Publishing Books on Amazon: The Opportunity Most Lawyers Miss

Whether a plaintiff or defense firm, whether a large firm, boutique or solo, the vast majority of law firms and lawyers are missing one of the best lead-generation and reputation-enhancing tools available: publishing books on Amazon.

All law firms and lawyers know that a having strong and ongoing online presence is crucial to maintaining and growing a law firm brand and reputation, and to bringing in a continual stream of qualified new leads. Almost all law firms and most lawyers actively use social media, and many also have staff dedicated to regularly creating and posting content in order to increase followers, readers, reputation and search engine optimization (SEO). Yet relatively few law firms and lawyers are publishing their books on Amazon, even though Amazon is one of the world’s top five most visited websites and sells the most products.

Given Amazon’s leading global market position, dominance and penetration, why are most law firms missing an opportunity to generate leads, enhance their reputation and business? Publishing books on Amazon can increase SEO and online reputation, generate quality leads, enhance client service, and create a new source of revenue for the firm.

Which law firms have published on Amazon? Some plaintiff lawyers have published books about mesothelioma and other topics. Some major law firms have published on Amazon; works include years-in-review/yearbooks and books on such subjects as international arbitration, global privacy, capital markets and securities, U.S. corporate jargon, and employment law. Yet, major accounting firms who are actively working to take market share away from traditional law firms, are way ahead of law firms in publishing on Amazon. Ernst & Young and PricewaterhouseCoopers have hundreds of books on Amazon, while the most any single, major law firm has is dozens.

In addition, related third parties in the legal sector, such as law firm associations and networks (National Trial Lawyers, Lex Mundi, Nolo, State Capital Group, PLI, etc.), regularly ask their members to write books with titles such as “Doing Business in [a specific country or state]” and “Estate Planning in [a specific country or state],” yet very few are available on Amazon.

For the few law firms that have already published on Amazon, the information about their books and authors is not current or complete, their firm names are not included as publisher or in the book description, and/or their Google “author” panels are not verified or up to date.

So publishing on Amazon is clearly a missed opportunity for most law firms.

If your firm is thinking about publishing on Amazon, perhaps my recent experience can help. I just finished compiling, writing and publishing my first book on Amazon. I did this by repurposing existing, non-client-specific content from my vast proprietary library of material. Here are the results attained:

  • In less than 36 hours, my book earned #1 New Release and Best Seller status on Amazon in the law firm education category – which, in addition to increasing the book’s exposure, made the phrase “bestselling author” a new professional credential of mine.
  • A few days later, the number of “results” that appeared when Googling my name increased exponentially.
  • We received numerous requests by email for bulk purchases (for which we offer discounts) from law firm leaders and in-house marketing and business development staff.
  • On social media, we received many comments and numerous requests to connect on various platforms and increased the number of followers on our social media accounts and pages.

So publishing on Amazon is well worth the time and effort. On a practical level, below are six key lessons I learned that go beyond simply writing an informative and useful book and then publishing it on Amazon:

  1. Do research, and then do more research.
  2. Assemble a top-notch team.
  3. Create a schedule, to-do list, budget and marketing plan in writing.
  4. Plan for extra time; things will not go as planned.
  5. Be flexible and ready to adapt.
  6. Create and implement an ongoing monitoring-and-review schedule, and adjust as needed.

Most law firms and lawyers also have tons of non-client-specific content – including books already written – that can be repurposed and published on Amazon. Doing so takes considerable time, effort and investment, but is well worth it given the increase in SEO, leads and new revenues that can result.

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