Welcome to the Fall 2005 issue of The Legal Chamber, LegalMatch's official Attorney Member
newsletter. This issue promises to deliver valuable information regarding LegalMatch news, products and
In this issue:
LegalMatch Partners with 13,000-Member Criminal Defense Organization
NACDL and LegalMatch Help Gain Representation for the Underserved
The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers is a major resource for the accused. As the preeminent criminal defense organization in the United States, its members include private lawyers, public defenders, active U.S. military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness within America's criminal justice system.
The NACDL is committed to ensuring a vigorous, high-quality defense for people whose time, property and sometimes life itself may be at risk. The NADCL has now validated the LegalMatch acquisition model and undertaken an affinity partnership on behalf of its members. This partnership reflects their recognition of the benefit delivered by LegalMatch, connecting accused clients desperately seeking an attorney to NACDL member attorneys who can help that client.
The partnership provides NACDL members with preferred access to LegalMatch's sophisticated, Web-based client acquisition tools, services, and activities. "This is a great step for LegalMatch," said Peter Reis, LegalMatch Director of the NACDL Affinity Partnership. "We welcome the opportunity to participate in this major category of law and help the NACDL protect people's right to justice while benefiting its members."
Potential clients can now use the Internet to gain key information about an attorney who can take their case. Rather than relying on the Yellow Pages, they will be able to evaluate the attorney's fee structure, background, and experience with their matter, so that they can make an informed decision. Busy NACDL attorneys will save time and be able to focus their practice on clients that they can help.
"LegalMatch has proven that it can effectively support and expedite the process of gaining representation for the accused, an often underserved segment of American society," said Ralph Grunewald, NACDL Executive Director, NACDL.
LegalMatch Blogs Strengthen Your Web Presence and Your Practice
Gain Visibility to Potential Clients, Get Credit for Your Expertise
Check out the dynamic new Legal Blog Page on LegalMatch's client-facing site and then consider submitting an article in your area of practice. This site is reachable from the LegalCenter (on the menu of the consumer home page). The site features active, search-engine-maximized blogs on criminal, employment, family, immigration, intellectual property, personal injury, and real estate law.
Contributing to a LegalMatch blog is a great success strategy for you and a great resource for our clients. For clients, a blog is an instant interface with a knowledgeable attorney. They can educate themselves on relevant topics and get acquainted with you as the author and a potential attorney to handle their case.
Give your legal expertise the power of the world's mightiest search engines. Because our blogs are engineered to come up at or near the top of search engines, you'll get priceless Internet visibility. LegalMatch holds top-sponsored positioning on Google and is a top result for more than 12 million law-related searches. Thousands of visitors also find us on Yahoo, Overture, and on Verizon's SuperPages, which allows consumers to reach LegalMatch through law-related queries targeted by category and specific geographic location.
More than a Blog
While our competitors offer only blogs or a few limited benefits, LegalMatch has made our blog an integral part of the site. You leverage out your knowledge as part of an sophisticated marketing strategy, so your blog has maximum impact, synergized with the LegalMatch acquisition model and the marketing resources of our company.
Simple and Effective
One of the great advantages to putting your blog on the LegalMatch site is that it's incredibly easy. You can focus on the issues and the writing, sharing your expertise, while we make sure it gets posted correctly and reaches the intended audience. You receive credit on the footer as well as a link to your practice's website. Coming soon is a link to your LegalMatch site on our attorney page.
As a major authority, LexBlog states:
A legal blog establishes its author as a reliable, helpful authority on the subject matter, and builds and enhances the reputation of its publisher. Visitors often come to rely on... the legal blog for quality information and commentary. For professional businesses, like lawyers... the monetary rewards can be great.
For more information about contributing to LegalMatch Blogs, contact Don Keane at firstname.lastname@example.org.
LegalMatch Customer Satisfaction Soars to All-Time High
Results Streaming In 98% of Those Who Matched Would Use It Again!
LegalMatch employs Advanced Survey®, a company recently purchased by SixSigma®, to evaluate the satisfaction of its customers. The web-based, ongoing survey "enables the active gathering of voice of the customer" in the form of a real-time snapshot that constantly collates and assesses results, so that a company can see customer satisfaction as a living process.
As of September 30, 82 percent of 477 responding LegalMatch customers rated the service so easy that "anyone could use it." More than 98 percent "would recommend LegalMatch to a friend, relative or colleague who had a legal issue." Over 77 percent found LegalMatch through a search engine, confirming that LegalMatch's sophisticated Internet strategy is succeeding at bringing the company to the forefront of results on major search engines such as Google and Yahoo. Sixty-two percent declare that they would not use any other method of finding a lawyer besides LegalMatch in the future!
Legal Forums Enable Lively, Helpful Consumer Dialogues
A Quick, Convenient Way to Share Information and Get Answers
Online forums are part of a growing trend to use the Internet for finding answers to questions of a professional nature without actually hiring a professional. LegalMatch created Legal Forums as a resource for people who need quick answers to legal questions, but perhaps aren't ready to hire an attorney or might not even need one.
Lisa Zanassi, LegalMatch Client Services Attorney, oversees the active and growing Legal Forums, which now span the areas of bankruptcy, business, criminal, employment, family, immigration, personal injury, and property law, along with wills, trusts and estates. "For example," says Lisa, "in California Small Claims Court, no attorneys are even allowed. Often, individuals have no source for learning the 'ins and outs' of the procedures, and how to best present a case. Using LegalMatch Forums, they can learn from others who have gone through Small Claims Court and can share valuable information and tips."
"We started Legal Forums several months ago, and they've been picking up speed," says Lisa. "Many times, an attorney often won't contract with a person who just needs an answer to a single question, due to issues such as liability and compensation. So the Forums were set up in hopes that the public would log on and be able to address one another's questions. Sometimes attorneys log on too and offer advice. Anyone can post a question and anyone can answer it."
"We encourage people to share their own experiences in regards to a specific question. And since court procedures vary from county to county and state to state, people with experience in a specific jurisdiction can really help out others in that jurisdiction."
The Legal Forums are accessible from the LegalMatch home page. Click on LegalCenter, then on Legal Forums or go directly to LegalMatch Forums. Under the general topics are specific questions that people can post to, once they register.
LegalMatch New Consumer Cases Soar Past Record Again!
July and August Up 49 Percent Over Last Year's Totals
An effective marketing program, a wealth of online resources, and a growing reputation for satisfying clients have again motivated consumers to flock to the LegalMatch website and register for the popular matching service.
LegalMatch Vice President of Marketing, Don Keane, attributes the momentum to robust marketing and advertising channels, as well as to the "buzz" that is increasingly identifying LegalMatch as the premier Internet resource for the attorney-seeking public. "In a dynamic environment like the Web, success begets success, and this is proving true in the case of LegalMatch," said Keane.
A Broad Spectrum of Legal Resources Differentiate LegalMatch
"Our marketing department is maximizing our search engine optimization both through keyword management and expanded content in our LegalCenter. These results underscore an ongoing trend among America's consumers to utilize online resources to address their legal issues," said LegalMatch CEO Laurie Ziffrin.
No other attorney/client matching service has the total solution offered by LegalMatch, including a comprehensive Law Library, multi-topic Legal Forums, multi-category Legal Blogs, and an extensive array of Legal Tips. With consumers increasingly able to educate themselves about their cases, this single source for relevant information is convenient, easy to use, and most importantly effective in gaining them quality representation.
To underscore the latest positive perception, recent exit surveys reveal that nearly 97 percent of LegalMatch users who successfully matched with a LegalMatch Member Attorney stated that they would use the service again.
Simplified, Streamlined, and Updated: The New Attorney Home Page
Attorneys Spoke And LegalMatch Listened
Achieving quicker, more intuitive, and more productive navigation is the goal of a major home page overhaul, driven by LegalMatch Marketing Management Supervisor, Teejay Clemena. "The main reason we decided to change the home page was what we were hearing from attorneys," says Teejay. "They told us they were having trouble finding certain features on the home page; that the interface was too cluttered. That's all we needed to hear." The project, now two months old and ongoing, has already launched major improvements.
"I asked each Marketing Manager on my team to gather information and feedback from the attorneys they worked with," says Teejay. "They transferred it into a source document from which we could easily see which concerns stood out the most. And we knew exactly which features most attorneys wanted to see on their home page. After that, we started implementing improvements one by one. We held off changing until every attorney had a chance to give suggestions, opinions, and ideas."
The results? "We're getting lots of positive feedback they're just asking why all this wasn't done sooner!" says Teejay. "The major revamp is still ongoing, and more changes are on the way to address any remaining issues."
"The biggest improvement is that attorneys can now see a client's first and last names and contact information on their home page, without having to go into the case itself or find the client by case identification number which can be complicated." Another major improvement is a sorting feature, allowing attorneys to sort by last name or by responses.
"New functions are on the way," Teejay says. "We plan to revamp and update the FAQ section, and we've added many marketing techniques that help attorneys engage and retain clients." Teejay encourages everyone to explore the new capabilities of the home page, and invites input: "We take your suggestions seriously."
Roadshow Recap for Fall 2005
An Ongoing Year of Branding, Expanding, and Relationship-Building
The year may be winding down, but the LegalMatch roadshow is full steam ahead, with several successful events and important new relationships to celebrate. Representing LegalMatch at professional gatherings across the country, Doug Ott, Vice President, Membership and Strategic Alliances, and Peter Reis, Director of Special Projects, are making exceptional progress in communicating the LegalMatch vision to some of the most influential organizations in the U.S..
Most recently, Doug and Peter even managed to be in two places at the same time! In August, they attended the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) with whom LegalMatch just finalized an affinity partnership event in Portland and also appeared at the National Association of Bar Executives (NABE) Annual Meeting that same weekend in Chicago. Both conferences were extremely productive, reinforcing ongoing relationships for LegalMatch and introducing others to our company's advantages for practitioners.
"From a business development standpoint," says Peter, "the NACDL partnership is a glimpse of the direction in which the company is heading. We are looking to partner with select associations which embody the same qualities as LegalMatch in terms of their approach to serving clients."
To recap the rest of the season: The Association of Trial Lawyers of America (ATLA) 2005 Annual Convention took place in Toronto July 23-27 LegalMatch's third consecutive visit to an ATLA event. LegalMatch sponsored receptions for the Employment and Discrimination Law Group, the Family and Criminal Law Group, as well as the Minority Caucus Group. "Our effective networking with these ATLA groups exceeded our expectations in our first appearance," says Doug. "The Family Law group liked us so much they decided to run an article in their October Newsletter on LegalMatch through the eyes of one of our member attorneys."
"We also recently attended the ABA Annual Family Law Continuing Legal Education (CLE) Conference in San Diego, meeting with family law attorneys from all over the country."
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