Previously, I discussed the need to focus on geographical location in a firm’s SEO marketing efforts. Now, I would like to discuss the importance of authority. Would you believe me when I say that I’m an authority in online marketing? Well, for one thing, if you didn’t, you probably wouldn’t be reading this blog or accepting my services in other aspects of online marketing. I am an authority because I have experience in this field, and have built a base of loyal clients who know that they can take me at my word. Thus, if you want to expand your brand and be recognized in the legal industry as an authority you need to do the same. Lewis Howes of Entrepreneur says:
So many entrepreneurs and business owners are striving for elite status, but just don’t have the authority to make it happen. And the best way to set yourself up to win with your business is by becoming the authority in your industry. What does that mean? Most of the top authorities get more leads, consistent clients, have higher rates, endless demand, along with countless opportunities knocking at their doorstep.
I have discussed the importance of becoming an authority in previous postings, and briefly touched on it as a sub-topic to other SEO related articles, and now we are going to take a closer look at what it takes to gain this title.
Content Can Boost Your Authority Level
I know I talk a lot about the importance of content and I’m about to do it again. If you want to be an authority, your content must ring true. Think about it like this; if you were looking for a doctor to care for your family, and you found out that a particular doctor you had been considering was proven wrong or lied in his or her online medical blog, would you still want this physician to be in control of your health and the health of those you love? True, a lawyer may not be preventing loss of life or curing disease, but the work that your firm does can be just as detrimental to your clients. Mean what you say and say what you know to be true. This will reflect on the way that clients see you and your opinions in the future. Marketing Blog, Kissmetrics reports:
Another important key in writing content is keeping it updated. Because people can access an article anytime, if it isn’t up to date, it may appear that you don’t have a good grasp on the subject.
You can build client confidence in your content by backing up the points that you make with references to precedent cases, links to articles that provide similar information from reputable sources, or by quoting other authorities in your industry. Think about the way that you would use precedence to support a case, or the way that you referenced legal texts for papers during law school. Your clients may not be as critical as a law professor, but they like to know that what you are telling them is true, and providing examples is the perfect way to show this.
Show Your Clients What Others Are Saying About Your Firm
Have you ever noticed that companies, which offer products or services online, tend to promote themselves through customer testimonials and positive reviews? These will often be displayed on their website or the online retail channel they offer sales through. True, a law firm is different from a retail business in some ways, but in other ways you might be surprised at how similar you are. For example, your clients want to know how good you are, because nobody wants to hire a subpar lawyer. You can build your authority in your field of practice by collecting positive reviews from previous clients and utilizing them through your website or social media accounts. DIYThemes.com suggests:
Short, impactful testimonials get your customers excited about your work AND prove that they aren’t the first one to hire you! The quotes collection plugin was meant for quotes, but it can be used to rotate testimonials in any widget-ized section of your site, too.
This is an easy and inexpensive way to promote your firm, and prove how great you are at what you do. Using widgets like the one mentioned here can bring some reality to the claims you make about being the top firm in your location, and help build confidence in your services by those who have yet to use them. This also means that future clients may offer their own reviews and testimonials which continues the cycle and builds your brand.
Offer Your Expertise To Others
No, I am not suggesting here that you go ahead and begin offering your services pro bono, but rather that you get in contact with those who might appreciate your expertise in the form of an interview, guest blog post, or even an article for an online legal site. Other law firms, local businesses, and potential customers who see these publications are more likely to believe that you know what you are talking about, simply because others appear to want your opinions. It can be tricky to get your content noticed or wanted, but it isn’t impossible; Prolonger advises:
Befriend the big players in your niche. Tag them on thoughtful posts via social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook. Write about them on your blog and leave a trackback. Engage in discussions with them on their blogs, on forums and on social media. Develop relationships with them, as not only will others see you as a solid part of the niche, but these relationships make it easier to get published on the blogs belonging to the big players.
This is also an excellent way to spread your brand across the nation and the world, as any sort of online publication can be shared, emailed, liked, commented on, and passed around the online community with a simple click of a button. In a sense, becoming a guest blogger or offering a professional article for publication is a form of advertising in and of itself.
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