The Power of Good Client Reviews for Lawyers and Law Firms

Last Updated: Nov 2, 2022

The Power of Good Client Reviews for Lawyers and Law Firms image

How reviews, case studies, and client testimonials will support your firm's marketing

Law firms are increasingly looking for ways to promote their business and attract new clients. One method that is being used is to encourage current or previous clients to share, hopefully, positive feedback via testimonials and online reviews. This has become a well-known marketing tactic for a range of law firms. Some in the legal profession do question if reviews can benefit the law firm or, in fact, if they can tarnish a firm's reputation.

However, your law firm’s reviews are important for a host of reasons that we will share in this article. In summary: if your firm is looking to build a strong online presence, you should include client reviews, testimonials, and case studies in your marketing mix. We at Lawzana recognize the power of good client reviews for law firms as one way of putting your lead generation on autopilot. By building your profile on Lawzana, including quality reviews and testimonials, your leads will be shared directly with you via our effective, novel, and high-traffic directory.

Consider your own experience in terms of a purchase journey. Suppose you are looking into a new product or service. In that case, reading reviews highlighting the experience of people like you with that product or service are likely to be persuasive as the information can help inform your decision. This is no different with legal clients; even though the situation may be more complicated than purchasing a new phone, the principle is similar. Client testimonials and reviews can play an important role in law firm marketing

Client testimonials should be viewed as an opportunity to establish and build your firm's reputation and that of your lawyers. There are some best practices that we will share to generate these reviews in the most useful and effective way. In this article, we will outline the details related to client testimonials and reviews and explore ways your law firm can leverage them to build its brand reputation.

What are client reviews?

A client review reflects their experience with your firm's legal services. Reviews can be seen on multiple channels and websites, for example, Google Reviews, Trustpilot, Yelp, and Facebook.

Prospective clients may look into these reviews during the purchase journey to understand how your firm operates and if it is worth their time and money to consult your firm.

It has never been easier to publish an online review with very few checks and balances. Therefore client reviews can be valuable, not so useful, highlight positive or negative experiences, and can contain untrue claims about your firm. There is no easy way to control it.

As the reviews are published on third-party websites and, in theory, are made by real people, prospective clients often see these reviews as a trustworthy source of information—many people online trust third-party website reviews at the same level as personal recommendations.

It is, therefore, easy to see why in law firm marketing today, there's a strong drive to generate client reviews and testimonials online. The essence of the reviews system is valuable as it offers information to prospective clients to understand more about a law firm's service and the lawyers that work there, to understand if it's a good fit for them. As law firms are more complicated than everyday products or services, client testimonials are prioritized over customer reviews, providing more insight than a simple review can offer. Moreover, along with the complicated discussion of legal services, the information shared may be more sensitive than other review content. 

Client testimonials offer a unique opportunity for your firm to share detailed and useful first-hand experiences that can be used to provide information about your legal services through the lens of your clients, which can be powerful endorsements for your firm. These comments can highlight the value of your services based on the client's personal experience, which can offer a unique and reliable insight into what prospective clients can expect from your law firm.

How can your law firm leverage testimonials and reviews for your marketing?

There are multiple reasons why your law firm should consider scaling up your efforts to generate trustworthy and quality client reviews and testimonials. The question should be, can your firm afford not to pay attention to them? Showcasing your client's experiences is one of the most reliable and powerful ways to market law firms because they are based on a real person's experience. This is why client testimonials and reviews should play a role in a law firm's marketing plan; here are some of the main points why:

Build trust 

When researching various legal services, the majority of prospective clients will most likely have limited or no experience in selecting a law firm. They can review your marketing materials, for example, your website or any available brochures. However, trust will ultimately play a vital role in the decision-making process. By reading through your client testimonials, prospective clients can read first-hand accounts of positive experiences that the client had with your law firm, which will inform and support the prospective client in feeling more comfortable choosing your law firm.

Establish credibility

 Another critical factor in the decision-making process is demonstrating that your firm has a strong and trustworthy track record. If your firm provides proof points that demonstrate that you can successfully conclude cases for clients in a practice area, you are likely to be more attractive to prospective clients who are looking for that particular service. Adding client testimonials and reviews is a further and more trustworthy proof point that demonstrates the value of your services by highlighting success cases.

Improve shareability

 Law firms can be more traditional in their approach to marketing; however, even for law firms, most marketing is conducted online. This is where you will reach the majority of your target audience and even where prospective clients go to discover more about your firm. This is why it is important that any of your marketing, including testimonials, can be viewed and shared by your network seamlessly. As the story is told through the eyes of the client, testimonials and reviews offer a digestible content format that is also easy to share, which will help spread the word about your law firm.

Enhance relatability  

Law firms and the legal world can be scary for some people or at least unfamiliar. It may be challenging to understand how their own case would be handled; this is why testimonials help provide content that is easy to understand, so that prospective clients can see how your law firm works and why other clients like them selected your law firm. By reading testimonials, prospective clients can access relatable information, which will provide insights and a sense of clarity by comparing their experience with that of your clients.

How do you generate client testimonials and reviews?

To begin publishing client reviews and testimonials, the best way is to start approaching your clients. For example, a client may come to you after the successful conclusion of a case in their favor, complimenting your firm and the lawyers they worked with. This is the perfect opportunity to ask if they would be open to providing a testimonial or review. Even if a client does not actively come to you, if you sense that they are satisfied with your service, it is acceptable to contact them and ask if they would be willing to share their experience with your law firm. Below are some standard places you can ask your client to review you. It is a good idea to focus on a few channels first to gain momentum by building up the reviews in one place. It is also strategic to prioritize your efforts in building up the number of reviews on the platforms you believe your target audience is most active. If, for example, you are already aware that prospective clients use LinkedIn frequently, you may consider building up the profile of your lawyers on this platform.

LinkedIn 

LinkedIn does not offer a channel to review your firm directly. However, it is a powerful professional social network, and lawyers frequently use this platform to generate new leads. Therefore, particularly if your firm works in corporate law, it can be a valuable exercise to ask clients to review your lawyers so that their LinkedIn profiles create a solid first impression when your lawyers are networking.

Facebook 

It is relatively easy to ask clients to leave you a review on your Facebook page. Since this is one of the most popular social networks, having good reviews will serve your law firm in building its online presence and reputation. You can fit this into your standard process by asking clients to give you a rating and a quick review on your social page.

Online directories 

When potential clients are searching for legal services, it is likely that they will be exploring any reviews or comments your firm has in local directory listings, such as Yelp or local versions and community websites. Having a good presence in a range of local directories with solid ratings and reviews will help reassure prospective clients that they are making an informed decision. This is why your firm should take steps to build your ratings in local directories, which can be part of the same process as asking clients to give you a review on Facebook.

Video 

Written reviews are a quick win. They do not take long for the client to do, so it is a smaller ask. However, video testimonials are a more in-depth way to generate proof points for prospective clients because they are more personal and realistic. Considering the importance of shareability and digestibility, video testimonials are a highly effective way to add value. You can add these videos to your YouTube channel and embed them on your website. They can be a potent marketing tool by providing a platform to demonstrate your services' quality visually. Even though it is a bigger ask of your clients than an online review, it is still possible to make it as simple as possible by setting up a short video call online and recording this conversation, with your client's permission of course, then editing the video to make it suitable to share online. In this way, you do not need to schedule an in-person meeting, saving your client's time and your time.

This point is crucial; you need to make the process of providing reviews as straightforward as possible for your clients. Clients will be more willing to take the time to give a testimonial if the process is easy and seamless, with no friction. Automate and streamline the process as much as possible by preparing a set of questions, so they do not need to spend time thinking about what types of information are valuable or should be said. You can also offer to help them in writing up the final testimonial based on their experience. However, for the integrity of your firm and clients, it is important that the comments shared are based on the client's true experience and it should also be in their voice; this will also support your firm in producing the most authentic-sounding testimonials, which are more likely to appeal to prospective clients.

What are the best examples of testimonials?

Prospective clients will be looking for honest, positive, relatable, and real testimonials and reviews that focus on results and outcomes for your previous clients. One thing to be mindful of is what type of information should be included in a testimonial. Many legal cases contain confidential information, so this can be a challenge to get the balance between presenting enough information to merit the review as realistic while respecting the privacy of your former clients. You will need to consider this to reassure previous clients that you have taken this into account before asking them to provide a testimonial. As the legal profession can be complicated with many unique scenarios, you will also need to clarify that your firm cannot guarantee a similar outcome or result for all potential clients.

Where should you showcase client testimonials?

Considering client privacy and clarifying that you cannot promise a particular outcome, client testimonials should be displayed strategically wherever possible. A dedicated space on your website is a good place to start featuring client ratings, reviews, and testimonials. Social media can also be used if you wish to highlight a particular testimonial to present it as a success story. In the same way, firm newsletters can be an excellent place to share targeted testimonials with your subscribers.

Here are some channels to consider to leverage your client testimonials:

Website 

Your law firm's website is the first place you should consider adding past and current clients' experiences with your firm. Your website is your firm's hub, which most of your prospective clients will visit at some point, so it is essential to include proof points related to the value of your services here. This is why particularly strong client testimonials can be featured on the homepage, as it is likely to be your most visited page for a wide range of website users. You can also set up a dedicated testimonials page to share with prospective clients.

Legal directories 

Online legal directories are an effective and efficient targeted marketing tool for law firms. As with other types of directories, they support your firm’s SEO (search engine optimization). Legal directories also allow your law firm to be listed and outline your services. Some directories, such as Lawzana, even include a space for client reviews and testimonials.

Marketing campaigns 

Examples could include a social media or email campaign; in the content, you can add client reviews and testimonials to the campaign messaging.

Include staff and colleague testimonials

Clearly, client testimonials are powerful proof points that can help persuade prospective clients that you are a trustworthy firm. However, your colleagues can also play a role in building the profile of your firm. This could include your staff, which can also benefit recruitment or even other profiling legal professionals or firms that have worked with you. Providing professional feedback on their experience of working with you and your law firm can effectively demonstrate the quality of your services to prospective clients and provide them with information to learn more about your services and feel confident in selecting your firm.

Summary

In conclusion, law firms cannot disregard online reviews because, to some extent, firms cannot control if they are subject to review or not. Even if your firm is not actively encouraging clients to share reviews, some will provide reviews independently. Unfortunately, there may be negative reviews that should be monitored and, where appropriate, responded to in order to protect your firm's online brand reputation. In some extreme or malicious cases, it may even be necessary to consider legal action if the review has the potential to cause reputational damage.

 On the more positive side, client reviews and testimonials can provide a further social proof point, highlighting an individual or company's experience with your firm. This can attract people like the reviewed party to become interested in your firm. Using reviews in this way can be a highly effective marketing tactic for law firms.

If you have any questions related to law firm marketing, do not hesitate to contact our expert team at info@lawzana.com