The Modern Firm's web developers often have the opportunity to speak with attorneys about our development process. What exactly does it mean, for example, to create a custom law firm website without reinventing the wheel?
Boiled down, it means that we start most new designs using one of our website design layouts created specifically for law firms. Each of these layouts has been developed and tested to meet the specific needs of law firms and their clients. (We're also regularly adding new ones, as the online climate changes, and retiring outdated designs that have lost their edge over time ...)
It does not mean, however, that we simply plug a law firm's text and photos into a preexisting layout. Rather, each layout is primarily a structural jumping off point that gives us a visual way to talk through our clients' genuinely customized site designs. Because the scaffolding therefore already exists, we save time and money (the basic structure of the wheel is there, no reinventing required). But the appearance of each new law firm website is still developed uniquely for each client — ultimately, no two are the same.
As we near the end of April — and, for those of us in the Northern U.S., hopefully FINALLY embark on Spring — we have a whole slew of new small law firm and solo attorney designs in the works, for a truly great group of folks. Here's a small sample of new websites in the works.
First up is Columbus, Ohio divorce attorney LeeAnn Massucci. With a background in several fields including athletic coaching, you couldn't find a more interesting and committed Ohio family lawyer than LeeAnn. The only thing we respect more than her successes in her field and clear dedication to her clients is the fact that she might let our writing staff draft some professional biographies for the four-legged members of the firm.
Massucci Law Group LLC
250 Civic Center Drive
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Phone: (614) 484-0177
Next, we're excited to have begun working with several more Ann Arbor neighbors of the Modern Firm's central office. We recently got off to a great start with Ann Arbor, Michigan estate planning attorney Terrence A. Bertram of the Legacy Law Center. This experienced planning and elder law group has a wealth of free Michigan estate planning materials that we look forward to reorganizing and presenting on their new website in the weeks to come.
This group also is a perfect model for how a law firm can use a website as a strong marketing tool without appearing pushy or slick. Though we hate to say, "If you build it they will come," in can be true in some cases. The idea here will be to generously offer a range of free information, consistent with the firm's utter commitment to improving its Michigan community through education and volunteer work. Although of course the website will also be traditionally optimized for search engines, this kind of goodwill is what allows a firm's character to shine through the many choices of attorneys that clients will find on the web. It begins to build that trust so critical to the attorney-client relationship.
Legacy Law Center Terrence A. Bertram, PLLC
2950 S. State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Phone: (734) 995-2383
We've also built a lot of websites for attorneys from Texas over the years. And we've been unusually impressed getting to know Houston tax and bankruptcy attorney Patrick Williams, our newest client from the Lone Star State. Both an attorney and a CPA, Attorney Williams is uniquely positioned to work with Texans facing IRS problems or other financial issues. And he exemplifies why we work with the select clientele that we do: the best attorneys still create personal relationships with their clients and offer learned help when they need it most, leaving them in a better position than the one in which they started. It is this ethic that gives the legal field a good name, and combats the picture of vulnerable clients as prey for money-driven lawyers. And it is this kind of lawyering that inspires us to support the legal field.
Patrick T. Williams, Attorney at Law
4422 Cypress Creek Parkway
Houston, TX 77068
Phone: (281) 587-2823
Another case in point: St. Louis, Missouri personal injury and employment attorney Ryan Furniss. Here's a solo attorney who has literally never marketed his legal services. Not that he knows of anyway. You can tell just by speaking with him why his practice has been successful merely due to word-of-mouth and referrals from other clients: he's his own ad. Another example of a solo attorney who clearly commits himself personally and intellectually to his work, his services simply "sell" themselves. We look forward to also teaching him a thing or two about traditional marketing; as "referrals" commonly become publicly sourced via Google searches and internet reviews, instead of always literal word of mouth, even the most established attorneys are learning their ways around the web to stay up to speed and allow opportunities for firm growth.
The Furniss Law Firm, LLC
200 S. Hanley Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63105
Phone: (314) 914-2522
Finally, our run-down of great projects in the works wouldn't be complete without an introduction to the St. Charles, Illinois divorce attorneys of Weiler & Lengle P.C. In practice for decades, these hometown attorneys also have a referral-based practice, thanks to their years of service to friends and neighbors throughout the Fox River Valley. They, like many of our established clients, recognize that the primary web-based element of a word-of-mouth practice is validation: when a potential client looks you up online after hearing your name, it's critical that the client find you quickly and that your website confirms all the good things they've heard about your law practice. Inviting professionalism is key here. And we're excited to work with the firm to create just the right look and feel.
Weiler & Lengle P.C.
2445 Dean Street Suite G
St. Charles, IL 60175
Phone: (630) 587-5600
Welcome LeeAnn, Terrence, Theresa, Patrick, Ryan, Tim and Phil!