Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Website Design and Marketing for Attorneys, Doctors, and Other Professionals
Below are some questions many clients have when they first contact Foster Web Marketing about the online marketing world.
The questions below may address many initial concerns you may have. If you don't find your answers here, you should contact us for answers to any questions specific to your firm.
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Could an Infographic Be a Powerful Marketing Tool For My Law Firm?
An infographic can be a powerful marketing tool for your law firm - if you take the time to design a thoughtful visual and if you know how to use it to your full advantage once it has been created. Great content on your website will always be rewarded, and a striking visual image that is unique and relevant will be of interest to your readers as well as other people in your field. A great infographic will be shared, linked, and blogged about - but keep in mind that a poorly conceived or slapdash infographic will have little impact. In the same way, a great infographic that is not properly marketed won't result in better traffic and exposure for your attorney website, either.
How can you help get your law firm infographic noticed on the web?
Write a blog post about your infographic.
Share your infographic with industry bloggers.
Write a press release about your infographic.
Share your infographic on Flickr.
Share your infographic on social networking sites.
Make a PDF of your infographic available for download.
Would you like to develop an eye-catching and relevant infographic to help market your law firm and attorney website? Let us help. Here's an infographic we created for our own marketing purposes: The Road To Social Media Success.
Are reciprocal links really a bad thing for my lawyer website?
They are certainly not the best thing for optimal attorney web marketing, but they are better than no links at all. A reciprocal link is when a site links to your practice site, and your site also has a link to their site. Sometimes these are known as these are known as "link swaps," "link exchanges," or "link partners."
- When the reciprocal links do not appear on the link page.
- They have the "smell" of an arranged link scheme or a trade.
- When the other site is not as reputable as your site
- A reciprocal link has a natural reduced value
- When reciprocal links are shared between related sites
- They do have the ability to increase traffic
- Good, solid links (think quality over quantity) can boost your rankings in search engines
- As stated above, they are better than nothing!
Be smart about your reciprocal links. Check out the sites you want to exchange links with, and make sure they are complementary to your site and of good quality. Then, place their link on one of your internal pages, not your home page. Next, email the owner of the reciprocal site, compliment their site, and ask if they will link back to your page. Remember, your reciprocal link partners should make sense. The other sites should be natural and within a related community. Do not let reciprocal links be the only links that bring in traffic or affect your attorney web marketing.
Why do lawyers need video on their website and on YouTube?
Videos are an excellent way to spark interest and traffic on your website. If the video is displayed on YouTube, this will help direct users to your site. Once on the site, be sure to have more videos, whether they are viral, conversion, or educational. They all work and will benefit you!
This type of marketing is needed because it will provide unique users to your site, and it will also provide a constant user. A future client is more likely to stay on your site if a video is provided. If your video is two minutes of education, you have just received high marks from Google's Panda tool. It is excellent to have unique users and garner traffic, but it is even better to create loyalty. Videos help make this happen.
Videos also have a way of adding credibility to your lawyer web marketing, especially when it is an educational video. This allows the user to learn from you. If the video is well put together and does not look like a quick 15-second clip from a camera, your information will appear relevant and useful. The future client now looks to you as someone with their needed information and establishes you as the expert. This makes your site and your practice the solution to their problem.
Video Is Personal
This way of communication drives your site into the 21st century and, despite the use of technology, it is more personal to the user. They see your face, hear your voice, and listen to your expertise all before stepping foot into your firm. Video will set your web marketing apart from other firms and lawyers who do not use public speaking as a way of connection. Use video as a way to establish your authority, expertise, and credibility.
How Can I Position Myself as an Expert in My Practice Area?
Education marketing is based on a few simple principles. One of them is that by positioning yourself as an expert in your field, you can work less and charge more. But how do you go about doing this?
The first thing you should do is establish a web presence that is loaded with very informative articles, blogs, frequently asked questions, and videos. As part of your web marketing, you should use your extensive knowledge of your practice areas to write a book. If you don't have time to write a book, you can hire someone to ghostwrite it for you. Published authors are always considered authorities in their industry. This applies to attorneys more than other fields. People take hiring a lawyer very seriously and want as much information as they can get. If you are the one providing it, you become an expert in their eyes.
You will need to get your books into the right hands. First, you should offer it for free to your website visitors. You should also consider other places that might find it useful. For example, if your practice focuses on bicycle and pedestrian accidents, give a case of books away to a local bike shop to give away to their customers.
Authors also attract media attention. This can result in interviews for local publications and television stations. Becoming an expert in your local community is a great first step to becoming a national expert. For more information about book writing and turn-key marketing solutions, call Foster Web Marketing today at 888-886-0939.
Should your law firm hire a marketing director?
Depending on how involved you are in your marketing, you may find that you need some help. Foster Web Marketing offers plans for lawyers who want to hand their web marketing off to someone else, as well as tools for the do-it-yourselfers.
If you like marketing and want to be involved in the marketing of your law firm, you will likely find that it's hard to balance practicing law with marketing your firm effectively. You may even consider hiring someone to help you. We'd strongly recommend getting yourself some help, but you'll need to make sure you hire the right person for the job.
First, consider what kind of help you need. If you want to really explode your practice, you might consider hiring someone with 5-10 years of internet marketing experience. They should have strong copywriting skills and be highly motivated, energetic, and able to take complete control over your firm's marketing.
This may not be realistic yet for your firm. Attorneys like Ben Glass take advantage of local universities to hire interns. If you screen them properly, interns can help your marketing tremendously. The trick is to find the good ones. Give them a test before you hire them. This test could be as simple as writing an article about a legal matter or as complex as writing a follow-up sequence. You want to know if they are intelligent, can learn quickly, follow directions, and meet deadlines. For more information on hiring marketing help and sample job listings, email our marketing director Zach.
What is the difference between inbound and outbound marketing? Where does attorney Web marketing fit in?
"Outbound marketing" includes print ads, television ads, cold calling, trade shows, and email blasts. While good in the past, these techniques are now outdated due to technology. Outbound marketing does not speak to a specific group and it interrupts those who may not even need your services. How many have hung up on a telemarketer during dinner or thrown away a flier left on the windshield?
"Inbound marketing" instead targets people who are already looking for your services. This type of attorney Web marketing uses the technology that the majority of people use - the Internet. Inbound marketing includes: blogs, Ebooks, YouTube videos, search engine optimization, webinars, and feeds. Without interruption, future clients search the legal advice they are seeking. Your page pops up on the search engine, they click, and on your home page includes information about your free book. The future client decides to order the book, and his or her name is added to your lead database.
Inbound makes sense, especially during this economical time, because your marketing is cost effective and efficient. It is cost effective because there is no need to buy ad space, booth space, or higher telemarketers. It is efficient because your videos, blogs, etc., are seeking out specific individuals who are searching specific keywords.
Though your marketing comes from you and your team, when using inbound, your future clients' perception is that they made the choice to click on your webpage rather than be pushed to use your services through a barrage of fliers, phone calls, or pesky "salesmen" at a trade show. To further your attorney Web marketing, use inbound marketing to receive the benefits: effectiveness, efficiency, and esteem.
For information on how we can help you with your Internet marketing needs, contact us today by calling 888.886.0939 or filling out our online form.
Be sure to order our FREE report, The 5 Biggest Mistakes 99% of Lawyers Make With Their Websites!
Does My Website Need Facebook's "Like" and Twitter's "Tweet" Buttons?
The short answer is YES, but you may wonder why you really need social media sharing buttons on your website. Each time a web visitor clicks the "Like," "Tweet," or "+1" button, it is a natural, organic way of saying "Hey this is good stuff!" Facebook, Twitter, and search engines try to use this data to rank you in search engines and provide accurate ads for you on their sites.
In addition to data gathering, people trust their friends and followers on social media sites. When you share an article or blog post on a social network, it has a chance to be seen by thousands of people. It automatically creates a link back to your site that could be followed by any friend or follower of the person that "liked" it. Social media is proven to drive targeted traffic to websites that integrate on every page of their site.
It's very easy to add sharing buttons to your website. Just go to AddThis.com and sign up for an account. They will walk you through the very simple process of getting Facebook, Twitter, and Google +1 buttons on your site. If you are Foster Web Marketing client, you already have them! For more information on social media, get a free copy of our book Secrets of Social Marketing for Attorneys Revealed: Mission 101.
Why Do Lawyers Need to Use YouTube?
It is a fact that lawyers are getting cases from the videos they have posted online. It is also a fact that people think lawyers are intimidating, untrustworthy, and overwhelming. You may not like to hear that, but it's the truth. Video is your chance to change their perception and, if done properly, encourage them to pick up the phone and call your office.
You have likely heard about the Google Panda update, which has recently hurt many websites that publish "spammy" content. Studies have shown that since the Google Panda update, sites like YouTube are up to 18% more visible in Google search results.
Google is tracking the activity of visitors on your site and using that data to decide if it's worthy of top page ranking. How much time a user spends on your site is among the data they are tracking. Video is one of the best ways to keep visitors on your site longer. In addition to adding "Google juice" to your site, video builds trust with potential clients. Many of our clients note that when new clients come to their office, they feel like they already know each other because of their videos.
To learn more about how to get your firm found on YouTube and turn those viewers into clients, check out "The Small Business Guide to YouTube."
When sharing my personal information on the internet, how much is too much?
It doesn't matter whether you're posting comments on your personal or professional social media pages when it comes to sharing too much information. Just be sure that there's nothing that would deter possible prospects coming to the door of your legal firm. In fact, think of all posts as communication that directly affects your legal web marketing and your practice, and you'll be just fine.
Ask yourself these questions when posting information on Facebook, Twitter, or other legal web marketing outlets:
- Is your post friendly, interesting, and professional? Remember that social media is a place to let your hair down while still attracting potential clients.
- Would you feel comfortable directing clients or even your mother or father to your posts?
- Are you cognizant that the information you post online today will be available for a very, very long time, even if you try to remove it? The online risk protection company Symantec calls this phenomenon a "digital tattoo."
- Have you checked your privacy settings recently? Do it often, as the settings morph without warning.
If you feel like your web marketing strategy needs a boost, give the internet marketing experts with Foster Web Marketing a call for a consultation at 888-886-0939. Also, be sure to take a look at our book Explode Your Practice through Internet Marketing.
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