Your Guide on How to Get Clients as a Solo Attorney
Solo law firm marketing can be challenging. As an attorney working on your own, you’re asked to wear a number of hats when it comes to managing and growing your practice.
Of course, there are plenty of benefits to being a solo practitioner. Having a flexible lifestyle, being your own boss, and creating a lasting legacy are just a few. But one of the negatives of running your own firm is that you are entirely responsible for drumming up business; whereas bigger firms often have an in-house team dedicated to this task.
Fortunately, there are many effective methods that a solo attorney can use to get clients. Whether you’ve just hung up your shingle or have been open for some time and need to shift your tactics, this guide will show you how to get clients as a solo attorney.
Deliver Exceptional Client Service
If you want to be so successful as a solo practitioner that you have to turn clients away, focus on delivering an exceptional client experience. It sounds simple enough on the surface, but this is something that too many businesses, including law firms, neglect.
Legal services are a bit different in that people who need them don’t necessarily want them. If you think about it, few people are thrilled to be hiring a personal injury, family law, or business attorney. Satisfied clients that vouch for your skill and compassion are essential when it comes to attracting new clients who may be wary of the process.
For some clients, the legal process can be intimidating or stressful. Stay transparent and take the time to walk them through what to expect. Keeping your responses timely will also likely be appreciated. At the end of the year or around the holidays you might consider sending a card and a small gift.
Build an Effective Website
Your law firm’s website is its virtual ambassador, so it should be effective at greeting visitors and providing information about your services. If your website was built several years ago, isn’t secure, is slow, or doesn’t provide enough information, you’re not going to get the results you want.
Not only should your site be modern and well-designed, but it should also showcase your services and experience. Use your website to inform prospects about how you are different, and make sure that it is optimized for search engines. There’s nothing wrong with emphasizing that you operate a solo practice and letting visitors know how this will benefit them.
Work on Your Local SEO
Every marketing step you take should keep local SEO in mind. Most people hire only local attorneys, so your localized SEO efforts will pay off as a solo attorney when you rank well for search terms like “DUI lawyer near me.”
First, claim and update your Google Business Profile (GBP) profile. Add photos and a strong description that includes the areas you serve. Next, include practice area pages and blog posts on your website that mention the cities, counties, neighborhoods, and the state you serve.
Leverage Social Media
Social media marketing for lawyers isn’t new. That said, you should be engaging on social channels as a solo attorney if you aren’t already. Social media for solo law firm marketing is impactful in several ways:
- It allows you to form a personal connection with your target audience over time.
- You can slowly establish yourself as an authority in your field, even among your peers.
- As you build brand awareness and trust, it will be easier for people to leap from “social media follower” to “client.”
While you should have social media profiles set up for your law firm, it’s better to engage on social media from your personal profile, particularly when you are a solo practitioner. Social media is about people, so your efforts should focus more on making connections as an individual than on pushing conversions for your firm.
Consider Paid Ads
One of the fastest ways to get exposure for your solo law practice is to use paid ads. Investing in PPC (pay per click) ads in Google can have your law firm listed at the top of the search results for your chosen terms, such as “truck accident lawyer Chicago.”
You can also pay for ads on social media on platforms like Facebook. Just remember that you are paying for every click on an ad, whether those prospects become clients or not. So, it’s vital that you optimize and monitor your ads to track your ROI.
Ask for Client Reviews
In today’s online world, reviews mean everything. How much? According to our report Understanding the Legal Consumer, 80 percent of legal consumers found reviews important when hiring an attorney. People have easy access to the web, and, for many, it’s now the first place they turn to solve a problem or look for a reputable business.
As a solo law practitioner, you need to start collecting online reviews for several reasons. First, that social proof makes you look trustworthy and drives people to make contact with your firm. Second, the number and “recency” of your reviews on Google will help your GBP page rank better for local search.
Engage in Content Marketing
An excellent way to set yourself apart as a solo attorney is to help educate people who land on your website or social media profiles.. Remember, most people that hire an attorney aren’t thrilled about the prospect. They have pressing legal issues, and they need answers.
While you certainly don’t want to work for free, you can build brand awareness and trust by lending a hand with some helpful content. Does your audience want to know what happens after a DUI arrest? Tell them. What about the procedure for a no-fault divorce in your state? Posting helpful and engaging content will bring prospects to your website, where you can gently suggest that they give you a call for assistance.
Make Strong Community Connections
Another great way to market your solo practice is to forge strong connections in your community, both online and offline. Join community and business groups and get involved. Instead of pushing your services, focus on being helpful and letting others get to know you; the referrals will come organically if you do this well.
Speaking of referrals, not every attorney is a jack of all trades. Connect with other solo attorneys in different practice areas to form referral relationships. When an existing client or someone you know needs help, you can refer them to a colleague, and vice versa.
There are many ways for solo attorneys to get new clients. While these strategies are proven to produce results, you might struggle with deciding which ones to prioritize or choosing the right combination.
If you want to access a team of legal marketing experts that can boost your solo practice’s online visibility and business results, Martindale-Avvo can help. Our professional digital marketers can strengthen your firm’s digital marketing strategy and help your solo practice achieve its goals. Contact us today to schedule a free assessment.