It's Time to Update Your Attorney Bio; Here's How to Do It Right

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By Casey C. Sullivan, Esq. on June 08, 2016 12:15 PM

Tucked away on your firm website is your attorney bio. It's beautiful. You've got a nice, professionally taken photo, a summary of your educational background and expertise, a list of your legal successes. And it's horribly out of date. You're ten years younger in that profile pic. You've had much more success than your bio notes. You've even won an award or two in the years and years that have passed since your bio was made. But no one knows about it -- because you're not telling them.

It's time to update your attorney bio. Here's how to do it right.

1. Treat It Like the Marketing Resource It Is

Your personal story is powerful. It's what many potential clients look at before they choose to contact you. So you should use your story as a marketing resource. Your attorney bio shouldn't just be a resume, though it should include your major legal and professional accomplishments. It should tell a story and build your brand.

What got you in to the law? Why are you passionate about your work? How are you different from the others? Answer those questions and you can start making the personal connections to legal consumers that will bring them through your door.

2. Smile for the Camera

We know, you're an attorney, not a model. But that's no reason to keep your pretty face from the world. Every attorney needs a good, professionally taken headshot. Whether you're smiling or stern, empathetic or intimidating, will depend on your personal brand. But a quality shot will do wonders compared to a home-made selfie -- or worse, no photo at all. And your photo should be relatively recent; people want an accurate depiction of whose office they're about to walk into.

3. Keep It Active, Engaging

Your bio should be short, sweet, and hit all the right spots. Make sure you cover the three P's: pedigree, practice areas, and your personal story. But keep things to the point. (This is the Internet, after all. People have short attention spans, even when hiring a lawyer.) And make sure it's engaging. That means skipping the legal jargon and the resume mumbo-jumbo. It also means avoiding passive voice; keep things active to keep your reader engaged.

4. Make Updating Your Bio a Regular Activity

Refining and shining your bio shouldn't be a once-a-decade affair. It shouldn't be even an annual one, though if you make it part of your year-end housekeeping, you'll be ahead of most attorneys. Instead, update your bio whenever it's appropriate. That means every time you have a major win or something new to brag about. Your bio is the most-read section of your website, after all, so give it the attention it deserves.

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