Law Firms Vulnerable to False Marketing Claims

In today’s downed economy many out-of-work and minimum wage earners are turning to web development and content marketing as a home business and a way to pay the bills. But just because someone claims to be a content marketing professional doesn’t make him or her one. They may have the website and business cards. They may have even filed the fictitious name form with the city. But where are their customer testimonials and portfolio?

Any reliable online marketing professional will have a successful web presence that showcases their satisfied clients. But where you have actual client testimonials, you also have barrels of fake ones.

Law firms are feeling more urgency than any other field when it comes to needing professional online marketing services, as competition for snatching their share of online clients is at the forefront of every firm’s marketing efforts. Online marketers know this, and as a result, law firms are vulnerable. So how can you tell real client testimonials from fake ones, and how do you spot the legitimate online marketers from the wannabes?

Once you have researched your options for hiring a firm or individual marketer, investigate them thoroughly. Start by scouring social media platforms.  YouTube is a great place to start, as it hosts a number of legal marketing videos that displays their client’s testimonials. If the supposed lawyers who leave the testimonials don’t offer the name of their firm or their own names, disregard the company altogether. And if the lawyer does namedrop their firm, give them a call and confirm they used the marketing service.

Check Facebook. Any company that claims to be a marketing expert will practice what they preach, and will have a glowing presence on Facebook. But even tech savvy fakes can create a false image.

Daily Finance addresses this growing concern and sheds some light saying that there are ways businesses can defend themselves. They report on a study from Cornell University that found that fake reviews focused more on narratives and superlatives rather than providing concrete descriptions. They suggest this is due to the fact that fake reviewers rarely have actual experience with the field they are reviewing.

The study continues to express that red flags are raised when reviewers use words like “I” and “me” more frequently, perhaps to reinforce their credibility as “real” people.

Once you have scanned your potential marketer on Facebook, check to see how many “likes” they have, and click on those profiles that liked them. If you come across accounts with no friends or a blocked profile, it is safe to assume that these “likes” came from malware-comprised accounts.

Check them on Linkedin. If they are connected to other reputable industry professionals and have endorsements than this will firmly attest to their professional legitimacy.

Contact the marketer directly and ask him/her to provide you with a link to a current client’s website where you can view their work. You should also ask for their portfolio and resume. When viewing their work make sure the marketer produces well-written, original optimized content cemented with solid search marketing and SEO practices such as link building and the use of keywords.

When you hire an online marketer you are putting your firm’s reputation and potential profit earnings into the hands of a stranger. Do your research—this is the only way to ensure that a good hiring fit is in place.

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