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Did you know that we can add payment options to our profile in the SBM Member Directory? asked Linda Lawyer entering the conference room of L&L Law. Brother Lance looked up. No, what are you talking about? Well, you know how clients are always anxious to know the costs of their legal work. Now when they go to our profile page in the Directory, there is a section where we can explain our fees. Let me show you, she answered pulling up her profile on her tablet. Going to her profile page, she clicked on edit and found the section on payment options. The first question is whether to charge for initial consultations. Some lawyers charge ...
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You are a lawyer. You are not a website designer, nor do you desire to be one. And, using your sister-in-law's son who knows "everything" about computers, is just not working. It's time for professional help. How do you select the best designer for you? Define the goals for your website. Are you trying to increase brand awareness, or are you looking for new leads for your practice? If you're a criminal defense attorney, your website should focus on conversion of site visitors, a return on your investment, and building a client base. If, however, you're an insurance defense practice, you may be more focused on brand awareness rather ...
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Sally Consumer is an active Internet user. She uses it to find coffee shops, restaurants, doctors, and lawyers. More often than not, her searches take place on her phone or her tablet. If your website or blog loads slowly or doesn't fit the smaller screen, she will move on to a more responsive or mobile friendly website. Google has long known of Sally's search habits and has decreed that its search robots will include "mobile friendliness" as a ranking signal. This means that site pages that can't fit comfortably on the smaller screens will downgrade in search rankings. How do I know if my website is mobile friendly? Ever efficient ...
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Content Marketing in 2017

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Content marketing : a strategic marketing approach focused on consistently creating valuable, relevant, and informative content for your clients and prospective clients. Client-focused content for your website and blog will continue to be a big theme of marketing in 2017 as it was in 2016. Your content should inform, build trust, and each page should give readers a convenient way to contact you. Content will be longer. When a consumer enters a query into Google, a search engine results page will display. The object, of course, is to be one of those listed on the first results page. Studies have shown a positive relationship between ...
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The State Bar of Michigan and local bar associations across the state present awards to outstanding lawyers and judges. For example, the State Bar presents the Roberts P. Hudson Award to lawyers for their outstanding and unique service to, and on behalf of, the Bar, the legal profession, and the public, and the Frank J. Kelley Distinguished Public Service Award which recognizes extraordinary governmental service by an SBM member. The Ingham County Bar Association , to which I belong, has two award events. At its annual dinner in November, it presents awards to members who have distinguished themselves by manifesting civility, or to ...
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In the two-plus years the SBM Member Directory has been up and running, many features have been added and expanded. Some features are free to members and others contain a subscription cost. While all State Bar members are listed with a basic profile, not all have taken advantage of the free features such as an expanded profile, online appointment scheduling, blog publishing, or promoting professional events. Other features which require a subscription fee, are the Lawyer 2 Lawyer referral directory, the Law Firm package, Zeekbeek Web Archiver, and the profile builder. Free Features Enhance your basic profile to gain more contacts. ...
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Lance Lawyer is enjoying a quiet meal with his law school roommate, Scott. After graduation, however, they took different professional paths. Lance is a shareholder in a small law firm practicing elder law; while Scott, whose family had long been in the military, is a JAG lawyer. Over coffee, the conversation turns to marketing. "We spend a lot of time and money on our website, blog, and social media," said Lance. "I need to update my blog tonight." "I'm glad I don't need to do any marketing," said Scott. "I'm not sure about that," said Lance. "What if you decide to leave the military? No one will know you exist." Lance is right. ...
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Community outreach: An activity of providing services to populations who might not otherwise have access to those services. Adding local community outreach events to your strategic plan can benefit both the firm and the community. Supporting local community events is a way to increase brand recognition, create happier employees, gives you an opportunity to offer much needed assistance, and builds your reputation and presence in your community. Increase Brand Recognition, Grow Networks Its easy to see how being involved in a community event yields greater recognition in the community. Connecting to good works builds trust, cultivates ...
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Your firm's brand will be far more important in 2017 than in the past simply because more law firms are on the Internet competing for space. Having a brand identity and message will lead to more targeted and consistent marketing, which will increase your business. What is a brand? A brand is a name and/or symbol that uniquely identifies a seller's goods or services in the market. Brands enable customers to rapidly recognize the providers of services. Over time, and with consumer experience, brands acquire reputations for quality, value, price-level, reliability, and several other traits that help consumers choose among competing offerings. ...
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I think we should add regular e-mail campaigns to our marketing schedule, said Linda Lawyer to partner and brother, Lance. The marketing experts say that e-mail marketing is still the most effective way to reach our clients and prospective clients. Lance agreed and, because of the time constraints on their growing practice, they added a quarterly e-newsletter to their marketing schedule. E-mail marketing campaigns, which have been in use for several years, are still the best way to deliver a targeted message to a particular and receptive audience. While its true that many e-mail messages are deleted after reading the subject line, its also ...
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I received the Amazon Echo Dot for my birthday. It is a hands-free, voice-controlled device that uses Alexa to play music, answer questions, or read the news. There is some setting up to do, which I have not completed yet, so I use her to tell me the weather and play music. However, I am not alone in using a voice-controlled device to find information. Many of you already use some form of an intelligent personal assistant, such as Siri, Google Now, or Cortana, available on your mobile devices, to quickly find information. Voice search is the fastest growing type of search. It's faster, hands-free, and allows you to multi-task. According to Google's ...
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"My problem," said Marcy, marketing director for L & L Law, to Linda Lawyer, "is that we now have nine attorneys and each one has a profile listing in the online SBM Member Directory with a different username and password. It takes forever to log on and make changes to all of their profiles." "Well," said Linda, "I heard at a seminar last week that the State Bar has solved that problem with a new Law Firm product offered by Zeekbeek." Linda is right. Your SBM Member Directory now has a Law Firm package, which allows access to the profiles for every person in a law firm with one username and password. What is Law Firm? Law Firm ...
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The month January, originally named Januarius in the Roman calendar, is named after Janus, the Roman god of beginnings and transitions. He is depicted as a two-faced god capable of looking at the past and the future at the same time, which is exactly what you can do when you set out to write those New Years resolutions; be like Janus and look to the past to plan the future. Start by looking back at 2016. List three things that worked. Maybe the new paralegal you found after a long search is awesome, social media brought in new business, and you delivered a killer and winning final argument. Then list three things that didnt work. For example, ...
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The visitors to your website and blog want writing that is clear, concise, formatted correctly, and helpful in finding the information they seek. To keep the reader on the page, use the active rather than the passive voice. Stephen King, in his book On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft , states that a "passive voice equals timid voiceand timidity never makes for good writing." Active v. Passive Voice "In case you're a little hazy on the whole active/passive voice thing," wrote King, "it has to do with the verbs you choose." In the active voice, the subject of the sentence is doing something, while in passive voice, the subject ...
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"I've been thinking about our voice," said Lance Lawyer, standing in the doorway of his sister Linda's office at L & L Law. "What's wrong with your voice?" she asked, "It sounds fine to me." "Not that voice," answered Lance, "our website and blog voice. Which voice or point of view should we use for different parts of the website? I think it makes a difference in how readers experience our site and blog." What is Voice or Point of View? Point of view, or voice, in writing is the perspective the writer takes to tell the story. It is the mode of narration used to inform your clients or prospective clients. There are three points of view: ...
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The design of your website helps attract business to your firm. Yes, you need compelling content and your contact information, but a good design is a website's foundation. Today, we'll focus on design tips. According to Lawyerist.com and other design experts, here are the following points to consider when evaluating your website: Your brand , as reflected in your images, colors, fonts, layouts, and words, should be clearly communicated. For example, if you're a criminal defense fighter, think red, black, and white pages in a sans serif font (e.g. Arial). If your brand is that you're a good listener, include images of lawyers sitting with ...
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The practice of law is both a business and a profession. The professional side is the part you trained for and spend most of your time doing. The business side is what accountants do and what youd like to ignore. However, the marketing piece of the business side deserves some of your attention and that should start by thinking for a minute about who your present clients are and who youd like them to be. Make two short lists, one for present clients and one for future clients. Include age, gender, educational and economic level, and interests. Now that you have them in mind, lets review the generational characteristics of our population, think ...
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Sally Consumer is looking for a lawyer. She collects suggestions from friends and family, then turns to the Internet for more information. Like most consumers, Sally will visit the review section of a lawyer's profile. Internet reviews are the modern version of word-of-mouth referrals. Future clients want reliable information when deciding on an attorney for their legal needs. Client reviews, like those found in the SBM Member Directory, are an important part of Sally's decision-making process. Should you want to add reviews to your Internet presence, you can start by updating your SBM online Member Directory profile . The client review and ...
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In 1969, Neil Armstrong took a step onto the surface of the moon and said, "That's one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind." It was a small step from the ladder to the moon's surface, just as the planning of the flight, the manufacture of the rocket, and the details of the project were a series of small steps. However, when those small steps were added together, they made "one giant leap for mankind." Marketing for your law firm is comprised of both large and small steps. There are several small marketing steps you can take in this the last quarter of the yearsmall in cost and time commitmentthat will help you make giant marketing ...
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Did you know that in the past three months, more than 81,000 attorneys and consumers searched more than a million pages of the SBM Member Directory? Lance asked as he walked into the conference room of L&L Law. Linda looked up at her brother. Really?" she said. That is a lot of people. I did have one new client last week who said she found us in the directory. Im going to review our profile, Lance said. I want to make sure we are using all the features the directory has to offer. Back in his office, he pulled up the SBM Member Directory to research the available features. He found the expanded profile had the following: Expanded & ...
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