The most important page on your website
If your law practice relies on referrals, then building
relationships with potential referral sources is the most important
thing you can do to build your practice. But what happens after a
potential client gets your name from a referral source? In all
likelihood, one of the first things he or she will do is to read
your bio on your firm's website (either because the referral source
provided your website URL or because the prospect has Googled your
name). Your LinkedIn profile may also get a look (i.e. in addition
to or instead of your website bio).
Your bio is typically one of the most visited pages on your
website. Prospective clients turn to your bio to help evaluate
whether they think you are someone they can trust to help them
solve their problem. They are looking for tangible evidence that
you have experience in working with similar clients and that you
have worked on similar projects for these clients. In short, they
are hoping to further substantiate what the referral source has
already said about you.
If you mainly represent institutions, prospective clients will be
looking to see that you have experience in their industry. They
will be looking for evidence that you have handled the kind of
problem they have and they will be looking to see examples of
Like an elevator speech, your biography and your LinkedIn profile
should position you in a way that makes you memorable. While you
have more latitude in a bio (i.e. to include a broader mix of work
that you want to be known for), make sure that your biography is
not simply a laundry list of everything you have ever done.
Instead, focus more on how you are best positioned in the
marketplace. Find a way to describe your expertise in a manner that
differentiates you from other lawyers who may handle similar
A good biography or LinkedIn profile should contain the following
- A description of the industries and types of businesses,
organizations and individuals that you represent;
- A summary of the kinds of problems you solve for these
- What have you done (i.e. give examples of matters you have
handled and describe what you accomplished for these clients);
- Other professional activities which highlight the depth of your
experience (volunteer activities, trade group involvement,
speaking, writing, etc.); and
- Any "recognition" that you have received (either implicitly
through leadership positions you have assumed in trade groups or
community groups, by being quoted in the press, or explicitly
through any awards you have received).
You can spend hours trying to get this right and if that is all
you do to market your practice, then you are probably not
allocating your marketing time well. In
my last LPM tip, I mentioned the same issue when talking about
social media. But maintaining an up to date and descriptive bio
will help turn those referrals into actual phone calls and
ultimately, it will help you build the practice you want. So get
out and network, but don't forget about your bio.
Tip courtesy of Stephen Seckler, president, Seckler Legal
Consulting and Coaching.
Published September 27, 2012
To learn more about the Law Practice Management
Section, which is complimentary for all MBA members,
contact LPM Section Chair Thomas J. Barbar or Vice
Chair Cynthia E.