When I was a kid, one of my favorite shows was Matlock. Ben Matlock, a criminal defense attorney played by Andy Griffith, would be assigned a case and gather all of the information in person. He would meet with clients and gather all of the research with his research team and get his client the verdict they wanted through sharp litigation. Matlock was a hands-on attorney and had a gregarious Southern charm to him. He was a product of a different time when agreements were made on a handshake and verdicts could be reached within the hour the show was on.
Unfortunately, law is not like that anymore – if it ever was – and today’s attorneys must juggle a number of different responsibilities all at once. They must act as marketers to attract new clients as competition for the most lucrative cases is fierce, they must handle a large case load, and they must contend with a legal system filled with rules and regulations that must be followed to the tee. And to make matters worse, given the legal job market, there are many law graduates who are ready to supplant those who fall behind.
Given these factors that attorneys have to deal with, many are looking into technology solutions, like law office software and SEO, to make life as a lawyer easier and avoid legal penalties as well as a lull in attracting new clients. Here are some of the top solutions out there:
• Use Skype to talk to clients: Given the busy schedules of both the client and the attorney, Skype and other mobile communications solutions allows attorneys and clients to meet when they can without worrying about transportation and other issues that make face-to-face time inconvenient. Lawyers and clients can see and speak with one another through their front facing camera on their phone or tablet and get just as much information as if they were to meet in the days of Matlock.
• Legal marketing is imperative: Many legal firms are using SEO and other internet marketing tactics to attract new clients. There was a time when prospective clients would just look in the phone book to find their local attorney. Now more people are reliant on the internet to find legal services. On top of SEO practices like on-site optimization and link building to make their website more welcoming to search engines, another great idea that should be considered is using social media and blogging to showcase authority.
• Online legal software makes organization easy: Within the practice of law, there are multiple clients, multiple deadlines and multiple conflicts. A system is needed to harmonize them and reduce stress. Automated online legal software organizes the lawyers multiple clients, tasks and deadlines, and streamlines the legal billing process, so a law firm can even find additional time which they forgot to bill and be more efficient and cost effective.
Today’s world is not Matlock’s world, and lawyers must utilize technology to stay on top of things. These are just some of the ways law firms are embracing technology to offer the best legal services they can for their clients and remain in business.