Your previous successes as an attorney are important points of social proof that can inspire your potential clients to have confidence in your work, engage you, and hire you. Case results, when written correctly, can be even more valuable than recommendations from your former clients and other lawyers.
Unfortunately, attorneys often list case results on their law firm websites as one or two line summaries that may not mean much to your potential clients and don’t encourage them to reach out to you. But if you write your case results the right way, they can become powerful stories that speak to your potential clients and inspire them to seek your assistance.
What we see on most law firm websites is a single page list: many results, not a lot of detail. Victories, verdict amounts, not guilty verdicts. These things don’t mean a whole lot to potential clients out of context.
A quick side note about structure: We recommend having an index page that lists all of your results in a visually pleasing format. The results listed on the index page should have links to a dedicated page for each result, where you can provide in-depth information. Among individual results, you should have the ability to browse from one result to the next. (LawLytics does this automatically for you.)
The trick to writing case results that convert has to do with getting into the mindset of your potential client.
The Hierarchy of Potential Client Needs
It’s important to understand how your potential clients and referral sources approach the information they’re consuming about you.
Before your potential clients or referral sources consider your accomplishments, they want to know about you as a person. The old saying, “People won’t care about what you know until they know how much you care,” is fitting. Aside from knowing how much you care about what you do, your potential clients also want to know how enthusiastic you are: how intense is your interest in your practice, in them, in their problem?
Once your potential clients determine that you meet the foundational criteria, then they want to know what you’ve done.
What Purpose Do Your Case Results Serve?
An important aspect of writing better case results is understanding what they’re meant to do, not just what they’re supposed to contain. By knowing what purpose your case results serve, you can write compelling stories that humanize you and drive potential clients to reach out to you. Your case results should inspire confidence, engender trust, and convey sameness between you and your potential client. Your potential clients read case results with themselves in mind — they’ll put themselves into the shoes of the clients that are the subject of your results. That’s why, more than simply listing the outcome, it’s important to explain why you fought so hard and why it matters in the context of the client you helped.
How To Write Better Case Results For Your Law Firm Website
Telling a compelling story with your case results can be broken up into four steps: the facts, the challenges, the quest, and finally, the results. Attorneys often start with the results, but by adding some contextual information before you get to the results, you create a better, more inspiring story. Let’s look at each individual step.
The facts. Here’s an example. Let’s say your client was in a car accident. Give your readers the set up: Perhaps your client was driving down the interstate on a weekend afternoon after taking her child to soccer practice when, suddenly, the unthinkable happened.
Describe your client’s frustrations with the insurance company, with medical bills. Make the situation that your client was facing real and relatable to the person reading the story. What was at stake? Why is it as an attorney you felt the need to take her case but to put your energy into the case? Were you fighting for her? For justice? For both? What were the motivations of your potential client, and what were your motivations? Where do those motivations intersect? Your potential clients want to know that your motivations are in alignment with theirs. (The “How much do you care?” part of the pyramid.)
The challenges. This is where enthusiasm comes in. What were the odds and obstacles that you faced in this case? How did you prepare for it? It’s a matter of not only saying what you did but how you got there. By only talking about the conclusion, your potential client may not understand how much work went into the final result. As you’re talking about how you prepared, talk about why you cared about the case so much that it becomes clear to your reader that you also care about their case.
The quest. The details matter, regardless of whether you were in court arguing a death penalty case, a complex document issue, such as providing for multiple heirs in a way that’s fair — the details will go a long way toward convincing potential clients that you’re the right person for the job.
A note: you don’t necessarily want to put your bio here, but you can connect your client’s story to your bio that ties things together nicely without restating it. You may want to include a link to your attorney bio.
The result. This is often where most lawyers start when they talk about success stories, but without understanding the facts, the challenges, and the journey you took to get to the result, potential clients may not understand this part without some context. So once you’ve built up the other elements, talk about your results. Don’t just talk about the legal result — winning the motion for summary judgment, getting the dismissal — talk about how the result impacted your client’s life. For example: Perhaps you won a trial that allowed your client to keep their license. Being able to keep his/her license allowed them to keep their job. That job allowed them to send their child to college. The deeper you go, the more relatable it is to your potential clients. But the end result doesn’t just benefit your potential client — after you talk about the general results, talk about how it better armed you to serve your clients in the future. How did this case continue to prepare for the next potential client’s case?
Make your case results work harder for your law firm.
To learn more about writing and structuring case results that speak to your potential clients, check out our on-demand Case Results Clinic. Do you have questions about your case results, your attorney bio, or your law firm’s marketing? We’re happy to talk — contact us here.