Nearly half the visitors to your law firm website enter through your homepage. Many prospective clients enter your homepage by searching for particular lawyers by name or by typing a particular search term, such as family law attorney in Illinois, into Google and clicking through to the lawyer’s optimized biography page.
According to statistics, attorney's bios attract 80% of law firm website traffic.
Thus, attorney bios are crucial. All law firms know they need them but few know how to create engaging bio pages.
- Should I make my legal bio page purely professional?
- Should it be a mix of personal and professional?
- How much should I focus on my achievements?
- How can I make it engaging?
It's normal to ask these types of questions. At GoEngine, our SEO experts can help you create engaging attorney bios that resonate with your potential clients. To schedule a free initial consultation, contact our lawyer bio experts today at (864) 300-0344.
How Do You Write a Good Bio for a Lawyer?
Here are the top 7 tips for creating the best bio page for attorneys and some important mistakes to avoid.
Open With a Powerful Statement
The attorney profile is the key to selling legal services so even if it's in a third-person voice, it should be about connecting your legal experience with the legal problems you solve. The first paragraph of your biography is essential for starting a conversation with the target audience you're trying to connect with.
By adding specific keywords in the first line and headings, such as your law firm location, your first and last name, law firm name, and most prominent law practice area, you can increase your visibility. You should add personal information and education at the end of the biography.
Include the Basics
Add all the basics that people will want to follow up on to make sure that you're who you say you're. Typically, you should include:
- Contact Information: Include your law firm location, social media links, phone number, and email address on your biography.
- Education: You should also include undergraduate and law school credentials and any post-graduate degrees.
- Work History: Although this isn't always necessary, be sure to add any noteworthy positions you have held in the past in your biography and list of accomplishments.
- Practice Areas: If possible, be concise.
- Published Cases or Clients You Have Represented: Remember to include high-profile clients and pro bono work you have done in the past but make you solicit permission to publish where necessary.
- Publications: These include publications you have been interviewed by or those you've written.
- Speaking Engagements: Panel discussions, podcasts, and lectures are great to include in your bio content.
- Awards: Your biography should also contain both civic and legal awards.
- Board Memberships: Every instance should be its own bullet point or entry.
- Legal Organizations and Bar Associations: In your biography, highlight leadership positions first, next you should add general memberships and include years of participation where possible.
- Clerkships: Judicial clerkships are also important to include in your profile.
Cover the Extras
Next, include anything extracurricular that'll make you stand out in the crowded legal space. These may include community service, leadership positions, even outside of the legal industry, and board memberships are great extras to add to your biography. Also, this is section is the right place to include a personal line or two about your hobbies, interests, or family to resonate more with your target audience.
Add a Relevant, Professional Photo
This is an area where many attorneys fall short. Don't forget, this may be the only time your prospective clients will see you before deciding to hire you. Give your best possible first impression by investing in professional bio photos that reflect your personal brand and your best qualities. Take professional headshots frequently to keep your online image up-to-date.
Create Several Bios for the Best Web Engagement
The professional biography you have on your law firm website should differ from the one you have on sites, such as Martindale-Hubbell or Avvo. This gives each of your bios a unique content score with the search engines, improving your overall search results rankings. Also, it allows potential clients to see unique pieces of bio content that haven't been cut and pasted to save time.
Thus, it's essential to create a bank of biographies for your website, each of your online biographies, and your printed biography. Further, don't forget to set a reminder to review your biographies once per quarter to keep them updated. Also, create a different “short” version, which you can use when you guest post on a blog, you speak, or are published in a legal journal.
Avoid These Biography Mistakes
There are many issues that we see often when we review clients’ offline and online biographies. Some of the worst pitfalls when creating an attorney biography include:
- Informal Photos: Avoid using old repurposed photos of your school yearbook photo. And, unless you're a professional graphic designer, avoid photoshopping yourself into different settings.
- Avoid Being Wordy: You don't need to add everything you have done in your legal career in your online biography. Avoid the fluff and focus on the highlights. The ideal biography length is between 300-500 words.
- Big Blocks of Text: Too much text tires online readers, and chances are pretty high your readers will lose attention even before they hit the second paragraph. So, keep paragraphs short with 2-4 sentences to incorporate white space. Make sure you read your bio out loud to identify any drawn-out sentences.
- Third-Person Formal: Avoid calling yourself “Ms. or Mr.” in your bio. This can be off-putting for potential clients. Instead, use your full name once at the beginning of your biography and your first name after that. It's essential to note that there is a ton of debate about whether to write your bio in the third person (he, she, them) or first person (I, me, my). But the answer depends on your personal brand, who your target audience is, and your legal practice area.
Use Creative and Interactive Elements
To make your bio page stand out more, incorporate engaging elements, such as introductory videos, v-cards, or printable versions. However, make sure these elements are professionally produced. Also, it's advisable to include a disclaimer if you list your email address stating that sending you an email isn't the start of a legal attorney-client relationship unless an engagement letter has been signed.
How Long Should Your Bio Be?
It should roughly be two to six paragraphs or sections. Here you have to balance a few considerations.
It's essential to note, your website profile isn't meant to be your curriculum vitae. An online biography captures attention, sparks interest, and confirms some central features of your current work and legal background. A resume is important, and you certainly can link to your resume from your biography. However, these two items serve different purposes. Your web biography should comprise compelling content, that's easily digestible and shouldn't be overly long.
However, if one goal of your website is search engine optimization to improve your law firm's ranking in search engine results for local attorneys who practice specific types of law, biography length matters in a different way. Search engines want a decent length of content to meet the user's intent, so you shouldn't make your biography too short.
But if your law practice is primarily a referral-based practice and thus your website is mainly a "validation" site for prospective clients checking you out after hearing your name elsewhere; aim for two to six paragraphs of four or fewer sentences each. If your goal is to market your legal services online through organic search results, go for an overall length instead, which includes bulleted lists, of about 500 words. Maintain a lengthier, but digestible bio content with brief paragraphs and SEO-friendly, skimmable headings.
Contact the Lawyer Biography Experts at GoEngine Today for Your Law Firm Digital Marketing Needs!
Writing the perfect attorney profile doesn't have to be a laborious task. When marketing your law firm, start with your target audience and work backward. Your lawyer biography is a great opportunity to connect with prospective clients before you meet them. Create bio content that is concise, search-friendly, and filled with your accomplishments. This will allow prospective clients and colleagues to “cut through the online buzz” and recognize you for the great attorney that you are. At GoEngine, we can help you with your bio creation needs. For a free initial consultation, contact us today at (864) 300-0344.