And The Winner of Best Law Firm Marketing And Social Media Award Is…

Posted by Paul Hajek on Wed, Oct 01, 2014 @ 01:57 PM

Social media award logo 2014   winner 1Autumn is Keats’ time – “the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness”

Autumn happens also to be the start of the Law Firm Awards Season.

Why Should Your Law Firm Enter Legal Awards?

Or to put another way why not recognise the efforts and  successes of those Law Firms who rise above the ordinary and take their law firms to the extra-ordinary.

All the more important in this age of increased competition from big brand Alternative Business Structures.

When your law firm seeks to differentiate itself from its competitors winning awards can be a real beacon to clients and potential clients that you may actually be as good as you say you are.

As most awards are independently judged by experts winning such an award gives credence to your law firm. Winning also gives comfort to existing clients and positive food for thought for potential clients thinking of instructing you.

Who would also eschew that warm glow and dopamine inducing reaction an award can bestow.

The congratulatory handshake is not only a great feeling for the recipient in person at the Award Ceremony but great for staff morale back at the ranch.

Most law firms would cite the positive PR with local, regional and national exposure that winning awards can bring as the most obvious immediate benefit. But, also in this digital age winners can blog, tweet and puff their feathers out to all who will listen and are interested in their award.

And, you should not underestimate the networking opportunities on the Big Night itself. 

The 5th Annual LFS Conveyancing Awards

The LFS Conveyancing Awards are now the National Conveyancing Awards.

The short list included multi-branched, regionally and nationally Conveyancers as well as the minnows such as our good selves; Clutton Cox.

Gongs were awarded in regional categories, an award for best Direct Conveyancer, Best Conveyancing Firm as voted by Estate Agents, Best Young Conveyancer, Best Website and Marketing and Use of Social Media and Best Overall Conveyancing Firm of the Year.

And the Winner of the Best Law Firm Marketing And Use of Social Media Award Goes To…

Let the judges do the next bit:

"This year’s winners stood out for the judges due to the clear differentiation of its presentation and offering.  Centred on Paul Hajek, the business had concentrated on developing a strong online presence via producing large quantities of relevant content and using a large range of social media channels to drive traffic to the website and the business.

They have excellent follow up of online enquiries with strong sales edge, ensuring good conversion from opportunities."

Conveyancing Award Winner 2014 LFS

So a big thank you to the organisers of the Law Firm Services Conveyancing Awards and a hearty thanks to my wonderful staff at Clutton Cox for their efforts.

A Full List of Winners at the LFS Conference Awards 2014 can be found by clicking here

But, to get back to the last line of John Keats poem “To Autumn” 

            “And gathering swallows twitter in the skies”

Indeed I shall!

STOP PRESS: Clutton Cox have won the 2014 Most Innovative Marketing Idea at the 360 Legal Group Awards. Read more here

Awards logos 2014 Marketing

Topics: inbound marketing for law firms, social media for law firms, marketing for solicitors, LFS conveyancing awards

Law Firms: “Be Bloody Bold and Resolute” in 2014

Posted by Paul Hajek on Thu, Jan 09, 2014 @ 09:19 AM

Be Bloody Bold and resoluteLists: I love them.

I had fun compiling New Years Resolutions for Law Firms last year and am thrilled to do so again for 2014.

Personal recommendation for lawyers and word of mouth reputation are still the cornerstone for successful law firms. But, increasingly clients and potential clients are inexorably moving towards the internet where they can get a flavour and judge for themselves the “cut of our legal jibs”

I kid you not: algorithms are already determining the percentage chances of successful litigation, yet the flat-earth branch of the profession still denies the internet is having an effect or will have an effect on their law firms. So good luck with that one.

There has been a splurge of new lawyers and law firms with an internet and social media presence. Inbound marketing continues to grow rapidly but inbound marketing for law firms is still nascent.

Social Media for lawyers is no longer a minority past time, as more and more lawyers dip their toes in – although to be fair some less subtle law firms are stomping around with hobnail boots on.

As I exalt in the freedom of by-gone worries of splitting my infinitives, let me be one of the first lawyers, to boldly go on a trek through the internet marketing and social media universe, and give you my list of self proclaimed aphorisms, pointers and tips sprinkled a few bon mots and links to people I enjoyed connecting with in 2013.

The following legal musings are in a handy bite-sized chunk format.

Law Firm Management

  • Get closer to your clients. It’s not new but unless you care immensely more for your clients your competitor law firms and ABSs will do it for you.
  • Audit the whole experience of working with your law firm through the eyes of your clients. Yes, we can all improve
  • Banish the “C” word – Commoditisation. It’s a sackable offence in my law firm.
  • Avoid the race to the bottom on legal fees especially Conveyancing.
  • Learn more about the art and science of Pricing your Law Firm services
  • Sign up and follow the advice of Richard Burcher at Validatum or Kim Tasso on pricing for professionals 
  • Write a “Thank You “ note to each week to a client or contact who won’t be expecting it
  • Promise yourself you will cure your law firm myopia by working  more “on” your business rather than just in “it”
  • Demote the excuse “I am too busy” to market my firm: work smarter and/or put your fees up
  • Give all your staff company encrusted road haulage trucks like Eddie Stobart does.
  • Exceed expectation – get on board for destination Wow
  • Sign up for Joe Reevy’s newsletter. Gems and Golden Nuggets of common sense advice guaranteed
  • Read my blog: Circle the Wagons and Come Out All Guns Blazing
  • Hit the Road, Jack – speak and visit other law firms, talk learn, and share: protect our solicitor brand. I’ve travelled to meet some great solicitors this year to “chew the legal cud”
  • Reduce reliance on third party paid referrals
  • Read my blog: Match Point: What More Could Your Law Firm Achieve?
  • Remember client retention is much cheaper than client acquisition

 Internet and Inbound Marketing for Law Firms

  • No one really cares about your law firm website – get over it
  • Mens sana in corpore sano - a fit mind in a fit body..and that includes working out personally and with and on your law firm website
  • Invest in marketing technology such as Hubspot to help run your firm effortlessly 24/7/365
  • Talk to me about Hubspot – I’m evangelical
  • Repeat the mantra “My law firm will get found online and we will convert leads into clients”
  • I said repeat it
  • Start an E-Newsletter or improve on an existing newsletter.
  • Evaluate your own law firm website with fresh eyes: overhaul the home page at the very least if it doesn’t cut the mustard
  • Consumers complete 60% of their buying decisions before talking to a sales rep – work out how that will impact your online law firm strategy
  • Read my blog: Get the Love –Inbound Marketing is the Future
  • Sign up with Boyd Butler at Great Legal Marketing and learn to think differently.
  • Read my blog: Are You Investing in Chinese Fishing Nets?
  • Get proof of how good you are – get testimonials from satisfied clients and keep asking those clients to refer new work to your firm
  • Marketing your law firm is an endless tour – don’t let yourselves be bowled out in 31.4 overs like the England Cricket team in the last Test Match in Australia:concentrate and be bold.

 Blogging for Lawyers

  • Look to build a blog not launch one
  • Work out an antidote for any “Lexblogophobia” in your firm.
  • Find a blogging champion within your firm but never force anyone –it will show.
  • Make it easier for potential clients to discover what you’re bloody at –create great content 
  • Increase your blogging and content output by 50% over the next twelve months
  • Write 2 blogs a week for your website –that will increase your law firm website by 100 over a year. Powerful
  • Start your blog editorial now and round of the year with your first eBook
  • Make sure you write that eBook (If you have a 100 new blogs next year that should more than cover it!)
  • Sign up and follow the blog of Irish Solicitor Flor McCarthy from Clonakilty County Cork – and be enchanted.
  • Find your niche Create great legal content and become “the go-to lawyer or firm” like I have done with Chancel Repair Liability
  • Never post a blog without a thumbnail image and an alt tag. Images add power.
  • Mix and Match your blog article lengths and be sure to do an in depth blog at least once a month. Google likes in depth content - it’s official
  • Sign up to the Solicitors Online Success blog below and never miss an article again
  • Your law firm is now a media publishing business embrace it and excel.
  • Educate your clients and help them learn about the legal process as it affects them
  • Ask your staff to name the 10 most common questions asked daily and create your first 10 blogs or another 10 blogs if you’re already up and running.
  • Learn to multi-task and think, write and construct blogs – Watch Monday Night Football and Blog; Watch Rugby and Blog; Watch Breaking Bad and on second thoughts..

 Content Marketing for Law Firms

  • Cut the Crap (1) avoid bombastic, turgid and orotund blog posts and content
  • Cut the Crap (2) No more inane tweets informing the Twittersphere that you are available for a quote for conveyancing, a divorce or a Will. Yuk!
  • Download Crap: The Content Marketing Deluge by Velocity Partners and follow @dougkessler its creative director to see what fantastic content looks like –be inspired
  • Veni Vidi Video –especially the last one and don’t be so precious and eschew the library books at the back
  • Don’t fear your law firm’s content management system – learn a bit of code and feel more in control.
  • Ensure every page of your law firm website has a sufficient Call to Action – or stand on the naughty step
  • Make your content shareable and sociable, allow people to easily follow you and share your content

 Social Media for Solicitors and Lawyers

  • Treasure your invite to the world’s largest cocktail party that is Twitter
  • Understand that Twitter is primarily a listening medium
  • Read the “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” by Gary Vaynerchuk and learn how to tell your story in a noisy social world.
  • Consider other social media not just the usual suspects such as Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr and Slideshare and Prezzi and Uberflip could help your practice but:
  • Don’t try and do every “social media” stick to what you think will work best
  • Perfect your blogging style over time – don’t rush ( please don’t hold any of my original blogs back in 2008 against me)
  • Exit a group on LinkedIn which no longer inspires you
  • Join a new group on LinkedIn which may inspire you and join in the discussions

 SEO for Law Firms

  • Don’t get fixated and hung up with SEO, but do concentrate on creating great content. You’re writing for humans not robots!
  • Think twice and then thrice again before instructing a so called SEO expert sign up to Moz to find out what SEO is really all about.

Law Firms and Google+

  • Google+ will grow in importance and influence search results. Google+ is here for the long haul
  • Inhabit Google+ and work out how it can benefit your clients and staff
  • Claim your content with Google Authorship markup and if you are lucky Google will post your photo next to your blog like here

Which, if any, Were Advertising Slogans Used by Alternative Business Structures in 2013?

  • Feeling Flat?: Let Our Legal Team Put the Wind Back In Your Tyres
  • It’s not just car breakdowns we cover but also marital breakdowns.
  • Free Marital Breakdown Cover When You Sign Up for Roadside Breakdown Cover
  • Free Roadside Breakdown Cover When You Sign Up To Marital Breakdown Cover
  • Your tyres may have let you down but our legal services team won’t
  • Wills While You Wait………. For Our Van To Arrive
  • Injured in a car accident in the last three years? ( That one may have been overplayed a bit now, admittedly)
  • We’d like you to turn all your legal problems into a Saga
  • We can’t run a Bank but boy oh boy do we know how to run a law firm
  • The highways jammed with broken heroes on a last chance power drive - but not our Truck Stop Lawyers, Eh Eddie?

Extract from my Unforthcoming  Book on Conveyancing

‘Two Tick’ Tulisa, an 18 year old, highly experienced one-to-one, customer-facing conveyancing coordinator with Inter Galactic Estate Agents.com (and author of ‘How to Successfully Tick Your Way Through the Conveyancing Process and Wave Goodbye to Common Sense’) was delighted.

The enthusiastic Tulisa, acting upon a hot lead from her punter procurement department, had persuaded first time buyers Mr Poor and Miss Unfortunate (not their real names) to use the conveyancing services provided by their sister company and fledgling ABS Your-Call-is-Important-To-Us.com.

For you see, Tulisa had shown Mr Poor and Miss Unfortunate the light: their appointed lawyers were the future of conveyancing.

Apropos Nothing

  • So you’re in a lift/elevator- tell me what you do in 29.9 seconds or thereabouts
  • Only talk to passionate and enthusiastic people in said lifts/elevators
  • Avoid temptation to utter whilst in said lift/elevator “I’m ready to take this baby to the next level are you?”
  • Shun Mr. Mrs and Ms Negative and all their family and relatives and all their close personal friends
  • Look forward ( if rumours are to be believed) to joyous wincing at Saul Goodman the outrageously corrupt, ghastly and appalling attorney from Breaking Bad in his new eponymous series
  • Have an inflatable “scales of justice” proudly above your office – only joking –see above
  • Avoid TV adverts for your law firm  – and I’m not just talking about Call Saul
  • Create your own three word aphorism for ABS – never harms to amuse oneself 

Macbeth

Above all else avoid complacency in your law firms.

“Be bloody bold and resolute; laugh to scorn the power of man, for none of woman born shall harm Macbeth

After all it’s what did for poor old Macbeth in the end.

And finally..

A Happy, Content Enriched and Wonderfully Prosperous New Year to you.

Topics: content marketing for law firms, content marketing for lawyers, online marketing for law firms, inbound marketing for law firms, blogging for lawyers, blogging for solicitors, blogging for law firms, solicitors online success, social media for law firms, ABS, internet marketing for law firms, law firm marketing, Alternative Business structures, marketing for solicitors, twitter for law firms, Internet marketing

Law Firms Get The Love: Inbound Marketing Is The Future

Posted by Paul Hajek on Tue, Apr 16, 2013 @ 09:22 AM
Inbound 12
When I qualified as a Solicitor, in 1983, I didn’t have the first idea what role marketing played in winning clients.

Marketing for solicitors, or so it seemed to me, was an invention waiting to happen.

If I were to characterise Law Firm Marketing back then it was thus: Open Solicitor’s Office; Buy Yellow Pages Advert; Answer Phone; ergo, Client Deluge.


Law Firm Marketing Has Changed: Outbound versus Inbound Marketing

My first ever experience of solicitor marketing came from a conference by practicing solicitors John Loosemore and Robert Parsons tantalisingly entitled “What They Didn’t Teach You in Law School”

Thank you John and Robert as I have never looked back since.

Many law firms still believe in the traditional marketing routes of advertising.

I dare say some law firms still rely on Yellow Pages almost exclusively as their advertising and (by extension) their marketing of choice.

Those outmoded forms of what may be termed old –fashioned or outbound marketing are being replaced by inbound marketing

Inbound Marketing for Law Firm: Get the Love

Your law firm may not have heard of the term “inbound marketing”.

Inbound marketing does not involve an exclusive law firm upgrade of Photoshop designed to vanish blemishes and air brush your lawyers’ profile shots.

Inbound marketing is the way to get your law firm loved by your existing clients and potential clients alike, to ensure continuing instructions.

Intrigued?

What Law Firms Should Know About Inbound Marketing

Let’s start with a definition of Inbound Marketing from the creators of the term Hubspot.

“Inbound Marketing is marketing that’s useful. It means acquiring customers by attracting and nurturing prospects with exceptional content, data and customer service”

Your law firm may even be in the vanguard of inbound marketing without actually knowing it: powerful website providing useful information and opportunities with your targeted clients in mind

But, although a simple enough concept, in my opinion, too few law firms have grasped the power of inbound marketing.

How Law Firms Should Adopt Inbound Marketing

Avid dear reader you will be well accustomed to inbound marketing as a strategy for law firms as we have been promoting inbound marketing as a strategy for solicitors and law firms since we began blogging on Solicitors Marketing Success at the beginning of 2011.

Inbound Marketing, in the sale of legal services involves using great online content as the core component.

The 3 Basic Tenets of Inbound Marketing for Law Firms

There are three basic tenets of inbound marketing for law firms

 

  • Get Found – Tactics like, search engine optimisation, promotion through social media, blog and content marketing, that aim to attract potential clients to your law firm
  • Convert  – The use of calls to action, landing pages, email marketing and marketing automation that are intended to convert your law firm website visitors in to paying customers and clients
  • Analyse – Using the right software tools to improve your law firm’s efficiency of the entire process.

The Difference between Old or Outbound Marketing and New Or Inbound Marketing for Law Firms

Yellow Pages Directories are now a sliver of their former weight and size.
Adverts are expensive and a very blunt tool best kept to the major brands and their product awareness campaigns. Sky Plus and TiVo based products allow us to block out adverts (yes, even adverts from Quality Solicitors)

Law Firm clients and potential clients all have the same thing in common: they are more in control, more independent than ever before -  and they decide when they want to hear or read from your law firm.

Pre Selection of Law Firms by Client Research

For most law firms this is the invisible elephant in the room.

Many solicitors and law firms have simply no idea that they are being selected by the content (or rather lack of it), and look and feel of their website.

I experience this weekly on my Clutton Cox website where we receive online instructions and we have had no contact with that client other than from interaction within our law firm website.

Solicitors Marketing Success, Hubspot and Your Law Firm

Time is the enemy for most solicitors who do not have the resource of a bespoke marketing department.

Law Firms of all sizes large and small need to think smarter about their marketing and inbound marketing in particular. And above all law firms need the tools to make their marketing experience as painless and as efficient as possible.

Hubspot provides all the tools a law firm would need to turn their website into a legal powerhouse and fight on a level playing field with much bigger law firms and new entrants in to the legal services market.

I have been using Hubspot software for my law firm Clutton Cox for over 4 years.

As Solicitors Marketing Success is now an affiliate of Hubspot, I want to teach you to use what I consider to be the best, most comprehensive software available for law firm’s and their inbound marketing strategy.

Talk To Me

Give me 15 minutes of your time to begin to explain how Hubspot can work for your law firm and set you up with a free 30 day trial.

And see how you and your law firm can be loved all over again.

Itching To Find Out More- Go On!

Paul Hajek is a Solicitor with over 30 years experience in private practice. He is one of the most prolific law and marketing bloggers in the UK.

Paul Hajek would love to coach, mentor (and cajole if needs be) inspire and teach you all he knows about blogging and blog marketing for your business.



Topics: online marketing for law firms, internet marketing for solicitors, internet marketing for law firms, marketing for solicitors, blogging