Fifteen years ago, I was one of the first handful of forward-looking lawyers to embrace the Internet as a tool for marketing a solo or small firm practice. For starters, robust websites, blogs and social media enabled lawyers to really engage and educate consumers in a far more meaningful way than a screaming CALL-YOUR-LAWYER 911!! television ad. And equally important, the Internet was a wide-open space and largely free which meant that newer lawyers could compete with incumbent firms that had the resources to buy up the back of the Yellow Pages.
But all too soon, the Internet got away from lawyers. Today, well-funded companies can pay for SEO and top page rankings and block out the competition. Increasingly, solo and small firm lawyers are scrambling, many falling prey to charlatans promising visibility online but failing to deliver. As a result, we’re nearly back to where we started but worse: today, a handful of incumbents dominate google, along with VC-backed non-lawyer providers — squeezing out solos and smalls.
Solo and small law firms are an integral part of the legal ecosystem, ensuring competition and access to real lawyers and not just DIY services at different price points. But to remain the justice system’s safety net, solo and small law firms need to be SEEN.
Which brings me to my friend and colleague Annette Choti’s new book, Click Magnet. It’s a bible for any lawyer who wants to learn the basics of SEO and digital marketing – and I was honored to read an advance company and write the foreword. Click Magnet is jam-packed with understandable and practical advice for lawyers to market a practice and be seen and found online. And in so doing, the book helps to ensure access to justice by helping consumers find the legal representation they need. Pick up a copy today!!