Your law firm probably has an account on a plethora of locations online, from various social media accounts like Google+ and LinkedIn, to listings on Yelp and Local.com. In this day and age it just makes sense to have these various accounts in order to build your online reputation, find new clients, and increase your overall presence. With any reputation though, comes negativity from time to time. So how does your law firm respond to negative online reviews?
How To Respond To Poor Reviews Of Your Law Firm
Due to attorney-client privilege, one of the stickiest situations for lawyers is deciding whether or not they should respond to a negative review online. Since communication that occurs between a lawyer and a client are confidential unless the client has that privilege waved, if you respond, you risk exposing confidential information. On the flipside, if you say nothing, your silence could be taken as confirming the accusations as true. So what do you do? We will help guide you through the best way to respond to negative reviews for you law firm.
Respond To The Negative Online Review In A Respectful And Professional Manner To Client
If a client posts information that is recognizably inaccurate, it is reasonable to request such client to take down the negative review. It is absolutely rational to post a public response that says to the effect of, “As Mrs. Smith’s attorney — and therefore bound by attorney-client privilege — I am unable to respond to her accusations without violating client confidentiality. Nonetheless, I take issue with Mrs. Smith’s allegations and maintain that my actions were both ethical and legal.” In most cases it is important to address the review while you must not get yourself into attorney-client privilege issues, it is beneficial to address any fallacies in the review. By responding to the negative review you are giving your law firm that chance to voice your opinion on the subject to the rest of the world. Many customers will look at reviews of law firms before hiring an attorney so it is important to make sure they aren’t scared away from your website because of one review. Your response will also give you the opportunity to mend the relationship with the former client. This may not lead to them working with you again, but you can make sure they don’t walk away with a sour taste in their mouth.
Request To Discuss The Negative Review In Private With The Client
Another way to handle a negative online review is to request they take the matter offline. Asking the person to call or e-mail you to better address the review is not only reasonable, but deals directly with the problem in a professional manner and shows others who may read the situation that you are trying to solve the issue one-on-one. Even if the client never actually contacts you directly, it is posted for anyone who may see that you were actively trying to remedy the situation. This will show that your law firm cares about your clients and strive to provide all of them with the best possible situation. Just taking a few moments to politely ask negative reviewers to speak with your staff offline is a responsible method of remedying the situation.
Remain Calm When Your Law Firm Receives A Bad Review Online
Keep in mind that many times people use online avenues as a source to vent, and there’s not much more to it than that. If you handled the negative review respectfully and showed an attempt to remedy the situation professionally, at that point all you can do is keep calm and move on. There is no need to keep feeding fuel to the fire. Remember, no business has 100% of their clients like them 100% of the time. It is okay if you have a bad review every once in a while among a lot of positive feedback. It just shows you’re human. Customers are able to tell when a law firm uses fake reviews based upon if there are only positive reviews. Using fake reviews may have been able to fool customers a few years back but consumers have gotten much more savvy against deceiving marketing strategies.
A few negative reviews won’t be the end of the day for you law firm if you take the correct actions to actively respond and remedy the situation. We highly recommend that you reach out and respond to each negative review instead of ignoring them. By responding you are able to remedy the situation and show potential customers that you care for the success of your clients. It can be stressful to receive negative reviews but there are steps that can be taken to remedy the situation as well as show your value to potential customers. By prioritizing online reputation management, as well as other digital marketing tools such as ppc, seo, and web design for your law firm you will be able to convey a message of authority to your potential clients.
Need Help with Online Reputation Management for Your Raleigh Law Firm?
If you are a law firm in Raleigh and need help with overcoming negative reviews, online reputation management, and digital marketing for law firms, our internet marketing team is here for you. Our team can diligently monitor your name online and make sure you always save face with those clients who get unhappy from time-to-time.how to respond