Law Practice and Marketing
Law firms vary by practice area, location, client-type, experience, and many other facets. Each additional factor causes the marketing requirements of each business enterprise that much more distinctive and unique. While they all share the reality of operating in an overly competitive legal industry, they must find their niche within this industry, then develop and sustain this niche over time.
The law is extraordinarily varied and offers law students and established attorneys a wide menu of specialties from which to choose. These choices may become narrower based on geographic location and client-type. It is important and rewarding to know that none of these choices is irrevocable.
Law school graduates should choose a practice that primarily fits the achievement of their goals while allowing them to utilize the best aspects of their substantive learning, as well as their interpersonal and other soft skills. While these choices are revocable, they should nonetheless be considered carefully.
A practice area will dictate how an attorney builds his or her practice. Attorneys should match personal and career interests with a type of practice that allows the maximum use of their hard and soft skills. Working with larger businesses and corporate law may be something outside of a person’s comfort zone. It may be preferable to operate a general practice that results in contact with families and individuals.
Each respective practice specialty imposes the following:
- types of clients
- level of paperwork
- data gathering
- desk work
- level of client sophistication
Attorneys must consider all these sub-tasks that together produce the legal services that a client requires. Once an attorney knows his or her practice area, it is time to formulate a marketing strategy with both short-term and long-term goals.
A law firm’s online marketing must deliver consistent measurable results and building a marketing strategy, especially a digital marketing strategy, may be a lot to manage when trying to practice law. This must be accomplished although there are no simple formulas for creating the perfect marketing mix that guarantees success for any law firm. Thus, while most lawyers understand the importance of having a good marketing plan, adopting a one-dimensional approach to marketing suggests ignoring the notion that no two law firms are alike.
Professor Neil Borden of the Harvard Business School was the originator of the famous four Ps concept or the “Marketing Mix.” The marketing mix consists of everything a law firm, or any business enterprise. can do to influence the demand for its product. The seemingly endless possibilities may be classified into four groups of factors or variables known as the “Four Ps”: Product (Service), Price, Place, and Promotion.
- Product (Service): The services that the business offers to the target market.
- Price: The amount of money customers must pay for the product.
- Place: Location as well as the company’s activities that make the product available to target consumers.
- Promotion: The activities that communicate the merits of the product and persuade target customers to buy it.
The marketing program of any business enterprise should blend all the elements of the marketing mix into an organized program coordinated to achieve the firm’s marketing objectives. Within the firm’s area(s) of practice, the four Ps may be considered and developed. While “place” may have fewer effects on marketing strategy from one area of practice to the next, it will still substantially affect the other three Ps.
“Promotion” is more of a factor with law firms, especially since advertising restrictions on attorneys were lifted several decades ago. Whether a personal injury, estate planning, or family law lawyer, those attorneys who make themselves visible through any legal, ethical means are at an advantage over those attorneys who do not.
Attorneys can help the poor and unfortunate who cannot fight solely by themselves. They can help parents fighting for custody of children. Law school provides the tools necessary to practice law, which is serving clients. The CDTA provides both the hard and soft skills that attorney-advocates require to meet the needs of clients in the 21st Century. At CDTA, we train, educate, and develop students to be exceptional attorneys and trial advocates. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here.