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Beat the crowd: Tips for rising above the competition in a saturated market

The Am Law Daily announced last week that early numbers show only modest growth for a prestigious group of New York’s largest law firms last year. Within the study is the admission from several partners that persistent pressure to lower rates is cutting into profitability, even with a rise in some types of litigation work. The push for firms to lower their rates or pursue alternative billing agreements is growing as law schools continue to graduate more students than the market can absorb. Not only is the market saturated, but too many young attorneys are graduating ill-prepared to meed the demands of both employers and clients. Some are responding by attempting to cut rates even further.

The problem is becoming so pervasive that some law schools are considering opening their own firms to better prepare students for the real world of the legal profession. Arizona State, for (more…)

How Your Law Firm Can Dominate Google for Hundreds of Keyphrases – Podcast

your SEO strategy is often centered around high-traffic, targeted keywords. However, there is another way to make use of variations on the theme. Check it out here.

New York Times Offers a Preview of its Revamped Website Design

The New York Times has announced it will be rolling out a new website over the coming year. On Tuesday, the Times provided a sneak peek, complete with animated examples of the new home page, sections and comments. The paper claims that the updated layout will give users easier access to areas of their interest and provide a more intuitive reading experience.

Access to the beta version of the new site is being provided to a limited number of randomly chosen individuals who request it from the demo page. But everyone can check out the preview, and it is worth doing. Some good lessons can be learned from examining what the new site is doing right.

Simplicity. In its current incarnation, the Times website suffers from the same clutter that afflicts many high-information sites. Upon first glance, it is difficult to determine what to do – very (more…)

Set your firm apart in a way that matters to clients

One difficulty confronting firms that are operating in an undeniably saturated market is the ability to effectively communicate what sets them apart from all the other firms competing for the same clients. Many attorneys have begun to recognize that they must define themselves in a way that is distinct from their competition. And this is correct. One key to successful marketing is showing clients how you are different from (and better than) all of their other options.

Unfortunately, many attorneys identify and promote the wrong things – things that clients do not find relevant or helpful. These things can be categorized as “features” of a firm, like having 20 years more experience or boasting a larger network of non-lawyer collaborative partnerships. That is not to say that these thing don’t matter; it is simply that they matter to people searching for a lawyer only insofar as they provide a real advantage to (more…)

Google’s How Search Works site outlines the search process and offers live spam screenshots

Google has launched a website called How Search Works, which takes users through the process of search from crawling and indexing to displaying results. From a purely design standpoint, the site is a beautiful example of how modern coding techniques can create a completely interactive, animated and Flash-free website. It uses plenty of white space, large text and simple graphics to explain the indexing and search process.

The information contained on the site’s landing page is pretty basic; anyone who spends a lot of time online is probably already familiar with the concepts. However, each of the steps has its own dedicated, in-depth page that explains the process more thoroughly. The site also offers plenty of links to more comprehensive information, including a download of their search quality evaluation precision guidelines, links to answers in their knowledge base, a video that describes ways in which they try to improve search and (more…)

Paying Attention to Your Law Firm Tagline – Podcast

Law firms have more considerations than other service providers and retail businesses when it come to choosing a name. Like it long or short? Here are a few things to consider.

Six tips for building your blog readership

Lawyers blog for a variety of reasons, marketing often being chief among them. Blogging and other online social activity can be both rewarding and frustrating. Every regular blogger has wondered if there is really anyone out there reading their tips and insights. For your professional advancement (and peace of mind), it is good to know that your blog readership is growing. More readers mean more interaction, more prominence online, more opportunities to build trust with visitors and ultimately more chances to secure a new client. Try some of these tips for making your blog more active and productive.

1. Be a good reader. Good writers read. Regularly. Writing in a void without exploring examples of the skilled writing of others can result in poor quality material. Reading helps strengthen your own writing and critical thinking skills, particularly if you read material that comes from a point (more…)

Too many keywords are keeping your law firm down

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Spice up your attorney marketing with infographics

Attorneys and law firms are not generally known for their infographics, but there is no reason that should be the case. You may love them or hate them, but regardless of your personal stance, it is important to recognize that they do garner more attention than plain-text posts and articles. Infographics are an easy way to distribute helpful facts, lists or other data. As social media assets, they are easy to share. As visuals, they are more likely to get attention and be seen by a diverse audience.

Infographics can be fun and interesting, but they are only effective as a marketing tool if they gain traction through pins, shares and retweets. Infographics must be well-designed, engaging and contain information that people actually want to know. Certain types of content are more likely to go viral than others, like lists, graphics that tell a story, information that is surprising, (more…)

Digital Business Card Options are Expanding

Depending upon who you ask, business cards are either an essential professional tool or a dinosaur left over from the old days of print. The reality is probably somewhere in between; you will not win new clients through the sheer brilliance of your business card design, but a good card can help keep you in touch with valuable connections.

Truly tech-savvy early adopters have been searching for ways to digitize the business card for some time. LinkedIn offers an app called CardMunch, which lets you take a picture of a physical business card with your iPhone and then convert the information to a contact in your address book. This may be good for storing other people’s information, but it does not address your ability to share your own digital card. Other apps, like Cardcloud do allow you to create and share a digital business card via phone or email. Unlike some card (more…)