How to Make a Lawyer Profile – And Why You Need One!
Before you start wondering how to make a lawyer profile, you might first want to know what a lawyer profile actually is.
A lawyer profile is – or should be – a cleverly written, abbreviated CV, featuring a photo, which will make anyone reading it think they’ve found the perfect lawyer. It is, essentially, an advertisement.
Obviously, the real challenge is how to make a lawyer profile ‘cleverly written.’ So many of these profiles sound too much like one another; your lawyer profile needs to be different and memorable, while still staying relevant.
Fortunately, if you’re a lawyer, you’re a wordsmith – and there are some pretty easy rules to follow (which is also familiar territory):
- Pick your photo wisely
- Focus on your expertise
- Make it readable!
- Use SEO keywords
- Keep your achievements short and succinct
- Ensure your profile is up-to-date
- Include blog entries
- Don’t breach any ethics codes
- Proofread, check and double check
No grainy selfies…
… Or any other photos that make you look less than the seasoned lawyer you are (shirtless salmon-fishing and boozy vacation pics are NOT recommended). Have a professional photographer take a head and shoulders shot of you wearing appropriate business attire and a smile. Although you might feel more scholarly leaning against a bookshelf of thick legal tomes, a white or plain background works far better, keeping the focus on you.
And your profile really does need to feature a photo. Clients are looking for a lawyer – an identifiable person – not a computer-generated, faceless silhouette.
Remember, you’re the expert
Your lawyer profile should focus on your expertise. Referring to too many practice areas will make you appear too much of a generalist and stop search engines finding your profile.
Nobody will want to read your profile if it’s dull, so let’s look at how to make a lawyer profile interesting. As well as making clear to clients what you can do for them, try to inject a bit of yourself – the person behind the lawyer – into your profile.
This will make you memorable. One Australian law firm, whose contact page features lively and amusing (as well as relevant) descriptions of each of its lawyers, has noticed that its bio pages are by far and away the most popular pages on its website.
Short paragraphs and bullet points improve readability, while a handful of carefully chosen testimonials and recommendations will boost your credibility.
Remember that search engines pick up pages with a lot of traffic: something that can only be achieved if the content is worth reading.
And while we’re talking about SEO
Use keywords appropriately in your profile. Work out what future clients might type into a search engine when looking for a lawyer like you. For example, if you are a ‘tax lawyer in Austin’, use that in your tag line, rather than ‘partner in commercial law firm’.
To learn more about writing content for SEO, check out our blog on how to write the Keyword Focused Approach to SEO.
Focus on relevant achievements
When you were at school, your grades were all-important to universities and early employers. They are of little importance to your clients. By all means mention your university, further education, professional affiliations, awards and honors – they provide useful reference points – but it’s recent and relevant experience that future clients are most interested in now.
It’s obvious: if your ‘most recent’ transactions or cases are two years old or more, you’ll be seen to be struggling or retired. Make a habit of updating your lawyer profile at least monthly, so that it stays current, shows that you are still very much active, and reflects your busy caseload.
Include blog entries
As well as helping you market your practice, a law blog enhances your knowledge and is great for networking. Reference your blog feed on your profile.
Don’t break the law!
There are often strict regulations about which specializations you can claim and how to advertise them, so bear these in mind when writing your profile.
The tools of a lawyer’s trade are accuracy and attention to detail. Check and double-check your profile to ensure it’s accurate and grammatically perfect.
And, above all, remember: it’s not just a question of how to make a lawyer profile, but also how to make a lawyer profile work for you.