By Chris Casseday
As you probably already know, online reviews are extremely important. And this applies to law firms, restaurants, and countless other businesses.
Many companies obtain reviews through sweepstakes contests. Participants are able to enter the sweepstakes by leaving a review on the website. Nike, Nordstrom, and JCPenney all offer between $100 and $1000 gift cards to the winners of these sweepstakes. But aren’t review sweepstakes illegal?
These sweepstakes contests are deceiving and involve many intricate steps and buried requirements, ironically making them legal. Mike Blumenthal recently revealed these deceptions in his blog about his experiences with JCPenney’s review sweepstakes.
While department store conglomerates and well known brands take these risks, we will never advise a lawyer to go these lengths to get reviews. This type of strategy is not and will never be recommended for attorneys due to the code of ethics.
Don’t worry—there is hope. You can still create a knockout review strategy without having to go against the code of ethics. Here are five things to keep in mind:
1. Identify where you would like to have your clients leave reviews for you online. The majority of the time, I advise our clients to focus on Google, then follow with other sites like Avvo, BBB, and Yelp.
2. Do not ask a client for a review until their case is closed.
This seems like common sense, but waiting until the end (assuming the outcome is favorable) will increase your chance of receiving a positive review.
3. Determine the best time to have the review conversation with your client. For example, if you typically have your client pick up their settlement check at your office at the end of the case, that is an opportunity to let them know that you’d appreciate it if they’d leave a review for you online.
4. Create a review strategy. This can be done a number of different ways, depending on your internal process. You can create a review card with links to review sites to give to clients, or you can communicate this request via email.
5. Make this process as easy as possible on your clients. Getting reviews isn’t easy, even if clients really like you. You’ll find that people will forget to follow through in most cases, but for the ones that do, you want to make it painless.
Do you have a review strategy in place currently? If so, is it working? Now is the time to make this a priority, you won’t regret it.