Byte of Prevention Blog

by Jay Reeves |

And The Winning Website Is...

Looking for creative inspiration for your firm’s website?

Search no further than the blawg, which has released its list of nominees for best law site of 2012.

The firms who were nominated range geographically from Atlanta to Ontario, from California to Columbus, Ohio. Substantively, their practices cover all areas from intellectual property law to automobile personal injury. One firm concentrates in representing universities and law schools.

In many respects they could not be more different. But their websites share two things in common:

* They are visually appealing – lovely to look at, some even eye-popping.

* They say what needs to be said – and nothing more.

Put another way, they possess the dynamic duo: Great Design and Great Content.

In a perfect world, perhaps, law firms are chosen strictly on merit and ability. But in the real world, the race is often won not by the swiftest or the surest, but the splashiest.  Weep and wail if you wish, but it doesn’t change the fact that appearances matter.

Presentation is paramount.

We live in a visual world. You can be the best lawyer ever, and yet doomed to obscurity if nobody sees you.

That’s why you won’t find a single cookie-cutter site among the Lawyerist nominees. No Geocities templates or findlaw home pages.

Solo attorney Todd Stanton of Georgia used his own fabulous photography to dress up his site.

And Kottler & Kottler, an auto/PI firm in Los Angeles, created an animated car crash, complete with cartoon characters and a hero lawyer who saves the day. Click on it and see if you don’t stay glued to the screen until the episode ends.

Isn’t that the whole point of marketing? To grab and hold attention?

And once you’ve got it, make your pitch quickly. Tell them who you are, what you do and how to contact you. Period. Save the rest for the initial interview.

The home page of Harvest, Marinelli, Saleem & Wright in New York City features stunning graphics and less than 30 words total.  Clean and simple.  The Mahon Firm of Southlake, Texas offers you a cup of coffee.

The fun thing about the Lawyerist contest is that you get to decide the winner. Go to the site, peruse the possibilities, and pick your favorite.

Even better, ask your partners and staff to do the same thing. Compare notes. Which sites did each of you like and why? What elements worked or didn’t work?

How can your own blog or website be spruced up? Be creative. Try something new.

Who knows? An award-winning practice might be a mere mouse-click away.

About the Author

Jay Reeves

Jay Reeves practiced law in North Carolina and South Carolina. He was Legal Editor at Lawyers Weekly and Risk Manager at Lawyers Mutual. He is the author of The Most Powerful Attorney in the World, a collection of short stories from a law life well-lived, which as the seasons pass becomes less about law and liability and more about loss, love, longing, laughter and life's lasting luminescence.

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