Whatever stage of your career you are in, branching out on your own to create a law firm in a big decision, and one that you should feel good about making. Creating something from nothing is a great accomplishment, and one that you are sure to achieve
When starting a legal practice, it’s important to remember that, while you provide legal service, you are still a business. And one that needs to efficiently attract new customers and operate functionally.
When establishing a law firm it’s important to consider the name that you will give it. Of course, the first thought will be to your own name. After all, who doesn’t want their name on the title of a law practice? However, for somebody who needs legal service, there is no reason to choose your service out of the phone book or web search when there are multiple identical looking names.
Choose a name that includes what you do. For example, Criminal Lawyers Boston or 24 Hour Legal Service Las Vegas. While a name like these may not be elegant, when you are just starting out, these are the names that are going to get clients in your door.
Speaking of your door, where it is located is the next tip we have to share. Of course, the most tempting place to rent an office space would be in the middle of the city amongst all of the other prestigious offices. However, are your clients really there? Unless you are a business lawyer, consider setting up an office is a more strategic location. For example, if you offer 24-hour legal services, consider an office close to a police station. When deciding on a location, consider your clientele and let that drive your decision.
When you do consider your clientele, it’s important that you are selecting the correct customers. Consider the word customer, not a client. A customer is somebody who pays for a product or service. A client is somebody who receives a service. What a business needs are customers, and that’s who you should look to attract. For this reason, shy away from offering free upfront legal services to entice new clients as you may end up filling your waiting room with people who are unable to pay, leaving you little to no time to address those who can.
Last, but certainly not least, is your website. Similar to the tip above, it’s important that you aim the design of your website towards your clientele. For example, the Groupon Coupons page for QVC is designed to attract those looking to save money on jewellry. For your business, if you primarily manage car injury suits, consider a website that steps somebody through the process of taking details, photos, statements while they are at the scene and waiting for the emergency service show up Similarly, if you offer ad-hoc services during late nights, consider a website with a number clearly shows and designed to allow people to call you easily from their mobile device. These small design choices can have a significantly positive impact on your customer attraction.
There is no rule book when it comes to establishing a business, but as a lawyer, it’s important to take off your legal hat and put on a business manager hat from time to time and consider tips like the ones in this article.