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Is a Better Business Bureau (BBB) Membership Worth It for Law Firms?

About PLM

A 4-attorney law firm client of mine recently asked me if a Better Business Bureau (BBB) membership is something he should continue paying for.  His cost is $600 per year.  Below is my answer, which I thought may be helpful to others.

I view the BBB as mostly window dressing and a conversion tool as opposed to something that will generate leads.  And I think you have a lot of that already with Super Lawyers, AVVO, MH AV, Legal Elite, etc.  So I don’t believe you miss a ton by dropping it.

On the other hand, the BBB is more recognizable to the average person than the legal awards and very few law firms leverage it effectively.  So it could be a differentiator for you… and because of how competitive your space is, it could have value for your firm.  But only if you maximized a few things…

  1. Reviews.  Right now you have 0 reviews on your listing and that matters.  Fortunately, I’ve found that the process for completing reviews on the BBB website is quite a bit easier for clients than some of the others such as Google, Yelp, etc.
  2. Torch Award.  I work with another law firm in a different state that won the BBB Torch Award Small Business of the Year.  In order to do so, we had to submit a pretty lengthy questionnaire that took some time and effort, but the resulting marketing opportunities were very good.  We got a nice badge for the website, published a press release, and now use the award in most of their online lawyer directory marketing.  I’m assuming your BBB chapter has something similar, but I’m not 100%.  Maybe it’s worth keeping it a year and going for the award.  If you don’t get it, revisit the idea of dropping the investment.
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