How Google Authorship Can Help You Stand Out From The Competition

George Murphy, Owner at The Search Ninjas provided a guest post about Google Authorship.

Google, which is still the preferred search engine for 67% of the United States according to Comscore’s latest report, launched their Authorship program in early 2012 in an attempt to help users differentiate between trusted, reputable authors, and web spammers. Many Internet marketers (myself included) believe that the Authorship program will play a big role in the search engine giant’s ranking factors in the near future, and to plan for this, you’ll need to know more about Google Authorship and how to implement it on your website(s) and/or blog(s).

What is Google Authorship?

You know how, when you do a Google search for something like “Maryland DUI attorney” or “Los Angeles divorce lawyer”, you see a number of other lawyers’ pictures come up in the search results page?  Their pictures are being displayed because they’ve implemented Google Authorship into their website(s) or blog(s), and studies have confirmed that click through rates for webmasters who have implemented Google Authorship are much higher than those who haven’t.

How Do I Setup Google Authorship?

The best part about the Google Auhtorship program is that it doesn’t take a web “ninja” to figure out how to set it up. Here are a few resources that you can utilize to implement Google Authorship:

How to sign up for Google Authorship and link your Google+ profile to the content you create by Google

Rich Snippet Testing Tool to see if your website’s Authorship markup is working correctly by Google

Check Authoship impressions and clicks in Webmaster Tools by Google

A Few Quick Tips

    While you may be tempted to post more personal/laid back images of yourself on other social media profiles, you probably want to keep the suit on for Google+. Surveys have shown that law firms with more distinguished attorney pictures are preferred to the picture of you and the family on vacation.

    In the “contributor to” section of your Google+ profile, add a link to as many profiles as you can- your LinkedIn profile, Twitter profile, Facebook page, Superlawyers/Lawyers.com/Findlaw profile, etc- as it adds reputation to your Authorship efforts.

    If you use Wordpress for your website or blog, Yoast’s SEO Plugin will help you to easily implement Google+ Author markup.

Improved Search Engine and Overall Web Visibility

As you continue to:

    Add more content to your website, blog, and other websites through guest posting and contributions.

    Increase your reach on Google+ by following and interacting with others, posting regularly, joining and interacting with communities, and +1’ing other posts on a regular basis.

    Market your Google+ page in your newsletter, e-mail campaigns, and other social media profiles.

    Get added to more people’s circles on Google+ as a result of the above

The more trusted you will be in Google’s eyes and, as a result, the more visible you and your firm will be to search engine users and your target audience.

About the Author


George Murphy is the owner of The Search Ninjas, a Maryland-based web marketing company specializing in website design and SEO (search engine optimization) specifically for law firms and attorneys. George has been in legal web marketing for over 5 years and has worked with a number of law firms throughout the country and in a variety of practice areas. Find out more about their law firm SEO services or follow George on Google+.

 

 

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WATCH THIS VIDEO to learn how a paid search advertising campaign can provide the broad online visibility you need to quickly generate high-quality leads for your law firm.

 

Finding Yourself Can Be Harder than it Seems

This is an interesting post by Brian Farrell, one of LexisNexis' Law Marketing Specialists, that includes helpful information to get you ranked higher in your name's search results.

If you Google the name Brian Farrell, you'll find a lot of "us." There's Brian Farrell the Artist, Brian Farrell the Doctor, Brian Farrell the Lawyer, Brian Farrell the Harvard Professor and Brian Farrell the Irish Footballer. And then, there's me, and many, many others.

Among all of these other Brian Farrells, it's critical to me that my name appears at the top of search results. Not an easy task when competing against professional athletes and distinguished Ivy League professors! I've spend a lot of time working on this, and so should you. You want potential clients to find you, not the person with an identical name who lives halfway across the country. And while "Brian" and "Farrell" are both relatively common names, even attorneys with more unusual names may share those with others.

So how do you set yourself apart online from those with names exactly, or almost exactly, like yours? It will take some research and a small investment, but the results will help secure your online identity.

First, buy your name as a domain name, and then grab your Twitter handle. Next, customize your Facebook URL and your LinkedIn profile URL (replacing the random string of numbers with your own name). If you haven't done this already, you may find that the obvious ones have already been taken, particularly websites that end with the .com extension or @YourName on Twitter. If that's the case, try to snatch up domain names that end with .net, .name or .me as an alternative. You should consider taking www.YourNameSucks.com while you are at it, as a preventative measure. Many of these will be free, such as LinkedIn and Twitter, but you will have to pay for domain names. However, the fees are nominal, and once you "own" them, they are yours as long as you keep renewing them.

There are also free services, such as www.knowem.com, that will help you identify different extensions and domain name availability, as well as searching the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office database.

If you find that the obvious names have been taken, you will need to consider Plan B, or even Plan C. For example, seek out domain names that include your middle initial or your full name with your practice area or location (but don't use your city or state if you don't plan to practice there a long time), such as www.JohnDoeLawyer.com.

Throughout all of your social media activity, remember to abide by the rules of the state bars where you practice. And stay up to date on rulings and ethics opinions, since this is an area that is quickly changing.

Next, figure out which of these names you want to use to market yourself. You don't need to create a website for each of the URLs you secure — you just want to make sure no one else uses them. You can always redirect your chosen URL to your Lawyers.comSM profile, too. Once you have settled on one URL, Twitter handle, personalized LinkedIn page and business Facebook profile, be sure to use those consistently to brand yourself.   

Read original post here.

Facebook Moves To Make Search More Personal

Phillip Livingston, CEO of Marketing and Business Solutions at LexisNexis, posted about Facebook's new "Graph Search" feature that they will begin to allow people to test.

What Graph Search will mean for lawyers looking to leverage social media remains to be seen. According to Whitson Gordon, editor in chief at lifehacker.com: "This is an awesome new feature for Facebook, not an awesome new feature for the internet. For anything not related to Facebook or your Facebook friends, you'll still be better off going to Google, or Yelp, or Amazon...." Others are predicting Graph Search will prove useful to people seeking lawyer referrals, lawyers looking for job opportunities, journalists needing legal SMEs, and more. We'll be watching the Graph Search launch with keen interest!

So what is it?

"It's going to cause people to do all kinds of searches they have never done before because you couldn't do these searches before," says Danny Sullivan, founding editor of SearchEngineLand.com in a story by the Los Angeles Times. In short, it adds another layer of possibilities for what you'll be able to search for and find on the site. As opposed to searching the Web, Graph Search takes place within Facebook. If it proves popular, it could mean users begin to spend even more time on the site.

According to Facebook, Graph Search will enable you to search using simple, specific phrases like "photos my friends took in New York City" or "restaurants my friends like in London." You can look up anything shared with you on Facebook, and others can find stuff you've shared with them. Each person sees unique results. If there isn't a match, it will show results from Bing.

"Web search is designed to take a set of keywords (for example: 'hip hop') and provide the best possible results that match those keywords," Facebook further explains in a press release. "With Graph Search you combine phrases (for example: 'my friends in New York who like Jay-Z') to get that set of people, places, photos or other content that's been shared on Facebook."

Graph Search is available now in a very limited beta. It is expected to launch publicly within the next few months. Stay tuned!

Read original post here.

Last Chance for FREE Webinar on Search Engine Optimization

Keywords to success, search engine optimization, seo, google, yahoo, bingTime is running out to register for our new, free webinar, “Keywords to Success: How to Generate More Business for Your Law Firm with Search Engine Optimization” to be broadcast on this Tuesday, December 6, 2011.  We are applying for CLE credit for the program.

You can register at www.lexisnexis.com/webinar

I’ll present the webinar and will describe how your law firm can focus its online search marketing strategy generate leads and new business.  The program will show you how to optimize your website to promote the areas that matter most to your clients and prospects.

At a time when more and more consumers are searching online before meeting with a lawyer, this seminar will show you how to make your website more visible to prospects searching for the areas of law you practice.

You will learn:
•     How keywords and search engine marketing works
•     The difference between organic links and paid links, off-site and on-site optimization
•     How to promote specific business initiatives at your firm such as entering a new market and targeting new types of clients.

There’s no charge and no obligation. You can register at for free at www.lexisnexis.com/webinar.

Register Now for a Free Webinar on Search Engine Optimization

law firm marketing, search engine optimization, SEO, keywords to success, LexisNexis, legal marektingYou are invited to tune into LexisNexis' new, free webinar, "Keywords to Success: How to Generate More Business for Your Law Firm with Search Engine Optimization" to be broadcast on Tuesday, December 6, 2011.  LexisNexis is applying for CLE credit* for the program.

You can register for free at www.lexisnexis.com/webinar.

I'll host the webinar and will describe how your law firm can focus its online search marketing strategy to drive more business.  The program will show you how to optimize your website to promote the areas that matter most to your clients and prospects.

At a time when more and more consumers are searching online before meeting with a lawyer, this seminar will show you how to make your website more visible to prospects searching for the areas of law you practice.

You will learn:
      •     How keywords and search engine marketing works     
      •     The difference between organic links and paid links, off-site and on-site optimization     
      •     How to promote specific business initiatives at your firm such as entering a new market and targeting new types of clients.

There's no charge and no obligation. You can register at for free at www.lexisnexis.com/webinar.

*CLE is in the process of approval. LexisNexis is approved for telephonic/Webinar training on this topic in the following states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New York†, North Dakota, and Utah (self-study only).

†Only experienced (having completed their first 32 hours of CLE) NY attorneys may take telephonic training for CLE. New York regulation requires that all CLE sessions must be conducted by a JD or an attorney in good standing.