Personal injury attorney Joshua “Josh” Bonnici left his first job out of law school to launch his own firm. Starting from scratch, just nine months later he hired his first employee and has been growing ever since. Bonnici built on his own love of cycling to focus on bicycle accidents and injuries, helping bicyclists in the bustling city of San Diego.
Now he’s known as “The Bike Guy” and stands out in the crowded personal injury field by specializing in an area he’s passionate about. He’s an example of specializing in something you love, and he’s sharing his story with new lawyers just starting out.
Bonnici walks us through, step by step, how he took advantage of an available incubator system, learned on the job from a mentor, and built his practice and his reputation. Hear how he got started, networked, built a brand, made himself memorable, and hired an assistant to make himself more productive. Real lessons from real life.
Got questions or ideas about solo and small practices? Drop us a line at [email protected]
- “Follow your passion” is common advice. But in the case of guest Josua Bonnici, his passion for bicycling helped him stand out in the crowded personal injury field.
- Hiring your first employee. Why it’s scary and why it’s necessary.
- How to develop a website and social media presence with a library of videos and testimonials.
California Lawyers Association
Thomas Jefferson School of Law
San Diego Bar Association
Joshua Bonnici previous appearance on Legal Talk Network’s “On The Road” podcast
Special thanks to our
sponsors and .
Intro: New approach, new tools, new mindset, New Solo.
Adriana Linares: All right, it’s time for another episode of New Solo on the Legal Talk Network. I’m Adriana Linares. I am your host. I like to say I’m the hostess with the mostest because I feel like I am and you’ve got to be confident in the things you do. My guest today is Joshua Bonnici who’s an attorney in Southern California and I was very impressed when someone introduced me to him just randomly saying, “Adriana, you and this attorney might have some synergy. He does some work with the California Lawyers Association and as a solo small firm section and maybe you could do a webinar for them?” I said, “Sure, I’m always happy to talk to folks that work at bar associations, it’s fun.” So we connected and as I chatted with him I said, “Wait, you started a solo practice off the ground?” That’s impressive, 11 years later, cool. “Oh, you’re also adjunct instructor in a law school?” That’s interesting and that will keep you busy, and then when I went and looked at his website, I was very impressed with his marketing efforts. So I’m going to ask him about all those things today. Hi Joshua.
Joshua Bonnici: Hi, a pleasure to be here.
Adriana Linares: Can I call you Josh?
Joshua Bonnici: Please.
Adriana Linares: Great. So Josh Bonnici, tell us a little bit about your background. You know, you started as a solo. Looks like you’ve got a little bit more going, so give us the, “Here’s how I got to launching my law practice” part of your life.
Joshua Bonnici: Sure. So I graduated law school, was working for a small firm and kind of take a left turn onto that when worked for a small legal marketing campaign for about a year, planned to start our practice after that with a friend and after I put my two weeks in, my friend bailed, we’re still good friends now, so that’s okay. And so I then was okay, thinking I’m going to go ahead and start my own practice. So I started a practice, solo with zero clients on a super shoestring budget and eventually started to grow that. Within nine months, I hired my first assistant. I hired my first associate attorney about two or three years later and then I kind of kept it lean and mean. The largest we’ve been is about five or six people and 11 years later, we are four strong and I have a nice boutique, personal injury and disability appeals practice that we just celebrated 11 years in October. And I’ve been recently doing some other things from around that, but that’s kind of my story.
Adriana Linares: Well it’s very good. It’s very impressive, and I did notice that you say you do disability and personal injury, but you have a tiny niche. This is a problem I always have on New Solo, niche on your website that I think is interesting and that’s bicycle injuries.
Joshua Bonnici: Yeah. So as a kid, I was a big mountain biker and always been riding with my dad, really enjoy that — unfortunately my dad got in a pretty bad mountain biking accident when I was in high school, so I stopped riding for a long time. I started my law practice doing personal injury because that’s what my experience was and I liked kind of that time where — into litigation, but wasn’t in court every single day. I was working directly with people solving problems and I started representing a handful of cyclists. I said, these are people I enjoyed talking to, the damages on kind of a litigation kind of damages look is better in those cases because they aren’t as protected as people in cars. So I said, “You know what? Maybe this is something I kind of want to focus on.” So in 2015 I made that determination. I said, “I’m want to be the bike guy in San Diego.”
Adriana Linares: Love it.
Joshua Bonnici: So I went and bought a road bike. I started getting associated with a lot of clubs in riding rides in San Diego. I mean we might get into this later, but now I’m entering my third year being title sponsor for the largest cycling club in San Diego. So that’s kind of been a little bit of my niche to where I’ve gone into for personal injury, so that people can know who I am. I always make the joke that you go to an attorney networking event. You throw a rock, you’re going to hit like five personal injury attorneys, right?
Adriana Linares: Right.
Joshua Bonnici: Okay, well I’m not the smartest guy in the world, so I need to stand out in some other fashion and so now that’s the niche that I’ve chosen.
Adriana Linares: See, even you don’t know. I think that’s brilliant. If you’re going to start in the estate planning practice, pick a niche, there’s a million of those out there. So I’ll say something like — I make dumb suggestions, but there’s suggestions that I think of which is nobody thinks about in estate planning for young people like me. I have an estate planning attorney. I don’t have an estate plan because I think I don’t have an estate, but yet I own property. I’ve got a business. So I just think it’s so smart to get into a niche.
And then the other thing I always tell attorneys, especially when I’m talking to law students, I do a lot of sort of guest lectures at law schools is, “Please find something you love.” Your bicycling example is perfect, because not only is it something that you just you love and you’re passionate about, you don’t have to fake genuineness about it because it’s truly something that you love, plus makes you happier when you’re working in an area that you love. So great, I’m so glad I asked you about that. You said all the right things.
If you are talking to young lawyers today and I know that you do because we’re going to talk about your law professorship in a moment, is that something you suggest as well and when they say to you, “I don’t know what I want to do.” I mean I just feel like it’s so natural to say, “Find something you love.” There’s always a need for a lawyer in everything.
Joshua Bonnici: I definitely try to have someone find something that they already have a lot of passion or background in or something they like because then it’s not working as much, right?
Adriana Linares: Right.
Joshua Bonnici: Because you’re already maybe invested in that area whether it’s yoga or it’s engineering or something. If you’re already invested in that area, then the marketing there isn’t going to be as hard. So it be easier to talk with those people and it’s going to be a way to break down barriers.
Adriana Linares: Yeah.
Joshua Bonnici: Because you’re able to talk about that niche with somebody who’s already invested and now they’re not really talking to a lawyer inasmuch as they’re talking to somebody who shares that passions, and then you can help them throughout within that niche.
Adriana Linares: Love it, great, brilliant advice. Let me go to you launching your solo practice and when you decided to do that, how did you know where to start? Where did you find the resources or did you do it like a lot of other attorneys which was the school of hard knocks?
Joshua Bonnici: Adriana, I got super lucky and maybe just was connected to some of the right people. So my law school actually had an incubator system that they had just launched about a month prior to me myself launching, and they had an opening because somebody dropped out. So I slipped right in there the very beginning of 2013 and it was myself and eight other lawyers where we were all running our own individual law practices. We had a seasoned attorney running the incubator system where we all shared in overhead. We all shared and kind of do some CLEs once a week and kind of really collaborate a lot on marketing ideas and things like that. So for a full year, my overhead was really low. I was paying $250 a month for an office in a high rise that I had a receptionist that kind of greeted everyone for us. We had a meeting space for clients, all of that.
So that really kind was my springboard moving forward, and then a year after that, we end up staying in the same space, but a new cohort of incubatees came in. We kind of shadowed them a little bit and kind of took them under our wing a little since we had kind of already been through the process. So that was kind of my springboard to move forward and then I moved out of there in 2017 and got my own office suite by myself and kind of took off from there, but I definitely had a lot of support. It was an amazing thing and I would actually love to kind of reinvigorate and we start up a Southern California incubator, but it’s just kind of hard getting all those things kind of put together, but that’s kind of how I got my wheels rolling.
Adriana Linares: No, that’s great. I feel like we used to hear about incubators a lot more than we do now. So that must have been during the era of incubators and I definitely wish more law schools would really get those going, because it would make a job of a consultant like me so much easier where attorneys would be able to call me and pay me to get beyond the basics, right? Like, “Okay, I’ve got the basics down, now here are a little more in-depth questions.” I never mind answering any question, but sometimes it be great to not — to just have a jumpstart on stuff.
All right, so you launched your solo practice, you had as you said zero money, zero clients, but you had some ideas. You had a place to work and what I love about all these is that — and you’ve successfully had this practice now for 11 years, congratulations on your anniversary.
Joshua Bonnici: Thanks.
Adriana Linares: You turned that whole thing right around and now you are the professor teaching at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, a law practice management class?
Joshua Bonnici: That’s correct, it’s a solo practitioner course, how to open your own practice. My mentor who was actually the director of the incubator taught that course for a handful of years, Louise Maguire (ph). I think we had talked about you knowing who she was.
Adriana Linares: For sure.
Joshua Bonnici: And yeah, and so when she stopped doing that, she kind of made a pitch to the dean saying, “Hey, this is an important course. I might have someone that can come in and take over” and then when they were ready to offer that again, they reached out. We all got together and now I’m teaching that course which is amazing. They never had that course when I was there.
Adriana Linares: Right.
Joshua Bonnici: And so I’ve got 11 students and we got two more courses left this semester, two more weeks, and just walking them through, you know, why you start a business, how you do it, business development, how to send bills, how to interview clients, how to deal with difficult clients. All the stuff that is the real world application of what you learned in law school, but kind of how to make that happen as a business.
Adriana Linares: I’ve a lot of listeners that are trying to do that very same thing. So in a nutshell, what are some of the most important things that you need to know, need to plan for, or this is not what they taught you in law school, things that you could summarize from the course you’re giving, and from your personal experience?
Joshua Bonnici: Yeah. So my big push is always to — when you’re opening a new practice, think about it as a business. The service that you’re providing is law, which is amazing. There’s a lot of brilliant lawyers out there, but without clients coming in the door and having some systems and processes, right? Those things will fail, and so looking at it that way, seeing other successful businesses have done on that aspect, installing that into your practice. So one thing I always talk about is doing some great networking, creating your own brand, creating your own kind of niche, the kind of like we talked about. It doesn’t have to be a specific niche in a way that you’ve really needled down to one particular area, but being memorable so that people know who you are and how to refer you and why to refer to you. So you start building that way.
Another thing I always recommend is to hire an assistant as soon as you can, and people freak out and, “Oh my goodness, I can’t afford an assistant, and you know that’s going to be extra money.” I totally get it. It doesn’t need to be 40 hours a week, 25-year experience paralegal. It can be 20 hours a week virtual assistant that you’re paying $10 an hour for to at least start getting some things off your desk so that you can be more productive with your time, and you can start servicing more and more clients. So those are probably some of the things that if had to give a two or three-minute, just review that I would probably tell people to start thinking about when they’re getting their new practice going.
Adriana Linares: I think those are awesome. A recurring theme on this podcast over and over again from everyone who comes on who’s had experience and will tell you number one piece of advice is networking. And it’s funny how often over and over again it’s the most thought piece of advice, where a student thinks or a new solo just thinks that doesn’t possibly matter, right? My Grandpa’s been telling me that, but it is over and over again the number one way to get clients and referrals. So never forget, new solos out there.
Branding is funny because it’s another one that attorneys don’t think it matters. We just finished a four-part series at the San Diego County Bar on marketing. The third session was on branding and it was our least attended because I think attorneys don’t get what it is and why it’s important and believe me, we tried to come up with a title as sexy as possible and it just doesn’t grab. So I think your whole conversation about branding yourself as the bicycle guy, the bicycle attorney is brilliant and that is everything. So you’re right. If you haven’t studied branding and figured out how to brand yourself, brand your law firm, make yourself recognizable and lovable name or law firm out there, you got to do that.
Then the last thing I’ll say is most certainly hiring assistant. I couldn’t agree with you more and then I will add on is the technology consultant that having your tech stack set up correctly with the right resources and technology and knowing how to use those is right up there as well.
Listen, I want to come back in a moment after this message from our sponsors and talk to you about another little side hustle you’ve got that you really enjoy doing which is helping other attorneys. We’re just going to keep the conversation going there about what types of questions you get, what kind of advice you give and we’ll take it from there. We’ll be right back.
Adriana Linares: Okay everyone I’ve got a secret for you. Clients don’t care where you work from and finally I’ve got some stats to prove it. It turns out based on Clio’s Legal Trends for solo law firms, clients don’t care whether you’re working from home or from the office and I’ve brought in Joshua Lenon, Clio’s lawyer in residence to help prove me right. Hi Joshua.
Joshua Lenon: Hi Adriana. Thanks for having me. Our research from clients has shown that whether a lawyer works from home or from an office has negligible influence on their hire-ability. Clients don’t really care and that makes sense given the legal work is more distributed than ever and the ability to work from home just is better for maintaining good work-life balance. It’s no surprise that solos are 38% more likely to prefer working from home. If you want to learn more about how you can set up a practice where you can work from home how you want and connect with clients remotely, download Clio’s Legal Trends for solo law firms for free at Clio.com/solo.
Adriana Linares: Lawclerk’s nationwide network of talented freelance lawyers is trusted by thousands of law firms. Solo attorneys and firms can get help with project based and also ongoing work via subscription. Sign up is free and there are no monthly fees. You only pay when you delegate work, plus Lawclerk has a new app for your mobile devices to help you manage the work you’ve delegated while you’re on the go. Be sure to use referral code “New Solo” when you sign up at Lawclerk.legal.
Okay we’re back. I’m Adriana Linares, your host of New Solo. I’m with Joshua Bonnici today. He is a solo practitioner where he’s a little bigger than a solo, but he’s had his practice for 11 years in San Diego, very successful, very busy guy with a lot of interests, sounds very happy which I always love talking to attorneys who are running a busy practice but are happy about it.
So Josh, I want to ask you next about — it’s obvious that you like helping others because you’re a law school professor and that is something you have to like and I can tell by listening to you and chatting with you that helping other attorneys is important to you. So you’ve started a little side hustle, if you will, as a business consultant, as a law firm coach. Tell us a little bit about that and then give me like the types of questions you get asked the most and what your responses typically to those.
Joshua Bonnici: Yeah. So in kind of my passion for kind of the business side of the law and helping other people really serve more, and oftentimes better clients, I started saying, “You know what? I’ve gotten my practice pretty well solidified. I don’t have a drive to add employees beyond where I am.” So I’ve started consulting with attorneys on either starting a newer practice or growing and scaling a practice, and not just kind of the technology side. I know I think there’s a lot of great people like yourself who can kind of get people plugged in and ready to go and kind of go, “Okay. I’ve got a good base.” But working with them and saying, “Okay, what practice areas do you have? What areas of focus do you want? Can we create a brand for you? Can we get yourself into a niche, right? So that you can start fading away some of these other leaves that you don’t like and really bear down to some of the cases that you really want.”
Some of the other questions that I get is, “You know, I’m really nervous on hiring somebody. I’ve hired before, didn’t go well or I don’t think I can afford it or I’ve never interviewed somebody before. How do I even put an ad out? How do I do that?” And so walking them through with all the experience that I have and kind of building us, all the team and then training them on how to utilize that employee or even that independent contractor to further their goal, if that’s taking a vacation because they haven’t because they’re working 80 hours a week, if that’s adding a new practice area because they’ve always want to do something like that, or just bring in more cases and just making more money. So kind of finding those pressure points and trying to see the best way to alleviate those.
Adriana Linares: So you made me think of something when you said “growing an existing practice”, right? So you like helping new solos launch. That’s probably my favorite thing and then helping a firm practice, but then it reminds me of something you said in our first segment which you talked about processes and procedures. So that sounds to me like you probably have a book of policies, procedures and practices that you update and when somebody comes in, you can pretty much handle the bulk whether it’s digital or physical and say, “Okay. Well, here’s how we do things here.” Talk to us a little bit about how important that is in either world, whether you’re just launching a new solo practice or I imagine that’s actually a really important part of helping a firm become successful as you probably go in and say, “You don’t have written down how you open a matter or close the matter or get these files from cradle to grave?”
Joshua Bonnici: Completely. So in my own practice, we got several policies, procedures on different aspects whether it’s new client sign up, it’s litigation, it’s closing a matter, and then we meet usually once, sometimes twice a year and say, “Okay, where can we make this better? Has anything changed? Can we make this more efficient?” And I’ll go to my staff and like, “Okay, you’re doing most of this. What have you noticed?” Give them the power and the authorization to say, “No. I think we should change these things” to say, “Great, let’s do that.” So now they have a say in kind of what work they’re doing and how they’re doing it. A lot of times, if someone is starting a brand new practice today, that may not be the thing that’s going to launch them faster, is having a new client onboarding process. I would say that you probably have to do a handful of them first.
Adriana Linares: Yeah.
Joshua Bonnici: To figure out, “Okay, this is how I want it to be done.”
Adriana Linares: And write it down and then when you change your mind, edit it, but write it down.
Joshua Bonnici: Exactly. Usually the new solo has time.
Adriana Linares: Right.
Joshua Bonnici: To actually start writing that and creating that list.
Adriana Linares: Exactly.
Joshua Bonnici: So that’s usually when you want to start doing that. It’s going, “Okay, you know what? On a Friday night, close your blinds. Pour yourself a glass of wine or whiskey, whatever your vice is” and just go in on your laptop for two hours and say, “Okay, this is how I want a new client sign up for instance, an onboarding to look like.” Now if you have a solo or a small firm that’s been established for a while and they don’t have those things, that’s where you can really make some of the big changes is saying, “Okay, we’re going to number one, put together the policy and procedure list on how you want these things, but we’re also going to make sure that the right people are actually doing the tasks that are best suited for those tasks.” Whether or not the managing attorney in a small office wants to do something that they enjoy it, great. We’re assigning those to you, right? But having a task list with an understanding of, “Okay, whenever a new client comes in, this attorney does the interviews but when the retainer is signed, this assistant is the one who puts together the new client packet. This attorney is the one who sends out the thank you card or whatever it is.” So everyone knows what’s supposed to happen once a certain task gets assigned, so there’s no glitch in the matrix, right?
Adriana Linares: Yeah.
Joshua Bonnici: Everyone knows exactly what’s supposed to happen and happens the right way and the person that’s doing it is very efficient doing it, so they’re saving time and doing it correctly. So I think those are some of the best ways for lawyers to start thinking like a business because there’s checklist and processes for everything, for everyone. The example I love is airline pilots, right? They might have flown 10,000, 15,000, 20,000 hours. They still go through the checklist every time before they take off and when they land, right? Just to make sure something doesn’t get missed, to make sure that everything is the same and so us lawyers need to get out of our own heads and understand that that’s something that can really help our practice.
Adriana Linares: Could not agree with you more. I’m going to give everyone a good use case for ChatGPT. I think sometimes the hardest part about creating policy or procedure is writing it down and taking the time. Well, I would suggest to you that you dictate it right into something like ChatGPT or Bard and with something like, “You’re an attorney trying to write policies and procedures for your client intake form, take the following notes and put them into a bulleted list when a practice when a new client walks in the door” and just literally speak it out to one of the robots. It will give you a great place to start. I love the ChatGPT, Bards, Claudes of the world and I think attorneys are thinking a little bit too hard about how to use them and also being a little bit too afraid that these are perfect use cases for them. You can always then go back and say, “Oh, on number three, add this. On number four, change it to this.” I mean, it’s a great use case is helping you write down your policies and procedures. Of course, you’re going to edit it afterwards. Well, that’s all very helpful, really good information.
Let’s another quick break. We’re going to come back and I am going to ask you about the awesome marketing that I see coming off of your social media platforms and your website.
All right. Now, I’m back. We’re back, me and Josh Bonnici and I’m talking to him about just running a successful law practice, helping other attorneys do the same and now I want to do a little bit of a deep dive into Josh’s very nice looking website and all his social media platforms. So Josh, I’m looking at your website. You’ve got all the right things on here. You’ve got a click-to-call. You’ve even got an email. All your social media buttons are at the top. You’ve got a button to click a free consultation. You’ve got chat on here. You’ve got videos. Your colors are beautiful. Everyone, make sure you go to bonnicilawgroup.com when you’re listening to this podcast. It’s bonnicilawgroup.com. Go look at it. You’ve got all the right elements on here. You got a click-to-call, an email, great navigation, including one very specific tab for bike lawyer. Get a free consultation. Click to make that appointment probably. All your social media chiclets are up here and you have a chat. You got videos. Nice font. Nice colors. It’s a beautiful website. I even love the colors. Your LinkedIn, clean. The branding carries over. Your logo is there. You bring it home with your tagline. You’re a bicycle injury lawyer and racer, disability appeals lawyer and you call yourself out as a baseball nerd. I like it, makes me want to call you
Joshua Bonnici: You got to have a little fun with it, right?
Adriana Linares: Right.
Joshua Bonnici: I want to be the approachable lawyer.
Adriana Linares: I love it.
Joshua Bonnici: So if we have one thing that we can kind of be — have in common, talk a little baseball or bikes or bourbon or something, then hopefully it makes me an easier lawyer to talk to and sign up with.
Adriana Linares: It’s great. Your YouTube page, which I think it’s completely underutilized resource, is YouTube is full of good videos, is even a still of you with a very adorable dog. Here’s here, is that your dog?
Joshua Bonnici: Yes, that’s Marley, the office princess. She’s in the office most days and Yeah, if you go to my website, usually the first picture or part of the video that pops up is her which I think is hilarious. She is the start of the show.
Adriana Linares: Very approachable, very likeable. Your Facebook page looks great. Your Instagram looks great. There’s new and recent posts on there all the time. So tell us how did you come up with all this branding? How is it working for you? How do you keep up with it all?
Joshua Bonnici: So I did my own marketing and everything for a long time and about two and a half years ago I outsourced and I said, “You know what? I’m too busy in my practice. I kind of need to reassess kind of what is not only making me money, but what I’m enjoying doing.” So I contracted with a local, kind of smaller marketing agency where I’ve got direct contact with my manager, the owner of the company. So I basically given them my vision and they ran with it. Like my website, especially the colors like you mentioned, I want something that was a little lighter, that was more approachable, not the super dark blues, nothing black. So I’ve got that teal color, a little orange pop and there’s kind of different — and then, the videos and all of the blogs and stuff. So now they create for me and so they’ll send me the blog’s — I will proof them all usually once a week, maybe every other week. They’ll send me six or seven blogs. I proof them all and make edits in Google Docs, send it back to them and then they will brand them for me and release them kind of on two or three a week. I believe I’ve got 300 or 400 blogs now on my site with over 5,000 keywords, which is a big deal for SEO marketing.
Adriana Linares: That’s awesome.
Joshua Bonnici: Yeah.
Adriana Linares: I want to call out your Instagram tag line which I love too. It says, “Bonnici Law Group” and then it’s the emoji of a guy in bike and the scales of justice, adorable and then it says, “San Diego’s bicycle lawyer who rides and races. We know bikes and the law. Let’s connect and get you back on the bike.” It’s so good. Then it says, “DM us for sponsorships.” So you said we might talk about that and I didn’t even realize this was going to be on here. So yeah, tell me how all of this works. You’re paying someone. You got a lot of resources. You’re looking for sponsorships. Does it pay off?
Joshua Bonnici: So it does. So on my first paid sponsorship on the bike aspect was in 2017. I was a small little logo square on the back of a jersey for the bike club that I’m currently the title sponsor for and it was $500. I didn’t know what I was going to do with myself. It was so much money. I started kind of just using the branding of that blue square and my name for biking moving forward and now — I mean what, it’s five or six years later, I’ve sponsored four or five different teams. I was on the board for the San Diego Mountain Biking Association, definitely sponsored a bunch of their events and now I am the title sponsor — meaning my name and logo is the biggest for the San Diego Bicycle Club. It’s a lot higher than the $500 a year before when it started, but I have made my money back on that hand over fist.
Adriana Linares: That’s amazing.
Joshua Bonnici: And on the business side, it is a great decision. It’s also just a lot of fun and able to give back and help out with this non-profit that puts kids on bikes, donates helmets, all that kind of stuff. So within that, I go bike racing all over the country and utilize that for my business as well.
Adriana Linares: That’s brilliant, and then I just want to point out one more thing, especially on your Instagram which everyone, it’s SD as in San Diego, bike lawyer is the handle on Instagram. So over at the top, Instagram allows you to sort of collect posts together and you have used them and maybe it’s your marketing company or maybe you already had it set up this way, so that bike lawyer actually is the last one in this case? So that when you come to read about it, you’re also going to see that Joshua practices or helps with motorcycle, long term D, personal injury, disability, car accidents, and then bike lawyer is the last one, which I think is brilliant, because now you’ve got people that have come here likely because of your marketing, but they’re also seeing that you aren’t just the bike lawyer. You also have these other aspects of practice that puts you top of mind when they or someone else they know needs help with that type of law?
Joshua Bonnici: Honestly I go back and forth a little bit on how I want to utilize that specific account. So I don’t want to make it look like I do everything. That might be a concern that I have kind of on my own that I need to work on, but saying car accidents and slip and falls and bike accidents, all these other things. I don’t want to confuse the reader too much, right?
Adriana Linares: Yeah.
Joshua Bonnici: But having them all come in that same vein I still think is helpful so that when they’re looking at it, they can kind of see, “Okay, no, like he’s got a couple of different avenues here, how can he be a resource for me?”
Adriana Linares: I think it’s great and like any marketing plan and this is something you might just want to speak to for a moment. You’re constantly massaging it?
Joshua Bonnici: It’s never perfect, right? I feel like you’re constantly running kind like an A and A B campaigning in a way saying, “Okay, you know what? We’re going to change this up a little bit. We’re are going to use these tags or maybe we need to use more pictures of me.” That has ended up being trending and tagged better when I’m in the photos. So like, “Okay. Well now I got to get with marketing company, do some more photo shoots, provide them more pictures.” Is it me on a bike? Is it me helping somebody, talking with someone? So those are all kind of different things that we review and make sure to check back, “Okay, the last 30 days, how did this last campaign go? Do we need to tweak it? Does it look great?” But yeah, it’s always evolving.
Adriana Linares: Can you talk about how important it is to hire a professional photographer because it looks to me like you do?
Joshua Bonnici: And it doesn’t need to be the best photographer in town. It just needs to be shot on something that’s non-iPhone 7, right? A little bit of touch up, so that they can’t see my wrinkles and my gray hair, but it is what it is, but no, it needs to be presented professionally, but not crazily overdone. So like the pictures you see on there are usually my marketing company coming out with their nice DSLR and stamping (ph) some good pictures, making sure they have a bunch, so that they can choose some of the good ones. The video that you see, they can now and they’ll do and we’ll record five or six videos once a month and then do those. I’m not in a production room with all the booms and everything, but just keeping it clean and simple. That’s the way that it gets done at the same time too, right? So if it’s something that could be done 80% as well and you’re not ruining everything for perfect, it’s still going to do the job. And so that’s kind of how I’ve tried to execute on that side of the marketing.
Adriana Linares: The last thing I’m going to ask you about which is also really important, attorneys hate doing it, but it’s so important and I can see you have a ton of them, is client testimonials.
Joshua Bonnici: So important and it’s weird, the first couple times you ask as a newer lawyer, sometimes whereas even newer solo is, “Hi, can you put your face on video saying that you were my client?”
Adriana Linares: You love me?
Joshua Bonnici: And during the whole time. Right yeah.
Adriana Linares: Can you just come in and talk about how much you love me?
Joshua Bonnici: Right. But people are really going to do it. I think I have about a dozen on my website and as of right now, I only have five star reviews on Google and Facebook and AVVO and asking for those and making it part — are you ready for this?
Adriana Linares: Process?
Joshua Bonnici: Making part of your policies and procedures.
Adriana Linares: Yes.
Joshua Bonnici: To ask for reviews, have a nice Bitly link that’s ready to go. My marketing company created a link for me that I send out and once you click it, it opens the says, “Did Bonnici Law Group offer you a five-star experience?” If yes, you click yes, if no, you click no. If it says yes, I’ll take you automatically to a Google review page to where you just start typing in. If it says no, there’s a fill-out box saying, “We’re sorry to hear that. How can we do better?”
Adriana Linares: Brilliant.
Joshua Bonnici: It doesn’t give them the option to leave a review any longer.
Adriana Linares: Right, so way to do it.
Joshua Bonnici: It’s super simple for them, so don’t be afraid of that. Ask for reviews. In a day where everyone goes to Yelp to go double check that the restaurant they want to go to has good reviews, they’re doing the same thing and you can control that if it’s on your website or Google.
Adriana Linares: Well Josh, this has been a great conversation, chock-full of a ton of information and I cannot thank you enough for taking time out of your very busy schedule to help more of your fellow attorneys. It’s attorneys like you that make those podcast so awesome. Thank you.
Joshua Bonnici: Thank you for having me. This is a blast.
Adriana Linares: I’m glad. Tell everyone how they can find friend or follow you, make sure you spell that last name for them one more time.
Joshua Bonnici: Sure. So my Joshua Bonnici, B as in boy, O-N-N-I-C-I. I run Bonnici Law Group for a plaintiff’s personal injury and disability office. As you noted, I’m also doing some coaching on the side and that company is called Domestique Attorney Consulting. The website for that is dattorneyconsult.com and everyone says, “What does Domestique mean?” It is a French word for a bicycle racer who is the helper for the person they want to win. So if Adriana is racing the (00:34:40) team and I want her to win, I’m the Domestique. I am making sure that no one gets too far away in the race. I’m bringing her extra water. I’m maybe riding in front of her so she gets a draft behind me, all and efforts that she wins and then I don’t, and so that’s kind of what I named my consulting company after. I’m really excited about it.
Yeah, you can find me at dattorneyconsult.com there. It’s been really fun watching people’s passion for the law grow and getting more excited because they’re getting more efficient, they’re getting organized and better at goal setting.
Adriana Linares: That’s brilliant and the fact that you have a cool story wrapped around why it’s called that, that alone is a conversation starter. So you’re really smart guy, Joshua. I love everything you’ve done. I hope we stay friends and get to work together in the future. For now, thank you everyone for listening to another episode of New Solo. We will have another one coming up soon with more wonderful guests, chock-full of pearls of wisdom and until then, we’ll see you on New Solo.