Three Ways Attorneys Lose Potential Clients’ Trust


Let’s face it, appearance matters—especially in the ever-visual online world.

So considering public perception is vital for your practice. Particularly when just one slip could make potential clients question the quality of legal representation you offer.

Here are three things you can watch for when it comes to gaining, and losing, potential clients’ trust.

1. Non-Branded Email Addresses

Just like you wouldn’t have some other company’s information on the top of your 24lb bonded cotton letterhead, nor should you brand your emails—today’s standard form of communication—with anything other than your law firm. In fact, when FindLaw asked legal consumers, “If a lawyer used a free third-party email address (i.e.,, would you hire them?” over half of the respondents stated that it looked unprofessional. Likewise, in the face of email scams and sketchy junk mail consumers are overloaded with, a professional email address will set your law firm apart and identify it as trustworthy.

2. No Website

Reality check: having a website today is not an option. An absent website will directly translate into a loss of potential clients, and that’s because consumers question the legitimacy of a business that can’t be found online today. Legal consumers that do manage to find you may end up questioning whether your firm is in-touch enough to represent them in today’s world. No two online marketing plans will be the same, but some simple guiding principles can help you determine how to invest and, importantly, measure the success of your efforts. And it all starts with having a website.

3. No Online Recommendations

More and more, the world is looking for attorney recommendations online. Strangers trust other strangers for candid feedback on how your law firm assisted them in a similar time of need. Third-party perspectives can validate your ability and character more powerfully and authentically than any marketing message you could send. It may seem scary to hand over your hard-earned reputation to the public (although really, it’s a good thing), but it’s necessary. For your practice to thrive, you have to master the art of cultivating recommendations.

Remember that every presence on- and off-line is a trust exercise with legal consumers. It’s your job to provide these potential clients with a consistent, relevant and trustworthy picture of who you are and what your firm has to offer. You’d be surprised how some small, vital steps can impact your bottom line.

Don’t miss the boat.

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