Having a successful private practice is a dream of any budding lawyer. After law school, the first step you may have taken is to be an associate of another firm. Time has passed and you are probably considering taking off on your own.
According to Tampa criminal lawyer, Mike G. Law, there are many reasons why lawyers start their own practice:
Flexibility: Being an associate of another firm brings a steady income, but you may be asked to comply with a schedule. You may need to appear in the office at certain times of the day or keep up with your client’s meetings within the work settings. Having your own law firm allows you to make your own schedule with your clients.
Scalability: Starting your own law firm also provides a great opportunity if scaling your income growth. Working for an employer will only bring you the paycheck that amounts to the time and effort you put in. However, starting your own firm can potentially increase your income without necessarily putting in the time for the long-term.
Area of specialization: Another benefit of starting your own law firm is the ability to pick your specialization. Other law firms may be under a specialization that you may not be fully invested in. By taking off on your own, you can focus on a particular group of people that you want to serve.
If you are contemplating on being independent, Mike G. Law provides us with his insight on strategies you need to utilize with starting your own law firm.
Have a concrete plan about your law firm.
Have you heard of the phrase, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail?” Tampa criminal lawyer Mike G. Law states that you have to have a concrete plan when starting out your law firm. Put on record each and every facet of your business. These may include the following but not limited to:
What are the expenses that you may incur as you start your firm? This may include your rental, office renovation, marketing, salary, operating costs and other overhead expenses.
All lawyers must have a marketing strategy in place. Where do you plan to market your services? Have you set up a website? Will you be utilizing print ads and billboards in your city? Who will be your marketing team?
Mission and vision:
How do you see your firm in 10-20 years? What is your mission statement? Who is the market you’re trying to serve?
How will the employee hierarchy of your business look like? How will the business operate and how will you recruit other associates?
These areas of planning are crucial and can be a major determinant of your success to establish a law firm.
Specialize in a single area of law.
When it comes to practicing law, it is more profitable to be a master of one than becoming a jack of all trades. The problem with trying to cover most areas of law is that potential clients will fail to recognize you as an expert.
With so many competitors in the market, the way to stand out is picking a specialization. Tampa criminal lawyer Mike G. Law knows this well. According to him, staying in the criminal law specialization has allowed him to expand his clientele. Additionally, it is also a field he is interested in which motivates him to provide quality work.
Have a referral network set in place.
Having a referral system in place is a gold mine for many law firm business owners. Cold leads are valuable, but people also value recommendations of others who have had a good experience. By building a referral system, you capitalize on that trust as potential clients tend to look for ‘tried and tested’ lawyers whom others have partnered for success.
Connect with non-competitor law firms, not under your specialization, and ask them to refer clients to you. This way, you can return the favor and all of you can build a bigger client base. You can also talk to your clients and ask for their referral within their own networks.
Mind your marketing.
Nowadays, lawyers can get creative with how they market their services. They can use search engine optimization (SEO) for their websites, content marketing, or the use of traditional methods such as TV or print ads.
As previously mentioned, you need to have a marketing budget set in place, but you also have to set a marketing strategy. Proper branding and establishing yourself as an authority in your specialization will help gain the trust of potential clients.
Mike G. Law believes that with the right strategy and persistence, most lawyers will be able to succeed in starting their own law firm. Consider these tips handy when planning your own business.