7 Deadly Sins of Internet Marketing

I recently saw a list of “7 Deadly Digital Marketing Sins” and it got me thinking…What are some of the big “sins” of internet marketing that we see lawyers committing frequently? In no particular order, here are my top 7 internet marketing sins that should be avoided:

  1. Superman Syndrome – You’re smart and you’re a great lawyer – but that doesn’t mean you should try and do everything at your law firm all by yourself. There’s the old adage “If you want it done right, do it yourself.” But sometimes, it just makes more sense to delegate tasks instead of doing every little thing on your own. Is posting on Facebook or setting up an email campaign worth your time? Or could you be spending all those hours working on client matters and making money?  
  2. Making website visitors think too hard – When someone comes to your website, they should be able to tell what you do after only a few seconds. If they’re still confused about your services or practice area by the time they scroll through your site a bit, they’re not going to keep digging. They’re going to find another attorney’s website instead. Your website should also be easy to navigate, which means making links obvious and prominent. You should also avoid trying to cram as much information as possible on your homepage, because a cluttered, messy-looking website will turn away potential clients. 
  3. Trying to please Almighty Google – Focusing on Google (or search engines in general) is a big mistake. Sure, there is value in showing up in the search results. But there is MUCH MORE you can do on the internet – for example, did you know that most lawyers are only getting about 1/3 of the referrals they could be getting? You can use social media and an email newsletter to drastically increase your referrals. That’s much more important than your Google rankings, especially because Google can change their ranking algorithm at a moments’ notice. 
  4. “What was his name again?” – Speaking of staying top-of-mind with clients… This past weekend at Law Firm 500, Spotlight Branding co-founder Marc Cerniglia gave a presentation where he mentioned some of the worst things an attorney can hear: “I didn’t know you did that” or “They did a great job, and I’d love to recommend them, but I can’t remember their name.” Unfortunately, this happens pretty often, and it’s because most you aren’t keeping your name, and your brand, in front of past clients. At the Law Firm 500 Conference, an attorney came up to our booth and told us that she had seen our posts on social media being shared by a friend of hers. Because she had been exposed to our brand and what we do, she wanted to come chat with us and see if we could help her out as well.

    Don’t live under a rock like Patrick

  5. Living under a rock – If you’re not using social media, you might as well be Patrick Star, because you’re living under a rock. By not keeping up with current trends and staying informed, you’re going to lose out on so many potential clients who are using new media sources. Get on the right social media platforms, and know your audience. If you’re an estate attorney, working with mostly older clients, you probably don’t need to be on Snapchat. But by knowing what your potential clients are interested in seeing, you’ll be able to appeal to them and keep them engaged with your content. And that is key to staying top-of-mind, especially when they have the chance to make a referral.
  6. Eager Beaver turned Ghost – You should consistently publish a stream of content in the form of blogs, social media, video FAQs, etc in order to stay top-of-mind. But this idea is twofold. It also makes you look credible by revealing your knowledge about a variety of topics. If a potential client comes to your website and sees dozens of blogs with titles pertaining to your practice area, they’re going to know that you’re an expert in your field. Boom, credibility. The sin here is starting out strong with a few great blogs and a heavy social media presence…then going MIA. We see this all the time. You need to stay consistent – and if you don’t have the time to do this, delegate it to someone in your office or hire an outside expert. 
  7. Space Jam Website – Space Jam came out in 1996. Starring Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny, it’s a fun movie and it definitely embodies the 90’s. So does the Space Jam website. It hasn’t been updated since 1996, and looks just like it did when the movie came out. Check it out for yourself and enjoy the nostalgia of the internet from two decades ago. However, while it’s fun to reminisce, if your law firm website looks like it’s out of the Space Jam era, it’s time for a new one! Your website makes the first impression for many potential clients and it’s important that it’s a good one! 
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Jana Eatman

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