Marketing a Law Firm | The Dangers of Outsourcing Your Marketing
This post is from the first blog I started, called “How to Start a Law Firm.” Over the years I’ve moved to different sites a few times and wanted to catalog all of my content in one place. If an article refers to a link and there is no link, sorry, that’s consequence of the move. Enjoy!
I’ve written in the past about marketing your law firm and outsourcing your marketing efforts to third parties, and to summarize, I’m generally against it, particularly when it comes to online marketing. There’s just too much opportunity for you to get in trouble (don’t believe me, here’s a great example of what can happen when you outsource law firm marketing). I hadn’t written or thought about it much until this week, when I got an interesting fax.
I’m not going to tell you who the fax was from, because I don’t want to promote them in any way, shape, or form. But I will tell you what was in the fax. Here’s what it said:
Having too few reviews or want to boost your online presence?
We can improve your online reputation by posting positive reviews on major review sites. People go there when they want to find good, reliable services in which they can trust.
Having positive reviews on those sites will drive more people to choose your business and will make your name stand up from all of the other competitors.
Our services include:
– Improving your reputation by posting good reviews and other links;
– Suppressing negative reviews or other links that might damage your reputation, with positive ones which you can control;
– Increasing your online popularity by creating websites and offering SEO (Search Engine Optimization) services.
Find out more about how we can help by visiting our website at …
Thank you for according us your time and understanding.
Hopefully you can already see all of the things that are wrong with this, but I wanted to talk about two in particular.
First, and foremost, don’t do this. Ever. Not only is it just bad for business (you should have a system set up for asking for reviews from your clients that makes it easy for them to do so) but if you get caught you are going to face the wrath of a lot of your colleagues, and they will make sure anytime anyone looks for you they’ll find out you’ve been using fake reviews (see the link above to see what I’m talking about).
It’s not hard to build up a good reputation, on and off line, but it’s really easy to destroy it. If it sounds easy and too good to be true, it probably is.
Second, and more importantly for me as a consumer, I wonder how much of this is going on. This can’t be the only company offering these services. What good is a review if you can’t be certain it came from a real person with a real experience? There are plenty of people out there who would love to review your services. All you have to do is ask.
Starting a law firm is hard. Marketing a law firm is harder. Make a plan, put it to work. Clients will come. Don’t take shortcuts. They may help in the short term, but they could blow up your firm in the long term.