The following blog post is an excerpt from the MyCase eBook “Local Business Marketing Strategies for Small Law Firms” by Marlet Edwards. Download the full eBook for free here.
A mere decade ago, an article about local marketing would have included tips on shotgun approaches like television advertisements, billboard placements, and optimal layouts for a direct mail letter. Skip ahead to 2018 and we can discuss very highly targeted digital approaches. More opportunities exist than ever before to strategically market your law practice to your local community.
Niches Lead to More Riches
Your goal is to become liked, trusted, and remembered in your community for the specific legal services you provide. To build such local rapport, a good strategy is to choose a specific niche within your practice area to hyper-focus your marketing efforts. This will not in any way limit your practice – it simply streamlines your content marketing strategy.
If you struggle with exactly what your hyper-niche should be, considering the following factors should help.
This is the easiest of the three categories. You know the area of law in which your experience lies. Make it as narrow as possible by thinking through the details of your ideal client and case. Developing your marketing efforts around attracting this perfect client/case will help draw more of these to you; however, it will not limit the scope of your practice in any way.
Here’s a tip: Think through the subjects you are comfortable writing articles about, speaking about, and putting your name and brand on as an expert and thought leader.
What types of quirks (may be non-work related) make you the unique individual that you are? What are your passions, hobbies, and ideals? Listing these out next to your practice area can help you discover a type of market that is naturally attracted to you and, therefore, your professional services.
Future Trends in the Legal Profession and Community
The last thing you want to do is put a lot of effort into a niche practice area that is on its way to obsolescence due to artificial intelligence, commoditization, changing laws, etc. Research future trends by visiting any of the top futurists’ websites. Scour the latest news to see if you can spot something that will impact your practice area.
Almost all future trends have legal consequences. If you are having trouble being creative here, it may be worth the investment in one of the many new consultants making a living out of coaching lawyers through the process of developing their hyper-niche and resulting content marketing strategy.
Here are a few examples to get your creative juices flowing:
- North Carolina’s Lemon Law Attorney
- New York City’s Cabaret Law
- Newport’s Bad Faith Claims Litigator
- Miami’s International Child Custody Mediation Services
- Georgia’s Law Firm for Startups.
Also watch for the future trends in your community by staying in the loop of new economic developments, commercial projects, roads and highways, local news, and community influencers’ visions. How can your role as an attorney play a part? Who do you need to get to know to ensure your firm can play a vital role? Join committees and participate on advisory boards.
WHAT’S YOUR STORY
Now that you have your hyper-niche practice area, it’s time to write your story. How did you come to open your practice, choose your practice area(s), and develop your unique way of serving your clients? Your business is a story. Deliver that story in a way that captivates your clients and explains why they should hire you.
Develop Your Story as Part of Your Local Community
Why did you choose to open a practice in your specific location? Did you grow up there? Go to law school there? Meet your spouse there? Bring the local community into your story.
An emotional bridge into your narrative is a powerful way to sell your professional services. Make it clear through your story that your intention is to help people; explain the how and the why. Add in details of your life to help build connections with alumni, organizations, community memberships, etc. The more familiar you make yourself, the more comfortable a potential client will feel in making that next step to engage your services.
Storytelling is how and why your law firm came to be coupled with what motivates you the most to help your clients. The story then becomes the basis for your entire web presence.
It should NOT be boring, long-winded, boastful, or too commercial and sales-y. Your story can incorporate your community’s history and images of local landmarks.
Consider printing the story-in-a-book format. Self-publishing platforms like Blurb and Lulu make the process easy and affordable. The end result is a professional-looking hard or soft copy bound book that you can give to potential clients. You can take it a step further by incorporating a significant or newsworthy issue about your practice area. There are ghostwriters available who can interview you and then write the draft for you. This could potentially lead to a book that actually brings in additional revenue as well as providing awesome marketing material.
Now that you have your brand, your niche, and your story, it’s time to take the next step. Download the rest of this eBook now to learn how to implement local marketing strategies to attract the members of your community to your legal services.