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How to deal with a negative law firm reputation?


Reputation management for lawyers and law firms includes activities like managing your business listings as well as monitoring and reviews management on several online review directories and social media platforms. Monitoring involves responding to positive and negative reviews appropriately and courteously. It is a good practice to collect real positive reviews from happy customers and endorse them on the law firm website or share them on social media. Doesn’t matter if you’re a lawyer suggesting to clients or businesses that are researching for their legal needs, everyone implements online reviews and ratings to find the best lawyer. Keeping in mind that legal services are sometimes costly and emotionally exhausting, legal clients want that they make the best decisions. With intense online competition, owning a good online business reputation is now more important than it was ever. People are looking for lawyers online and scouring through online review directories.

If you can’t see yourself on the first page of Google search results and have many negative reviews, it’s hard to stand out to your competitors and win customers. Your business will start getting criticism from the customers and everyone will avoid doing business with you. Lawyer reputation management helps attorneys and law firms gain higher visibility on the first page of Google, improve their online reputation, boost their ability to win new clients and retain existing ones.

Why do clients leave online reviews?

For clients, online reviews act as an opportunity to share their side of the story in the buying of services from the law firm or lawyers. The feedback process is exceptionally important for legal issues, as these services are usually available at a high cost and often bring high stress. If you’re a contract lawyer when people want to know if you can offer good advice on modifications in rules for helping them attain the best results. If you work for the family law and accept divorce cases, your clients want to be certain if you can help them reach a conclusion with as petty conflict as possible. Before anyone places their legal outcome in your hands, they want to feel secure that they won’t get disappointed.

An online review provides a guarantee that the law firm they are going with is reliable. If you have a good lawyer reputation your clients will feel secure while contacting you while if that’s not the case and you have negative reviews on your business profile, this is a matter of real concern. This means you need to indulge in the online reputation management of a law firm you own.

Handling of negative reviews

  • Understand – Recognize the problem which is the main step of negative reviews management. Rather than running after what happened, apologize for the inconvenience caused, if necessary and show understanding for your client’s experience.
  • Promote – Stay calm and positive and restate courteously the value your firm brings for the client. Try to suppress negative review by asking your past clients to share positive reviews. In other words, you can say bury negative review by posting multiple positive ones.
  • Connect offline – Considering the situations don’t add fuel by writing angrily to the negative comments. Try to reach out the reviewer via phone, email or both to discuss the situation in a better way.
  • Keep it professional – Don’t put questions and avoid addressing specific factual accusations as they could lead to the violation of client’s confidentiality. Such conversations are better handled privately.

Responding to positive reviews

We all get so busy dealing with negative reviews that we almost forget about positive reviews, however, those should not be neglected. This can prove to be important for boosting a law firm’s reputation and even increases the chances that potential clients will reach you out. When your happy clients write positive reviews, it is very crucial to address and express gratitude to them. You can use this opportunity to encourage other clients to do the same.

An effective response means that a happy customer will keep coming back.

  1. Say thank you and be precise – It is important to thank your customers for taking out time and writing a review for your business. Don’t forget to state your customer’s review and politely write to convince your client to come back again. This shows the client that the business took time to acknowledge their feedback.
  2. Use business name and keywords – Don’t miss out the opportunity to push your firm in the search results, as positive reviews are key to searches. When you mention your firm’s name, keyword, and category, it helps index the review online.
  3. Promote – A review reply is a great way to spread the word for your business. You can highlight the positive traits of your firm. It is a great idea to highlight such online reviews adding them to the testimonial section of your business website.

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