How to Start a Small Law Firm That Will Stand out From the Rest

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If you are a member of a small law firm or you are thinking of starting your own solo practice, you need to set yourself apart from your competitors. You need to identify your key value, passion, and focus, and pursue them rigorously. You cannot be all things to all clients, but you can be the best at serving a niche need. 

Once you stake your claim in a well-defined area of law, you can create a map for taking your practice right where you want to go.

Here are a few tips for starting your own law practice.


Create Your Brand Identity 

Choose a niche that interests you, or that seems to fill a need in the marketplace. Articulate why a client would choose you over your competition. 

For example, if you practice trusts and estates law, how can you stand out from all of the other lawyers who do the same things you do?

Maybe you specialize in special needs trusts, or wills for single mothers. Maybe there are no all-female law firms in your town, and you think women might prefer to work with other women. 

You may have already developed a focus: where have you achieved the most successful results? Have you received any awards? Are you involved in any bar committees or other groups? 

Once you discover what makes you different, you can market yourself to capitalize on your differentiators. You can create messaging, a logo, and an online presence that all capture your distinctions. 


Develop a Marketing Budget and Plan

Once you develop a brand identity, you need to create a plan and a budget with which to carry it out.

Most law firms allocate about 2 per cent of their revenue to marketing and business development. Of course, if you need to build a website or make another large expenditure, you may need to spend more, especially if you are just starting out.

You may choose to work with a law firm marketing consultant who can help you utilize your budget in the most efficient way to achieve your desired results. You may choose to spend money on SEO, Google Adwords, or a CRM system, depending on your overall objectives, market, and target consumer. 


Identify Your  Audience and Objectives 

Once you know what you want to market and how much you want to spend, decide whom you need to reach. Think about the job, age, and demographic of your ideal client.

Where do they get their information? Who do they trust? Depending on who you are trying to reach, you may choose to place opinion pieces in local papers, purchase online ads on specific websites, or make presentations at community events. 

It is also helpful to define your goals. Do you want to grow your practice by 5% in new employees or annual revenue? Will you be happy with two new clients per month? Defined objectives will keep you on track.


Adapt When Necessary

Not all marketing tactics will be successful immediately. Learn from online analytics and data tracking what is working, and what is not. 

Make changes if you discover that more people are interested in your criminal defense services than your class action suits. Adapt your business and your marketing to follow the money and serve the needs of the people you can really help. 


The Successful Small Law Firm: Focused and Nimble 

For a small law firm to succeed, it must narrow its focus on a clearly defined practice and audience. It must set a plan for delivering its brand value to a target group, and it must be prepared to pivot if the market signals that its services are needed in another area. 

For more tips on starting your own small law firm or other business model and making it a success, keep checking back here. Visit the Startups and Law sections of the Bootstrap Business Blog right now for additional insights on starting and marketing a small law firm.

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