Marketing Refresh 2.0
By Beryl Vaughan
Your sparkly marketing plan is in place.
You get a rush of new case calls.
But then the rush becomes a trickle and anxiety kicks in. Downs (vs. ups) freak out even the most confident, established doctor.
A normal response would be to beef up your marketing strategy, double down to more diligently reach out to attorneys. If the trickle keeps shrinking, you might give up on your goals and resign yourself.
Instead you need a second wind and here’s a little CBT to get you going.
WHAT IS THIS?
You have more than one chance to make a good first impression.
The reason is that lawyers are constantly revisiting the impression an Expert has made in light of a new and different case.
I’m going to teach you how to tap that attorney’s re-visit to your practice, your expertise, and your ever-deepening experience and skills.
Your practice isn’t static. Communicating that can be accomplished with practical steps.
Building a Website or Revamping Your Website
If you’ve established an effective website, consider:
Write New Content–Ask Attorneys What They Want to Know
- Anything new attorneys keep bringing up? Write about it. Post it.
- Consider a blog (or not).
- Focus on different or expanded areas of expertise. Early, mid and established-career doctors all benefit.
- Bored, or stuck in a rut? Everyone needs a practice that’s interesting. Use content to emphasize your experience in those engaging areas of expertise where you want to be working. E.g. if you have been doing Fitness for Duty evals but would like the occasional criminal case, then write about competency to perform a job and similarities/differences from competency to stand trial.
Add Imagery, Photographs, Illustrations, Cartoons (if appropriate)
- Update graphics and photographs. (This includes photos of you!)
- I believe that, on landing at your website, visuals for attorneys are more powerful than words. (By the way stock photos are inexpensive and protect you from licensing and attribution issues. Adobe Stock, Shutterstock, 123rf are a few service with a large library of imagery.)
Introduce Features that Invite Interaction
- Introduce interactive features into your website, like comments, open questions, “Ask” or “Contact” forms on pages besides the FAQ or Contact Us page; link to other information on the site, “Share this Page” and other tools attorneys appreciate.
Update Expert Directory Listings
Ideas for your directory listing
- Update your profile.
- Add any new accomplishments, presentations, credentials, years of experience.
- Update your CV and load it to the directory.
- Adapt content from your website for use on the directory (most have this option.)
There is no charge by any directory to update the profile responsive to shifts in your practice.
Post on LinkedIn. Facebook or Twitter?
Social Media is a misunderstood tool. Let’s be clear: there’s only one social media platform appropriate for Expert Witnesses -LinkedIn. A Facebook business page and joining Facebook attorney groups can be worthwhile but you must lock tight your perosnal page.
- A LinkedIn post contributes to your online footprint and, ultimately, leads clients to learn about you, usually on your website. Building a base of connections to attorneys is a good thing. When you post, or even comment on their post, they receive a Notification and a chance to wonder who you are and click on your profile–an introduction of sorts.
- When a potential client searches you by name, Google gives prominent real estate to your business when you take advantage of free Google services. Google MyBusiness and a Google Plus listing are free and valuable. Take the free advertising! Using these features, I made it possible to search ForensicExpertPro for some valuable visibility– test your own name in a search and then do so for a prominent expert in the field (outside of academia).
Most Social Media posts bear a date; a dusty date gives the impression your practice isn’t active, or that you haven’t learned anything new lately. Posting regularly establishes a routine “conversation” with your contacts, keeping you at the forefront of their thoughts.
Consider adding multimedia to your online venues– a video on social media, a webinar, podcast or PowerPoint about what attorneys want to learn. In fact, that is your only option in the COVID age.
Did you give an interview posted online last year? Include a caption, and byline, get permission to reprint.
Scan and add a photo to your site of you speaking to attorneys, at an event or simply on the job.
Maximize video of your testimony, if it exists. An attorney with whom you worked on the trial can help you find out if the court will allow it (after all, it is public record), if a videographer was present and who. Be sure to the proper licensing or copyright permission.
Video is also valuable because Attorneys care how you will appear to a jury. Wise and thoughtful? Flippant? Hostile? Trustworthy? I can assist with video and audio editing and art direction.
Remember, anything you post online is open game on the stand. If you write it or post it, you must be prepared to talk about it in open court. This is a good reason to keep your statements straightforward. Identify personal opinions as such. Cite research if appropriate.
*Why 2.0? When software is first released to the public, it has a version number. The first release is 1.0. As the software is updated and improved, new releases use sequential numbers, sometimes referred to as “builds.” Your marketing plan goes “live” at release 1.0. This article is about developing and releasing new builds. Thus, 2.0. (e.g., I am writing this using MSOffice (containing Word) version 1707.