Back in law school, they don’t really teach you a lot about how to go about obtaining clients, do they? So a lawyer knows the law and the intricacies of the legal practice; the other important skill he has to acquire is how to sell his practice – and his firm – to the public.
Some attorneys are innately good at marketing, and their law firms benefit greatly, but for those of us who are not naturals, it can take a lot of practice and guidance to become proficient at law firm marketing. Here are a few principles being followed by most law firms in their marketing programs. This is by no means an exhaustive list. But these points would be very good principles to start your marketing plans with.
Law firms who are making very good business nowadays are known to employ very strong targeting measures to attract more clients. No matter how wide and varied the range of specializations a firm has, its size or the number of lawyers under its employ, targeting still plays a major role in their overall marketing programs. For instance, a major law firm would not necessarily target its marketing efforts on both capital markets and leveraged finance, even though it may be capable of handling both types of transactions. The reason that successful law firms engage in very targeted attorney marketing is because they are able to establish themselves as experts.
It is vital to establish your firm as an expert in a particular specialization since potential clients are more inclined to hire the services of lawyers who are obviously skilled, knowledgeable and experienced in that certain area. It would be wise not to refute a potential client that his case or problem is unique and thus needs special attention; you won’t have him as a client if you even try to do so. If you can establish from the beginning (without lying) that your law firm is expert at the type of situation they’re facing, then you’ll be golden when it comes to convincing them to hire you.
Get in Your Client’s Head
In order to gain more ground, a marketing program should also make room to address potential clients’ issues and concerns. A lot of law firms try to use their marketing to impress potential clients with everything that they know and how good they are. Although performance records and success rates are important to potential clients, they also have specific concerns that you wouldn’t know about unless you address them directly.
One such concern is the public perception that lawyers are quite passive and nonchalant in their approach to their cases. Regardless of whether this is true or not, if a lot of your potential clients feel this way, then your marketing needs to address this issue head-on. Your “expertise” would be rendered worthless if potential clients will shy away from hiring your services because they think you won’t take their cases seriously anyway. It is important to personally address the potential clients’ concerns and be responsive.
As an action tip, if your law firm needs more clients and you want to improve your law firm marketing, then the first thing I suggest is to sit down, write down all the characteristics of potential clients that you can think of, and then make a list of all of their potential concerns and/or questions. Rank the issues and concerns accordingly and from there, start tweaking your marketing program.