How to Start Your Law Blog

Law Blog

Blogging has been around for quite a while but it feels like it’s starting to gain more traction all over again. If you haven’t jumped on the blogging train yet, you’ve probably at least read your fair share of blogs. I mean, you are reading this one right now, right?

Blogs can be many things, from a recipe source to a guide on the latest fashions. When done properly, they are a hot resource for quick and digestible information.

So why should you consider starting one as a lawyer?

Blogs make you visible.

By starting a law blog, not only are you getting yourself out there to provide value to your potential clients, you’re boosting your website’s presence on Google – the king of search engines.

But why should I provide value to my potential clients for free?

By giving value to your potential clients for free, you’re allowing them to get to know, like, and trust you. They can then implement a tip you’ve given and say, “Oh hey, that attorney’s advice worked for me!” which will keep them coming back for more.

How does blogging help me get visible on Google?

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) boosts your website by pulling keywords from your website’s text and listing your site pages under relevant keyword searches. If you blog about fighting speeding tickets in Minneapolis, your post will appear in searches that people make about how to fight a speeding ticket in Minneapolis.

How to start your law blog:

  1. Start with your website. Which platform do you use? With WordPress, it is insanely easy to start your blog because it is likely already built into your theme. You’ll simply create “Posts” when you’re ready to make a new blog entry. If you notice that your posts don’t look nicely formatted, you may want to speak with your developer to set that up. If you used a ready-made theme to set up your website, this should not be a problem as blog post formats are built into most themes. Also, be sure that your website’s menu shows your blog page so people can find it easily when they visit your site. Don’t have a website yet? You need to create one! This is your best tool for finding clients and a necessity for your law blog.
  2. Get to writing! You have all kinds of knowledge and experience. Share it! Writing blog posts doesn’t have to be excruciating. Make a list of topics you want to cover, pick one, and start vomiting every thought you have about it onto your keyboard. Editing can happen later – just get your thoughts onto the screen!
  3. Look at your formatting. Do you have photos in your post? What about headers and other formatted text to break things up? You do not want your posts to look intimidating to read – people will skip right over them. Bold your keywords, add relevant photos (be sure to add a Featured Photo, too!), and break your lines up so that the content is skimmable.
  4. Check on your SEO. Your blog is most useful in attracting potential clients when it can be easily found, right? Make sure to use relevant keywords throughout your post, add inbound/outbound links, and keep your text easy to follow. For added help, you can download the Yoast plugin to your WordPress site and it will guide you in best practices that will help boost you in search results on Google.
  5. Launch your blog! Now that you’ve written, formatted, and SEO-ified your first post, it’s time to launch! You don’t need a lot of content on your blog before going public with it. Get eyes on your content right away and if they like what you’ve written, it will keep them coming back for more. To do so, announce your blog on your firm’s social platforms, LinkedIn, and even your personal platforms. Encourage your followers to like and share.
  6. Keep it up. Don’t write one post and bail on your blog. Your website loves the boost of content & the added keyword searches you’ll show up in, plus your potential clients are hungry for your knowledge. Stick to a schedule and continue pumping out the value that people are searching for.

Now go for it!

Hopefully this information has given you the gusto to actually start your law blog and give your potential clients some insight into what you’re knowledgable on. So now that you’ve read what you need to do, it’s time to actually do it! Sit down at your computer and let the (word) vomit fly.

Do you currently have a law blog? What are your favorite topics to cover in it? Let us know.

When Should You be Outsourcing?

When should you be outsourcing?

A small business owner cannot do it all. Whether you have employees on staff or not, outsourcing is an eventual must. But how do you know when it’s time, or even what you should be outsourcing?

If you are feeling that you are not able to focus on daily tasks within the scope of your profession – it’s time. If there are certain tasks you absolutely dread or that interrupt your day many times – it’s time. If your staff is spending too much time doing busy work or answering phones – it’s time.

What should I be outsourcing?

Anything that can be done on a computer or phone can be outsourced. The real question is: What is your current biggest time-suck? Look at where most of your time is going – do you have to be the one doing that? Is it worth paying an employee to do it? Or would you prefer to outsource at a lower cost?

Outsourcing incoming calls has increased in popularity for small business owners. The key for growth is cutting costs in some areas, to redistribute them to other extents. Thus, causing more revenue to your business.  According to The Staffing Stream, successful small business owners that outsource discovered that they can save 50% on their budget overall.  They also found that they did not lose any quality on the work. Which brings up a good question, am I actually posting this right now? Or did I just outsource my social media presence?

Benefits of outsourcing

One benefit to outsourcing is having fewer employees to manage yourself. You do not have to deal with finding coverage for sick days and planned time off. Having an outsourcing partner ensures you will always have a team of ready and capable workers.

Outsourcing also increases productivity, going hand in hand with more work being done for a lesser cost.

Do some introspecting

Are you getting caught up in taking calls, checking messages, and scheduling? These are all distractions that prevent you from performing your job efficiently. Challenge yourself and take the time this week to evaluate your daily phone operations. Add up the minutes and enlighten yourself about how much time you could be saving throughout the week and further investing in your business.

If you realize you need help in this department, let us know! We will give you a free 7 day trial so you can feel the benefits before committing.

Upholding Integrity

With so many stigmas surrounding lawyers and their ethics (or lack thereof) it is extremely important that law firms create and maintain integrity. With this month being March Madness, we can compare integrity to basketball.  When the image of the NBA was suffering due to poor off-court behavior, it was athletes like Larry Bird and Julius Erving that saved the NBA.  They exhibited being virtuous role models in the league.     

Instead of investing time and energy into creating an image of perfection…. invest in your employees, promote honesty, and walk the walk.  Conscious capitalism is on the rise, which means people are more concerned with companies that have strong core values and less about flashy brands.

Quick Tips

Here are few ways you can create and maintain integrity:

  • Keep your word: Deliver on your promises and commitments… no if, and’s, or buts!
  • Notice your environment: Is your office space organized? Are papers taken care of and filed properly? This speaks volumes about your firm’s integrity. If your office is messy, or if things get lost/misplaced, your clients will notice and not feel safe in your hands.
  • Don’t get distracted: There is always going to be new and exciting things to distract you from your goals/ values. Don’t get caught up in these things, remember what you are here for and who you are serving.
  • Surround yourself with like-minded people: If your values are delivering honesty and integrity, then mingle in crowd with the same values! This includes your employees/ professional partners. If you want an honest business culture, then hire those who reflect those values in their own lives.
  • Respect your employees: Valuing your employees is huge! Lead by example in your firm and see your employees follow in your footsteps.

These principles are important to bring into our professional lives not only because it’s the right thing to do… but also because it’s just smart business practice.

Teamwork: What Every Law Firm Needs

In the spirit of March Madness, we are focusing on teamwork!  There is a lot we can learn from professional basketball teams and their strategies to create a more cohesive unit.

Teamwork Strategies

Here is how you can practically apply basketball teamwork strategies in your law firm:

Have a leader: Every great team must have a leader who is out there on the court with them. Think Steph Curry or Lebron James. Be a servant- leader, who leads by example and inspires others.

Start the day with a huddle: Huddling is not just for sports teams, it applies to any and every type of team. It gets the group ready, prepared, inspired, pumped, and excited to tackle the day.

Practice drills: This strategy is particularly helpful with customer service-related interactions. Practice makes perfect and performing practice drills together can allow for peer to peer constructive criticism making it a great learning experience.

Regularly do team building exercises: For a professional basketball team, just about every exercise is for team building purposes. That is how they become so in-tune with one another. If you want your firm to be more cohesive, to know one another better, and to increase communication; then give them fun activities (not related to work) to complete together. This will help everyone to relax and reveal personality traits, strengths, and weaknesses.

Learn from failed teamwork: Failure is okay! It’s when we don’t learn from it that it becomes a problem. You may face times where you don’t work together and didn’t have the awareness that you hoped for. Maybe more strategy is needed! Take what you learned from your failures and apply it for the future

Working as a team is important in every firm, no matter how big or small. If you want your employees to fit in with your business culture and reflect company goals and values… start with trying some teamwork strategies!

Simplify Your Law Firm

Marie Kondo is on to something with her philosophy to discard anything and everything that does not “Spark Joy.”   It’s a very effective method for tidying up your house!  But, there is some real wisdom to her mantra that can be applied to every aspect of our lives, including in your law firm.

The ‘KonMari’ Method

Here is why Marie Kondo’s philosophy is life changing:

  • It’s simple and offers quick results.  In the ‘KonMari Method’ all tidying should be done comprehensively all at once so clutter can’t be pushed from one place to another. In our businesses when we start to declutter, whether that be literally or figuratively (getting rid of vendors who don’t serve you, employees who just aren’t working, etc.) it should be done all at once.  This is so messes don’t get piled somewhere else becoming a problem for a later date.

 

  • Teaches you to appreciate what you have. When you are in the decluttering process, you are made aware of all that you have creating a deeper sense of appreciation. It also impacts future behavior patterns. You become aware of what really works for you, and what doesn’t.
  • Sorting by category keeps you from being overwhelmed and disorganized. At times we have so much to declutter and toss out we have no idea where to start. With the KonMari Method, decluttering is done by category.  You do not move on to the next category until the one is finished. It teaches to take things one step at a time and to not get so far ahead of ourselves.

Spring is right around the corner, so in the spirit of regrowth, take time to see how you can declutter your life. Whether that be in personally or professionally… there’s always room positive change and personal growth!

Clio Grow Integration

 

As many you have already heard from our social media posts, we are now integration partners with Clio Grow! This integration will further streamline the intake process because new leads will be sent straight to your Clio Grow inbox, further alleviating some of the paperwork formerly required for this task.

Why You Should Use Clio Grow

If you are not using Clio Grow, it’s time to get with the program! It does so much more than simply keep you organized, it grows your firm by tracking data, such as potential client progress and key business drivers– which would otherwise be nearly impossible to collect on your own.

Some of the other amazing Clio Grow functions include:

Automated intakes, engagement agreements, and more. Clio Grow helps you automate these emails with templates, email scheduling, customized intake forms, and more!

Quick Intake button. The Quick Intake button is simple and makes adding potential clients into your database super-fast.

Clio Referral Network. The Clio Referral Network gives you access to a community of lawyers who also use the software, making referrals a painless process for when you are at max capacity and can’t take on another client.

And so much more…!

These are only a few of the functions offered by Clio Grow; It truly is a highly advanced and groundbreaking program.  We are excited to be utilizing this to greatly increase the efficiency of your law firm!

Back Office Betties

Solo Concierge’s at Your Service!

Back Office Betties specializes in helping small and single attorney firms, which allows us to provide unmatched services for our clients.  We are proud to announce that we are making your customer experience even better with our NEW Solo Concierge Service!

Unlimited Personal Concierge Services

Aside from answering phone calls and other duties that commensurate with daily office function; here are some examples of what personal concierge’s service can do for you:

  • Online shopping- for when you get held up in court and don’t have time.
  • Setting up lunch dates- for when you get caught up on the phone with a chatty client!
  • Researching travel- for when you unexpectedly make a new client that you need to see.
  • Scheduling family events- for when things get hectic, keeping your home life balanced.
  • Ordering flowers or a gift – for your loved one and you don’t want to miss the occasion!
  • …And so much more!!

Save Precious Time

We know that as a busy attorney, you don’t always have time to get personal things done. The great news is, you don’t have to! With our Solo Concierge you have a professional who you can trust to take care of those small tasks that seem to take time out of your day.  There’s nothing wrong with asking for help, especially when it means you get significantly more time in the day to spend working with your clients, providing the services you know they need.

The Solo Concierge by Back Office Betties is here for you… After all, we are your team of professional virtual receptionists who will work on your side and support you like no other!

G.O.A.T.

When it comes to customer service, who better to learn from than the Greatest Of All Time (GOAT) in customer service!  If you want to improve the customer service of your company, look to imitate brands that offer the customer experience you wish to provide. Whether it be the GOAT of Hospitality Horst Schulz of the Ritz Carlton or the GOAT of Culture Tony Hsieh of Zappos; there are so many great entrepreneurs who have paved the way for excellent customer service for us to follow. The best way to start is by identifying where your weak spots are as a company and figure out how you can begin improving upon them using other companies who are successful in these areas as molds.

Superior Service

Here are some basic things that the GOATs are doing to make their customer experiences superior:

 

  • Having a core commitment to your employees and your customers. If you make the focus of your company to create an environment of belonging and purpose, then employees can deliver superior customer service. Horst Schulz has created a process called, “Continuous Process Improvement” which has become highly effective and duplicated with many companies.

 

 

  • Making personal customer service interactions an easy option. Truett Cathy, GOAT of Fast Food, goes by the philosophy that customers are always wanting someone who is reliable and will take care of their needs.

 

 

 

 

  • Hiring people who care about customer service and company values. Tony Hsieh, GOAT of Culture, focuses on investing back into customer experience.  Rather than spending on paid advertising, he believes that the customer will do the marketing for them if they have supplied amazing customer experience.

 

 

 

  • Predicting you customer’s needs. If your goal is to really learn your customer, pay attention to them and their needs. GOAT of Customer Experience, John DiJulius, believes that customer experiences are built on the ability to recognize opportunities to exceed customers’ expectations regardless of the circumstances.

 

Of course, there are so many different customer service strategies you can steal from the GOATs out there, so it us up to you to know where you need the most improvement.  Customer experience is on trend and now is the time to refine your philosophy within your company.

Integrations That Work

If your firm hasn’t explored these integrations and feel they spend a lot of time with administrative tasks, its time to start making some changes. However, knowing the right integrations to use can be difficult, especially when there are so many different software programs out there.  To help you learn more about legal integrations, below is the list of a few that we use and how they are helpful:

 

  • Clio Grow: We have talked a lot about Clio Grow in past blogs because of its versatility. This integration allows us to add new leads and take notes on calls in your “Clio Grow Inbox.”
  • Acuity: A great scheduling tool for Outlook and Google calendar. This user- friendly software has turned scheduling, taking payments, and completing customized legal intake forms into a simple and easy process.
  • Appointment Core: A scheduling tool that integrates with InfusionSoft. This software allows our receptionists to easily schedule client appointments through booking links.

It Makes Life Easier

Integrations are here to help and make life easier, so if you haven’t hopped on the bandwagon yet, you are only making administrative tasks more difficult on yourself and your employees. We have adopted many integrations to make scheduling, billing, and payments seamless, so that we can provide the best services possible!  All of the integrations we use are on our website, where you can read a more in-depth description of their functions.

 

Increase Workplace Happiness With A Dream Manager

If you are looking for employees who are loyal to your company, strive to meet company goals, take pride in their work, and want to see their organization grow more successful…then you need to understand the influence of job satisfaction. Employees who feel appreciated and tend to be happier are:

  • cared about by management
  • feel they can be trusted
  • given an appropriate workload

It’s not exactly rocket science that being treated well makes a person happier, but often organizations miss the mark with their attempts to increase employee job satisfaction.

Dream Manager Program

One of the more unorthodox, yet effective strategies at increasing employee happiness is implementing a dream manager program. Matthew Kelly’s book, The Dream Manager, shows how companies can have stupendous results by helping their employees achieve their dreams. A dream manager’s job is quite literally helping employees plan how to fulfill what they desire! This can be anything from helping an employee with their goal of running a marathon to helping an employee learn to make the perfect souffle!

While employees work hard to support company goals, in return, the company is helping them achieve their personal goals. This sends a message to the employees that their interests’ matter and that their lives outside of work matter.  More importantly, they feel valued. In turn, employees have more confidence, are more invested in their work.  They naturally will work harder and become generally happier, feeling more satisfied with their position.

If you’re looking for a way to increase job satisfaction, consider a dream manager program because it’s fun and rewarding. It truly benefits everyone! Furthermore, it’s doable for almost any company, no matter the size. Even small businesses can fulfill small employee dreams and goals.  It’s certainly a worthwhile investment!