Why Get a Legal Marketing Agency to Help Strengthen Your Online Reviews?
Cultivating positive online reviews for your law firm isn’t just a vanity project. It also helps you bring in more new clients, as Firmidable established in our overview post on reputation management for lawyers.
The next question we often hear attorneys ask is: “Do I need a legal marketing agency to run my reputation management program?”
You can use software platforms, after all, to track your reviews across the web, send requests to happy clients for new reviews and respond to reviews. No law stops you from doing that on your own.
Still, at our legal marketing firm, we believe we can add a lot to your efforts to grow your reputation, and your law firm along with it.
Keep reading for our 7 top reasons to work with an agency on nurturing your online reputation.
7 Reasons to Get an Agency for Reputation Management
1. You’ll get guidance on the best practices to kick off your campaign and keep it strong.
There are right ways to seek more user reviews and respond to reviews—and wrong ways. Reputation management software helps you administer your efforts, but it doesn’t explain the broader principles behind refining your online image. We’ll keep you informed.
2. You’ll have someone to set up your account.
This one is a time and hassle saver. A legal marketing firm like Firmidable can set up your account and make sure you’re linked to all the appropriate review sites on the internet. You may not even realize all the places online where you’re getting reviews.
Your agency can also make sure that your firm’s logo, colors and other markers of your branding are uploaded to your reputation management platform.
A great benefit of reputation management services is that they generate a special web page that houses a collection of your glowing reviews. Having that page out there, linking to your web site, is good for your search engine optimization (SEO). It’s another way people can find you online.
But the software doesn’t automatically know to use your branding. Once your branding is in place, people who find your page of positive reviews can clearly identify you as the law firm they’re looking for.
Another part of your setup is linking your account to your firm’s Google My Business and Facebook profiles, which are multi-step processes you can spare yourself from dealing with if you have an agency do it for you.
3. You’ll get support for your process of requesting reviews.
Maybe you inform clients of the good news of a successful case result when they’re in your office. Maybe you do it by phone or by letter.
Whichever way you choose, you need to plan how your requests for online reviews go with it. For example, if all your clients file reviews from your office location—because that’s where you first ask people to do reviews—those reviews could appear inauthentic.
A legal marketing agency like Firmidable can advise you on how best to encourage reviews. The online system will send requests to clients electronically, but you may want to supplement that with carefully timed verbal reminders or written notes.
You also need to customize the messages that the online portal sends to clients asking them to leave reviews. On its own, the software will generate generic messages. Your agency can personalize this for you. The warmer approach gets you better responses and more effectively builds your stellar image on the internet.
But you can’t create a message and leave it on autopilot. If you’re not getting enough responses to your requests, or responses have fallen off over time, an agency can rewrite your messages to get the process rolling again.
4. You’ll receive model messages to use when responding to reviews
A software platform can’t tell you how to respond to reviews like a human being—at least not yet. And responding to reviews is one of the most important parts of an online reputation management program. Future clients will see how responsive you are and be impressed.
But sometimes responding can be tricky, especially for negative reviews that irk you. At Firmidable, we provide model messages our clients can use as a basis for their responses.
You can take our examples and tailor them to each specific review. You shouldn’t post the same templated answer to multiple reviewers, but we can help you get started on writing responses that follow the best practices.
5. You’ll have someone to monitor your progress at gathering reviews.
As your drive for more and better reviews advances, firms like ours can give your process a critical-minded assessment, pointing out ways that you can better maximize the number of reviews you’re receiving.
When a law firm has a reputation management campaign in place for a while, sometimes staff members who started out energetically participating begin to push it aside. Maybe you raised your review average up to 4.5 stars and feel like you can leave it alone.
Getting the most out of reputation management means always adding fresh reviews. The SEO benefits of good reviews fade when the newest ones are a year old. The negative effects of bad reviews remain unchecked if you don’t have newer, better reviews to bump them down the list.
6. You’ll be spared dealing with troubleshooting issues.
This is another time and effort saver for you. When the system has issues, as computer systems sometimes do, we’ll troubleshoot that so it doesn’t take up your time.
We can also provide feedback to your attorneys and staff members on better taking advantage of what the software offers.
7. You’ll get reports on how your efforts are working.
An agency can step back and take a bigger look at how your reputation management campaign is going. At Firmidable, we sift all the data from the platform into clear, succinct monthly reports on your firm’s progress and identify opportunities for improvement.
Why Your Law Firm Needs Reputation Management in the First Place
The effects of a strong program to manage your online lawyer reviews go far beyond the reviews themselves.
Studies have found:
- Most potential legal clients examine online reviews while shopping for attorneys.
- Positive reviews increase the chance that people will become customers at local businesses.
- The vast majority of young adults place more value on online reviews than personal recommendations.
- Reviews are a major factor in getting your website to rank well in local internet searches.
The more reviews you get, the more you benefit from their potential to bring in more clients.
And while positive reviews are the best, your responses to less flattering ratings can also improve the impression you make on people looking for lawyers.
To explain why your law firm might want to work with a marketing agency to guide your reputation management program, Firmidable President Nathan Chapman draws a rough analogy: It’s like someone going to court by themselves instead of getting an attorney who knows the landscape.
“You can do it on your own, but it’s easier—and typically more successful—if you have someone experienced guiding you and watching out for you,” Nathan says.
Get more support for your reputation management goals and law firm growth by contacting our legal marketing firm today.
Firmidable has been a national expert in legal marketing for almost 30 years. It brings law firms customized, data-driven marketing strategies and services, including online and traditional media for a wide range of legal practices. From Maine to Hawaii, it has transformed the lives of attorneys—and their clients.