Did you know that the biography section on a law firm’s website accounts for nearly 50% of total page views? That’s more than the home page, law firm info or even the contact section. Online bios are what make or break a lawyer’s web presence as they connect to potential clients and can prove itself invaluable as it brings in business on a regular basis.
Unfortunately, most lawyer bios are pretty bad. They often over compensate with endless lists of schools, accomplishments, cases, and every legal matter they have ever dealt with. Here are a couple key issues with lawyer bios, and a few suggestions on how to address them:
The Likability Factor
Although qualifications, education and experience are important to clients when selecting representation, it is most important that they like you. If they don’t immediately like you, they will not hire you. It is incredibly important that a lawyer’s online bio reflects an actual human being instead of just a list achievements and facts. Studies have shown that customers buy from people they like, trust and they think know (in that order). So does it make sense to focus on how much an attorney knows? Expertise is important, but won’t mean anything if you don’t come off as a real, likable person. Including a picture in the biography is an important addition. A headshot from a professional photographer with a smiling face can engage potential clients and encourage them to want to build a relationship. A photo that depicts a friendly face is a key addition to any website bio.
Writing a likable bio isn’t an easy task, which is why appealing lawyer bios are hard to find. When talking with lawyers, they often display strengths such as loyalty, being well-networked, passion for a certain area of law, and charisma, but these features are hardly ever covered in bios. This needs to change in order to appeal to potential clients.
The Evolving Lawyer
Another downfall of many attorney bios is the fact that they are outdated. It’s the year 2011, and although law is a timeless area of study, it is imperative that firms stay up to date with technology. Featuring a biography that hasn’t been updated in years is not smart business. Potential clients are interested in what lawyers are doing now, including latest articles or presentations they have made, recent cases they have won, and proof that they are still alive and practicing. A video is a good way to kill two birds with one stone. Not only does a web video prove that they are up to date with technology, but it engages audiences and gives an opportunity to display knowledge and expertise of the law.
Another good move is to include icon links to professional social networking sites like LinkedIn and Twitter. This shows that the firm is engaging in current social media and gives the potential client a chance to connect with the lawyer without the formality of a face to face interaction.
The Niche Market
If you look at many attorney bios, you will notice one thing off the bat: a laundry list of accomplishments. Lawyers often try to do too much, offering a wide array of services for everyone. The beauty of living in a global economy is the opportunity for lawyers and other professionals to cater to a niche market and succeed. Lawyers should be encouraged to practice a specific area of law, which their bio can focus on. The Pareto principal says that 80% of business comes from 20% of our clients. This is a system lawyers should follow in terms of where to focus their attention and efforts. It is a good idea for lawyers to focus on the highly profitable 20% of their clients that bring in most of their business instead of fretting about the other less-profitable 80%. The world of online marketing can be extremely competitive and if a lawyer doesn’t have a clear and specific focus, it’s likely that they will get lost in the shuffle.
In this new age of online marketing, it is crucial that law firms do what they can to capture the attention of the online audiences who are seeking their services. Neglecting the biography section of their webpage is turning away to half of the potential clients who are interested in your firm. If your bio needs assistance, or if you are just looking for more information about marketing your firm online, call the internet marketing specialists at TheeDigital at 919-341-8901, or just fill out our contact form.