of Social Media

I’m in beautiful Lake Tahoe today, brought here by an attorney who attended a Rainmaker Retreat in Las Vegas recently, and then invited me to speak to a group of alumni from his alma mater, the Oak Brook College of Law. 

I’m talking today about Building Referrals Through Social Media, a subject every attorney should learn more about since referrals are so highly sought and valued and the proper use of social media makes it easier than ever to gather the referral gold.

Social media networks are not merely places to connect and share with friends anymore, they are now being used more and more as personal search engines. Both Google and Bing have integrated social media into their search results, knowing that whatever you are searching for is likely to be much more meaningful to you if your connections have something to say about it.

Tens of thousands of searches are executed every day on Facebook – the truth is that asking friends and colleagues for a referral has simply moved online. Which is why it is important for lawyers to have a presence on multiple social media platforms, especially the top 2 for referrals: Facebook and LinkedIn.

If you’d like to learn more about how to build referrals in the age of social media, do like my Oak Brook College friend did and attend a Rainmaker Retreat.  

We have one coming up next weekend in Orlando (Oct. 5-6) and two others later in the Fall:

October 26-27, 2012 – Scottsdale, AZ

November 16-17, 2012 – New York City, NY

You can still get in on our Early Bird Discount for our upcoming Rainmaker Retreats in Scottsdale and NY, so be sure to register now to receive the $200 discount. 

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Your Prospects Are Online...Where Are You?

The LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® Attorney Selection Research Study found that 76 percent of consumers used the Internet to search for an attorney in the past year. 

Are you and your firm up to date on the latest digital marketing strategies and tools to capture all the prospects you possibly can who are searching for you right now on the Internet?

If not, you can get up to speed quickly at a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing boot camp. 

Listen as Ruben Avila of the Law Offices of Mario Avila, who attended a Rainmaker Retreat session recently in Orange County, explains:

We cover everything busy attorneys need to know – and can put to use immediately – at each Rainmaker Retreat. There’s one coming up next weekend in Orlando (Oct. 5-6) and two others later in the Fall:

October 26-27, 2012 – Scottsdale, AZ

November 16-17, 2012 – New York City, NY

You can still get in on our Early Bird Discount for our upcoming Rainmaker Retreats, so be sure to register now to receive the $200 discount. The Early Bird Discount for our Oct. 5-6 in Orlando ends today, Sept. 28.

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now.

 

How Consumers Choose an Attorney: Finding a Lawyer

The LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® Attorney Selection Research Study can now be downloaded for free by clicking the title link. Go get it!

As I noted yesterday, this research found that 76 percent of consumers used the Internet to search for an attorney in the past year. Most consumers used a four-stage process in their search for an attorney: gather information about a legal issue/case, find a lawyer, validate a lawyer and select a lawyer.

During the second stage – finding a lawyer – the #1 source was family and friends, so the Internet has not changed that too much. The study found that 45% of people looked to those they know well for recommendations on a lawyer. The second most popular way was using search engines (35%) and visiting law firm websites (35%).

So what can you do to influence this part of the process? Keep in touch with your clients! Educate them about what makes a good referral for you and encourage them to make referrals. 

Form alliances with strategic referral partners – others who serve your same client profile like CPAs or financial planners – and make it worth their while by reciprocating in kind.

For more information, revisit my posts on How to Build a Referral System That Delivers Results and Law Firm Marketing: How to Develop Referrals.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

On-Demand Webinar: Lessons From Dewey & LeBoeuf: 5 Biggest Reasons Why Law Firms Fail

With the spectacular announcement of the biggest bankruptcy in law firm history, Dewey & LeBoeuf stunned the legal community. Now comes the work of dissecting what went wrong and how their competitors can avoid a similar fate.

When you order this new on-demand webinar, you will watch nationally recognized law firm marketing expert Stephen Fairley interview Donald Scarinci, Managing Partner of Scarinci Hollenbeck, one of the fastest growing mid-sized law firms on the East Coast and a nationally recognized thought leader on law firm management. They discuss:

  • The 5 biggest reasons why law firms fail and how you can avoid a similar fate
  • How fast growing firms can avoid the pitfalls that brought Dewey & LeBoeuf to its knees
  • How Scarinci Hollenbeck went from relying almost entirely on “word of mouth” marketing to being featured in the Wall Street Journal for their cutting edge approach to social media in less than 6 months
  • What Managing Partners and law firm administrators need to know now to compete
  • Marketing and managing your firm in today’s roller coaster economy
  • A “behind the scenes” case study of how Scarinci Hollenbeck has adapted to the new realities
  • Effective tools multi-attorney firms can use to market a variety of partners and practice areas

Order the on-demand webinar on Lessons From Dewey & LeBoeuf: 5 Biggest Reasons Why Law Firms Fail , watch it at your convenience and share it with your partners and associates.

 

 

How Consumers Choose an Attorney: Information Gathering

The new LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® Attorney Selection Research Study was just released yesterday and is something every attorney needs to review.  It is chock full of interesting findings from an in-depth look at how people look for and hire an attorney.

Over the next several days, I am going to post about those study results and provide specific action steps on what attorneys can do to capitalize on this new learning.

First, some numbers:

  • 110 million U.S. consumers have sought legal counsel at least once;
  • 58 million have looked for an attorney in the past year;
  • Of those who looked for an attorney, 57% hired one, 15% decided to use a DIY approach and 13% continued to search

The study found that 76 percent of consumers used the Internet to search for an attorney in the past year.  Most consumers used a four-stage process in their search for an attorney: gather information about a legal issue/case, find a lawyer, validate a lawyer and select a lawyer.

So what sources do consumers use on the Internet to gather information?  The study found:

  • 39% used online search engines, primarily Google
  • 34% visited online legal forums
  • 31% used online directories
  • 31% visited law firm websites
  • 29% visited legal blogs
  • 26% used social media sites

Translated into law firm marketing terminology, in order to be found by a consumer searching for an attorney in their first stage of search – the gathering of information – attorneys need to:

Employ skillful SEO tactics on their websites and blogs (see post on Law Firm Marketing SEO: Don't Forget The Basics)

Answer consumer questions on online legal forums (see post on The Do's and Don'ts of Answering Legal Questions on Avvo )

Beef up profiles on Avvo.com, Lawyers.com, etc. (see post on Social Media for Attorneys: How to Leverage Avvo's Marketing Power to Generate Leads)

Have a content-rich, SEO-compliant law firm website (see post on Transform Your Law Firm's Website into a Client Generating Machine)

Have a blog (see post on Law Firm Marketing: Top 10 Ways to Generate Leads From Your Blog)

Participate on social media sites, especially Facebook (see post on Social Media Marketing for Lawyers: How to Increase Your Facebook Fan Engagement)

Of course, we cover all of the above in-depth at our two-day law firm marketing boot camp, the Rainmaker Retreat.  There’s one coming up next weekend in Orlando and two others later in the Fall:

October 26-27, 2012 – Scottsdale, AZ

November 16-17, 2012 – New York City, NY

You can still get in on our Early Bird Discount for our upcoming Rainmaker Retreats, so be sure to register now to receive the $200 discount.  The Early Bird Discount for our Oct. 5-6 in Orlando ends this Friday, Sept. 28.

Go to www.rainmakerretreat.com or call 888-588-5891 to register now.

 

A Law Firm Marketing Guide to Facebook Ads

Facebook offers ad targeting that is hard to beat since you can narrow who sees your ad on Facebook by zip code, by profession, by age, by sex, and by at whole host of interests (anyone market exclusive to, say, Harvard graduates?).

However, with its latest introduction of new ad formats, Facebook has created a lot of confusion in the marketplace.  Here’s a handy guide that aims to calm that confusion:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get All the Law Firm Marketing Strategies You Need to Create A 7-figure Law Practice with Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2!

Newly released!  Rainmaker in a Box: Volume 2 includes:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals

Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm

Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media

Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media.

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs

My interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

Data DVD: 
Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

Click here now to order!

What New Twitter Profile Page Means for Branding Your Law Firm

Earlier this week, Twitter unveiled a new design for its profile pages and just like the new redesign from LinkedIn recently (see my earlier post on Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: Get Ready for New LinkedIn Company Pages), it relies heavily on imagery to help businesses brand themselves online.

Here’s a look at the new layout:

So what do law firms need to do with this new profile layout to enhance their online branding? 

First, claim your profile space with photos that speak to what it is you do.  Hopefully you have graphics on your website that you chose because they were highly relevant to your practice area – look at repurposing one or two of those that speak to who you are.  

Try to steer clear of the static suit-and-tie studio shots – instead, use photos that show your leadership, like a shot of you speaking at an event.  Be sure to add a link to your blog so those that follow you on Twitter can get the benefit of your deeper thinking in your blog posts.

Twitter is also supporting video on profiles, so be sure your law firm videos (you do have some, right?) are featured on your new profile page. 

Your new Twitter profile page will be available on desktop, tablet and mobile platforms so if you have not mobilized your own site yet, this is a great opportunity to have a mobile presence at no cost to you.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7 figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a pdf transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

5 Ways Blogging Grows Your Social Media Presence

Blogging should be at the heart of your law firm marketing strategy because of the ways it contributes to growing your social media footprint. Here are 5 ways that happens:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

Social Media Tsunami: 7 Startling Facts About Social Media

You can’t operate a business today – and running a law practice is a business – without recognizing the incredible impact social media has made on our lives and trying to find a way to integrate it into your law firm marketing.

The deny-ers are still out there, but they are ignoring some pretty compelling facts about social media at their own risk:

If you’ve become convinced that you need to learn more about social media marketing for your law firm, invest two days and a little cash and come to a Rainmaker Retreat.  Here are the upcoming dates:

October 5-6, 2012 – Orlando, FL

October 26-27, 2012 – Scottsdale, AZ

November 16-17, 2012 – New York City, NY

You can still get in on our Early Bird Discount for our upcoming Rainmaker Retreats in Scottsdale and New York, so be sure to register now to receive the $200 discount.

For more information, call 888-588-5891 or visit www.RainmakerRetreat.com.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

PI Attorneys: Register Now for PILMMA Fall Summit Sept. 21-22 in Las Vegas

Join me at the Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing and Management Association (PILMMA) Fall Legal Marketing & Management Summit on Sept. 21-22 in Las Vegas, when I will be making a special presentation on 5 Proven Strategies to Double Your Referrals.

There are a host of other nationally renowned speakers who will be joining me for this prestigious summit, including:

James Mitchell Brown, author of the book Marketing for the Contingency Fee Law Firm, is the nation’s leading consultant for contingency fee firms. Brown has been an attorney since 1973.  He formed Attorney Consultant Inc. in 2004 and has been recognized throughout the country for his expertise in teaching marketing and business management skills to attorneys.

Mark Wolfe has been practicing in the area of personal injury litigation since 1987 with an emphasis on auto-negligence cases. He is a partner in the Mobile, Alabama firm of Boteler, Finley & Wolfe. He has tried over 200 car crash cases to verdict and handled over 3500 car crash claims or cases.

Patrick Anderson will share the strategies and results of successful PI attorneys who are using iPhone apps to bring in “winnable cases”. His Case Study documents a step-by-step marketing blueprint used by PI firms to generate thousands of legal app downloads in a few short months.

For those who are not already members of PILMMA, you will be able to attend this two-day summit and get two months of PILMMA Gold Membership rights at one all-inclusive rate. PILMMA members and non-members can register online -- simply click this link and learn how you can start snagging these big cases for yourself!

 

5 Reasons Why Blogging is Critical to Law Firm Marketing

I ran across a great post the other day from John Jantsch at Duct Tape Marketing on why blogging remains a critical tool in the age of social media. Some people may think that blogging can take a back seat to other forms of social media, but that is akin to putting your best foot backward.

Here’s why:

Blogging is the most stable form of SEO. Google is always taking steps to penalize sites that try to artificially boost their rankings. Blogs provide high quality, education-based, keyword-relevant content that will never be penalized by Google.

Blogging is your hub for social interaction. A blog forms the foundation for your social media efforts. You post a great blog and then make everyone aware of it by reposting on Facebook, Twitter, etc. That drives more traffic to your blog.

Blogging builds your email list. Valuable content entices people to learn more from you by signing up for a subscription to your newsletter or a feed from your blog.

Blogging builds your credibility. By approaching your blog as a publishing platform and pumping out content with a consistent point of view, you build a targeted audience and your expert status.

Blogging gives you options. You can repurpose blog posts into an article, a free report, an e-newsletter or other forms – useful content created on a blog has many potential lives.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD Set

The Practice Made Perfect CD set and manual applies Stephen Fairley’s unique High Impact Marketing System to the practice-building challenges faced by solo practitioners and partners at small law firms.  

It includes dozens of specific marketing and sales recommendations that can be easily and quickly applied to your firm, including:

  • The only 7 sure-fire ways to get clients in your door NOW
  • Why advertising doesn’t work for most small law firms
  • The 7 reasons why people don’t buy from you           
  • How to market and sell with USP’s (Unique Selling Proposition)           
  • Using audio logos to attract immediate attention for your business
  • Using low-cost, high impact marketing strategies           
  • Strategies for achieving maximum results from all of your marketing efforts           
  • How to discover your Ideal Target Market
  • 3 critical factors to remember when looking for new clients
  • The NEW sales cycle for professional services
  • How to retain your best clients

Click here to order your Practice Made Perfect for Lawyers CD set and manual now.

 

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: Get Ready for New LinkedIn Company Pages

Last week, LinkedIn announced upcoming changes to its Company Pages and provided a preview of what those will look like once the change is rolled out to all users:

If it looks a little Facebook-familiar to you, I am sure that is no accident – getting rid of the text-heavy pages in favor of streamlining information and making room for lots of images is in direct response to what people prefer on social networking sites. 

Right now, LinkedIn is just making the new design available to several large beta company users but plans to roll it out to everyone by year-end.   LinkedIn also plans to make Company Pages mobile-friendly to capitalize on the growing use of mobile devices for social networking.

With this change, LinkedIn is making it easier for attorneys to showcase their practices as well as for you to engage with prospective client companies online. You will be able to monitor and track developments at companies you have targeted as potential clients, giving you more information to target your marketing as well as more opportunities to engage those prospects.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: Is it for You?

Two-thirds of adults online currently use social networking sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and others – an impressive statistic when you consider that just five years ago, only 5 percent of adults online were involved in social media.

So what does this mean for your practice and law firm marketing efforts?

Should you step up your social media efforts or jump in if you haven’t already? The answer is, it depends. 

And what it depends upon is your Ideal Target Market (ITM).

Remember the ITM? I talk about it a lot here and we focus on it at our Rainmaker Retreat session as well. Identifying and targeting the right market is absolutely critical to the success of your law firm marketing plan. If you don’t target the right market, nothing else you do will matter. To be successful as a legal marketer and attorney, you have to start with a clear picture of your ITM.

Take a look at the breakdown of who is using social networking sites (SNS):

If you are a personal injury attorney or DUI lawyer, you should know that 62 percent of accidents in the U.S. involve drivers who are aged 18-49. Social media makes sense for you.

If you are a bankruptcy attorney, you should know that the average age of a U.S. bankruptcy filer is 40. Social media also makes sense for you.

You get the idea. Social media marketing is just one tool in a law firm marketing arsenal at your disposal. If it fits with your ITM, then you should be using it. 

If you don’t know how, then I invite you to attend a Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing boot camp where you will leave with a comprehensive marketing plan for your practice that incorporates your ITM and the strategic marketing initiatives you’ll need to reach them. Here are the upcoming dates:

September 14-12, 2012 – Orange County, CA

October 5-6, 2012 – Orlando, FL

October 26-27, 2012 – Scottsdale, AZ

November 16-17, 2012 – New York City, NY

Registration information is available by visiting the Rainmaker Retreat website, www.RainmakerRetreat.com or by calling 888-588-5891.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line

At The Rainmaker Institute, we define a “7-figure lifestyle law firm” as one that allows you to have the lifestyle that you want to live!

It’s more than just money or achieving a million dollars in revenue.

It’s about creating a lifestyle where you do what you love and building a business around your core values and interests.

In this recording of an interview between Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, and nationally recognized attorney John Bisnar, Stephen asks John to share with us some of the secrets he has used to create a law firm that allows him to go into the office only one day a week and take, on average, 3 to 4 months of vacation every year - all the while managing a very successful, multi-million dollar law firm!

You will receive either a CD or MP3 recording, plus we will email you a PDF transcript of the interview.

This interview will help you discover:

  • The difference between a law practice and a business
  • How to identify superstar employees to help you run your business
  • The difference between an Office Manager and a Business Manager
  • The 7 essential systems your firm must have & how to implement them
  • How to micromanage the client experience
  • Critical keys to success
  • And much more!

Click this link now to order Secrets to Building a 7-Figure Lifestyle Law Firm: Proven Strategies from the Front Line.

 

5 Ways Lawyers Fall Flat When It Comes to Social Media

Most attorneys I speak with these days feel a sense of urgency to participate on social media networks, but in the rush to join in some are making critical mistakes. If you’re just beginning to dip a toe in the social media ocean, here are 5 things you should definitely avoid:

Hard sell. There’s a reason it’s called social media...it’s social! Just like you wouldn’t give the hard sell to a prospect at a cocktail party, you also need to avoid it on social media.   The way to approach social media is as a tool for building relationships, and from those relationships will eventually flow sales opportunities. 

Self-promotion. Nobody likes to listen to someone talk about themselves ad nauseum. Again, think of the cocktail party analogy...social media is for engaging and listening. 

Being all things to all people. Your practice has a target market, and different social media networks appeal to different people. Once you have identified your target market, identify where they are hanging out online and spend your time on those social media sites.

Keeping up with the Joneses. If you’re a small firm or solo practitioner, don’t try to compete with the big firms. There is a reason clients come to you and there is real value in being exactly who you are online. 

Thinking social media costs nothing. 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. Monitoring your social media ROI and assigning a number value will enable you to track how effective a tool social media is for your practice.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

PI Attorneys: Register Now for PILMMA Fall Summit Sept. 21-22 in Las Vegas

Join me at the Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing and Management Association (PILMMA) Fall Legal Marketing & Management Summit on Sept. 21-22 in Las Vegas, when I will be making a special presentation on 5 Proven Strategies to Double Your Referrals.

There are a host of other nationally renowned speakers who will be joining me for this prestigious summit, including:

James Mitchell Brown, author of the book Marketing for the Contingency Fee Law Firm, is the nation’s leading consultant for contingency fee firms. Brown has been an attorney since 1973.  He formed Attorney Consultant Inc. in 2004 and has been recognized throughout the country for his expertise in teaching marketing and business management skills to attorneys.

Mark Wolfe has been practicing in the area of personal injury litigation since 1987 with an emphasis on auto-negligence cases. He is a partner in the Mobile, Alabama firm of Boteler, Finley & Wolfe. He has tried over 200 car crash cases to verdict and handled over 3500 car crash claims or cases.

Patrick Anderson will share the strategies and results of successful PI attorneys who are using iPhone apps to bring in “winnable cases”. His Case Study documents a step-by-step marketing blueprint used by PI firms to generate thousands of legal app downloads in a few short months.

For those who are not already members of PILMMA, you will be able to attend this two-day summit and get two months of PILMMA Gold Membership rights at one all-inclusive rate. PILMMA members and non-members can register online -- simply click this link and learn how you can start snagging these big cases for yourself!

 

Using Paid Search to Drive Traffic to Your Legal Marketing Website

Prospects for your services will use certain words to search for what they want.  Knowing what those words are – and using them throughout your site in content as well as in paid search campaigns and social media marketing -- is the key to driving targeted traffic to your site. 

Pay Per Click (PPC) marketing is probably the most important development in advertising in the past decade. Never before has it been possible to spend so little to have new, precisely targeted clients coming to your website within minutes. 

However, if all your competitors are using the same keywords to target prospects, you don’t need to add your voice to that fray.  Talk to your prospects and clients and find out what words and phrases they use to look for a lawyer in your practice area.  Research those keywords and find out how many other people use them, then make a list of 20 to 30 words and phrases to use in your PPC campaign.

This infographic shows the current Cost Per Click (CPC) for various legal categories:

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get 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.

 

Tips on Creating Content Your Blog Readers Will Want to Share

The New York Times did a research study on the Psychology of Sharing to learn more about why people share content on the Internet. 

The research found that these were the top five reasons people share content via email or social networks:

1. To bring valuable and entertaining content to others

2. To define ourselves to others

3. To grow and nurture relationships

4. Self-fulfillment

5. To spread the word about causes or brands

So if you have posted content on your blog or created articles that aren’t seeing much action, you need to examine your content to see if it is meeting any of these needs that people have for sharing.

Here are some tips for creating great content that people want to share:

Make it real. Don’t simply deal in hypotheticals – tell a story with a good outcome (maintaining privacy, of course) that draws people in and makes them feel something.

Create a conversation. Commenting on the hot topics of the day with a unique viewpoint increases the chances your content will get shared. Ask others’ opinions on your blog and post comments.

Speak like a human being. Do not use legal jargon or write above your target market’s head. Use a conversational tone in your posts or articles in a voice people can understand.

Make a list. People love to read and share lists, so get a little creative and develop lists that will get noticed.

Understanding the psychology behind what makes people want to share content and then crafting your content to fulfill those needs will ensure your words get the reach you’re hoping for.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Webinar on Key Performance Indicators: Knowing the Numbers That Run Your Law Firm Now Available On-Demand

We are now providing one of our most popular webinars – Knowing the Numbers That Run Your Law Firm – in an on-demand format, so you can watch and learn at your convenience, as many times as you wish.

Over the last decade we have helped over 8,000 attorneys market and grow their business. During this time we have identified many of the key characteristics of highly successful law firms.

One of the more consistent ones is that they track specific numbers and key indicators that give them instant insight into how their law firm is performing on a weekly and monthly basis.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are the numbers that make your law firm run. By analyzing these critical metrics, partners and owners of law firms can easily determine whether they are on track to achieve their goals or if they need to retool and refocus their marketing and business development efforts.

In this fast paced webinar, you learn:

  • How to easily identify the 12 key metrics your law firm needs to track and measure
  • How to set up a system to identify these numbers
  • The 7 critical systems every law firm must have
  • CPL and CPC: the 2 most important numbers every attorney must know in order to succeed
  • How to avoid “paralysis by analysis” and being overwhelmed by too much data
  • Delegating roles and responsibility to your staff
  • Using software to track your KPIs

If you’re a spreadsheet and data driven individual then you will love this webinar! However, if numbers scare you or you tend to ignore them because you have a hard time making heads or tails of all the different data you see, then this webinar is a “can’t miss” event!

We cut through the clutter and give you clear and easy to understand guidance on which numbers really matter the most, how to track this information, and what to do with it once you have it!

To register online for this on-demand webinar, click on this link: Knowing the Numbers That Run Your Law Firm.

 

ABA Survey Finds Majority of Small Firms, Solos Get Business From Their Blogs

The American Bar Association’s 2012 Legal Technology Survey finds that half of small firms (2-9 attorneys) and 53.3 percent of solos that have blogs report signing new clients as a result of their blogging efforts, either directly or via referral.

This rate significantly outpaces the results that large firms (100-499) attorneys experience, which was still impressive at 40 percent reporting new business from blogs.

With this rate of success, then, you have to wonder why only 12.2 percent of small firms and solos report having a blog. If there was ever a case of “first to market reaps the rewards,” it can be found in this ABA report.

On the technology front, the use of tablet computers doubled in the past year among attorneys, going from 15 percent in 2011 to 33 percent in 2012. Even though attorneys generally lag behind in the use of technology, smartphone usage is growing with the iPhone gaining and the Blackberry losing ground. 

Solos and small firms also lead the way when it comes to utilizing cloud computing, with 26 percent reporting such usage versus only 15 percent of lawyers in large firms.

If you haven’t started a blog yet – or want more tips on creating a blog that will help drive clients to your door – see my free report offer below.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

Online Reputation Management: How to Track Your Social Mentions

To successfully manage your online reputation, you first need to know who is talking about you, what they are saying and where they are saying it. Fortunately, there are several free online tracking tools available to help you do this:

Google Alerts. Probably the most widely used tool, Google Alerts lets you set up alerts for any mention of your firm and yourself and sends those feeds directly to your inbox on a daily, weekly or “as it happens” basis. Be sure to create alerts for your competitors as well.

Socialmention.com – This cool tool allows you to do a real-time search using any keyword or name, and then creates a page with statistics on the top keywords, top users, sources and sentiment (positive, negative, neutral). You can also sign up for a daily alert feed that scours all social media sites for mentions and delivers them to your inbox.

Klout.com – This site is catnip for attorneys who love rankings and ratings. Klout measures your online influence across all social networks, on a scale of 1-100. Remember that Klout only measures your influence in social media – it doesn’t care if you went to Harvard or chair your local bar association or other real world influencers. 

For more information on this topic, see my post last month on What is Your Online Reputation? How to Monitor and Manage It.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get 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.

 

Top 10 Ways Law Firm Marketing Has Changed: The Avvo/LexBlog Report

My post Friday on Law Firm Marketing Survey Finds More Attorneys Engaged in Digital Marketing explored the key findings from the Avvo/LexBlog 2012 Legal Marketing Survey Report.

Today we look at the ways law firm marketing has changed over the past five years, from that same report, based on what lawyers responding to the survey said:

Law firm marketing has moved online and a majority of attorneys want (and need) to learn more about SEO and social media.

Most lawyers now believe they need an online presence to be viewed favorably by peers and clients.

The low cost of digital marketing has leveled the playing field, making it more affordable for all attorneys to participate, which in turn has ratcheted up the level of competition.

Yellow Pages are irrelevant today and print media spend has declined dramatically.

Bar associations are in chaos over the new rules and regulations needed to adapt to new media channels, leading to confusion among practitioners.

Clients are smarter and are doing more of their own research online.

Traditional firms and older attorneys are adapting to the online world.

Overall, attorneys feel overwhelmed by the plethora of different online marketing tools.

Focusing on online marketing makes it harder to develop personal connections.

Mobile is a platform attorneys cannot afford to ignore.

When lawyers were asked what they most wanted to learn about when it comes to legal marketing, the top two subjects of interest were SEO and social media. 

We spend a lot of time on these two areas in our two-day law firm marketing boot camp, the Rainmaker Retreat – to get a sneak peak behind the curtain of what happens at a Rainmaker Retreat, see below.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

New Webinar: How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle

When it comes to law firm marketing, it is truly a jungle out there! Mastering social media, SEO and Internet marketing strategies – and making sure your efforts align with legal marketing rules – can give even the most eager attorney pause.

In his new one-hour webinar, Stephen Fairley 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. You will 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 today’s hyper-competitive online focused marketplace

This FREE webinar will also give you a preview of the 65 different marketing techniques and strategies taught at our 2-day legal marketing boot camp.

Click on this link to register now for the FREE How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle webinar.

 

Law Firm Marketing Survey Finds More Attorneys Engaged in Digital Marketing

The Avvo/LexBlog 2012 Legal Marketing Survey Report finds that more attorneys than ever are engaged in digital marketing and using social networks to not only reach out to prospects but to communicate with existing clients as well.

The data is derived from 1,325 respondents to an online survey of attorneys conducted by Avvo and LexBlog in April 2012. Lest you think the age of respondents skewed the results toward digital marketing, the largest respondent age group – 32% -- was over the age of 50. In fact, 59% of respondents were over the age of 40.

Here are the key findings:

Attorneys are embracing law firm marketing activities more than ever before – 80% plan to spend the same or more on marketing in 2012.

Investment in digital marketing is increasing – one-quarter of respondents say they spend 75% of their marketing budget online.

54% of respondents use social media for business development.

LinkedIn and Facebook are the most popular social media sites for new business development; lawyers are also using these to communicate with existing clients.

72% of respondents say they actively monitor their online reputations.

A majority of respondents said that answering legal questions in online forums is an effective marketing strategy for their firms.

Offline marketing remains a priority – 75% of respondents attend conferences to network and more than 50% speak at events to help generate new business.

The report also examines how legal marketing has changed over the past five years – I’ll post about that this weekend.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

There are two versions: one for Attorneys in Solo Practice and one for Attorneys in a Small Firm.  Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

How to Market to Boomers, The Most Valuable Generation

A new study out from Nielsen calls baby boomers the “most valuable generation” because they will control 70 percent of the disposable income in the U.S. in the next five years.

There are currently 80 million boomers – those born between 1946 and 1964 – in the U.S. today and the number of Americans 50+ is projected to grow by 34 percent by 2030. That means that within 20 years, half of Americans will be over the age of 50.

Boomers are also driving the growth of social networking – their usage has doubled to 42 percent in the past year. Currently, Nielsen reports that 53 percent of boomers are on Facebook and they use business-related social sites like LinkedIn at a much higher rate than the average American consumer.

Not surprisingly, the reason behind this (according to Nielsen) is that boomers use technology as a way to stay perpetually young. But you would be wrong to lump all boomers into one broad category.

For example, leading edge boomers (born 1946-55) are pre-retirement or have already retired. Trailing edge boomers (born 1956-64) are still working and earning. If you are an estate planning attorney, you would likely market your services differently to these two segments of the boomer population.  

Boomers continue to be the “me” generation, and have become jaded to mass marketing – one of the reasons their use of social media is so high and growing. They now seek more personalization and customization, which places an increased demand on attorneys to personalize their law firm marketing communications with tools like e-newsletters, blogs and social media messaging.

For boomers, you have to always be answering the question, “What’s in it for me?”

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Learn About Internet Marketing for Lawyers at August 8 Phoenix Legal Networking Group

Having an Internet presence is a must for attorneys who want to effectively market and grow their firms. But how do you know you are going about it the right way?

It should be no secret that the Internet is one of the most cost effective lead sources for attorneys today. Even if a portion of your client base includes referrals, you can be sure that they are checking you out on the Web before they give you a call.

At the August 8 Phoenix Legal Networking Group meeting, you can learn how top law firms are using the Internet, search engine optimization, their websites and blogs to find more and better clients for their law firms.

Come join us and discover:

  • 2 critical keys to getting your website on the front page of Google
  • 3 most important goals of your website & blog
  • The “secret weapon” of Internet marketing for law firms
  • How to avoid the most common pitfalls and mistakes attorneys make with their websites

Date:  Wednesday, August 8; 5:30-7:30 pm (5:30-6:45pm Networking, 6:45-7:30 pm Seminar)

Location: Grimaldi’s (Rockefeller Room), Old Town Scottsdale, 4000 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Speaker: Stephen Fairley, CEO of The Rainmaker Institute

Cost: $35. This covers drinks, hors d’oeurves, the networking event and the seminar.

Dress:  Business Casual

Sponsors:  Attorney at Law Magazine and The Rainmaker Institute, LLC

Register online now for the August 8 meeting of the Phoenix Legal Networking Group.

 

Check Out This Social Media Checklist for Business

At first glance, the infographic below seems mind-numbingly complicated and could be enough to dissuade even the most ardent believer in the benefits of social media. 

But as I’ve said here before – and you undoubtedly tell your own clients – you don’t have to do it by yourself. There are many resources out there to help you promote your firm in social media (full disclosure: The Rainmaker Institute is one of them). 

So take a cue from our Olympic athletes: find a way to get it done. The reward can be a lifestyle law firm that will allow you to do exactly what you want.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

How To Get More Clients Through Reviews and Endorsements

Research shows that more and more consumers are depending on reviews and endorsements for products and services before making a purchase. Online reviews of a business or product are viewed as “unbiased”, and therefore more credible. A good review can make you, and a bad review can turn clients away in droves. 

Is there a way to generate reviews and endorsements for your practice? There are several:

Repurpose good reviews. If you have received good reviews or testimonials, post them on your website, in your e-newsletter and anywhere else that potential customers are likely to stumble upon them. And be sure to ask whoever provided you with that great review if they would also submit it to Google so it shows up in search.

Give to get. Social media is, well, social. So if you give good reviews on Facebook, LinkedIn or other social networking sites, chances are that the effort will be rewarded with reciprocal reviews.

Request a review. We know of a car salesman who routinely asks satisfied customers to post reviews of his service on Google and other review web sites.   He says it is now responsible for a big part of his monthly new customer acquisition count. If you’ve made a client happy with your service, ask them to submit a review or testimonial saying why they loved doing business with you.

One thing you should never do is fake a review or testimonial. If they sound too glowing or like you wrote them, it will do much more harm than good. And somehow consumers can always tell what is authentic and what is not, so don’ t try to fool them or you could get burned.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

Firms That Post Blogs to Social Media Get 50% More Leads

If you’ve ever attended a Rainmaker Retreat, you know how much we talk about using a law firm marketing blog as the hub of your online marketing efforts, and the importance of publishing your blog content to your social media sites.

Now, new research from inbound marketer HubSpot shows that firms that follow this strategy generate 50% more leads than firms that don’t. 

In addition, the study found that firms that used a social media publishing tool to schedule their posts had three times as many leads as those that didn’t.

To maximize your blog’s effectiveness, HubSpot recommends:

  • Optimizing blog titles and content with keywords prospects use to search for your services.
  • Create “tweetable nuggets” in your posts that your readers can easily retweet.
  • Include social share buttons on your blog.
  • Publish at a time that garners the most engagement from your followers.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

New Webinar: How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle

When it comes to law firm marketing, it is truly a jungle out there! Mastering social media, SEO and Internet marketing strategies – and making sure your efforts align with legal marketing rules – can give even the most eager attorney pause.

In his new one-hour webinar, Stephen Fairley 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. You will 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 today’s hyper-competitive online focused marketplace

This FREE webinar will also give you a preview of the 65 different marketing techniques and strategies taught at our 2-day legal marketing boot camp.

Click on this link to register now for the FREE How to Attract Clients in Today’s Marketing Jungle webinar.

Top 5 Reasons Your Law Firm Needs a Blog

At a recent Rainmaker Retreat, an attorney asked me if I had to choose, would I build a website or a blog? My answer seemed to surprise most of the room. I told him to build a blog.

In a perfect world, of course, you would have both. Every business today is expected to have a website.   And you can certainly hang your blog off your website, integrating both into one online presence. But if you absolutely had to choose for whatever reason, I believe you would be better served with a blog, and here are the top 5 reasons why:

1. A blog is a low-cost, long-term venue to reinforce your brand and educate prospects about what you bring to the table.

2. A blog provides an informative resource for anyone seeking information about you and your practice area(s), generating leads for you at a low cost

3. A blog gives you a platform to speak directly to clients, prospects and other attorneys rather than through the filter of the media or other sources that may not be accurate.

4. A blog provides a stable base for your content without the limitations of other social media channels like Facebook and Twitter that are constantly streaming feeds. It is a place for your own voice, 24/7.

5. Blog analytics provide you with important information on what interests your prospects so you can generate more content to attract them and learn more about marketing to them, thus increasing the likelihood of a greater ROI on your marketing spend.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

Social Media Marketing for Lawyers: Data on Facebook Users by State

This recently released infographic shows Facebook usage by state, so you can determine more clearly how prospects in your geographic area are engaged on the #1 social media site: 


++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The Early Bird Gets the $200 Discount! Sign Up Now for an Upcoming Rainmaker Retreat

Highly successful lawyers understand they are running a business, not practicing law.

Listen to what some recent Rainmaker Retreat attendees had to say about their experience at our two-day law firm marketing intensive:

“This was the most valuable seminar I’ve ever been to.  They should teach this in law school!  Stephen is wonderful, accessible, knowledgeable, entertaining and truly gifted.  His staff is outstanding.  If I ever implement a fraction of what I’ve learned, I will increase my practice tenfold.”
- Helene Dreyer Koch, Estate Planning

“The step by step marketing plan, details on lead conversion, and tips on how to determine our KPI’s was immensely valuable.
  After two days I feel like I’ve identified holes in our current marketing systems and strategies for how to fix those holes and going forward which will lead to added success.”
- Susannah Younquist, Law Firm Marketing Director

“Two days very well spent.  Stephen Fairley more then lived up to what he promised to deliver at this program.  Not only did he conduct an excellent overview of small and solo law firm marketing, but he also presented the most innovative yet convincing blueprint for Internet and social-media law firm marketing that I have heard to date.”
- Jeff Sydney, Solo, Estate Planning

Be sure to register early to take advantage of the Early Bird Discount, where you receive $200 off your registration. For the upcoming San Francisco session, you have until Friday, July 13 to register and receive the discount.

Here are our upcoming sessions:

July 27-28, 2012 – San Francisco, CA

August 24-25, 2012 – Las Vegas, NV

September 14-12, 2012 – Orange County, CA

October 5-6, 2012 – Orlando, FL

For more information please call 888-588-5891 or visit www.RainmakerRetreat.com.

 

The Telling Differences Between Social Media and Traditional Media

I ran across this comparison chart at business2community.com and think it does a good job of pointing out the differences between social media and traditional media at a glance. Looking at it makes you realize how social media really is a whole different animal:

Social is all about share – giving something of value that incentivizes prospects to engage in conversation with you. It’s permission marketing at its finest. Traditional media is all about push. And as we all learned in the elementary school playground, share is much better than push.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Last Chance! Rainmaker in a Box Volume 1 50% Off Until Midnight Tonight ET!

If you know anything about online marketing and the Internet, you know that nothing stays the same for very long. Tricks that got your website on the first page of Google search results 6 months ago are old hat and ineffective.

Fortunately, we stay on top of the trends and cutting edge strategies for you.

We have one aim in mind – to teach you how to use these little known strategies so you can get more and more qualified leads and dominate your marketplace; to help you create the law firm of your dreams.

Cutting edge strategies! Discover how top attorneys are growing their top line revenues, generating leads from social media and the internet, and increasing the quantity and quality of their referrals!

Rainmaker in a Box, Volume 1 includes:

The 5 Immutable Secrets to Building a 7 Figure Law Practice: How to create an automated marketing system to transform your law firm from a practice into a business. We have studied best practices in law firm marketing and share with you the 5 unchanging secrets they use to build a multi-million dollar law firm.

Secrets of Building a Referral-based Law Practice for Busy Practitioners: Every lawyer wants more referrals, yet for many the steps to get there remain an elusive secret. Listen in and watch as I lay out my 8-step proven system to triple your referral sources in 90 days or less!

The Top 6 Most Powerful Online Marketing Strategies for Attorneys: Internet marketing is one of today’s fastest growing and most powerful marketing tools for lawyers. Yet much of how to generate more business and attract more clients online is still a mystery. Watch as I pull back the veil and walks you through the core concepts and key principles every attorney must understand in order to dominate their competition online and build a powerful Internet presence on a shoestring budget.

Action, Accountability and Next Steps: Knowledge is power. The most difficult part for most attorneys is putting that knowledge into action. In this DVD you will discover an 8-step system for creating your law firm marketing plan and how to take action immediately.

Data DVD: Includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you watch the 4 intense DVDs.

This Independence Day offer expires at midnight ET on Friday, July 6, so click now on this Rainmaker in a Box Volume 1 Independence Day Special link to get this $397 DVD series for only $198!

 

Small Law Firms, Solos Favor LinkedIn and Blogs for Legal Marketing

A new study out from LexixNexis® and Vizibility® on the Use of Social Media in Legal Marketing shows that small firms are leading the way when it comes to utilizing social media for law firm marketing, preferring LinkedIn and blogs over all other social media tools.

The survey queried firms of all sizes, from solos to large firms of 500+ attorneys to determine how those firms are currently using social media and what they plan to do in the future. It found that 91 percent of firms with fewer than 5 lawyers already use some form of social media, with 76 percent of those using social media for lead generation. By contrast, 86 percent of large firms say they already use social media, but only 47 percent of large firms said they use it for lead generation.

Another interesting takeaway from the survey was how many attorneys have complete and updated profiles on leading social media sites. For LinkedIn, 59 percent of small firms said they were active while only 19 percent of all responding firms indicated involvement in the leading business social network. Small firms seem to dominate social media network engagement, with 44 percent claiming a presence on Facebook (vs. 13 percent of all firms) and 42 percent on Twitter (vs. 12 percent overall).

In May, I reported on research prepared for LexisNexis by The Research Intelligence Group showing that 76 percent of adult consumers looking for a lawyer used online resources at some point during the search process. Clearly, small firms and solos are getting the message about the importance of being online where prospects can find them.

You can download this latest report by clicking on this link: Use of Social Media in Legal Marketing.

 

How to Build an Engaged Audience for Your Law Firm Marketing Blog

If you build it, will they come? When it comes to a law firm marketing blog, the answer is, it depends on the strategies you use to attract and keep an engaged audience.

Obviously, this is not something that happens with no effort. You need to provide value and promote your content properly. This infographic provides useful tips on how you can build an engaged audience for your legal marketing blog:

 


Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: Best Practices for Twitter

Some attorneys are masters at using Twitter, but many attorneys can’t even bring themselves to say the word, “Tweet”. It sounds silly, and the law is not a silly business.

But the lawyers I know who have figured out how to use Twitter effectively consider it a great tool for engaging potential clients and referral sources in casual conversation, which can lead to serious business.

Social media marketing is all about engagement, which means it’s not enough to just push messages out there – you need to know what to send, when to send it and how often. 

A new study out by Buddy Media, a social media technology firm, analyzed user engagement on Twitter from more than 320 businesses active on the social network. Measuring reply, Retweet and engagement rates, they have developed a best practices guide for using Twitter:

  • Tweet 4x/day or less
  • Use fewer than 100 characters per Tweet
  • Add links to Tweets to get higher Retweet rates – Tweets containing links get 86% higher Retweet rates
  • Make sure the links are clickable by including a space before the URL
  • Tweet on the weekends – engagement rates are 17% higher then
  • Engage with followers during “busy hours” of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Include hashtags in your Tweets, but no more than 2 per Tweet – Tweets with hashtags get twice the engagement
  • Add links to images to increase engagement – Tweets with image links enjoy twice the engagement rate than those without.
  • Use the word “Retweet” as a call-to-action to prompt your followers to share – Tweets that ask followers to Retweet receive 12x higher Retweet rates

With more than 140 million active users, Twitter is a major social media network attorneys should not ignore. 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.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

 

How to Drive Traffic to Your Law Firm Marketing Blog

A newly released online survey of more than 5,000 U.S. and European professional and part-time bloggers finds that the two primary traffic drivers for blogs are posting frequently and promoting posts on social media networks:

The study, conducted in May 2012 by Overblog in partnership with BlogWorld and New Media Expo 2012, correlates to a 2012 Hubspot study that found:

  • 92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired a customer from their blog.
  • 70% of marketers indicate that they blog at least weekly.
  • 57% of companies with a blog have acquired a customer from their blog.

To successfully grow your law firm marketing blog, you need to not only post frequently and market your posts effectively via social media, you also need to make your posts “sticky” so your audience keeps coming back for more. Here’s how:

Engage with other online communities. Become known on other relevant blogs by contributing valuable content to pick up audiences for your own blog.

Write about what you know. If you are passionate about your law practice, share it.

Provide engaging content. Be the spark that starts smart conversations online.

Answer questions. Solicit feedback and keep the conversation going.

Offer real value. Dive deep into your subject matter to keep readers wanting more.

Create content to match needs. Speak to your target market in your blog about the legal issues that concern them.

Make readers feel good. If someone posts a thoughtful comment, respond to it with appreciation. If you disagree, do so gracefully.

Give more than you get. Offer readers something of value like a free e-book or newsletter subscription. Post on a regular schedule so your readers are always getting something new from you.

 

How Blogging Can Help You Target the #1 Decision-Maker Market: Women

Overall, women today account for 85% of all consumer purchases including everything from autos to health care:

  • 91% of New Homes
  • 92% Vacations
  • 80% Healthcare
  • 89% Bank Accounts
  • 93% Food
  • 93 % OTC Pharmaceuticals
  • 66% PCs
  • 65% New Cars

American women spend about $5 trillion annually, over half the U.S. GDP.

According to Karen Vogel of The Women’s Congress, “Wealthy boomer women are the marquee players in our country’s culture and commerce. They are educated, have a high income, and make 95 percent of the purchase decisions for their households.”

Marketing successfully to women is all about forming a relationship, according to the experts. Participating in blogging and social media is a great place to start.

BlogHer, Inc., the premium cross-platform media network and publisher for women, recently published this infographic about the blogging and Internet habits of women:


 

Social Media for Attorneys: How To Create an Editorial Calendar for Your Blog

In our Rainmaker Retreat two-day law firm marketing boot camp, I talk about how you can hang everything you do on the Internet to a great blog. Create a blog, post to it regularly with great content, then link those posts to your social media profiles and pages, and watch your traffic and search results improve.

Most attorneys find blogging to be cumbersome because of lack of time and lack of ideas for content. One of the best ways to hurdle both of these stumbling blocks is to create an editorial calendar for your blog. Here’s how:

Create a template. Use a calendar template or an Excel spreadsheet, whatever works for you. Decide how many times per week you will be posting (3-5 times is best) and try to plan at least three months out.

Research content. Take your top keywords and create Google alerts for each one. This will funnel news items on these keywords directly to your inbox. Bookmark leading blogs in your practice area at www.justia.com. Scour legal directory sites like JDSupra and Avvo to see what kind of content is trending for your practice area. Check out www.lawprofessorblogs.com and www.lexmonitor.com for practice area-specific blogs to mine for content ideas.

Schedule content. Fill your calendar with specifics for each posting day, including your topic, potential title and your keywords. Populate your calendar with special events and holidays you could use to theme relevant posts. If you’re publishing a special report or e-book, schedule posts to promote those. Leaving a few holes is fine, and will allow you to capitalize on newsworthy items – your calendar is a flexible tool, not something written in stone.

Now you’re halfway to creating a thriving law firm marketing blog that will help you generate more traffic for your website and leads for your practice. The other half of the equation is, of course, actually writing the content. And if you can’t find time for that, we can certainly help!

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

  • Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:
  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

SEO Basics for Lawyers: How to Be Found Through Social Search

If you want to obtain higher rankings for your website and blog on Google, Bing and other search engines today, there are some things you should be doing online to optimize your sites for social search:

Add original, high quality content to your blog and other social media networks.  As I’ve said many times, Google loves fresh content!  However, it’s not enough for it just to be fresh – it also needs to be original and relevant, and you need to post frequently, at least 3-5 times a week.

Add social sharing to all your online activities.  Adding a “Share” capability to your E-newsletters, website, blog and social networking profiles will help boost your visibility in social search.

Establish a Google+ Profile.  Set up a Google+ profile here and create links to all your social content.  You’ll need a profile on Google in order to use the new Google+1 button, which is Google’s answer to the Facebook “Like” button and is becoming more ubiquitous as awareness of its existence grows.

Use videos and photos.  Video and photo files are more likely to be shared online than text, so be sure your website, blog and social pages contain lots of these files.

Understand the importance of the now.  Google has decided that real-time information is more relevant and rewards content posted on real-time networks like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn with higher search rankings.  If you are a Twitter user, activate your Twitter Location and use social check-ins on Facebook.

Social Search: Bing Adds Yelp Reviews to Its Search Results

Fast on the heels of Google+ Local’s integration of Zagat reviews and review system into Google search results comes an announcement from #2 search engine Bing that it is adding significantly more Yelp review data into its search results pages.

For those unawares, Yelp.com is a leading online resource for consumer reviews of local restaurants and businesses. Bing said that, “With this increased integration, Bing can offer fresher and more reliable reviews so you can do more in your local area.”

It is clear that garnering client reviews is going to be crucial for your SEO efforts, and obtaining those reviews all stems from your ability to micro-manage the client experience. There are four keys to doing this, which I go into extensively during every Rainmaker Retreat:

  1. Standardize the Workflow Process 
  2. Train Your People to Work the System 
  3. Trust Your System 
  4. Start by Focusing on the Client’s Experience of Your Law Firm 

At a Rainmaker Retreat, you’ll not only learn about how to structure your firm to create great client experiences, you’ll also gain invaluable knowledge on how to develop the 7 critical systems every successful law firm needs, how to create law firm marketing strategies in a social media world and advanced search engine optimization strategies for attorneys.

You can visit www.RainmakerRetreat.com to learn more and sign up for one of these upcoming sessions:

July 27-28, 2012 – San Francisco, CA

August 24-25, 2012 – Las Vegas, NV

September 14-14, 2012 – Orange County, CA

 

Google+ for Attorneys: How to Embrace the Review & Reap the Rewards

I blogged earlier this week on Search Marketing for Law Firms: Everybody on Board the Google+ Local...or Else, in which I discussed how Google’s integration of Zagat reviews and review system into search results and its migration of Google Places to Google+ Local shows exactly how seriously Google is taking social signals when it comes to search results.

The fact is, attorneys cannot ignore Google+ and here’s why: when it comes to Internet search, Google owns the playing field.

In the new Google world, social rules. To gain a top listing on Google, you are going to have to have reviews, and lots of them. Of course, you want positive reviews because, after all, the idea is to attract new clients, not put people off.

Attorneys are going to have to embrace the review to reap the rewards of showing up well in search and driving traffic to your website. Here are some tips for doing this:

Just ask.  Most people enjoy sharing their experience with service providers, especially if it’s been a good one.  Just the simple act of asking a client to provide you with a review lets them know what they think is important to you – which makes them feel good.  You can start by contacting your old (happy) clients and asking them to provide a review.

Create great client experiences.  Cultivating a culture of great client service is a must for gaining positive reviews. Think about the greatest customer service experiences you’ve had and try to emulate them in your firm.

Implement a process for getting reviews.  Attorneys need to create a process for making reviews happen. Always look for those moments in your relationships with clients to create a review opportunity – when you have won a case for a client, when you have helped someone avoid litigation – all opportunities for you to generate a great review.

Remember that before they can post a review, your clients must have a Google+ account. Make it easy for them to review you by providing them with information on how to create a Google+ account (they automatically have one if they use Gmail) and how to post a review on Google+.

 

June 27 Webinar: Lessons From Dewey & LeBoeuf: 5 Biggest Reasons Why Law Firms Fail

With the spectacular announcement of the biggest bankruptcy in law firm history, Dewey & LeBoeuf stunned the legal community. Now comes the work of dissecting what went wrong and how their competitors can avoid a similar fate.

On Wednesday, June 27, tune in to this highly interactive webinar, where you will watch nationally recognized law firm marketing expert Stephen Fairley interview Donald Scarinci, Managing Partner of Scarinci Hollenbeck, one of the fastest growing mid-sized law firms on the East Coast and a nationally recognized thought leader on law firm management.

Join the discussion and discover:

  • The 5 biggest reasons why law firms fail and how you can avoid a similar fate
  • How fast growing firms can avoid the pitfalls that brought Dewey & LeBoeuf to its knees
  • How Scarinci Hollenbeck went from relying almost entirely on “word of mouth” marketing to being featured in the Wall Street Journal for their cutting edge approach to social media in less than 6 months
  • What Managing Partners and law firm administrators need to know now to compete
  • Marketing and managing your firm in today’s roller coaster economy
  • A “behind the scenes” case study of how Scarinci Hollenbeck has adapted to the new realities
  • Effective tools multi-attorney firms can use to market a variety of partners and practice areas

The June 27 webinar onLessons From Dewey & LeBoeuf: 5 Biggest Reasons Why Law Firms Fail is scheduled for 11 a.m. PT/Noon MT/1 p.m. CT/2 p.m. ET. 

If the time doesn’t work for you, don’t worry. All registrants will receive a recording of this webinar to watch at your convenience, so be sure to register now.

 

Search Marketing for Law Firms: Everybody on Board the Google+ Local...or Else

A couple of weeks ago, Google replaced its Google Places with Google+ Local. So if your law firm had a Google Places profile, Google moved it to Google+ Local. And if you don’t yet have a Google+ account, this move makes it more important than ever that you do.

That is, if you still want to be relevant on Google. 

What Google considers important in ranking for search is evolving, based on ways that people use the Internet for search. Social counts for much, much more – in fact, a new study by Searchmetrics found that the 5 of the top 6 ranking factors for Google search are firmly rooted in social media:

Google has also found that more and more people are searching by geography, the reason behind the push to Google+ Local. Your search rankings will now be fairly dependent on social media reviews, and Google has changed the way it does that, too.

The new Google review process is now based on the Zagat 30-point scoring system. Last year, Google acquired Zagat and has now integrated its reviewing process into Google+ Local. Also, there are no more anonymous reviews – anyone wanting to review a business now has to have a Google+ account.

With these changes, it is doubly important for attorneys to get clients and peers to provide favorable reviews for their services. Google doesn’t assign a number ranking to your profile until you get at least 10 reviews. This number ranking will have a definite influence on your ranking in organic search; these are the first four listings in a search for Phoenix car accident attorney:

In addition, when a client or peer posts a review for your law firm, it is also shared with their Google+ circle of friends, family and associates.

Click here to learn more about Google+ Local. You may also want to review my previous posts on Google+:

Why Law Firms Need to Claim Their Turf on Google+ & How to Do It

Law Firm Marketing: Why Attorneys Should Care About Google+

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

 

Getting to the Top of Google: The Power of Link Building for Lawyers

Getting to the top of Google for any term related to the legal industry is highly competitive! Now you can get a recording of this recent webinar that will tell you how!

Attorneys spend millions of dollars every year on Pay Per Click (PPC) and banner advertisements, trying to drive more traffic to their website. Far too often it comes down to how much money a law firm has to spend on PPC to outbid their competition.

How are small law firms and solo practitioners supposed to compete when attorneys are spending $20 to $100 per click for keywords?

If you’re thinking, “there must be a better way!” then this webinar is for you!

You will discover a little known secret of how hundreds of attorneys are rapidly increasing their website rankings in 90 to 120 days through building targeted links back to their websites.

Register to receive this recorded webinar now and discover:

  • What an “inbound link” is and why Google loves them
  • One of the fastest ways to get your website blacklisted by Google (make this mistake at your own peril)
  • Link building on the low down-building links on a shoe string budget
  • The benefits of being at the top of the search engine rankings
  • The ongoing debate between “quality” and “quantity” links
  • Selecting the right keywords to go after with your search engine efforts
  • Which directories are worth paying for…and which ones are not
  • The top 5 questions you must ask before you hire any link building company

When you register, you will receive access to the recording of the webinar. Click on this Getting to the Top of Google link now to register!

 

 

Study Reveals How Attorneys Can Increase Word-of-Mouth Referrals

Earlier this week, Search Engine Land released the results of a consumer survey by BrightLocal on local consumer purchasing behavior and there are some insights on how attorneys can turn clients into referral sources both online and offline.

According to the survey of 2,862 consumers, about one-third said they had recommended an attorney. This score is fairly high given the fact that a consumer’s need for an attorney is much less frequent than, say, needing a recommendation for a good restaurant.

This chart shows how word-of-mouth recommendations are slowly migrating online; note that over the past two years, the number of consumers sharing WoM recommendations dropped 2 percent, while recommending via Facebook increased 5 percent:

The top three factors that influence a consumer’s desire to recommend a business to a friend or family member are Reliability and Professionalism (65%), Friendly and Welcoming (45%) and Price (45%):

Also note above that 16% said they make recommendations simply because they were asked to do so – a simple thing so many attorneys fail to do!

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

There are two versions: one for Attorneys in Solo Practice and one for Attorneys in a Small Firm.  Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

7 Steps to Master the Measurement of Social Media ROI

Many business owners (yes, you are a business owner) continue to struggle with how to measure ROI for social media.  As you develop your social media marketing plan, take the time to determine what you want to know. 

Your plan should be able to identify all of your target audiences, the key influencers for those audiences, and your effectiveness in reaching them.  You should be able to track the conversion rate of prospects to clients, the response percentage to your marketing messages, and who is responding to your messaging.

However you choose to measure social media, it is imperative that you have a success metric in mind before you begin. Without some sort of benchmark, determining your ROI is impossible. 

Here are 7 steps to master the measurement of social media ROI:

1. Establish clear marketing goals for your product or brand, and then identify social measurements that directly support those objectives.

2. Organize your measurements and metrics in a logical framework.

3. Take a long-term outlook with social media interactions and measurements. It's a commitment, not a campaign.

4. If hard ROI metrics are difficult to track directly, consider a range of softer metrics that can be linked back to desired business outcomes.

5. Determine a dollar value for clients who choose to opt in and engage with your brand via social networks.

6. In your ROI calculations, don't overlook the value of cost savings that can result from ongoing social listening and tracking.

7. Build the technological capabilities to measure your customers' complete digital footprint-in real time.

One of the hardest ones for most attorneys to grasp is #3 - it's a commitment, not a campaign.  Building a social media presence takes time.  You can't expect to throw up a few blogs and have prospects knocking down your doors.  Create content that is relevant to your targeted prospect, keep pumping it out there, and they will come.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: 8 Reasons Small Firms & Solos Should Publish an E-newsletter PLUS 3 Steps to Get Started

In less than a few hours a month, you can produce an effective electronic newsletter, also known as an “E-newsletter.”

An E-newsletter is a customized electronic newsletter that is commonly used in business, but rarely in the field of law. If you are truly interested in the long-term success and sustainability of your practice, you need to learn how to leverage technology and the Internet to build it.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • The cost benefits of an e-newsletter
  • How to incorporate your e-newsletter with your social networking
  • How an e-newsletter supports your marketing efforts
  • How to get started right away with your e-newsletter
  • And much, much more!

To get your free report now, click here.

 

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: On Twitter, Content Counts

A recent study by Carnegie Mellon University, MIT and Georgia Tech examined more than 43,000 tweets over a two-week period to discover which tweets are largely ignored and which tweets engage an audience.

The findings, unsurprisingly, were that the most disliked tweets were the empty content ones: updates on someone’s mood or what they were doing at the moment, repeating old news and using too many # and @ signs were prevalent dislikes. 

Tweets that ranked high in the “like” category are those that ask a question, share information or link to content that the author has created. 

A new report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project shows that daily Twitter users doubled in the past year, with above-average Twitter use in the 18-24-year-old and African-American categories. In addition, urban and suburban residents are significantly more likely to use Twitter than those in rural areas.

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.

Here are some tips for creating attention-getting tweets:

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

 

Law Firm Marketing: Using Social Trust to Build Your Referral Base

Social networks are being used more and more as personal search engines by people looking for products and services who are using “social trust” as a guide -- and as the infographic below demonstrates, tapping into this phenomenon is critical for practices that thrive on referrals.

Relying on social trust is especially prevalent in the under-30 age group. Tens of thousands of searches are conducted every day on social networks for resources and reviews of products, services, and service providers.  

As we know, all things being equal, people buy from people they know, like and trust. By extension, people trust their personal networks to point them in the right direction.  

This long-time phenomenon of asking your friends and colleagues for a referral has simply gone viral and online. Social networks are quickly multiplying the number of connections a person can ask when seeking a referral to a trusted advisor.  

To capitalize on social trust, you need to be active on social networks, engaging with potential clients and referral sources. If you don’t, you’re missing out on a fantastic opportunity to cultivate referrals. 


How to Build a Facebook Page for Your Law Firm

The latest Facebook stats:

  • 180 million U.S. users – 72% of the people in the U.S. using the Internet use Facebook
  • 901 million worldwide users
  • 526 million daily active users
  • Average user spends 11.5 hours per month on Facebook/20 minutes per session on average
  • 48% of U.S. Facebook users are 18-34 years old
  • 1 of every 5 page views on the Internet in the U.S. occurred on Facebook
  • 10 states account for 52% of visits to Facebook in 2012: California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Georgia, North Carolina.
  • Facebook is the top overall site in the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore, and ranks 2nd in the UK, Brazil, France and Australia.

Are these facts reason enough for you to create a Facebook page for your law firm? Maybe if I also mention the fact that 3 of 4 consumers who hire attorneys use the Internet to either find or check out a lawyer during the search process?

Take some time this weekend and create a Facebook page for your law firm. It just takes a few minutes – the infographic below walks you through it. 

If you don’t have anything to say on your Facebook page, then just share your blog posts. You can link directly to them from your Facebook page.

And if you don’t have a blog? Then click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 


How to Create Law Firm Marketing Videos

If you believe the latest Internet statistics regarding online video viewership, you might think that most Americans are spending a lot of time watching online videos.

And you would be right.

According to comScore Video Metrix data, 181 million U.S. Internet users watched 37 Billion online videos last month (April 2012). This equates to 84.5 percent of the U.S. Internet audience who viewed online video. 

The lion’s share of the video viewing happened on YouTube, which is owned by Google. The average viewer watched almost 22 hours of online video content

So are you using video on your website or in your blog? If not, why not? 

It’s easy to get started with an inexpensive video camera (research shows that viewers will tolerate amateur picture quality, but audio has to be clear), or by hiring a local high school or community college film student to shoot and edit your video. 

Take the top 10 questions you routinely get from clients and create a 1-3 minute video where you answer each one. Be sure to include graphic calls to action with your contact information.

Set up your own page on YouTube and upload your videos, a new one every 2 weeks. Tag them with your keywords in the “Info” section under the video. Here’s a YouTube video that shows you how to set up a YouTube Channel.

No hard-sell! People care about your content – use education marketing to sell them.

Show your personality and let viewers see that you are real.

Transcribe the content of your video under the “Info” tab below each video.

That’s it! You’ve just created an exceptionally powerful marketing and SEO tool for your law firm marketing arsenal.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Looking for more proven tactics from The Rainmaker Institute?
Then subscribe to our FREE monthly e-newsletter. One click of your mouse will take you to our site where you can see the current issue and subscribe to our complimentary monthly e-newsletter that will be delivered to your inbox.  Each issue is chock-full of legal marketing information you can put to use right away. I think you will find the information in every newsletter something you will want to share with your staff to maximize the effectiveness of your legal marketing plan.

 

Internet Marketing for Attorneys: Where to Find and Engage Prospects

When it comes to law firm marketing, one of the most common questions attorneys ask is, “Where can I find good prospects?” These days, the answer is most certainly: online.

The infographic below shows how people spend their time online. U.S. Internet users spend an average of 32 hours a month online – with the largest share of that time, 22 percent, spent on social networking sites. The majority of time people spend online – 63 percent of that 32 hours – is spent engaging in just three activities: social networking, searching and reading content (which doesn’t include emails).

Perhaps one of the most startling statistics is that people spend five times as much time on Facebook than Google – an astonishing 7 hours and 45 minutes every month on Facebook versus one hour and 47 minutes on Google. 

And why is this so meaningful to attorneys? Because people are beginning to use Facebook as a search engine, looking for all sorts of products and services. And when they search for legal services, you can target a Facebook ad to reach them using targeting options like location, age, sex, relationship status, likes and interests, education level, schools they attended, companies where they work, groups they are part of and fan pages they “like”. 

Facebook ads allow you to target very specifically to reach an audience of likely prospects you may not have had the opportunity to reach with any other medium. It is also inexpensive; you can try it out for a week or two for a couple hundred dollars or less.


++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

There are two versions: one for Attorneys in Solo Practice and one for Attorneys in a Small Firm.  Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: 8 Steps to Get You Connected on LinkedIn

As I’ve noted in past posts, LinkedIn is really becoming a must for attorneys who market B2B; here are the latest stats:

  • The most widely used business networking site in the world
  • 161 million active users --- 98 million in U.S. -- as of March 2012
  • Another 1 million people join every 6 days!
  • 40% of LinkedIn members are senior managers
  • All Fortune 500 companies are represented
  • Average household income is $109,000
  • Average age is 41 years

Frankly, it is my opinion that every attorney needs to be on LinkedIn; it’s a fantastic way to connect with referral sources as well as potential clients and build your platform as an expert and leader in your field of practice.  LinkedIn is also a very credible source in the eyes of Google.

Judging from my informal polling, however, many attorneys are still lagging behind when it comes to using LinkedIn for law firm marketing. Here are 8 steps to get you started:

1. Create a comprehensive profile – take your resume and use it all to create your profile. Be sure to use keywords (Google will use your LinkedIn page in search results) and be specific, just as I have done in my profile:

2. Start by connecting with people you know – if you use Outlook or Gmail, LinkedIn will import all your contacts from your email database and compare it with theirs, serving you up a list of your contacts who are already on LinkedIn. Start sending invitations to your contacts to connect with you. Your goal is to surpass the 500 connections mark, which will distinguish you as a “power user” so more people will want to connect with you.

3. Recommend others first, then ask to be recommended – go ahead and provide recommendations for your contacts, then follow up with an email to request they do the same for you.

4. Join groups for attorneys, referral sources & prospects – not only join, but participate! Contribute insights that will help build your reputation.

5. Start a group for your target market – by starting your own group, you get the right to market directly to the members, since LinkedIn allows group administrators to send emails directly to members.

6. Answer questions – another great way to be recognized as an expert.

7. Update your status at least 3x per week – you can use LinkedIn WordPress and Twitter tools to funnel your blog posts and tweets directly to your LinkedIn profile page.

8. List all your events on LinkedIn – someone may want to connect with you offline.

 

New Study Says 3 of 4 Consumers Look for Lawyers Online

New research prepared for LexisNexis by The Research Intelligence Group shows that 76 percent of adult consumers looking for a lawyer used online resources at some point during the search process.

If this surprises you, you are already well behind the curve.

Did you notice the news item last month that AT&T has sold its Yellow Pages business to private equity firm Cerberus Capital in an effort to “jettison shrinking parts of its business”? Yellow Pages revenue shrank 30 percent in just the last two years; the fingers are still doing the walking, they’re just walking over to the computer, smartphone or tablet.

Technology has changed consumer behavior forever and whether you spend your time lamenting or embracing this change will determine how successful your law practice will become. The very basics you need to successfully market your law firm today includes:

  • A website
  • A blog
  • A social media presence across all major platforms: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+
  • Participation on lawyer-centric websites like Avvo, JDSupra, Lawyers.com, etc.
  • An email marketing program
  • A search engine optimization (SEO) program for all of the above

I know that for many of you, this sounds overwhelming. But it’s certainly no more daunting than running a business, which is what you are really doing, even though they didn’t teach you how at law school.

However, just as you learned the law, you can also learn the fundamentals of law firm marketing to take you the rest of the way toward building a successful law practice. You can start by attending a  Rainmaker Retreat, our two-day law firm marketing intensive that give attorneys hands-on, real world training in both the art and the science of legal marketing. 

Our upcoming sessions:

May 18-19, 2012 – Houston, TX

July 27-28, 2012 – San Francisco, CA

August 24-25, 2012 – Las Vegas, NV

You can find out more at www.RainmakerRetreat.com.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

New Study Reveals Best Times for Posting on Facebook and Twitter to Achieve High Click Rates

A new study out last week from Bitly, a link sharing and analytics website, takes a detailed look at how content propagates through social networks and how when a link is posted affects the number of clicks it receives. 

The findings from the Bitly study for Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr posts reveal the best – and worst – times for posting on those three sites (times noted are ET):

The key takeaway from this study is that each social network has its own culture and behavior patterns, and being aware of these can help you publish your content at the right time to reach the most people. 

For more information on optimal posting times, see my previous posts on Social Media for Lawyers: When Is The Best Time to Post on Facebook and Twitter? and Law Firm Marketing: When Is the Best Time to Post to Your Blog?

 

Are Moms in Your Law Firm Marketing Mix?

Happy Mother’s Day! Today we celebrate all those hard-working moms out there, most of whom do double-duty every day, at work and at home. Actually, work and home have blended for lots of moms who are veracious users of social media to stay connected on both fronts.

If you are targeting Moms as part of your law firm marketing program, this Nielsen infographic should be of special interest to you:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Survey Names Top 3 Marketing Tools: Email, E-Newsletters, Social Media

A March survey of U.S. marketing professionals by trade publication Chief Marketer found that when it comes to Internet marketing, email continues to be the most effective tool, followed by e-newsletters and social media:

When it comes to improving organic search results, the marketers surveyed said that the most effective tools for accomplishing this important task were adding social share buttons to their existing websites, optimizing their landing pages for search (SEO) and adding more fresh content more often:

When it comes to email marketing, you need to remember the old maxim, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” To ensure your law firm marketing email grabs your prospect right off the bat, remember these tips:

Test subject lines – remember the ingredients for effective email subject lines: deliverability, actionability, personalization, clarity, brevity and consistency.

Keep it brief – keep the copy short and extend your offer early.

Make it social – include social sharing buttons that allow readers to pass along your content.   Research shows that adding these can increase your click-through rate by 30 percent or more.

Segment your lists – whether it’s by geography, new clients, current clients, prospects or practice area, segment your lists and talk directly to the subjects that interest that segment.

Personalize – not only by name, but also by interest. Make the most relevant offers to those who are most likely to be interested in those specific offers.

Remove distractions – don’t clutter your email newsletter with lots of “fun facts” or other esoterica that distracts from your message.

Strong call-to-action – hit your prospects in the face with a strong call to action in the first part of your email and make it impossible to miss.

Include a P.S. – these are irresistible to most readers, and should be used to reiterate your offer.

Optimize for mobile – research tells us that 70 million Americans access email via their mobile devices every day. Be sure your email messages are optimized for mobile.

For information on creating great e-newsletters, see my previous post on How to Create an Effective Law Firm Marketing E-Newsletter.

 

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: How B2B Law Firms Can Leverage LinkedIn for Leads

As we reported in January, LinkedIn has been found to be 277% more effective in generating leads than Facebook and Twitter. Since LinkedIn is a social network for professionals, it stands to reason that B2B law firms can get the most out of it when it comes to lead generation; here, adapted from a recent HubSpot post, is how:

Link your blog.  If you use WordPress to publish your blog, LinkedIn has a WordPress app that automatically publishes each new post to your LinkedIn profile. You can also use an RSS feed to accomplish the same task.

Share your slides. Your treasure trove of PowerPoint slides contains some great content; why not repurpose them for sharing on LinkedIn? Add a call-to-action and share with LinkedIn’s SlideShare app.

Promote your practice to a targeted audience. Your LinkedIn company page has dedicated tabs you can use to promote your practice. If you have multiple practice areas, create a tab for each one and promote to the target audiences that are relevant – you can target based on industry, location, company size, job function and seniority level.

Create banner ads. LinkedIn has a Product and Service Spotlight feature in its products/services tab area that allows you to create banners that promote your next speech, your free report or whitepaper, or any other service or product you desire. You can use the same targeting feature mentioned previously to promote to the right target audience.

Email your group members. If you have set up a group on LinkedIn, the site allows you to send one email every week to all members. Use this to promote your latest blog post, thought leadership pieces and so on.

Use LinkedIn Answers. LinkedIn Answers lets people ask and answer questions, which provides attorneys with a great platform for thought leadership, networking with influencers and even gathering information on hot topics for your own blog posts. When you answer questions, you can promote your own content as well.

 

Social Media Marketing for Attorneys: Is Facebook Making an Offer You Shouldn't Refuse?

Late last week, Facebook rolled out its Offers marketing platform to U.S. businesses after a four-month test with select retail users. 

Now you can create an Offer on your Facebook Business Page free of charge and it will be distributed to likes/fans in your Page’s news feed. This is a great opportunity to create Offers for free reports, articles, even a free consultation. Click here to find out how to create an offer for your Facebook Page.

I’m not necessarily recommending that you create a Groupon-type purchase offer, although three state bar associations (South Carolina, North Carolina and New York) have weighed in on the daily deals model for attorneys and found them to be OK, according to an ABA Journal article on the subject.

Free reports, white papers or e-books – whatever you want to call these informative downloadable documents – are a wonderful tool for attorneys to generate leads by driving traffic to your website or blog, get sign-ups for your newsletter and engage your followers on social media networks. To create a impactful free report, follow these steps:

1. Identify your prospect’s point of pain. The best reports provide a solution to a problem, so you need to identify what problems are plaguing your prospects – i.e., their “point of pain” – and then provide them with a solution.

2. Give some secrets away. You don’t have to give it all away, but entice your readers with a few secrets so they feel they have something of true value. Secrets are another way of demonstrating your experience and expertise, and that you know what you’re talking about.

3. Be brief. Your report should be 3-10 pages long and should start with a brief summary.

4. Make it attractive. The layout should be easy to read with appropriate graphics and saved as a PDF file for easy download.

Facebook is now providing another great avenue for you to generate leads, build your database and grow your social media following with their Offers marketing platform.

 

Law Firm Marketing: Why Attorneys Should Care About Google+

I only need three little letters to explain why attorneys need to care about – and participate on – Google+: S-E-O.

Here’s why your law firm needs to have a business page on Google+:

  • Google is the #1 search engine in the world
  • A vast majority of people use search for products and services
  • If you are not in the top 10 search results, those people are highly unlikely to find you, making a top rank critical
  • Google now places extra weight on social media links in search results
  • Sites on Google+ tend to be indexed more quickly
  • Receiving +1 links (that’s Google+’s “like” button) helps push your rank higher in search results
  • The more people you interact with on Google+, the better your SEO

This infographic does a good job of explaining the business and SEO benefits that a Google+ business page can provide:


++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Learn How to Get Your Law Firm to the Top of Google at May 16 Webinar

Getting to the top of Google for any term related to the legal industry is highly competitive!

Attorneys spend millions of dollars every year on Pay Per Click (PPC) and banner advertisements, trying to drive more traffic to their website. Far too often it comes down to how much money a law firm has to spend on PPC to outbid their competition.

How are small law firms and solo practitioners supposed to compete when attorneys are spending $20 to $100 per click for keywords?

If you’re thinking, “there must be a better way!” then this webinar is for you!

You will discover a little known secret of how hundreds of attorneys are rapidly increasing their website rankings in 90 to 120 days through building targeted links back to their websites.

Join us and discover:

  • What an “inbound link” is and why Google loves them
  • One of the fastest ways to get your website blacklisted by Google (make this mistake at your own peril)
  • The lowdown on link building on a shoestring budget
  • The benefits of being at the top of the search engine rankings
  • The ongoing debate between “quality” and “quantity” links
  • Selecting the right keywords to go after with your search engine efforts
  • Which directories are worth paying for…and which ones are not
  • The top 5 questions you must ask before you hire any link building company

This one-hour webinar will be held on Wednesday, May 16 at noon PT/3 pm ET. Even if you cannot attend the live webinar, you can still get all this information delivered to you so you can watch and learn at your convenience. Just sign up to receive a recording of my one-hour webinar.

Register by clicking on this link now for the Getting to the Top of Google: The Power of Link Building for Lawyers webinar on Wednesday, May 16 at noon PT/3 pm ET.

 

Time-Saving Tools To Help Busy Attorneys Manage Social Media

Most attorneys I know are too busy to devote the time needed to maintain a good social media presence, yet they very much want to be involved with social media for the lead generation benefits it provides at little or no cost.

One solution is to outsource your social media marketing to a trusted source who you know works with other attorneys. I discussed this recently in my post, Should Attorneys Outsource Social Media Marketing?

Fortunately, there are some great tools that can help busy attorneys manage their social media platforms from just one site. While there are several good tools that help you manage or integrate one or two accounts, there are two sites that provide total management capabilities for about the price of a Starbucks Grande White Chocolate Mocha:

Postling is a one-stop shop that helps you manage all your social media accounts from one dashboard. You can schedule and post your content across all your networks as well as your WordPress blog from the dashboard. Postling then delivers a daily report that aggregates all your social activity right to your inbox – plus, you can respond to any comments left on your blog or social network page right from the daily report email. Postling is also available for iPhone; an Android version is coming soon. You can try Postling for just $1 for the first 30 days and then $5/month after that for up to five social media accounts. 

HootSuite is another popular social media dashboard that provides virtually the same features as Postling but adds analytics as the cherry on top. While the dashboard allows you to monitor all your social media activity, I kind of prefer Postling’s email approach, since I am much more likely to respond to comments that are put in front of me than when I have to search them out. Nevertheless, many people swear by HootSuite for managing multiple social media accounts. There’s a free option with a few options and a $6/mo. option with many more features.

With robust, time-saving social media management tools like these, there’s no excuse for even the busiest attorney not to be engaged in social media.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Connect With Me in May to Learn How to Market Your Way to the Top

May is an incredibly busy month for me; actually, I’m starting it early by being in Chicago this weekend for our Rainmaker Retreat. My trip has been a welcome break from the Arizona heat, and I’m energized by all the eager attorneys and associates who have come to learn the fundamentals of building a lasting law firm marketing program that will push them to the top of their professions.

We’re closing fast on the midway point of 2012 so I ask you, what have you done to ensure your firm’s success this year? There will be plenty of opportunities for you to take a critical step toward your goals by catching up with me either online or in person during May:

Wednesday, May 2: Join me for a 60 minute complimentary call on "The Most Deadly Legal Marketing Mistakes Attorneys Make" and learn a proven Legal Marketing System that has helped 8,000 attorneys convert more prospects into paying clients, and why hundreds of attorneys across the country attend and rave about our 2 day boot camp  "The Rainmaker Retreat".  Capacity is Limited. Learn More  

Friday, May 4: Join me at the Avvo National Convention in Seattle where I will be presenting the closing keynote on "The Lifestyle Law Firm: Lead Generation, Lead Conversion, and Client Retention Strategies for Attorneys.”  The 2012 Avvocating Conference will be held May 3 and 4 at the Bell Harbor Conference Center in Seattle. Cost for the two-day conference is $625 per person. You can get a $100 discount by using the promo code “Rainmaker” when you register at the Avvocating Conference website.

Wednesday, May 16: "Getting to the Top of Google" The Power of Link Building for Lawyers. In this webinar, I reveal how hundreds of attorneys are rapidly increasing their website rankings in 90 to 120 days through building targeted links back to their websites.  Learn More .

Friday, May 18 & Saturday, May 19 – The Rainmaker Retreat comes to Houston! It’s been awhile since we’ve been in the Lone Star State, and I’m really looking forward to this one. If you're struggling to build your legal practice or want to learn a proven law firm marketing system for that has helped more than 8,000 attorneys discover how to generate more referrals and find new clients fast then you owe it to yourself to check out a Rainmaker Retreat. Learn More.

Beyond New Clients: Why Social Media Matters for Attorneys

I frequently write and speak about why social media is an important tool for attorneys when it comes to lead generation. However, a blog post at Hubspot today reminds us that participating in social media is equally crucial to any well-considered law firm marketing program. For example, social media:

Directly impacts your organic search results – search engines are beginning to rank social media presence higher in organic search results. When someone likes your Facebook page or retweets a post on Twitter, it tells the search engines that your site has authority for that subject. The more people who interact with you on social media, the better you show up in organic search results.

Allows you to control your image online – as stated above, Google and other search engines are ranking social media presence higher. You will note that if you enter my name in Google, the first page of results shows three social media sites where I am active:

By actively participating in social media, I maintain control over my online image and help establish my expertise in law firm marketing.

Distributes your content – your blog and website content gets a lot more traction when you retweet or repost on social media sites. This gets your content into the hands of people who may be your target audience – and if they like it or retweet it, it also goes to their spheres of social media influence, people may not know you yet – thereby extending your reach to potential new clients.

Gives you clout and visibility – even if you don’t think your target market is on social media, other people of importance to your practice – colleagues, potential business partners, industry thought leaders – probably are. Social media allows you to make connections that can help build your practice, especially if your competitors are conspicuous by their absence.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Get More Proven Legal Marketing Strategies FREE from The Rainmaker Institute

Then subscribe to our FREE monthly e-newsletter. One click of your mouse will take you to our site where you can see the current issue and subscribe to our complimentary monthly e-newsletter that will be delivered to your inbox. Each issue is chock-full of legal marketing information you can put to use right away. I think you will find the information in every newsletter something you will want to share with your staff to maximize the effectiveness of your legal marketing plan.

 

Social Media for Attorneys: Tips for Getting the Most Out of LinkedIn

Great post at BusinessInsider.com yesterday on unlocking the true potential of LinkedIn. Steve Kovach props up the hood on LinkedIn and shares some of his favorite tips and tricks for getting the most out of this uber-popular business networking site:

LinkedIn Today – LinkedIn Today is a daily digest of news and links from content people are sharing on the site. Scanning this can provide you with some great ideas for your own content generation needs, and your posts may even show up here. Access it from the News tab on your home page.

LinkedIn Signal – build new connections by seeing who is talking about news in your practice area by switching the search bar on your LinkedIn page to “Updates”. Narrow your search by region, company, etc. by checking off the boxes on the left.

Sync with Twitter -- you can sync your Twitter account to your LinkedIn status feed by going to Settings > Profile > Manage Your Twitter Settings.

Add Apps to Profile – you probably already know about JD Supra’s Legal Updates app and Martindale’s Lawyer Ratings app, but there are other apps you can add to your profile that allow you to link with your blog, share presentations, etc. 

Hire Someone – a majority of the Fortune 500 turn to LinkedIn to look for new hires, and you can too at the corporate recruiting page.

Optimize Your Profile – when you create your profile, LinkedIn gives you a default URL with lots of numbers and letters. You can customize your profile (www.linkedin.com/in/stephenfairley), which helps Google bring your name up in search results. To do this, go to your edit profile page and scroll to the "Public Profile" section. Click "Edit" next to the URL to choose a new one.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Join Stephen at Avvocating 2012: Legal Marketing in the Era of Social Media on May 3-4

If you are continuing to struggle in your practice trying to attract new and/or better clients, do yourself a favor and register for the May 3-4 Avvocating Conference in Seattle. 

The conference is themed, Legal Marketing in the Era of Social Media and has an agenda packed with relevant instruction for attorneys who want to learn about law firm marketing for lead generation and reputation management.

Avvo has brought together leading national experts in the fields of social media, SEO, pay-per-click advertising, website analytics and more, as well as practicing attorneys using social media marketing who will share what is working for their practices. Avvo’s General Counsel will also provide a one-hour CLE credited session on Social Media and Attorney Advertising Rules: Ethical Issues.

I will be presenting the closing keynote address, The Lifestyle Law Firm: Lead Generation, Lead Conversion, and Client Retention Strategies for Attorneys, and I will be sharing some secrets for success that I have gained from consulting and training over 8,000 attorneys over the past decade in law firm marketing best practices.

The 2012 Avvocating Conference will be held May 3 and 4 at the Bell Harbor Conference Center in Seattle. Cost for the two-day conference is $625 per person. You can get a $100 discount by using the promo code “Rainmaker” when you register at the Avvocating Conference website.

 

Social Media for Attorneys: How to Leverage Avvo's Marketing Power to Generate Leads

Avvo is a major legal social media site that attorneys should pay attention to, and here are the steps you need to take to ensure you are properly and accurately represented in what has essentially become a lead generation machine for many attorneys:

Claim your profile. This process is free and allows you to update your contact information and add information about you and your law firm.

Put your ENTIRE resume into Avvo. This can go a long way to improving your rating.

Add all the seminars you have given, awards you have received, and articles you have written. These items can also improve your rating. 

Add your photo.  I have heard reports that profiles with a photo are clicked on up to 10 times more than profiles without photos.

Add videos. If you have videos, put them into your Avvo profile. While they won't improve your rating, it will give potential clients who are checking you out online an opportunity to see who you are, how you articulate your answers, and will position you as more of an “expert.” The production quality of your videos does not matter nearly as much as the information you include in them. It's all about education-based marketing—educating your prospects.

Answer user questions. Thousands of consumers ask legally related questions on Avvo every week, and you can weigh in for free.  Please be sure to put a standard disclaimer on each response, i.e., that your reply does not constitute legal advice or the establishment of an attorney-client relationship, etc.

Create Avvo Legal Guides. If you're like most attorneys, you constantly get asked a common set of questions. Write down these FAQs and write a short (1-3 pages) response to each one. Make each question a legal guide and post it on Avvo, which you can do gratis. Keep the questions and answers highly focused on a specific topic. Be sure to add a disclaimer on each guide.

Ask all your attorney friends to endorse you. This can make a big difference in your rating. Just like a referral from another attorney in the real world makes a big impression on a prospect, so having a reference from another attorney or a judge on your Avvo profile can improve your rating.

Ask your clients to write a testimonial for you on Avvo. Client testimonials do NOT have a positive or negative impact on your rating. However, I assure you, potential clients read them! I know several states, like Florida, do not allow the usage of testimonials by lawyers. However, the Florida bar association has “agreed to exempt online directories like Avvo from most of its ad rules” because attorneys cannot control endorsements posted on third party websites like Avvo.

Put your Avvo badge on your website or blog. Avvo allows you to create a “badge” with your profile score on it that links directly to your Avvo profile.

Consider signing up for Avvo Pro. There is a small monthly fee for this ($49.95), but it provides you with all sorts of statistics like, how many people clicked on your profile, searched for your specialty in your geographic area, etc.  You can also advertise on Avvo. I've heard anecdotally from several attorneys who have had some success with an Avvo ad campaign in their local area. So if you have the budget, it's worth testing it out.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Webinar April 25: Learn Social Media Strategies That Will Work for Your Law Firm

Stephen Fairley and Larry Bodine, Editor-in-Chief of Lawyers.com and Martindale.com, will present a complimentary one-hour webinar, Join the Conversation: Social Media Strategies That Will Work for Your Law Firm, tomorrow (Wednesday, April 25) at 9:30 am PT/12:30 pm ET.

This complimentary one-hour webinar will demystify social media for you and explore viable strategies you can use to open up new channels for finding new business and extending reputation to new audiences. Particularly of interest will be real-world examples and sharing of statistics so you know what to expect from your investment of time and resources in social media.

Join the conversation to learn:

  • How to select the social media channels and tools that are right for your firm
  • How to raise visibility and enhance credentials via social media
  • How to create a sustainable, effective blogging strategy
  • How to use social media to attract new talent to the firm
  • How to monitor your presence in social media sites
  • How to leverage social media to differentiate your firm from competitors
  • How to address ethical and legal considerations related to use of social media

To join Stephen and Larry’s conversation about social media marketing for attorneys on Wednesday, April 25 at 9:30 am PT/12:30 pm ET, register online now at http://www.lexisnexis.com/webinar.

 

Law Firm Marketing: Using Social Media to Boost Referrals

A recent survey by the American Bar Association's Legal Technology Resource Center found that 56% of attorneys are already using a social network. Of those networks, LinkedIn is the most popular at 83% and Facebook is second with 68%.

Depending on the demographics of your target market, you may have more success with one social media platform compared to another -- but it is important that you have a presence on them all. 

What many people fail to understand is how people are using social media today.  Social networks are more and more being used as personal search engines.  Google and Bing are wise to this trend, and have integrated social media into their search results – and given social search more weight since they believe what your social media connections think and have to say about what you are searching has more value to you.

Tens of thousands of searches are conducted every day on Facebook for resources and reviews of products, services, and service providers.  When you think about it, this is common sense. When you are looking for a recommendation, what do you trust more -- a Google search or one of your friends who personally vouches for a specific service provider?   

This long-time phenomenon of asking your friends and colleagues for a referral has simply moved online. Social networks have quickly multiplied the number of people someone can ask when seeking a referral to a trusted advisor.  

Connecting with referral sources on social media can also help attorneys increase referral rates. Social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn help you keep tabs on your referral sources, so you can interact with them more frequently. Look for reasons to shoot someone an email or share some of their insights on your own page; this acts as a timely reminder to them that you’re still engaged and keeps you top-of-mind.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: 8 Reasons Small Firms & Solos Should Publish an E-newsletter PLUS 3 Steps to Get Started

In less than a few hours a month, you can produce an effective electronic newsletter, also known as an “E-newsletter.”

An E-newsletter is a customized electronic newsletter that is commonly used in business, but rarely in the field of law. If you are truly interested in the long-term success and sustainability of your practice, you need to learn how to leverage technology and the Internet to build it.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • The cost benefits of an e-newsletter
  • How to incorporate your e-newsletter with your social networking
  • How an e-newsletter supports your marketing efforts
  • How to get started right away with your e-newsletter
  • And much, much more!

To get your free report now, click here.

 

How to Leverage Your Legal Expertise by Using Social Media

In school, everyone knew who the cool kids were, the leaders who influenced what you wore and how you talked and even how you thought.

Life is not so very much different now than it was then. Except now, we call them “industry leaders” or SuperLawyers. And you find them all over social media, extending the reach of their influence to vast audiences.

So how do you grab a piece of this action? 

The most important thing in building your reputation online is to know your target market. Then, you focus on the social media networks that reach that market. The infographic below does a good job of helping you figure that out:

Facebook: By far the largest social media network with 845 million users, Facebook appeals to a young demographic, skewing slightly more male than female. Good targets for DUI attorneys.

Twitter: Does it surprise you to see that the largest age group on Twitter is 31-49?   Twitter is great for driving people to your blog or published articles on topics they care about.

LinkedIn: Audience demographics are pretty well split between men and women, and skewing slightly older, with 35-44 and 45-54 the two largest age groups on LinkedIn. This site allows you to post and link to your blog and articles, and join groups to spread your influence far and wide.

Google+: Predominantly tech-savvy male users; Google+ lets you organize your contacts into “circles” to help you target different content to different interest groups. 


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal

One of the secret tools of Internet marketing for attorneys is the power of having a targeted blog. In a report on the influence of blogs, eMarketer.com found that 51% of Internet users in the U.S. (that’s over 91 million people) read blogs, and they project that usage will go to 60% (150 million) in the next four years!

Still think blogs are a fad?

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • Why you must have a blog in order to stay relevant
  • 3 keys to successful blogging
  • 7 Guidelines for achieving ROI
  • Your 3 choices for managing your blog and social media efforts
  • And much more!

Click now for your FREE REPORT: How to Use Blogs as a Secret Weapon in Your Online Arsenal.

 

Free Webinar April 25: Learn Social Media Strategies That Will Work for Your Law Firm

You do not want to miss this.

One week from today, I will be teaming up with Larry Bodine, Editor-in-Chief of Lawyers.com and Martindale.com, to present a complimentary one-hour webinar, Join the Conversation: Social Media Strategies That Will Work for Your Law Firm.

Despite the potential of social media to uncover new channels of business, enhance the credibility of attorneys and strengthen reputation, many law firms are still slow to fully embrace social media.

This complimentary one-hour webinar will demystify social media for you and explore viable strategies you can use to open up new channels for finding new business and extending reputation to new audiences. Particularly of interest will be real-world examples and sharing of statistics so you know what to expect from your investment of time and resources in social media.

Join the conversation to learn:

  • How to select the social media channels and tools that are right for your firm
  • How to raise visibility and enhance credentials via social media
  • How to create a sustainable, effective blogging strategy
  • How to use social media to attract new talent to the firm
  • How to monitor your presence in social media sites
  • How to leverage social media to differentiate your firm from competitors
  • How to address ethical and legal considerations related to use of social media

To join our conversation about social media marketing for attorneys on Wednesday, April 25 at 9:30 am PT/12:30 pm ET, register online now at www.lexisnexis.com/webinar.

 

Social Media for Attorneys: LinkedIn Rolling Out New Content Marketing, Reporting Features

Last week, LinkedIn announced that it would be rolling out new content marketing and reporting features for its Company Pages that allows businesses to more directly target their content and see who is following their posts:

Targeted Updates – this new feature will allow you to choose whether your update goes to all followers or a targeted audience. You will be able to segment your followers by industry, company size, job function, seniority and geography. You can also choose to include or eliminate your own employees from receiving the update. Plus, 24 hours after your update is posted, you will be able to see metrics for your post, including number of impressions, clicks, shares and engagement statistics.

Follower Statistics – adds a new layer of reporting on your followers, including demographics, engagement levels, update impressions, total following, recent followers and monthly reporting on new followers. 

Here’s a short video from LinkedIn that explains these updates:

These new features are being slowly rolled out to all LinkedIn Company Page users over the next few months, so stay tuned.

Earlier this month, LinkedIn made it easier for you to choose which LinkedIn groups to participate in with Group Search. A simple keyword search will show you which groups each person in your network is already participating in, making it easier to decide on the most relevant groups for your practice.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Stop Wasting Precious Time and Money

Feel like you don’t have time for marketing?  Let us show you how to make a plan that runs on “autopilot” – one that attracts new and lucrative clients while you focus on your practice.

Learn how easy it can be to create an effective law firm marketing plan that performs by getting our Free Guide: 5 Easy Steps to Create Your Law Firm Marketing Plan

After working with many ultra-successful lawyers we found five common threads in their marketing plans. This guide outlines these shared elements to provide insight into strategies that work and how to make them work for you.

There are two versions: one for Attorneys in Solo Practice and one for Attorneys in a Small Firm.  Click here to download, and start using these proven strategies today!

 

Social Media for Attorneys: How Social Media Affects SEO

I am speaking today at the Arizona Bar’s 2012 Minority Bar Convention on Demystifying the Secrets of Social Media for Attorneys: Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter.

Social media is increasingly being integrated into search engine results, and clearly needs to be part of your law firm marketing SEO strategy. Here are some tips on how to boost your law firm marketing SEO with social media:

Select SEO-friendly names. When you set up your social media accounts, think of what your prospects would use to search for you, and use the most relevant term(s).

Keep it professional. When you’re using any social network to further your business goals, be sure you keep it professional and relevant. Post about things that are top-of-mind to your prospects, using relevant keywords.

Link. Put links to your websites and blogs in your social media profiles. Include links to topical blog posts and promote on your social media networks, which will drive more traffic to your website and/or blog, thus helping your SEO.

Promote. Add social share buttons to your websites and blogs and ask people to follow you. Be sure to link to all your social media accounts from your email signature.

Here is an insightful infographic to help you understand how social media affects SEO:


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE "Top 10 Mistakes Attorneys Make and How to Avoid Them" E-book

In a newly revised e-book, legal marketing expert Stephen Fairley outlines 10 of the most common marketing mistakes attorneys make that can lead to the failure of their business, and provides specific strategies and proven principles for avoiding these deadly errors. 

To get your complimentary copy online, click here.

Regardless of your specific situation, this free e-book will help you examine how you are currently finding new clients and recommend specific steps you can immediately start using to grow your practice. 

We have helped thousands of attorneys achieve their goals of creating a financially successful and personally satisfying legal practice. In this e-book you will discover specific principles and tools you can use to grow your practice, too.  

 

 

How to Turn Your Law Firm Marketing Blog Into a Lead-Generating Machine

Attorneys are compensated (generally speaking) for their expertise in solving problems. Breaking off little bits of that expertise and posting it on your law firm marketing blog is creating something of value, for which you hope to be compensated for one day (via new clients, industry recognition, etc.).

Which is why it is important that your law firm marketing blog have a strategy behind it and a way to measure results. Your time is money, so you really shouldn’t be wasting either, right? 

I came across an insightful post by Michael Stelzner over at SocialMediaExaminer.com a couple of days ago, giving tips on how to become a top blog in your industry. I think what he had to share is worth passing on to attorneys who blog and those who should be:

Address the interests of your target market. If you’ve been practicing law for awhile, you should already know the problems that face your target market. Each problem becomes a database of ideas from which to draw your blog subject matter. Sprinkle your posts with your insights and experience and you create something of value to potential clients.

Add other voices. Many of the most popular blogs have multiple authors. If you have partners and associates, ask them to contribute. If it’s just you, seek out other experts --- perhaps strategic referral partners like CPAs, accountants, bankers, etc. – who would be willing to contribute to your blog. If you view your blog as a publication for the benefit of your target market, you begin to see more possibilities for adding valuable content from others.

Include social sharing. In order to grow your law firm marketing blog, you need others to help spread the word, and social sharing is how you enable that process. Be sure your blog has embedded social sharing buttons that let your readers share your posts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other sites, like we do on The Rainmaker Blog:

Capture email addresses. Email is still the #1 marketing tool for lead generation and will help you nurture repeat visitors to your law firm marketing blog. We have a standalone email sign-up form on our blog encouraging visitors to sign up for our monthly email newsletter and you should, too.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Free Report: 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys From Building A Referral-Based Practice

Referrals are the lifeblood of many law practices, and building a good referral program takes a proven process.  Stephen Fairley unveils the 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice in his new free report.  Read and discover:

  • How to determine the best source for your referrals
  • How to explain your ideal target market to a referral source
  • How to get referrals from other attorneys
  • Whether online directories are a good referral source
  • How to network effectively
  • And much, much more!

Click now for your free report on 4 Myths That Keep Attorneys from Building a Referral-Based Practice.

 

Law Firm Marketing: How to Start a Social Media Marketing Program

OK, so you’re finally ready to jump in and bring your law firm marketing into the 21st century with social media. So where do you actually start

First, of course, is to establish your law firm’s presence on the leading social media networks for attorneys – Facebook, LinkedIn, Avvo, Twitter, YouTube and Google+. Recognizing your time and financial resources are finite, here are the top three things you can do to kick off your social media marketing program:

1. Identify your target market’s problems. What are the problems facing your target market? You should have a pretty good idea from your own practice. You can also use social media to monitor the latest conversations by doing Google and Twitter searches for key industry terms, creating an RSS feed/Google alert for each search and monitoring those searches daily to identify the hottest topics in your field.

2. Build your reputation as an expert. Once you’ve gleaned some of the hot topics that interest your target market, you need to provide the answers to their problems. Write a blog post on each topic, then extend the power of that post by linking to it from your social network pages.

3. Connect with other thought leaders. Use Google Blog Search and Tweet Grader to search out top-ranked thought leaders in your practice area, then subscribe to their blogs, Twitter feeds, Facebook pages, etc. Respond to their posts now and then with content that adds value.

Of course, the best way to jump start your law firm’s social media program is to attend one of our upcoming Rainmaker Retreats:

April 27-28, 2012 – Chicago, IL

May 18-19, 2012 – Houston, TX

July 27-28, 2012 – San Francisco, CA

At a Rainmaker Retreat, you will learn the strategies highly successful attorneys are using right now on the Internet and with social media to attract hundreds of people to their websites and blogs every month, convert them to paying clients, and keep them coming back and sending a steady stream of referrals.

For more information, visit www.rainmakerretreat.com.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FREE REPORT: 8 Reasons Small Firms & Solos Should Publish an E-newsletter PLUS 3 Steps to Get Started

In less than a few hours a month, you can produce an effective electronic newsletter, also known as an “E-newsletter.”

An E-newsletter is a customized electronic newsletter that is commonly used in business, but rarely in the field of law. If you are truly interested in the long-term success and sustainability of your practice, you need to learn how to leverage technology and the Internet to build it.

Here’s what you’ll discover when you read this report:

  • The cost benefits of an e-newsletter
  • How to incorporate your e-newsletter with your social networking
  • How an e-newsletter supports your marketing efforts
  • How to get started right away with your e-newsletter
  • And much, much more!

To get your free report now, click here.

 

Law Firm Marketing: Should Attorneys Outsource Social Media Marketing?

A few days ago, I posted on Social Media Examiner’s release this past week of their 2012 Social Media Marketing Industry Report (which you can find at Majority of Marketers Say Social Media Generates Leads, Increases Website Traffic & Exposure).

While digging into the data, I was particularly interested in seeing that in the past three years, outsourced social media marketing has grown from 14% in 2010 to 28% in 2011 to 32% in 2012. Thankfully, we have seen the benefits of that growth, as have some others in the law firm marketing sector.

So should busy attorneys outsource their social media marketing? Ask yourselves these questions before you decide:

1.  Can social media marketing drive your business growth?  It doesn’t make sense to spend time and money on something that won’t have a positive impact on your practice.  When considering participation in social media, attorneys should study their target markets first to see if this is a medium they can engage them on. 

2.  How well is your social media working today?  If you’ve already launched a social media initiative as part of your law firm marketing program, how’s it going?  Are you finding enough time to engage online with potential clients?  Or is it a chore that you dread facing each day?  If it’s the latter, and social media is important to you, you should consider outsourcing it.

3.  Could outsourcing free up your time to focus on your business?  Social media takes time, and small firms and solos usually don’t have much of that to devote to something other than client work and running the business.  If all your time is taken up with focusing on what you can’t outsource, you should consider outsourcing your social media to someone who can be just as effective at it – or more – than you are.

4.  How do you measure ROI?  Make sure you have measurable goals if and when you outsource your social media so you can see if you’re getting the bang you want for your buck.

And a note of caution: if you choose to outsource your social media program, make sure they have experience working with attorneys.  Keeping you “clean” in terms of the ethical standards attorneys are required to adhere to in their law firm marketing practices is critical.

When you interview a legal marketing company, be sure they meet these criteria:

  • They can point to other attorneys they work with;
  • They have a written blueprint for how they intend to generate leads for your law firm;
  • They clearly integrate blogs and social media and see one as an extension of the other;
  • They charge a flat fee that’s reasonable based on results;
  • They have clearly identified strategies to track and measure actual results from your blog and social media.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

April 12 Webinar: 5 Internet Marketing Mistakes Your Law Firm Can't Afford to Make

On Thursday, April 12 at 11 a.m. PT/2 p.m. ET, I will conduct a live one-hour webinar on 5 Internet Marketing Mistakes Your Law Firm Can’t Afford to Make: Secret Strategies Top Rainmakers Use with Their Website & Blog to Generate High Quality Leads

The Internet is one of the most cost effective lead sources for attorneys today. During this fast-paced webinar, you will learn how 7-figure attorneys are using the Internet, search engine optimization (SEO), their websites and blogs to find more and better clients for their law firm.

Attendees will discover:

  • The 5 rules for effective Internet marketing for attorneys
  • Do’s and Don’ts: the intersection of ethics and online marketing
  • 2 critical keys to getting your website on the front page of Google
  • How to avoid the most common pitfalls and mistakes attorneys make with their websites
  • Lead conversion pages: how law firms are converting 10-30% of website visitors into qualified leads
  • 3 most important goals of your website & blog
  • The “secret weapon” of Internet marketing for law firms

Have a time conflict? No problem. Sign up and receive a recording of this one-hour webinar to watch at your convenience.

Register online now for my one-hour webinar on 5 Internet Marketing Mistakes Your Law Firm Can’t Afford to Make: Secret Strategies Top Rainmakers Use with Their Website & Blog to Generate High Quality Leadson Thursday, April 12 at 11 a.m. PT/2 p.m. ET.

 

Have All The Law Firm Marketing Strategies To Create a 7-Figure Law Practice Delivered to Your Door

If you know anything about online marketing and the Internet, you know that nothing stays the same for very long. Things that were effective last year now don’t work at all. Tricks that got your website on the first page of Google search results six months ago are old hat and ineffective.

Fortunately, we’re staying on top of the trends and cutting edge strategies for you. We have one aim in mind – to teach you how to use these little known strategies so you can get more and more qualified leads and dominate your marketplace; to help you create the law firm of your dreams.

In our recently released Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2 DVD set, you will find:

8 Proven Steps for More & Better Referrals
-- Do you have a referral plan? An actual written plan where you can measure your success? Discover the proven step-by-step system used to double your referrals from current and former clients and how to build a network of strategic referral partners. Top attorneys have used this exact system to double their referrals in 6 months or less!

7 Strategies to Recession Proof Your Law Firm
-- The recession hit the legal industry incredibly hard! How is it possible that some attorneys are bucking the trends and having their best years ever? Watch and learn as I walk you through the specific strategies top lawyers are using to increase their revenues in this tough economy-and it doesn’t include reducing their fees! You can’t afford to miss these!

6 Keys to Unlocking the Secrets of Social Media
-- Social media has emerged as the fastest way to build a massive platform of prospects! I pull back the curtain and let you in on little known secrets of how attorneys are generating dozens of leads every month from social media. We guarantee you have never seen any social media system like this one!

5 Core Components for Highly Successful Websites & Blogs – Watch my interview with nationally recognized personal injury attorney John Bisnar on how his law firm uses search engine optimization and Internet marketing to drive tens of thousands of unique visitors every month to his 30 websites and 10 blogs. Discover proven techniques for converting website visitors into paying clients.

You will also receive a data DVD that includes all 4 PowerPoint slides for all 4 presentations. We recommend you print all these off and take notes on them as you experience these information-packed DVDs!

Click on this link now to get Rainmaker In A Box: Volume 2 delivered right to your door!

 

Majority of Marketers Say Social Media Generates Leads, Increases Website Traffic & Exposure

Social Media Examiner’s 4th annual Social Media Marketing Industry Report was released this week and finds that social media is working the way most businesses want it to: generating leads, increasing website traffic and boosting brand exposure.

The major findings from the report:

  • 83 percent view social media as important to th