Recently our Marketing Manager Nick Werker had the opportunity to co-host a live webinar with Social Firestarter founder Andrew Stickel. During their presentation, the pair discussed in-depth how attorneys can keep their business going strong while working remotely. If you have some time to kill (like many of us unfortunately do right now), we’d love for you to watch the video below in its entirety. But, if you’re not up for watching a two-hour webinar, we certainly understand. In fact, that’s why we created this law practice management blog post, so we could recap some of the key messages from the event. Scroll down below to review five takeaways from our webinar on getting clients in a crisis.
Legal Consumers Are More Scared Than Ever
Just about any legal discussion these days centers around the COVID-19 pandemic, and this webinar was no exception. Throughout the presentation, Stickel discussed how consumers are letting emotion guide their hiring and purchasing decisions, and that lawyers should be looking to produce and share as much informational content as possible during this time.
“You have the opportunity right now to calm people’s fears,” Stickel said. “If you calm people’s fears with good solid information, they’re gonna hang on to every word you say, they’re gonna want to hear more from you, and eventually they’re going to want to hire you. That’s what we’re seeing happen for several clients that we’re working with right now.”
Create blogs, vlogs and podcasts focusing on the issues your clients are dealing with right now. Tell them what they can do if they end up in a certain situation that was caused by this ongoing crisis. Now is not the time to worry about giving away too much legal information for free, and it’s definitely not the time to boast about all your accomplishments. Build trust and comfort with prospects by providing them with more knowledge, and letting them know you’re available to help if they need it. Do enough of this, and the clients will come.
Find Your Future Clients In Facebook Groups
Andrew Stickel is well-known for his Facebook marketing expertise, so we were very excited to see what advice he had to share for the network during our webinar presentation. Stickel’s advice did not disappoint. One thing he told us that really stood out is Facebook followers don’t really matter that much anymore, as algorithm changes to the network’s news feed over the last few years have made it extremely difficult to reach new users via posts on your page. Instead of just strictly promoting their service and trying to get likes, Stickel says lawyers should now be devoting more of their time on Facebook towards actual social networking.
“One thing that I do all the time is I go into other Facebook groups, and I’ll just comment on things, and I’ll just provide value,” Stickel said. “You need to join Facebook groups where your potential clients are going and where they are already having conversations.”
Stickel gave an example of this strategy, discussing how he’s part of a Facebook group in Florida called 863 Crime Watch.
“It’s the craziest group, because anytime there’s any police lights or there’s an accident, it always gets reported in this group,” Stickel said. “There is absolutely an opportunity for a personal injury attorney to go in that group and every time there’s an accident, just start commenting and giving information. Don’t go, ‘hey if you were in this accident call me today’. But, what you can do is actually go in there and start providing value and start helping people. People are going to start to see what you’re putting out there, start to see that you’re providing really good information, and are going to get curious who you are. Then they’re going to check out your profile. Then in your profile bio, you should put ‘I’m a personal injury attorney’, and have a link to your website or tell them to direct message you if they need any help.”
According to Hootsuite, there are now over 10 million groups on Facebook, so log on now and find the groups your future clients are engaging in.
Remove “Consultation” From Your Marketing Vocabulary
“Schedule a consultation” has become an overused phrase in the legal marketing world, and during our live webinar, Werker suggested another phrase for attorneys to use instead.
“We always say, hop on a call,” Werker said. “Using the word consultation makes it sound very final, and like you’re actually making the hire, when maybe you’re just looking for information. Nobody wants to be sold on something that they’re not really looking to buy yet. So just say, I’m here to talk. If you want to schedule some time with me, I’ll make some time for you and we can just talk about this. Hop on a call, it’s my favorite thing.”
This type of approach can go a long way during the current pandemic, as it gives the impression that you’re interested in actually helping those who are struggling, rather than just looking for a quick payday.
Create New Reviews Through Video Conferencing
A few weeks ago, it was announced that there would be limited Google My Business functionality due to the COVID-19 situation. One of the biggest impacts this announcement has on lawyers, is that they likely won’t be able to collect any new Google reviews for an extended period of time. Stickel is of course following this situation closely, and has found a new and perhaps better way for attorneys to collect reviews from former clients that involves using video chat technology.
“One thing you can do is video testimonials with your clients, where you actually interview them,” Stickel said. “The reason you want to do this, is because you’ll get better testimonials. If you just say (to clients), hey would you record me a testimonial, three quarters of the time they aren’t going to do it. The other quarter of the time it’s going to be a testimonial that’s like, ‘uh the Smith Law Firm was really good and they did a good job and I recommend the Smith Law Firm’.”
So how can lawyers create video testimonials that will actually win over future clients?
“What I try to do with all of my testimonials, is I try to tell a story,” he said. “You want to ask (your client) some very specific questions.”
The five questions Stickel says lawyers should be asking are:
- What was the problem that you had prior to coming to our law firm?
- Why did you choose our law firm over all the other law firms available?
- What was the experience like with our law firm, and who were the employees or staff members that really made a big difference?
- What was the result that we achieved for you?
- How has that result impacted your life?
“If you actually follow those five questions, what you can do is actually send the video to a video editor, chop yourself out, and you’ll have a really, really good testimonial,” Stickel said.
Looks like lawyers are running out of excuses for not creating video for their firm. This method is as easy as setting up a video call, so start reaching out to your old clients now.
Increase Your Firm’s Reach By Taking Selfies
That’s right, we said selfies. In our webinar, Stickel shared one of his favorite hacks for law firms looking to increase their online reach. Now it should be noted that this strategy may be difficult for firms to pull off during the current pandemic, but regardless it’s a great tip to keep in mind moving forward.
So here’s how Stickel’s “Team Selfie Hack” works, and how it can ultimately result in your law office ranking better. For their Google My Business page, law offices have the ability to upload pictures of their team members. According to Stickel, lawyers should be asking their team members to take selfies from different locations around the city, and then add those pictures to the firm’s Google My Business page.
“What you’re trying to do is expand the radius, and expand how relevant you are to your entire city,” Stickel said. “And the way you do that is by getting the latitude and longitude of all these different locations around your city on your Google My Business profile.”
So how can lawyers accomplish this without being spammy?
“I don’t know if you know this, but when you take a picture with your cell phone, it actually stores the latitude and longitude of where that picture was taken. If you basically go to all these different landmarks around the city, and have team members take selfies and upload it to your Google My Business profile, then it’s relevant, because then you can say, ‘oh here’s Jen from accounting at the Lincoln Memorial’.”
As we mentioned earlier, lawyers may find this strategy difficult to execute at the moment, as it requires visiting different locations around the city. However, Stickel did present a potential workaround.
“What you do is have your staff take pictures of themselves at their houses, and now at least you’re getting the latitude and longitude of multiple locations that you can upload to the team section of your Google My Business profile, and that will help you rank better,” Stickel said.