Avoid making these marketing mistakes so you don’t jeopardize the financial success of your law firm.
Running a law practice is a balancing act of trying to serve your current clients, while finding ways to attract new ones. Building an effective marketing strategy is a challenge even for trained marketing professionals, which means it’s especially difficult for the solo attorney who has no previous experience with marketing professional services.
Understanding what you’re doing wrong can help you adjust your marketing strategy so you can put your firm back on the path to success. Here are the top five mistakes most solo lawyers make:
1. Not building a personal brand
A key part of cultivating an effective marketing plan is establishing what makes you distinct in the market place. What do you offer that other attorneys in your practice area cannot?
This is critical to your selling proposition to a potential client. The best way to communicate what sets you apart from other attorneys is by developing a personal brand.
Too many lawyers do not put enough thought into their branding or they fail to brand themselves at all. This mistake is rooted in the fact that many attorneys don’t seem to understand what their personal brand consists of. To clear that up, here is the short answer: everything.
2. Failing to narrow their practice area
You might think narrowing your practice area would limit opportunities for new business; however, it actually makes you more accessible to potential clients. Narrowing your focus helps you stand out in today’s crowded legal industry and it also strengthens your entire marketing strategy.
Selecting a practice niche will give you a greater sense of the type of work you’re looking for and will enable you to successfully attract that type of work. Overall, your marketing strategy will become more targeted as you become more specific about the type of client you are trying to reach. If you don’t know exactly who your ideal clients are, then your marketing plan is guaranteed to fail.
Additionally, having a reputation in a certain field could open doors to work in related fields or produce better marketing opportunities. For example, as you gain more recognition in your niche, this may lead to speaking opportunities and special projects.
3. Having an inconsistent presence on social media
Attorneys who neglect their social media profiles are missing important opportunities to support their brand image, build their reputation, attract new clients and drive more traffic to their website.
Creating a Twitter account or having a LinkedIn profile isn’t enough to create meaningful progress in your law firm marketing. You need to make sure you’re maintaining a complete profile with consistent updates and active engagement, otherwise you won’t see any return on your investment.
The more consistent you are about using social media as a two-way communication tool to build relationships, the more clients and referral sources you’ll attract.
4. Not looking at the numbers
A lot of small firm lawyers stick to the same marketing tactics and wonder why they aren’t seeing the results they want. Others are seeing an increase in new clients, but aren’t sure what they’ve done that was successful.
When it comes to marketing a law firm, you can save yourself a lot of time by evaluating your tactics to determine what is working. The only way you can really improve your marketing strategy is by measuring your results and analyzing those numbers. Otherwise, you’ll never understand what you need to be doing more of and where you might be wasting your time.
5. Trying to do everything at once
As tempting as it may be, you can’t do everything all at once. The best thing you can do when starting to implement your marketing strategy is to learn a few tactics at a time. Once you’ve learned how to perform them consistently and you’ve found a way to automate them, you can then move on to adopting an additional marketing method.
Many marketing tactics will tie together, such as building your personal brand and engaging on social media, or blogging and publishing on LinkedIn, so there’s no reason for you to overwhelm yourself by trying to do all of them right now. Eventually, most of your efforts will connect.
It’s understandable that solos sometimes overlook or neglect key aspects of marketing and, therefore, struggle to generate the clientele they want. Sometimes it’s an issue of wasting time on marketing activities that don’t work and other times it has more to do with small mistakes they consistently make.
If you’ve been making any of these mistakes, then remember that they can be easily fixed. Successful law firm marketing is not something that happens immediately and with a bit of planning you can start seeing the results you want.