Is Your Outdated Bio Costing You Opportunities?
A timely topic or news story is the core of what PR professionals use to secure an opportunity. What accompanies that pitch more often than anything else is an attorney’s bio describing his or her experience related to that pitch. Yet, that bio can be the most ignored piece of content on a law firm website.
Lawyers often neglect keeping their bios fresh, let alone updating them on a regular basis. As a result, not only are PR opportunities missed because reporters can’t find sources when searching a site, but new business opportunities are missed because a potential new client is looking at stale information.
Nancy Slome, a principal at One to One Interactive, says the most important aspect of any law firm website is well written and updated attorney bios.
Nancy recently spoke at the Legal Marketing Association’s Bay Area Tech Conference about the importance of keeping an attorney’s professional bio fresh. She says surveys indicate that 80 percent of traffic to law firm websites goes to lawyer bios – and 78 percent of corporate general counsel use lawyer bios in selecting outside counsel.
Think about that. It’s not the firm’s practice group descriptions, pro bono activities, or its history that get the eyeballs. It’s the attorney bios. That makes sense because, after all, a client or prospective client wants to know as much as he or she can about the lawyers who they are trusting to handle their work.
Nancy suggests making changes at least twice a year – as often as you visit the dentist. The better option is to review your bio four times a year with updated content such as articles, speaking engagements as well as new matters and client successes.
A lawyer bio should include, at the very least:
- What type of work the lawyer does and for what type of clients
- A sample of representative matters, past and present
- Why that experience is relevant to a potential new client
- Any unusual methods that the lawyer uses: is she well known for greatresults through mediation? For using project management techniques to reduce costs and simplify matters? For preventing class actions from getting off the ground?
This is what the client or prospective client really wants to know – not where the lawyer went to law school or what clerkships he or she held. The worst thing you can do to your bio is lead with that information that is least important.