Episode 135 – How To Get More Reviews Even Though Its Hard To Do It?

Episode 135 – How To Get More Reviews Even Though Its Hard To Do It?

In today’s episode I’ve explained the importance of reviews and have shared how you can get more reviews on the sites where they matter. Listen to the audio below and find out how to get more reviews, it’s a little longer than usual but worth your time.


Hello, this is Richard Jacobs from Speakeasy Authority Marketing. And today, I’m going to talk about getting more reviews online. So I hear all the time that it’s incredibly difficult to get reviews online, and that’s true. It’s very difficult. Even if you have clients that say they’ll do it, a very few of them do. And then you have Google+, which is a pain in the neck to give reviews on, you have Yelp, half of the time they don’t even make them live. Real, real stuff, so what do you do? Well, a few suggestions that are going to help you up big time.

First of all, where is it important to put reviews? From what I’m seeing, the top places right now are four of them. It’s AVVO, Google+, which is Google Maps, Yelp, and your website. So the ones that are easiest to get is your website and AVVO seemingly; the ones that are more difficult to get is Google+ and Yelp. So how do you get more of these reviews? Well, first of all, I want you to look in context. You don’t have to go bananas and get a 100 reviews. If you look your Google+ for a start, once you get five positive reviews, you’ll get gold stars next to your listing. That’s a huge metric because once you do that, your listing is a lot more visit-able, it pops out to the searcher’s eye, it looks a lot better. So the gold really only has to be five reviews initially on Google+. Even if it takes you 6 months to get them, that’s okay. You’re still going to get them and it’ll help you.

On Yelp, same deal. You need at least 5 reviews in order to really get some traction on there. But here is how you tell how many reviews you really need. Google attorneys in your area, your metro that are in your practice areas and see how many they have. A lot of areas, most of attorneys have none or they have one or two or three. Imagine if you’re at a restaurant and you need like 500 but thank God, the bar is much lower for attorneys. So in your area, it may be as low as 5, maybe no one has ever used. In some areas, some guys, some superstars may have 20 or 30, and then it’s going to be a lot harder to be number one review wise. But what I’ve seen though is once you get to at least 5 on Google+ and Yelp and you’ve got them on your website and you’ve got them on AVVO, now it’s starting to get to a point that wherever someone turns, there are going to be reviews for you, positive ones, and that’s really going to help bolster you so you get a rising tide lifting by having reviews in these areas.

Now, there are plenty of piddly little sites that don’t show up very much, Thumbtack, places like that. And yes, it’s good to get a review or two there, but they are not the main ones that I would focus on. Now, tricks, how do you get reviews? Well, one mistaken belief attorneys have is that they don’t want to ask past clients for reviews because they think they’re bothering them, or they think that there may be a pissed off past client that’ll review them badly. That could happen, it happens sometimes but I would say 99% of the time, good reviews are what you’ll get, not bad. And if you get a bad review, you want to overwhelm it with good reviews. And usually you can’t wipe off bad reviews. The best way to counteract it is to have lots of good reviews. If you have no reviews and you get one bad review, that looks bad. If you’ve got 10 good reviews and you get one bad one, not so bad, okay. People look at it more in context. Big proof of this is go look on Amazon. There’s not a single thing you could buy on Amazon, not even positive reviews, nothing. The best products will tend to have 60, 70, 80%, 5 and 4 star reviews and only 3%, 5% bad reviews. The bad products have 10, 20, 30% bad reviews, anyway, all in context but this is the point here.

Another misconception, when should you ask for reviews. Most attorneys think they can only ask for a review once the person’s case is done. Not true. And it’s often better to ask for a review before the case is done. Why? Because the case isn’t done. The person still behold them to you and they want this great outcome but if they’ve already given you a review, they’re much more under the gun to do it. So, how do you do this before the case is over? Does this make sense? Yes. Let’s say it’s a divorce case. Before the divorce is finalized, there are many milestones along the way. What are the legal milestones or the positive events where the person’s happy in your practice area? So again, let’s say it’s divorce. You get to the mediation step and the person is a lot more comfortable process, they’re not freaking out, they’re not missing sleep every night, they’re actually settling into a new life, they’re calmer and mediation is starting to go really well. And you anticipate a good resolution. Ask the person for the review right then. “Hey Bob, it looks like the mediation is going good. No guarantees but I think we’re going to have as successful a possible an outcome. Please, if you would, can you review me on Google+ or Yelp or my website etc. It really helps me to do good work for people like you and I really value your time and it helps me run my practice. Referrals are everything to me”.

What about in the criminal case? Well, again, you don’t have to wait until it’s totally resolved. What if you get bail conditions lowered so the person gets out on bail when he otherwise wouldn’t? What if in a DUI case, they’re able to keep their driver’s license and don’t lose it but they still have to deal with the rest of the case? Well, that’s a win. That’s a milestone. Ask for the review right then. How about personal injury case? Well, what if you get to the point where negotiation has started with the insurance company instead of the insurance company just folding its arms and saying, “No, we’re not going to pay you anything”. That’s a win right there. Or the person completes their medical treatment and they’re on their way to working on a settlement or a case, that’s another win right there. So you got to look in all your cases for these milestones, even if they’re small. These little steps, these little victories at which clients get happy, and at those points, ask him for a review. They can hurt. Let me pull it back even further. Let’s say a client doesn’t even retain you, but they tell you they really valued the consultation or they really valued what you had to say but they didn’t have the money, well that person can still write you a positive review, did you realize that? They don’t have to be a full client, they can say, “I talked to Attorney Smith and he or she was very polite, very courteous, I explained my situation. Even though I didn’t have money to hire him, if I did, he’s the personal I would hire because he really did a great job”. That’s a good testimonial, why not. It could be 5 star, that could be a review. So there are many, many places to get reviews without waiting till the end of the case.

Now, last thing, asking for the review. Don’t just ask once. People need to be reminded, so sometimes you got to ask them 2, 3, 4 times, not constantly hammer them but ask them periodically. A good way to ask is if you do a monthly newsletter to send out a request in the monthly newsletter or a dedicated email to past clients. “Hey, I worked with a number of you people over the years. We’re looking to expand our referral base and not has to do so much marketing which is expensive. Please, if you would, write us a review on Google or Yelp or AVVO or just reply to this email and give us a review”. So that’s another way to spur reviews. We’ve done it for clients, we’ve gotten a lot of reviews for some people by doing that. It definitely works.

Another way to do it is to make it easy for the persons who review you, so ask your past clients or ask your current clients, “Hey, do you use Yelp? Oh you do. Okay, great. Would you review me there?” Because it’s easy for them to do. “Oh, you don’t use Yelp. How about Google Maps? Do you have a gmail account? Great. Can you review me there? Oh, you don’t use the computer very much or just the Smartphone, would you mind just emailing me the review or even texting it to me? Reply to this email or reply to this text”, get it the easiest way possible for that particular person. It makes it more likely that that person’s going to do it instead of not. If I don’t have a gmail account, it’s going to be really hard for me to review you on Google+. If I don’t use Yelp, same thing. Those are problems.

Last thing I want to talk about is wedding. So the two hotspots to get reviews are Yelp and Google+. What makes them hard is that these companies have algorithm that vet the reviewers. They don’t want fake reviews on there so they look where the review is coming from. Is the person trying to use your office computer to write the review? And it’s not going to work. They got to use their Smartphone or their computer. Where they’re writing the review from? If you’re in Kansas City and the person is reviewing you in Florida, it doesn’t make sense. Google may kick it out, or Yelp may not decide to show the review. Is the review written in proper English or is it a mess? That’s a grey area there, does the reviewer use curses, does it give personal information that Google or Yelp does not want to put in there, phone numbers, full names and that kind of things. Those are very important.

Another thing is Yelp’s algorithm. So Yelp wants to make sure you’re not just doing the review once and never using their service again, so in order for a Yelp review to stick, the person has to be using Yelp for other things. Review a restaurant, drycleaners or whatever. So people are going to review you on Yelp, encourage them, please, if you would, the review is not going to stick unless you also review like a restaurant or a dentist or something, two or three other places. So, please, make sure you do that. Yes. It’s a hurdle but if you get a good review to stick, a lot of attorneys can’t do it and you’ll be in a much better shape. So, before I go into a whole hour long diatribe on this, I think that’s enough info. You’ve gotten a lot. This is Richard Jacobs with Speakeasy Authority Marketing. If you need help in getting reviews, which are critical, call me 888-225-9594, or email me Richard.Jacobs@speakeasymarketinginc.com. Let me know and we can help you with this. Thank you for listening.


Richard Jacobs

About Richard Jacobs

My name is Richard Jacobs, and I've discovered quite a bit about the plight of solo practitioners and small, 2-5 attorney firms like yours these past 12 years.

I've come to understand the unique challenges in marketing ethically and effectively that attorneys face because I have:

  • Helped over 180 attorneys author their own practice area book and become the 'implied expert' in their practice area
  • Helped hundreds of attorneys successfully navigate Google's search algorithm changes, growing their websites from 2 potential clients calling a month to 4+ calls per DAY for some clients.
  • Interviewed and promoted over 507 attorneys nationwide, in practice areas such as:
  • DUI / DWI
  • Family Law
  • Criminal Defense
  • Bankruptcy
  • Auto Accidents
  • Social Security Disability
  • Slip & Falls (Premises Liability)
  • Real Estate
  • Estate Planning / Probate
  • Wage and Hour Claims
  • Expungements / Post Conviction Relief

Before you decide to invest in your marketing, it makes sense to first request your complimentary, custom, no obligation video website review.

Richard is the author of 6 books published on Amazon, Kindle and Audible.com

Richard is available for speaking engagements on direct marketing for attorneys and has recently spoken at the following legal conferences:

  • PILMMA (Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing & Management Association)
  • Las Vegas DUI Summit – Private event for DUI attorneys
  • New York Boutique Lawyers Association
  • Perry Marshall & Associates Marketing Academy (Marina Del Rey, CA)
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL)