Blog & Resources

NY Court Reverses Rule Banning Law Firms from Using Trade Names

The administrative board for the New York Unified Court System has lifted an old ban that prevented law firms from advertising based on trade names or domain names. This update to the rules of legal ethics will bring New York closer in line with other states that already permit the use of trade names in attorney advertising. However, there are still some cases where attorneys might get in trouble for advertising, depending on what trade name they choose for themselves. Continue reading “NY Court Reverses Rule Banning Law Firms from Using Trade Names”

Everything You Should Know About Zoom Backgrounds

Over the past month, businesses, law firms and schools have experienced a major change in their work environments. Now, attorneys and staff are connecting online through Zoom, the popular video conferencing platform. Taking these calls at home also places the pressure of finding a clean, at-home space to chat in! In order to solve this issue, there is a feature which remote workers can use to make working with colleagues more fun: Zoom Backgrounds.

Now, you may not have heard about this feature, and you may be wondering, what it is and what it does. We are here to answer all of your questions.

  1. What is a Zoom Background?

On the platform Zoom, there is a Virtual Background feature which allows the user to display an image or video as their background during a Zoom meeting. Examples include more professional options such as your firm’s logo, an office space, a solid color background; or more playful options, such as the beach, a city, or your favorite destination spot!

  1. How Do I Create a Zoom Background?

There are multiple ways to create a Zoom background, such as Photoshop or using a JPG image of your own. At PR4Lawyers, we are here to assist you in your Zoom background needs! For more information and to submit your Zoom background requests, you can contact John Zaher at JohnZaher@PR4Lawyers.com or call (631) 207-1057.

  1. How Do I Change My Zoom Background?

As mentioned previously, there is a Virtual Background feature on the Zoom platform. Once inside the platform, you can access this option through your settings. All you would need to do is navigate to this option and select the “plus” sign to upload your image.

  1. What is The Purpose of a Zoom Background? 

Not only are Zoom backgrounds a creative way to make the most out of working from home, during the COVID-19 situation, but it also provides you with the opportunity to maintain professionalism while connecting with your attorneys and staff or clients. In a few years, you and your colleagues will be looking back on this moment when you all bonded over the backgrounds on your Zoom call!

As a reminder, our team at PR4Lawyers is happy to assist you with your virtual needs. Do not hesitate to contact us to learn more. We look forward to hearing from you!

 

Part III: Promoting Your Webinar

Part 3 of a 3 part series

Now that you have learned why you should host a webinar and what you should consider when choosing a webinar platform, it is important to ensure you are taking effective steps in promoting your webinar.

Prior to promoting your webinar, consider who your target audience is. Once you have determined who you are seeking to reach, you can begin developing a digital marketing strategy to generate registration on your upcoming webinar.

Below include a few steps you can take to share your webinar to your target audience:

  1. Social Media Advertising
    • Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn
  2. Email Marketing
    • Introducing the webinar, reminding recipients of the webinar, and following up to thank them for attending
  3. Static Social Media Posts
    • Graphic to promote the webinar
    • Video “Teaser” to highlight the webinar topics
  4. Updating Your Website to Promote the Webinar
    • Website Calendar
    • Hello Bar
    • Website Pop Ups
  5. Adding the Webinar Landing Page to Your Email Signature
  6. Writing a Blog to Promote your Webinar
  7. Encouraging Employees to Share the Webinar with Family and Friends

Efficiently planning, launching, and promoting a webinar takes time and it is easy to forget essential steps. If you are interested in hosting a webinar and would like to ease the process, our experiences staff is here to assist you. For more information, please contact johnzaher@theprmg.com or call 631-207-1057 Ext. 107.

 

 

Part II: Choosing a Webinar Platform

Part 2 of a 3 part series

Choosing a webinar platform can be challenging. At the Public Relations and Marketing Group, we are here to assist you with your webinar needs. We will choose the most cost-effective platform for your practice and walk you through a step-by-step process on preparing and hosting a webinar. When choosing a webinar platform, it essential to consider the following:

What are you looking to achieve from the webinar?

  • Brand exposure
  • Lead generation
  • Relationship with clients

What tools and features does the webinar provide?

  • Multiple presenters
  • Presentations
  • Screen sharing
  • Live chat
  • Question and Answer sessions

How often do you plan to host a webinar?

  • Once a week?
  • Once a month?

How can you use webinars to measure success of your practice?

  • Email leads
  • Client feedback
  • Client questions/concerns on your products and services

Overall, there are various factors to consider when choosing a webinar platform. If you are interested in hosting a webinar please contact johnzaher@theprmg.com or call 631-207-1057 Ext. 107.

Part I: Why Host a Webinar? 4 Benefits to Consider

Part 1 of a 3 part series 

Webinars make connecting with your audience easier. Presenters can use video, audio and screen sharing to market products and services to viewers anywhere. Begin building personal connections, engagement, and trust by inviting attendees to a webinar and engaging them through question-and-answer sessions, live polls and more. If you are considering new ways to grow your practice and attract new clients, here are 4 benefits to consider.

  1. Hosting Webinars Raise Brand Awareness

Webinars provide the opportunity to utilize video conferencing technology to reach a wider audience. With this technology, your firm can reach clients across the globe and increase brand exposure. In addition, the people viewing your webinar are showing their interest, and therefore, are most likely potential clients. If they are satisfied with the webinar, they may even encourage family and friends to engage with your firm. Overall, this word of mouth communication is guaranteed to leave a lasting impression for your brand.

  1. Webinars Assist in Building Relationships with Potential Clients

By speaking to a group of potential clients, you have the ability to understand your target audience on a deeper level. A few examples include what they are interested in, what concerns they may have, and also understanding what motivates them. In opposition, viewers can get to know you as a person and gain your trust. They are able to connect to the video call while they are in the comfort of their own home or office, therefore there is no pressure. Accordingly, they will have the option to participate in interactive question and  answer segments. With each webinar hosted, you can establish a strong relationship with potential clients.

  1. Webinars Build Your Email List and Generate Qualified Leads

Sign-up forms for your webinar enable you to collect lead information such as email addresses, phone numbers, and job titles. In correlation, the details that you provide in your webinar educates and qualifies your audience. Examples include informing them about your background or services your brand offers and responding to questions or concerns your audience has.  

  1. Webinars Can Allow you to Stand Out Against Competitors

Are your competitors currently hosting webinars? Right now, is the perfect time to stay ahead of your competition. Building a strong online presence is essential in promoting your brand. In today’s world, 97% of clients find firms online first. By responding to these consumer actions and standing out online, you have a higher chance of growing stronger than your competition.

Overall, there are various benefits to hosting a webinar. Most importantly, webinars open up a new entry way in growing your practice. With the eligibility to invite and promote potential clients, share your brand message, raise engagement, and analyze and convert leads, webinars are the perfect option. If you are interested in scheduling a webinar for your audience email johnzaher@theprmg.com or call 631-207-1057 Ext. 107.

Don’t Let Your Revenues and Prospects Drop; Manage your Law Firm’s Online Reputation

In the vast world of the internet, information travels in the blink of an eye. Although it is valuable tool for law firms to reach out to clientele and potentially grow a business, the internet can just as easily make a firm come crashing down.

Hackers, internet “trolls” and hate sites are a reality that haunt many business owners. This results in specific firms being projected poorly due to untrue information, or bad reviews being vastly distributed and easily accessible. To avoid this as much as possible, it is important for law firms to be proactive about their online presence in order to stay on top of scammers and divert clients away from negative material.

Think of having a strong digital footprint as part of your overall brand. If your online presence is low, then your firm does not stand out and clients are unaware of where to look for your firm online. That leaves plenty of room for negative influencers to divert your potential clientele to inaccurate information. So, the stronger the footprint, the more control you have over your company’s image and the content that is present online about it.

In most cases of reputation crisis, publishing content online in a strategic manner that will push the damaging material out of the spotlight is the best course of action. However, this is not an easy and rapid task by any means. New content must compete with other materials and somehow make it to the first page of search engines. Content and review management programs may be a helpful to rise your content to the top at a faster pace to avoid negative repercussions as much as possible.

One program that could be established is to reserve applicable domain names. Malicious websites can easily host a website address that is similar to a firm’s name, diverting the attention of search engines and clients to the hate site and away from your firm.

One may believe that something as drastic as this would never happen to their law firm, but the truth is that anyone could be a target for malicious sites that are meant to attract inappropriate attention; sometimes for no reason at all. By purchasing all the appropriate domain extensions of your firm’s name, which can sometimes mean buying over 10 domains in a variety of iteration, you lessen the chances of potential attacks.

Some other ways to take control of your reputation include:

  • Making sure that the photos of you that appear online are appropriate and depict an image that you wish to portray.
  • Utilizing LinkedIn for most of your information sharing and connecting.
  • Maintaining a consistent schedule for publishing content to build a professional and reliable online profile.
  • Having a comprehensive AVVO profile.

Although there are several ways to deter the negativity online, many law firms simply do not have the time to regularly maintain an online presence. But, being there for your clients online is just as important as being there for them in the courtroom. That’s where PR4Lawyers can help.

PR4Lawyers integrates traditional marketing techniques the modern marketing necessities of social media, web development, and SEO. PR4Lawyers’ multifaceted approach helps law firms reach potential clients across all media, while also managing your online reputation to help your law firm succeed.

If you would like more information on managing your law firm’s digital footprint, or to set up a complimentary consultation, please call 1-866-PR4LAWYERS (866-774-5299) or fill out our online contact form.

How to Market Yourself Using LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a great way to showcase your professional brand and identity as well as your accomplishments. Not only can your profile reflect your resume, but it can also inform your network of the work you are doing. Utilize LinkedIn to network with people in your field of work, draw potential clientele to your business, and expand your brand over the wide web of digital connections.

Presenting Yourself on LinkedIn

To begin, fill out your entire profile completely. Below are some factors to consider when developing your profile:

  • Make sure your profile picture is professional. If you’re marketing yourself to gain more clients for your business or firm, use your picture to demonstrate that you are an expert in the field and take your job seriously.
  • Your cover photo should be just as professional, but instead of a headshot, it should promote your work. Use this photo as a digital billboard for promoting your firm’s services. Let viewers know that your firm specializes in divorces, injury law, or another field of law as soon as they click on your profile.
  • Keep your bio short and to the point. Tell page visitors who you are, what you do, and why you love doing it. Make sure to show your passion for your career, this tells people you’re dedicated and committed to your position.
  • Showcase your job experience; add your current position and at least two previous positions. This illustrates growth in your career and shows that you have extensive experience in your field of work.
  • Add projects or volunteer work to display the things you’re passionate about in life. If someone can find you relatable, this may lead to more clientele.

Networking

There are three different types of connections: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. Your 1st connections are people with whom you are already connected. This means you have either accepted their invitation to connect with you or vice versa. 2nd connections are those that are also 1st connections with one of your 1st connections. 3rd connections are people that are distantly connected to your network. For instance, they may be a 1st connection of one of your 2nd connections. The more connections you have, the more exposure and opportunities will become available to you.

Growing your network is important if you want to gain more clients and connections. Start by connecting with people you already know such as colleagues, previous people you have worked with or worked for, old schoolmates from college and even peers from high school. Join groups with alumni from your university, or if you were in a fraternity or sorority, connect with your fellow brothers and sisters.

Sharing on Your Newsfeed

When sharing posts and status updates on your newsfeed, be sure to sprinkle in any blogs or articles you have written. Articles created by you prove that you are extremely knowledgeable of the article’s topic and can increase your credibility on the subject matter. LinkedIn Publishing is great for generating articles, but another option would be to create a Medium account and write your articles through that site. Medium is a platform where thought leaders, CEOs, business leaders, and anyone really, can create a blog and share their stories and articles on Medium. You can post these articles on any form of social media including LinkedIn.

Another great way to increase visibility is to post any videos you may have of yourself giving a public speech at a conference or a similar event. There is no need to worry if you do not have any videos like this, regular articles and blog posts will suffice. Also feel free to share other people’s videos and posts that you resonate with to increase your presence on LinkedIn. Sharing other people’s articles and videos may help grow your network base as well.

Use LinkedIn’s tools to promote your business even further. Lastly, when it comes to marketing your firm or business, don’t forget the most important marketing tool is you.

PR4Lawyers is an experienced attorney marketing firm that has accomplished successful strategies for over a decade. For more information about our services, please call 1-866-PR4LAWYERS (866-774-5299) or fill out our online contact form.

 

 

Is Television Commercial Advertising Still Worth It?

With the rise of streaming sites such as Netflix, Roku, and Sling, do people even watch cable television anymore? The answer – yes.

Earlier this year, CNBC took a survey consisting of 801 Americans throughout the United States to find out just how many people still have cable television and actually watch it as well. Out of this group, 30 percent of people stated they only have cable or satellite TV and 36 percent said they have both cable and streaming services. That means 66 percent of the people still have cable television and have the potential to see your ad.

Streaming vs. Television

Even though the number of people watching TV is still large, there’s no denying that streaming services are becoming extremely popular especially among the younger generations. Streaming services are often a cheaper option than regular cable or satellite TV. This allows people to sit for hours upon hours binge-watching their favorite shows at their leisure. Whereas, regular TV tends to cost more and has a programmed schedule.

However, programmed schedules are valuable to those looking to advertise their firm or company on TV especially when it comes to a high-profile event, such as the Super Bowl, or a show airing at a specific date and time. For example, one of the most popular shows Americans watch these days is This Is Us on NBC. Securing an advertising spot on NBC Tuesday nights from 9p.m. to 10p.m. Eastern Standard Time could allow you to reach millions of viewers across the nation while they’re enjoying This Is Us. Many cable channel programs also command large audiences, such as TLC, Bravo, HGTV, and others.

Forbes even stated, “Television advertising revenue was up 7.1% in January 2018, according to the latest stats from the Standard Media Index.”

Besides the potential numbers of viewers, think about the effect being on TV has to large audiences. We instantly attribute a company being on TV with having a distinct and respectable status. Just seeing your advertisement on television can impact viewers to see your business in a prestigious light. Not only will your ad boost your fame, it will portray your business as credible.

So, don’t be blind to the steady influence of TV advertising in this digital age, it may be just the advertisement your company needs to be seen.

For more information please visit www.pr4lawyers.com.

PR4Lawyers is an experienced attorney marketing firm that has accomplished successful strategies for over a decade. For more information about our services, please call 1-866-PR4LAWYERS (866-774-5299) or fill out our online contact form.

An Overview of the Security Settings of Social Media Platforms

Social media can be both a beneficial and dangerous tool for businesses and individuals. While it can help spread your company’s message to the masses, sometimes, it can also share too much or the wrong information and can give users an undesired perception of your company. In addition, today’s increasingly popular digital world has brought with it the danger of hackers (people who gain access to others’ accounts and make unauthorized changes that can be detrimental to a business’s online persona).

In order to help prevent some of these issues, many social media platforms have started to offer improved security options. Many of these can be found on the platform’s “settings” header. These options vary from site to site, however. Below are some of the most noteworthy security settings from each major social network.

Facebook

One of the most popular social networking platforms, Facebook offers many security options to protect one’s page. The platform allows users to “turn off” the ability for people to leave reviews and send direct messages, post comments to the business page, or tag the page in another user’s posts and photos. This helps to prevent the company page from being associated with other users who do not represent the organization.

In addition, comments made on a publicly-shared post can be “hidden” so that only the person who posted the comment and his or her Facebook friends can view it. While there is no way to prevent these comments from being posted, these comments can be deleted by the page admin after they become public.

Another security feature Facebook offers is the ability to set a targeted demographic for a company page’s posts. A business can select a preferred audience for its posts and can restrict the audience who views it.

Twitter

An important thing to note about Twitter’s security settings is that not everyone has to see your tweets. While you can set your account to private — meaning that only your followers will have access to your tweets — you can also declare “approved connections,” naming specific accounts to receive your tweets. These approved connections will have the ability to like, comment, or “retweet” your posts. Twitter also allows users to prevent people from tagging their account in photos and can block other users from sending direct messages to the account. However, one of the greatest security drawbacks is that Twitter does not allow users to prevent their handles from being tagged in other individuals’ tweets.

Instagram

With a focus on photos rather than wordy posts, Instagram is a social media platform that seems to attract more individuals for entertainment rather than for professional use. However, many businesses still utilize the social platform to reach a specific audience.

One of Instagram’s security features favorable to businesses is the ability to turn off comments on specific posts. This feature is used to prevent other users from posting negative comments to a shared post. If you do not want to turn off comments completely to welcome positive posts, Instagram does allow the user to delete other users’ comments on their post. However, like most other social media platforms, these comments can only be deleted after they have already been posted and there is no way to filter out negative comments before they are posted without completely turning off the ability to comment on a post.

Instagram also offers the option for users to make their account “private,” which means that other users must request to follow an account and the owner of that account must approve or deny each request. This feature allows an account to control its audience, but it is used by personal accounts more often than business accounts because it tends to decrease visibility and traffic to a page.

If online interactions become too negative, Instagram also allows users to block other users. Without notifying the other user, the “block” option will prevent the blocked user from viewing your posts and will also prevent you from seeing theirs. You will also no longer appear on each other’s lists of “followers” or “following” and the blocked user will not be able to comment, like, or view your posts or direct message your account. In addition, the blocked user will be unable to find your account in his or her searches.

LinkedIn

When a user creates a LinkedIn account, it comes with many default privacy and security settings that may not be ideal for the business. For this reason, it is important to review your settings to ensure that your account is set up with the privacy and security features you would like. LinkedIn offers the following security options:

  • Under the “Privacy” tab of the “Privacy & Settings” header, the social platform allows users to turn off a setting that notifies the user’s network and connections whenever he or she updates the profile. When users make multiple changes to their profiles at once, their networks would likely see every change through their notifications, which could be a nuisance to some people.
  • Users can prevent people who they are not connected to from seeing all of their activity while browsing their page. This can be done under the “Blocking and Hiding” header, which allows users to select which connections may or may not follow the account, view the account’s activity, and view public updates.
  • LinkedIn has a feature that allows users to see who viewed their profiles. It also allows users the ability to limit the amount of information others see when they view their profile. A user can change these settings to show their complete information, a vague amount of information that hides their name and photo, or simply “LinkedIn Member.”
  • The ranking system on LinkedIn can be beneficial to a business or individual, but it can also be harmful. A bad ranking may deter others from taking interest in the user or their company page. However, LinkedIn allows users to exclude themselves from this ranking.
  • LinkedIn also allows a user to prevent others from seeing his or her connections and limit which emails he or she receives from the platform and those who may be trying to contact the account member or business.
  • The social platform also allows users to hide their photos completely or limit their accessibility to just connections or networks.

Some settings may be better suited for a company’s page than they are for an individual’s page and vice versa. For this reason, it is important for users to understand their audience and the message they would like people to perceive by viewing their profile.

Google My Business

In order to publish a business listing on Google, a business must be verified. This security measure is set up to ensure that whatever information is being posted about the business is being done by a representative of the organization. To verify a business, Google will send the user a verification code to the listed phone number either by call or text — or it can be sent by mail to the business’ address. In addition, these measures help to verify that the business name matches the contact information associated with it. Once an account is verified, the user will have full access to post to the page, upload photos, and engage with their audience.

While Google My Business does not allow individual users to delete negative comments or reviews, it does provide the option of “flagging” an inappropriate or inaccurate review. Once a review is flagged, a Google representative will review the post to see if its contents violate the platform’s policies. However, it is important to note that Google will not remove a review simply because it is negative. To be removed, the review must be in clear violation of Google’s policies. If the Google representative deems the post a violation of one or more of the platform’s policies, it will process the request and remove the post. This process may take several days.

Television & Video: Grab Clients’ Attention Before They Need You

According to computer software giant Adobe, streaming devices like Roku, PlayStation, Apple TV and the Amazon FireTV have grown in popularity by nearly four hundred percent since 2015. Thanks to these TV-connected devices, and the newly accessible online streaming services for live news and sporting events, television is back in a big way, and it’s time to take advantage of the trend. Communicate with current and prospective clients in a professional and highly visible platform with a series of television commercials.

Though cable is still widely popular, the internet is where many now get their news and media.

Continue reading “Television & Video: Grab Clients’ Attention Before They Need You”