Part of being an effective attorney is zealously advocating for your client. And although you may be the most motivated, competent advocate in the market, no one will know that unless you actually have clients.
So for those still unconvinced of the need for solos to push for marketing, consider this:
Solo Practices Are Businesses
A solo practice may seem in abstract like a principled statement of being -- one made by an attorney who wishes to make his or her mark on the world. It can still be that, but if you want it to last for longer than a few months, it must also be a business.
And businesses need clients. And clients' knowledge about your practice isn't a priori -- you need to get the word out.
That may seem like a "no-duh," but many attorneys find the first steps of marketing their solo practices if not almost slimy, at least arduous. Marketing doesn't have to be lubricated in the sleaze of a door-to-door salesman, but you do have to take that first step in proclaiming to the market that you, a competent lawyer, are open for business.
Taking the First Marketing Steps
Building your practice from the ground up won't be effortless, but a relatively simple step in marketing your practice is to create an online presence.
Once you get over the hurdle of actually naming your practice, you want to spread that name all over town (in a smart way, of course):
- Create a website. No solo attorney should exist in this century without a website. Even a barebones website can serve as the perfect platform for your bio and contact information and guess what? FindLaw can audit your site for free.
- Spread into social media. You may not be comfortable with Twitter and Facebook, but your clients spend an ungodly amount of time there, so that's where you should be. Once you get the hang of it your social media presence will be a snap to maintain.
- Prepare to network. Local bar associations and other professional organizations have great resources for new solo attorneys or even established solo lawyers looking to move to the next level. You can never have too many friends in this business.
Feeling overwhelmed already? There's one more marketing step that's pretty painless.
Get a Directory Listing
You probably don't need a listing in the Yellow Pages, but you do need to be listed with one of the major online lawyer directories. With most consumers doing their shopping for books, plumbers, vacations, hotels, and employment online, you need to be listed somewhere that is a Google search away.
FindLaw.com's Lawyer Directory is a quick and painless way to put your name and contact info out there, giving you ample time to plan on growing your reputation. The Lawyer Directory sees around 1.5 million visits per month, and all those eyes are going to be a natural boost to your market exposure.
Have we convinced you? Almost? Stick around for part two of this blog mini-series, and we'll tell you a bit more.
- 3 Reasons to Have a FindLaw Lawyer Directory Listing (FindLaw)
- FindLaw Remains Web's Most-Visited Legal Directory (FindLaw)
- What Is Reputation Management? (FindLaw's Strategist)
- Your Law Firm Website is (Probably) Designed to Fail (FindLaw's Strategist)