It’s not always easy for new lawyers to find clients for their new practices. Sometimes it’s simply because they are not spending enough time on business development. Other times, they waste time doing the wrong activities or they fail to connect with potential clients.
The following are a few techniques that new lawyers can use to market themselves – get their names out there and find clients.
You Have to Network
While networking isn’t an appealing endeavor for a lot of people, it’s absolutely crucial for anyone who is starting a new business, lawyers included. It’s common for new attorneys to only network with other attorneys, but that means that they are missing out on countless opportunities. Anyone, from any profession, has the potential to need a lawyer at some point. So, it’s important for new lawyers to network with people from all different types of businesses.
It’s easy to find networking opportunities in the local area. Facebook, LinkedIn, Meetup.com, or other social networking sites always have events posted. The more people you meet, the more potential clients you have. It’s a numbers game, just like sales. You have to get your bluehost name out there, but when you do, the business will follow. And it’s usually free. As Vivian Sobers posted on the , “My very first client came from mentioning to an old colleague that I had started my own practice. What did I learn? Networking is the cheapest form of advertisement.”
Ask for Referrals
The new technique for growing a law business is asking for referrals. It goes hand-in-hand with networking—it’s the next logical step.
“A lot of lawyers get most of their business from referrals, and that’s a wonderful thing, but the point is that it doesn’t just happen all by itself. The people who get these referrals are lawyers who cultivated them.” –
If you are a new lawyer who is getting started, some great referral sources include:
- Existing clients. Your existing clients know you and know your work. They are a perfect source for referrals. But you have to ask. They won’t know that you are even looking for additional clients unless you tell them.
- Other professionals. Reach out to the people with whom you network and let them know what type of clients and cases you are looking for. Brokers, accountants, and bankers are often good people to start with, but depending on your area of expertise you will want to consider other professions as well.
- Law school classmates. Your old classmates may be a good source for referrals. You won’t want to ask those who are in direct competition with you, but you likely have friends that practice in a different area of the law who may be able to refer clients to you.
The name of the game for getting referrals and filling up , is to get your name out there. Which brings us to another way to do that—online.
Create an Online Presence
Online marketing offers lawyers opportunities to network and ask for referrals. But there are some other important things you can do to create your online presence.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – SEO allows you to optimize the content on your website so that it ranks higher when certain keywords are searched.
- Pay-per-click Marketing (PPC) – This allows you to advertise on places like Google, but only pay when your link is clicked. It’s effective if your website is working at converting clients.
- Social Media – Create social media profiles for your law practice and post and update regularly. Facebook and Twitter are good places to start, and you must have a complete LinkedIn profile.
- Blogging – Sharing relevant and interesting content with your existing and potential clients is an excellent way to get business.
- Email Marketing – If you collect email addresses on your website (if you don’t, you need to) you can use them to . This will keep you name fresh in clients’ minds.
- Avvo – You rating on Avvo matters, so you need to build a profile and work to improve your rating. Prospective clients do look at ratings and often use them when making decisions on Final Thoughts
Lawyers who are just starting out have their work cut out for them. But with the techniques above, persistence and patience, it is possible to have a thriving law practice.