Is One Online Presence Enough?

Clear & Convincing Feature Article

Is One Online Presence Enough?

Let’s start with the assumption you have created a dynamic and engaging profile on our SBM Member Directory. You are certain it will attract potential clients. Does that mean you can sit back, relax, secure in the belief that your online presence is complete?

No, probably not. One stop on the Internet thoroughfare doesn’t complete your marketing journey. You need more than one to raise your ranking in the search engines, making it easier for prospective clients to find you.

Your first stop is to look at your profile. To make it stand out, add links to your digital life such as your website, articles you’ve published, case decisions, interviews, awards, pro bono work, and your social networking pages. Next look at the other legal directory listings such as Martindale-Hubbell or FindLaw. Most are incomplete and need to be updated. Being listed in several directories will look good to Google’s robots, increasing your page ranking and causing you to move up in the listings.

Now, create or rejuvenate your website. Like your physical office, your online presence can occasionally use an uplift.

  • Make it client focused with educational content
  • Create and check links to other informative sites
  • Give visitors something to download such as a booklet on “Estate Planning for Your Pet,” being careful to present legal information so as not to be classified as “legal counsel.”

And, last, decide on how or if you will use social media.

Social media, as defined by Wikipedia, are computer-mediated tools that allow people to create, share, or exchange information, ideas, and pictures/videos in virtual communities and networks. Examples are Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, or LinkedIn. Social media builds consumer loyalty by connecting and communicating with your audiences.

It’s an understatement to say that lawyers and legal marketers are busy people. A shortage of time and interest could cause lack-luster results for your social media sites. Maybe social media should not be viewed as  “must have” but seen as a way to achieve clearly defined marketing goals.

Lawyers with niche practices such as bankruptcy, transportation, aviation, or animal law, can update a Twitter or Facebook account quickly with new information that might interest their followers. This can lead to a conversation, which could lead to a client visit and more work for the firm. Success should not always be judged by the number of followers but by the quality of the conversations with those followers.

Even though everyone doesn't need to use social media, LinkedIn is one social network where you should be present. It is the place where people go to find information about you. It ought to be reviewed frequently to be sure the information is current.

The more places you can be found on the Internet, the higher your search engine rankings and the easier it will be for your clients and consumers to find you. And, the quicker your business will grow.

Roberta GubbinsRoberta Gubbins has served as the editor of the Ingham County Legal News. Since leaving the paper, she provides services as a ghostwriter editing articles, blogs, and e-blasts for lawyers and law firms. She is the editor of Briefs, the Ingham County Bar Association e-newsletter, and The Mentor, SBM Master Lawyers Section Newsletter.

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