In this episode, Jay and Seth talk with 2 lawyers who are growing their firms with acquisitions. Chuck Boyk and Lin McCraw talk about the challenges they face when acquiring a firm. Also Nalini talks about local vs national links!
Hey, everybody. Welcome to the June 24 edition of Maximum Growth Live. I almost call it feeding time live, Seth, which was our old name years ago. But I’m here with my good friend, where is he? He’s over here, Seth Price. Seth, how’re you doing this week?
Doing great. Great to be on the road, little vacay, little work. It’s a nice work life balance.
That’s good, that’s good. Yeah, I’m still stuck in my bedroom doing as much work as possible, but I’ll get outside, get some fresh air today for sure, because I think we’re going to get a puppy, you know, I don’t want to say too loud but we’re going to go this afternoon and see a litter that just was born, and so, we might have a new guest on the program in a couple of weeks.
We’re the, we’re the only people that are, who have not picked one up. every day another Facebook post of it. And so far, we’ve held out but pandemic is not over yet.
Exactly, exactly. You know, who knows how long it’s going to go? I saw that yesterday, the governor has just said that if anybody’s coming from Florida, coming to the New York, New Jersey, Connecticut area, they’re going to make them do this two-week quarantine, so certainly, it certainly looks like it’s grown. But we have a phenomenal show today and I want to jump right into it. Before we get to it, I want to talk about a few things. Number one, we’re live here today, but if you aren’t able to watch us live, you can certainly do it on our Facebook page, but we do have a podcast edition of this show that’s available on all the major podcasting platforms, Spotify, Apple, Google podcasts, all of those things. So, you can search for the Maximum Growth Live podcast, download it and you can listen to it wherever you like, either on the treadmill, after your walk, in your car… So, if you want to get this on the go, certainly do that. Of course, we are part of the Maximum Lawyer Media family, and you can always download the Maximum Lawyer podcast, perhaps the number one podcast for entrepreneurial lawyers. And obviously, they have their Facebook group, which is growing day by day. Other things I want to mention really briefly, Seth, obviously tell us a little bit about what BluShark Digital is so people who are new to us can understand what your role is in that company.
Sure. BluShark Digital is my passion play. I built my law firm Price Benowitz, it’s based on digital, and about five years ago, took our in-house digital team and spun into its own agency, we now have about 100 friends around the country that we do their digital for, and basically just trying to replicate the success we’ve had for Price Benowitz for all these law firms nationwide.
Yeah, and, you know, that’s the wonderful thing about Firm Flex, my passion play. You know, me, I was always big on social, we joke whenever we’re together that you are antisocial and I am pro social, but, you know, for the guy who’s the most network guy on the planet, it’s funny to hear that you’re antisocial. But yeah, Firm Flex is my passion play, you know, we really got into social media marketing for lawyers, and it’s really been taken off. So that’s who we are, but we are happy to have some phenomenal guests with us today. Seth, why don’t you tell us a little bit about who will be joining us?
Sure. Lin McCraw and Chuck Boyk, two of my favorites. We met them through John Fisher’s mastermind, we’ve now been able to continue the friendship through the Max Law community, both power PI players in their own markets. And what we’re talking about today is Growth Through Acquisition, something new and I’ve talked a lot about over the years. I’ve tried it sometimes successfully, and sometimes not so much. Chuck has done a great acquisition, we’re going to hear about, and Lin has been modeling what is it takes to do an acquisition. So, I think it’s a great one two punch of somebody who’s done it, and somebody who’s sitting there looking at the numbers, and what are those touch points that would make for a great acquisition, so can’t wait to have them on the show.
Yeah, you know, one of the things that I think appeals to a lot of lawyers is the idea of acquiring another practice and adding to your largest really quickly, but there’s some challenges that go with it, and there’s some things that people need to be on the lookout for. And I think, you know, with what’s going on in the world right now, you may see a significant number of lawyers who are looking to exit and so now, there might be an opportunity for you to acquire practice. So, I think having them on the call today, having them with us talking about some of the challenges and talking about some of the opportunities here is really a great time in our history to really sort of help people get through this, and I’m really looking forward to it. So…
I know, I couldn’t agree more that timing is everything and that we’re finally given the emotional roller coaster we’re all on right now. I think there are a number of people who say, “You know what? enough is enough”. So, if you’re ever going to have an opportunity where it’s a buying opportunity, I think whereas, again, my philosophy has always been you need a motivated seller, without that you really can’t, you know, it doesn’t make sense that this is the opportunity, there could be lots of motivated sellers in the market.
Awesome. So, why don’t we do that? Why don’t we bring them into the call now and we could talk a little bit about Growth by Acquisition?
Okay, so, folks, we are here with two very good friends of ours, both at different stages of the Growth by Acquisition process. With me is Chuck Boyk, as well as Lin McCraw, Chuck has successfully accomplished Growth by Acquisition, Lin is in the very early stages of looking towards that. And so, we wanted to join them and bring them in on the call today so we can talk a little bit about this as a process of growing your firm. You know, Growth by Acquisition is something that is a challenge for most lawyers, so I want to start first with a question to Chuck. You know, when, when you started with this opportunity to Grow by Acquisition, instead of growing in-house, like most lawyers do, they grow their verticals in-house, and they don’t worry about other firms that are out there. What made the, what made the Growth by Acquisition such, so appealing to you?
In, in our situation, we were approached by an older attorney who had been practicing for 45 years and was perhaps one of the top TV advertisers in the market for the last 20 years, so the opportunity was there to add cases, add name recognition, add credibility. Also, I was, I had gone to a seminar, for example, and Atticus, with Craig Golden about a quote, he commanded it to me, and he happened to be there about acquiring other law firms, and just seems like a fantastic opportunity to try to do that. One of the things that’s helpful now is our name is out there, so I kind of have a reason to approach some of the older attorneys in the marketplace, you know, that were affirmed as they are interested in.
Yeah, that’s fantastic. So, Lin, let me ask you a question, and this is something that you’ve actually started the process of doing. And one of the things that you have to really sort of focus on when you’re beginning this process is evaluating the value of another firm, right? Because a firm that you may want to approach to acquire may have a much different idea of their value than what the actual market could bring. Are there any things that you are looking for, any guidance that you’ve gotten, while you begin this process to really structurally evaluate the value of a firm in the acquisition phase?
Yes, as matter of fact, I spoke with Chuck about this very thing, about how to value firms, how to value the potential that the firm would have going forward. One of the things that’s at least, Chuck and I are both in the personal injury space, so we can value cases, we can value individual cases like you would value an asset, like you would value a building or any other part that the firm will have, that’s part of what goes into it, and that’s actually kind of the easy part is taking and valuing the existing cases, and then you’ll check out a very good idea about, about paying only on that part of the value, only as the case is completed, much like you would a referral fee for, for those things for cases, to value the, the attorneys input going forward. When it comes to new additional cases, the harder part is value in their systems and value in the marketing. There are, there are pros and cons both ways. One of the pros of having something, finding somebody that already has good effective systems is they already have good effective systems, and their employees are used to that. One of the good things about buying a firm that has no systems is that they have no systems, and they’re the, as a result, your systems will be a breath of fresh air for a lot of, of actually getting more out of the cases or making the cases move more consistently, quickly and that sort of thing. But one of the downsides to it is that the employees are not used to operating under systems at all, and many will buck under that. So, you know, we’re kind of looking at it both ways, but as part of my process, I kind of came into the, the whole COVID thing, and I realized I had very good systems, I had great people, and I was concerned about volume, I was concerned about running out of cases to feed the factory, essentially. And so, growth by acquisition is simply something that I had to look at to say, is this something that I want to entertain doing during this, during this time? Because I figured that quite a few older attorneys are probably simply going to say, ¨Enough’s enough, I’m out¨, and…
Chuck, on his way, through this process, and one of the things that struck me, that I think it was really bright about the way Chuck approached it, was that, you know, paying on results, makes it a lot easier for valuation purposes, right, Lin? I mean, the projects that you have a lot of, they feel it’s worth a lot more than it is. And we talk about systems, my experience, having looked at a number of firms, acquired one or two over the years, is that, in my experience, it’s never better than what’s brought to it, sort of like, in any business trip sale, I’ll just, say, maybe, I’m in, say you’re cynical New Yorker, but that I sort of, half what anybody tells me is based on the just meeting somebody and then if I don’t trust them by half, again, and that usually comes out about right, so that the idea that you can somehow do it on a performance model, rather than here’s a sum of money for the nice picture you painted me, I think that’s a huge advantage, and will help prevent, you know, big you know, holes to dig out of.
Well, most of the value of the personal injury firm is going to be in the existing cases. I mean, it just, it just simply is, unless they have a very robust marketing system that’s bringing them X number of cases per month, and you can look at the case values, they’re bringing in that sort of thing. But most firms simply don’t have that.
Yeah, Jay, something you said, you know, to me, buying for systems, with rare, rare exceptions, most of the time these guys have run their products into the ground. It’s what I’ve experienced. I’m curious to see what Chuck that when he acquired, because what I found is that guys are sort of like, they milk as much as they can the legacy employees, and it’s the opposite of getting systems, it’s a question of, can you get any of the people that you’re acquiring to fall into your system rather than hoping there’s some great system that you’re getting?
Chuck, what do you think about that? I want to talk to you about that, but follow up with Seths question.
As far as systems go, the firm we acquired, they had systems, but they were majorly different than our system, so we got like, you know, 110, 120 paper files, and the first thing we had to do is scan them all into our system and manufacture them into our system. I mean, part of the problem is like, I look at one of the files that we acquired, and I couldn’t even understand how to read it. So, that’s a big problem. I mean, it absolutely is a big problem, it’s a cost of doing business. One of the things I guess I like is we do a lot of marketing to herd of people, so, for me, acquiring just the names and the addresses of all those people, and in a merger type situation, I’m able to market to an additional herd that had some credibility from the prior attorney.
So, I want to ask you guys a question and, Chuck, you might be the best but, Seth, I know you might be able to answer this as well. When you do acquire another firm, there’s two ways to sort of go about it. One, you’re acquiring their book of business, and you take their business and you run it with your people, but, inevitably, if someone is trying to get out, they’re gonna have some allegiance to their existing employees. How do you handle that sort of culture transformation? Because not everybody’s going to be a good fit. You enter it with the best of intentions, but, number one, you may not have space on your team for duplicate employees, that’s the first thing. But also bringing other people who’ve been doing something for 5, 10, 20, 25, even longer years in a, into a new firm with new ways of doing things. There’s sometimes that oil and water mix. So, Chuck, tell me how that, how that worked with you? Did you absorb any of their existing staff? Or was it merely the files that you took?
We took all the files, all the phone numbers, the website. We also took two legal assistances. And one of the issues in the negotiation was, you know, whether we were going to take attorneys or not, and I didn’t want any attorneys because to me, exactly what Lin said, the value was the cases and the future new cases. And I already had a few attorneys in place. If I took the attorneys, there wouldn’t have been, I believe, very much profit in the situation. So, that was a big issue of negotiation, and that’s what took a long time.
So, Lin, let me ask you this question, then. Is that an approach that you’re taking as you start to do this evaluation? Will it be, will you ever consider a situation where you would add the lawyers? Because the lawyers are probably going to be your biggest piece of overhead that you’d be acquiring, and that’s a liability when it’s going to be matched up against future income on file. So, is that something that you would consider? Or is it something that, you know, if I am going to acquire, I’m going to acquire files and maybe support staff and marketing efforts, but not necessarily legal staff?
I would consider it but it’s gonna depend upon how big the other firm is, and how many cases they bring, if they bring enough cases that, that I’m going to need to hire lawyers anyway, I’ll certainly. But that, that has to be the analysis. It has to be first, last and always, it has to be, is this going to be a profitable venture? If it is, we’ll be adding additional lawyers. Then I might, if they fit my culture, but they fit my culture, because, you know, lawyers have an outsized role in effect in your culture, so you better make sure you have the right ones on.
Well, Seth, let me ask you a question about this, because I think it helps. You know, you’ve grown your firm by adding new lawyers, right? And new verticals, acquiring other firms and that type of thing. How do you find lawyers that fit your existing culture? And what do you do when 30 days in you recognize, ¨Wow, product line, verticals great, but they are not fitting our culture¨, how do you deal with that?
You know, look, I have been less successful. I wish, I wish that they found more of the Chuck Boyk acquisitions falling off trees around us. Believe me, we have tried, and it is, they are not easy, and when you find them, you grab on for dear life and you structure a fair deal. What I have seen is that, at least in my market, many of the topics, so we build stuff, and we take somebody like third to eighth year and build a practice up with them. Somebody who, you know, let’s say a fifth, sixth year rockstar that knows what they’re doing and then build a practice around them. The downside is, let me give you the negative, we, we acquired an ancient PI Collection shop, and we decided we were going to split it up, we took the PI work, like what Chuck did, it was done on a percentage basis, no cash up front, and the collections shop, half of the shop, went to another firm. Within a week, I don’t think a single employee was still there. They would, Chuck was dealing with where they’re scanning in every file, the employees were dinosaurs not motivated, as Lin was saying, we’re not part of the culture. So, I think that you really have to look at, what are you getting? Are you getting cases? Are you acquiring a rainmaker who’s going to work with you? Or are you acquiring people? That is rare that you’re actually getting like, people that fit your culture and that are turnkey? Yes, you need more people to work those files, but it’s less and less likely you’re going to find a guy who sells at a price you think is fair, at terms that are, there at, oh, yeah, he has this great team, working with him very often, the reason they’re selling is that that team is not there, and that’s why they need you because they can’t monetize those cases.
So, Chuck, let me ask you a question, and this is something that Lin might need to know. You know, from the beginning of, ¨Hey, I’m thinking about getting out to signing those contracts¨, and it being done, how long was the process to acquire?
Initially, when we tried to acquire in like a three or four-month span, I had a deal, and, initially, then the other attorney basically broke off the deal because he decided he wanted to keep practicing. And that’s one of the problems, I mean, a lot of us have our whole identity attached to being an attorney, so when you’re about to sign the document, and then I was approached about a year later by the same attorney, and now he was finally ready to retire, so…
And that’s, that’s it, Chuck, right? It’s all timing. We had a consultant in our market, he brought us 15 different people, and like 13 of them, you walked in and they weren’t ready or they put a price tag that was so high that you were, in cash, that you were just like, so that you need to not only have something that has value and a fair about, but the person psychologically has to be ready to make that move, and that, as Chuck just saw, even when they say they’re there, they’re not always there.
It sounds to me like it’s a little like Family Law. You know, the first time somebody, you know, thinks about divorce is three or four months before they say the word divorce out loud, and then it’s still a year before they say okay, now I’ve got to get out of this. And that’s certainly something that as lawyers, we can wrap our heads around, because, you know, this is a big deal, you don’t want to make those sorts of rushed decisions. Now, Lin, have you put together any like worksheets or anything that you’re saying, ¨Okay, this is how I’m going to evaluate things¨? Or is it more of a as you’re in it, you’re making those decisions as you’re starting to look at different things? Because, obviously, like he talked about, you know, inventory of cases does have a value, right? But geography, right? Where they get those cases from, that’s going to have a value if it’s in your market, if it’s outside your market, if it’s expanding your footprint, are you looking to expand through geography? Is that one of the reasons why you’re doing it? Let’s talk about that.
Yes, in fact, that’s a, that’s a major reason that we’re, that we’re looking at it. I want to expand my geography a little bit, I have my web group of BluShark, which Seth is involved with, is doing a wonderful job, but they’re actually helping me identify areas that we may want to look at. I’m always afraid of implicit bias in my decision making, because I’m biased about areas that I think are growing or think that might be good and that sort of thing, but I really want a good solid numbers and, to me, the way to get the best bias free numbers is to get somebody like, like David Brenton at BluShark to come in and say, ¨Okay, this is an underserved area for the internet, for what we’re doing¨, because a lot of our marketing is internet based, and of course, the community base, but I do a lot of, I do a lot of both. And I want to make sure that if we go into an area, that if I, if I do grow by acquiring someone that as an additional bonus, that we have a, that we were able to expand our internet presence and have an opportunity to expand it into an area where we really want to be.
Excellent. That’s awesome. I know you’re actually moving your offices, is moving your offices was that part of this thought? As you’re requiring to be able to need a little more space, get out of the downtown area, get more into the suburbs. Is that, is that part and parcel of this acquisition process? Because you guys have grown?
I mean, it’s part of it. I also deal with, with BluShark and David, and so, for example, we’re moving from a semi large office, but we’re actually keeping it a little small part of this office in this address because David Brenton has us so high on an organic Google with this address that I don’t want to give it up at all. But I think we’re really moving partially because of the increased cases, and partially, just because I find a lot of my clients don’t want to come to downtown and don’t like to go to parking garages.
And weren’t you, Chuck, weren’t you able to buy a place?
I was able to buy a building at a good price, exactly what I wanted, with free parking. As I was mentioning off the air, I spend about $36,000 a year on parking for my employees currently and for clients, and I realized I could put that towards maybe getting some equity in a business in a building, and there’s all sorts of neat tax advantages to owning…
That could be a whole nother episode, we could have Chuck back for it, because that, to me, my account yells at me once a year for not owning, granted my building cost $80 million, and I’m in Downtown, DC. But that’s awesome. Yeah, I’m just going to come to Jay, Jay is going to write the note, it’s going to be all…
Let me ask you a question, Seth, in connection with this acquisition talk that we’re talking about. One of the things that’s a challenge, I know for Lin, I know for Chuck, certainly for me, and why I haven’t done it is if you’re going to acquire a business, you could run into issues with your nap, right? Because you’re taking over a practice that may have existing space, right?
I mean, to me, that’s the, the answer is both, right? Chuck and I have talked about that. It may be you run the existing brand, this guy has been doing TV for years, and now you have a new nap coming in, ideally, you got to make sure it’s separate building because we still have some of that, you know, squeezing out of Google in the same building, but like, why would you give up that brand? A lot of times people acquire and it gets merged in, I’m like, no, I want two bites at the apple. As you know, for my criminal defense practice, we compete against ourselves all the time, nothing would have me happier than Chuck competing against himself and getting two bites at the apple.
Yeah, so, okay, so that’s, that’s going to be my final question of this whole process, because we’re starting to run out of time here. But one of the things that I think has value in the Growth by Acquisition mindset is the value of the pre-existing brand, right? You know, because if it is all built around the cult of personality have one lawyer, that is the one who has been generating all the business and they don’t really have an extensive marketing plan or brand, you can see a dramatic drop off in the volume of intake of cases, and that’s a risk that you have to be willing to undertake. Chuck and Lin, are there, are there things that you look for when you’re starting to do this evaluation to make sure that the case flow isn’t merely coming by way of personal referral to the lawyer, and is more associated with the branding of the lawyer so that you can maintain a value to that brand after acquisition? So, let’s start with Lin, right? And that might be something that you’re looking at as you’re looking to acquire, are there points that you’re looking for in terms of what the firm has done branding wise or marketing wise before you would approach them to acquire them?
Well, it’s something that we want to evaluate, because if the firm, if the firm has a good marketing presence, if they, if they reach out to their clients in a community based, you know, manner regularly, if, if they have really good internet presence with good branding, that’s something that I’m going to have BluShark identify for me, because I don’t want to lose that if we, if we end up purchasing that. So, I mean, I would consider buying somebody, leaving them separate and just helping implement better systems, so we can squeeze more, squeeze more out. On the other hand, if we’re dealing with somebody that is just built around an individual lawyer, again, the primary value is going to be the ongoing cases that that lawyer has, but as a bonus, we’re going to want to get everything we can about their existing clients, particularly if we merge them in up counsel something along those lines, so that we can market to them, so we can send them our monthly newsletter and, you know, that sort of thing. We, Chuck, it was, yeah, yeah, Chuck was absolutely right about that being a secondary goal, it is very important getting new names for the list.
Chuck, what are your thoughts on that?
Right. So, we had a situation where we just added the merging attorney, kind of as of counsel. And one of the reasons for that is the client, and in most states from an ethical perspective, the client owns the file, so the attorney can’t really sell the file, and I really don’t want to have, to have a situation, we have just said, send out letters to each one of the clients or anything like that. So, for the attorney, existing attorney to remain as co-counsel and become of counsel to the firm, that helps with a lot of those problems. And we market the other attorney that merged with our firm, we market him quite a bit due to our herd and him individually, so we can get more cases from his reputation.
That’s awesome. That’s awesome. Seth, any questions?
No, that was good. Thank you for such a great discussion. We could keep going on for hours.
Yeah, this was really interesting, and Lin, I’d like to talk to you again in a couple of months as you’re further along in this process, and maybe we can get Chuck back as well to talk about where he sees his next acquisition being having lived through this whole process, and at that point, Lin, you’ll be where Chuck is now, so it’d be a very interesting conversation to have and I’m sure we could all gain some knowledge by all talking together again in a few months.
We’ll love to.
Thank you so much for being with us today, guys. It was awesome getting to spend some time with both.
See you guys again.
Well, that was a fantastic conversation. Seth’s having a little audio trouble right now, so I’m going to throw it over to Nalini. Bring her in. I have a question for Nalini this week, and it’s something that it’s been boggling in my mind, and I want to get her input on it. So, Nalini, welcome back to the show, thanks for being with us. And here’s the question I have for you, right? I’m a brand-new lawyer, I’m starting out, I’m sort of like Chris from a couple weeks back, and I can either take my time and focus now that had built out my nap, which we talked about last week in last week’s show. And if you need to see that, you can either look back on the Max Growth Live page, or get a copy of our podcast, which went out last week, that’s got all the stuff about that. But really what I want to focus on is, should I be building my local links, like connecting with local little leagues and local events where I can be listed? Or should I focus more on sort of a large national links that I can get through like maybe a scholarship contest or something like that? Where should I really be focusing? And I know that Seth is going to say you should do both, but I can’t do both.
I can only do one. Which is more important and why?
All right. So, if you have to focus on one, I think that it, with all of my answers I kind of say it depends on your business, and depends where you’re ranking, right?
But I want you to take a stand.
Yes, I think I would say that first explain this whole why I would say something, you have to understand how Local works versus Organic, right? So, Organic is going to get you in that top 10 on page one, organic is link building and local, and content, right? Just content building. Then you have this one-way arrow that points from Organic to Local SEO, meaning that if you have a good build out in Organic, it will help you to rank in Local, but that arrow doesn’t point the other way, so if you’re a non-competitive location and you have great reviews, and you just don’t have a lot of competition in your local three pack, you can do just the optimization of your Google My Business and find that you rank in that local three pack, right? But by doing that, by getting yourself in that local three pack in a non-competitive location, it’s not going to give juice to make you rank in the top 10. And a lot of people ask me this all the time, they’re like, ¨Hey, I’m perfectly fine in my, my local three pack, but I don’t see myself at all for any keywords in the top 10¨. So, with that being said, and keeping that in mind, it’s going to determine, it’s going to matter where is your location, if you are in a non-competitive location, you’re just starting out, you only have so many resources, I say go Local all the way, because that’s going to get you placement at the top of the search result page, right? Then down the road, start focusing on your organic, work on your website, all that good stuff. But if there’s a chance, and you only have three main players, then go ahead and work on those local links, go ahead and get every single, you know, little league you said, or a little bar cafe that can talk about the, the 4k or the 5k, that you are sponsoring things like that, right? If you are in a very competitive market, three pack market, you’ve got 20 different lawyers who are fighting for those three spots, then I would say you need to focus on building out your organic first, and foremost before you can ever get into that free pack. So, go for those higher domain authority links, focus your money and efforts and resources on getting scholarship links, which is a little bit more difficult because you have to have kind of a relationship with those schools, but what about blogging? So, if you can be a guest blogger, an expert blogger, you guys have an expertise, right? You could write an article about the new interlocking device or about the new car accident laws that have come out. There’s so many new rules coming out with criminal law specifically right now, right? All of the police departments are going through training to learn these laws across the country. If you’re a criminal lawyer, now’s the time, I’d be writing all of those really awesome, juicy pieces, putting your name in the byline with a link to your website, and either sending out a PR so it gets picked up by other, you know, news source.
What’s a PR?
Press Release type thing. So, there’s, you know, there’s, um, there’s, there’s a lot of different companies, and I’m happy to share a couple of them, where it’s like $50, you put it out, it’s not guaranteed placement, but you can get, you get one for sure link on the site that they manage, and then they push it out to 130 different resources. If your article is good enough, it’s going to get picked up and you’re getting backlinks from all of these news resources that have really good domain authority across the country. So, if you have one shot, you’ve got limited time and you have to do national, I’d go more on the guest blogging side than the scholarship side. It’s a lot more difficult, it’s a lot more costly to if you have to give a $2,000 scholarship away, right? If you’re just…
Do something, but yeah, so…
Yeah, if you’re starting off.
So, small, small non-competitive market, you’re only competing against three people in that local three pack, all day long local links. If you are not in, it’s very competitive, go for the Organic, do those bigger high domain authority national links.
So, let me ask you another question now that we’ve got a little more time, and I didn’t prep you for this so I’m curious just off the cuff what your response is. You know, we talked a little earlier in the program with Lin and Chuck about Growing by Acquisition, but a lot of lawyers still decide that they want to grow internally, right? And they want to add a vertical. So, we see in the recent news, you got some family lawyers and some criminal defense lawyers, over the last couple of months they may have added another area like trust in the States, or maybe if they did Criminal Defense, they want to add family law, or they did trust the states, they want to add bankruptcy, that type of thing. Would you recommend that if you’re going to start a brand-new vertical to also get with it, a brand-new nap? So, get, if you can for $500 a month, get office space, a small office where nobody else has been before and devote a name, address and a phone to that area, even if it’s a block away or three blocks away, not necessarily 10 miles away, would you recommend opening up a new office for that new vertical so you can own its own nap and not have it confused with your existing stuff?
Yeah, and, you know what? I don’t even think you have to go a step as far as getting a whole nother office location with Google My Business, it’s just that two out of the three items of a nap need to be different for it not to be a duplicate profile. So, keep your address the same add a suite number, but you have to change the name and the phone number that’s on there, right? So, get a call rail, different phone number, and then get your name to be, it could be a practitioner profile, right? Or maybe you have a different brand. The problem with this is if you’re going to change that name to, you know, law firms’ bankruptcy PLLC, right? It can’t go to the same website as your regular website, because you’ve got a logo already on there, you’ve got a brand on there, you can’t create a new brand name and have two different brands pointing at the same website, but you can do the practitioner profile, and that is what I would suggest doing. As much as Google saying, you know, they don’t like the practitioner profiles for long term, if you’re looking to get yourself to rank, that’s the best way to do it. Keep your same office at a suite to it, put your blah, blah, Attorney at Law dash bankruptcy or something like that till somebody tells you can do the spam and get a new phone number and create that and build it out. Absolutely, build it out because you have another chance to rank in the three pack that way.
It doesn’t even need to be like a call round number, you could literally just buy a cell phone. Yeah, and have that cell phone be your new office for that brand.
Yes, agreed. Sorry, yeah, can be any kind of phone number that’s different from the other, you build them out and citations, but the most important part is the reason you’ve created the second Google My Business so that you can have Google understand it is devoted to bank or to your trust in the state or whatever it is, it’s different than your current practice area. So, make sure that your primary category reflects that right. The whole reason you’re doing all this build out is so that it can stand alone as this new practice area, make sure that you are listed as a trusted Estate Lawyer or a Bankruptcy Lawyer. Just that’s the whole point of it. And that’s how Google is going to understand that this is about this practice area and if someone searches for these keywords, you should show up. And make sure to also try to get at least 10 reviews in that first month or two so to bolster it a little bit, but absolutely, why not try it, there’s no reason not to.
Wow, that’s, that’s really great stuff. I mean, on Thursday afternoon, before heading, you know, heading into the last day of the week, and then the weekend, you just gave us a lot of really good stuff there, so really thank you for, for that. I really appreciate you being with us this week and every week for Nalini’s nag it for the chum, for whatever it is. I’m telling you; I need you to give me your name so I can make a nice little graphic.
So, last time I wasn’t clear enough, I was like, hey, give me a good name, I’m going to give you a prize, there is a very nice bottle of whiskey that will be on your doorstep, if you give me, or whatever your liquor of choice is, or if you don’t like liquor, then it’s going to be the best chocolate that’s out there in your state, but I do want this to be named something from our audience. So…
Down below, down below, we need people to give us names for the Nalini segment so that when we have that, we can have a nice graphic with up, I, you know, I can get it animated, it’ll be really cool looking. You know, and so, please, give us some help here, folks, and let us know what Nalini’s segment should be. But with Nalini, I’m gonna say goodbye to you. Thank you so much for being with us, have a great week and, and we’ll talk to you next Thursday, right around this time, right around 3:15, 3:30 ish Eastern. Thank you so much for being with us.
Boy, you know, Seth, sorry that when I clicked over to bring Nalini in and I lost you there, but, you know, that’s just the way sometimes it goes. I’m glad we were able to get in the Nalini content today, because, boy, she really gave us some really good stuff, and I think it’s all stuff that if you are looking to grow your firm, and depending on whether or not you’re acquiring a firm, whether or not you’re growing it from within, the stuff that Nalini brought to the table today, I think is great talking points and people should be definitely taking those notes.
Absolutely, great stuff.
Here’s what I want to do. We’re going to end today because we are gonna, we have, we’re, of course, we’re going a little long. It’s like the story of our, of our show. We tell people we’re gonna do a half hour, we never stick to the half hour, but next week, we’re going to be doing just a show with the two of us. If people have questions that they’re looking to get Seth and I to answer about growing your firm, you can do it down below, leave us the questions. You can send us a direct message and let us know what topics you want us to talk about next week. We’ll have plenty of time to just go through all of our viewer questions, as well as talk about some of the areas where we think we’re going to be able to grow our firms, coming up in the second half of the year as we start and we finish the first six months this year, and boy, what a crazy six months it has been, and looking forward to what we think the next six months will bring and how we’re going to survive and thrive in this time of Coronavirus. So, with that I’m going to sign off, I always point the wrong way. Here’s my friend Seth over here. Seth, any parting words today?
No, just great, great show and look forward to next week where we can sort of dive into some of the granule pieces, you know, what, what it is that gets us from A to B. And, you know, I see, you know, I’ve been talking online a little bit about what are those opportunities right now trying to take advantage of for our firm, and I think you are as well.
Yeah, I think it’s going to be great. So, with that, we’ll sign off. Have a great week, have a healthy week, and we’ll see you all here next week on another edition of Maximum Growth Live. Bye, everybody.