The November 2013 edition of Law Practice Today has been released, and its theme is internet marketing. The issue is chock full of tips, and it is available online to anyone here, whether you're a member of the ABA and the Law Practice Division or not. If you are a member, take a look for the latest issue in your email inbox.
Here's a preview of some of the great stuff you'll find in this month's issue:
Law Firm Websites
You firm's website is your 'home base' online. If you are still struggling with getting a firm website put together, you might want to read Jennifer Ellis' piece on how to quickly make a law firm website using WordPress. Jennifer is also the author of the forthcoming book WordPress in One Hour for Lawyers...keep an eye out for it!
Whether you're just creating a site or your firm has had one for some time, you'll want to the article by Fred Cohen of Amicus Creative, Top Five Ways to Annoy Your Website Visitor (and Lose a Prospective Client). Fred's article outlines five ways many law firm sites miss the mark - even if they've hired a professional web designer.
I have personally seen many of these mistakes in law firm websites of all sizes, including two of my personal favorites: writing your web content for Google, rather than for human beings, and making your site all about you, rather than about your clients.
Some recent ethics opinions issued by New York and Florida have called into question what lawyers can do on social media, particularly LinkedIn. I wrote about the issue this summer in my post, "Legal Ethics and Social Media" on the Law Technology Today blog, but Nicole Black of My Case gives us her perspective in, "Social Media Ethics and 'Expertise' - What's a Lawyer to Do?"
From a practical perspective, Twitter may be the most difficult social media platform for lawyers to understand and to manage. In, "Don't Cross the Streams: Filtering for Useful Content on Twitter," Jared Correia, author of Twitter in One Hour for Lawyers, gives practical guidance for lawyers on how to get the best 'stuff' out of Twitter without getting bogged down in the nonsense that sometimes clogs up the Twitterverse.
LinkedIn in One Hour for Lawyers, Second Edition was released last month, and I have been doing a lot of work with lawyers recently on LinkedIn, including one on one training so that lawyers get a hands-on experience with using LinkedIn. Once your LinkedIn profile is up and running, it needn't take a huge investment of time to continue your participation. My contribution to this month's issue was, "A LinkedIn Marketing Plan for Lawyers," which provides a five step plan for any lawyer to get moving on LinkedIn, and shows you where to spend your time wisely to get the most out of the platform.
While LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook may be the "big three" social media platforms, Google+ should not be ignored. As I mentioned in my article, Google Plus for Lawyers, if you're serious about visibility on the internet, you need to pay attention to Google Plus and Google's related services. Gwynne Monahan drives home the point in her article, "Google+: You, Your Law Firm and the Future of Search," where she provides a four step approach to taking advantage of Google Plus and its effect on search.
And speaking of search, Gyi Tsakalakis of AttorneySync explains just how powerful Google+ can be in making a difference in your search results in his article, "Standing Out in Search with Rich Snippets." If you don't know what rich snippets are, never fear -- Gyi does a fantastic job of explaining what they are and how you can use them so that your content really stands out in search results.
Legal Directory Advertising
Lawyers are inundated - almost daily- with "offers" to list them in various legal directories - for a fee, of course. These directories promise leads galore, and for many attorneys who are continuing to struggle, these directories seem to be the answer to the question of how to get the phone to ring and get clients in the door. Attorney Rich Goldstein shares his experience this month in "Learn from my $50,000 Mistake" and provides his advice on what you can do to avoid making the same mistake.
As you can see, there's something here for lawyers of all stripes, so make sure you don't miss this month's issue of Law Practice Today!