Home Advice For The Young At Heart How To Grow Your Law Firm Like A Business

How To Grow Your Law Firm Like A Business

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by Justin Leto, CEO/President of Idea Financial and LevelEsq, an Idea Financial company

A recent report on the legal industry reveals some surprising statistics on the approach law firms take to business growth. The report shows that marketing — a critical tool for growing a business in any industry — has fallen off the radar at most firms.

According to the report, which cites stats collected by the American Bar Association, less than half of all law firms earmark any money for marketing. Among solo firms (those run by a single lawyer), only 14 percent have a marketing budget. When you consider some businesses commit more than 25 percent of their annual budget to marketing, it seems law firms are limiting themselves in the area of business growth by failing to value marketing.

Like any business, a law firm must grow to survive. Marketing plays a key role in that growth. The following are steps lawyers can take to grow their firm like a business.

Start by setting goals.

One of the biggest marketing mistakes a law firm can make is launching a campaign without considering and setting goals. You must identify the target before you pull the trigger on an ad buy or other marketing initiative. Establishing your goals, deciding how you will achieve them, and then tracking your progress are critical components of a sound marketing strategy.

Focusing on goals is important because marketing is costly, especially in the legal field, which is one reason why so few firms engage in it. If you lack the time or expertise to do marketing right, hiring a third-party agency to set up and manage a campaign can help you avoid wasting your marketing budget on misdirected or mismanaged campaigns.

If you are not a solo practice, it is important to include your partners in the process of developing marketing goals and strategies. A good partnership requires a mutual understanding of each other’s work ethic and drive as well as alignment on how the business will be developed. How much will be spent on marketing and how the spending will be directed is an important decision that should be arrived at as a team.

Understand your current market.

Identifying your target market is a key step in developing an effective marketing strategy. The potential clients who are most likely to value the services you offer are your target market, and the easiest way to identify them is to look at your current market — the clients you have already attracted.

Identifying the demographics of your current client base will help you to develop marketing strategies that promise the best ROI. For what services are you billing the most hours? In what industries do your clients operate? In what geographic areas are they located? Answering these questions will help you to identify your target market and fine-tune your marketing strategy.

Explore the potential in new markets.

Growth strategies focused on your current client base will eventually reach their limit, at which point they should begin to take aim at new targets. This can involve targeting similar clients in new areas or offering new services to clients you already have.

As you begin to explore new markets, your competitors can provide you with valuable market intel. A Google search for law firms in your area will quickly reveal who is there, the services they offer, and even how they are promoting them. This can reveal viable areas for growth and the steps you’ll need to take to compete for clients in that area.

Commit to a long-term strategy.

It’s important to accept from the onset that, while essential, marketing is not easy. Most markets are saturated, which means your ads will have plenty of competition. In addition, bigger firms have bigger budgets that allow them to invest in bigger campaigns.

The best strategy is a long-term strategy. You should expect to spend on marketing for a few months before seeing any notable results.

Law firms, like any other business, need to grow to survive. Attracting, converting, and keeping customers is a critical part of growth achieved in large part through marketing. Stay committed to your strategy, pay attention to results, and tweak as necessary and your marketing will eventually contribute to your business growth.

[Photo credit: Photo by Benjamin Child on Unsplash]

 

justin leto

Justin Leto is the CEO/President of Idea Financial and LevelEsq, and Idea Financial company, a fintech small business lender that provides working capital lines of credit to small businesses throughout the US. Justin brings his entrepreneurial spirit and drive to LevelEsq and Idea Financial, where he sets the vision, mission, and strategy for the organization.