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Sometimes, just the thought of growing your law firm, let alone actually doing it, may seem like a monumental effort. But, without growth, your law practice will be at risk of stagnating.
Growing your law practice involves many factors, such as attracting and retaining new clients, setting your firm apart from competing firms, and managing workflow. Here are some strategies to consider if you are trying to grow your firm, meet the increasing demand for your services, or simply want to free up some of your time.
Create Efficient Systems
When setting out to create an efficient system for your law firm, there are six basic steps:
- Determining how you attract new clients
- Considering your initial interaction with potential clients
- Understanding what it takes to convert leads to new clients
- Looking at your process for handling the details of their case
- Defining your final billing process
- Creating or refining client follow up procedures
Are there any snags or bottlenecks in the system? Do you see any parts of the process that could go more smoothly? Are your staff members waiting for you to sign off on things or give directions? Answer these questions as objectively as possible and think of ways to streamline your system.
Learn to Delegate
Small business owners often think they have to handle all the work themselves. Maybe they are accustomed to doing everything because they have from the beginning, or perhaps they don’t think others will do the job as well. Take a look at the work that needs to be done for your firm to run properly and ask yourself these questions:
- Could someone else do this work?
- Could someone else complete this work faster than I can, or at least sooner than I can?
- How much will it cost me to do this work? How much will it cost a staff member to do it?
- Are there any ethical issues with a staff member doing this work instead of me?
You will probably find that you are doing work that someone else could do more quickly and for less money. Delegating this work will free up more of your time and allow you to focus on work that only you can do.
Hire Help When Needed
As your workload increases, be proactive in hiring associate attorneys and staff members to help you. Don’t wait until you are so overloaded with work that you don’t have enough time to hire and train new people. Find quality people to work for you by asking other firms where they source their talent or seeing if current employees can refer someone they know with specific skills.
Recruiting firms can also help handle different aspects of your hiring process, such as job descriptions, phone calls, scheduling interviews, or training. The last thing you want is for clients to fire you because you don’t have enough time for them or their case. Start by hiring someone or outsourcing a company to do infrequently occurring tasks, such as filing taxes or updating your website.
Invest in Marketing and Branding
Growing your law practice means attracting and retaining clients. Here are some ways to do this:
- Establish your brand by creating a consistent identity. Make certain common elements, such as your logo and color scheme, are consistent across all the media you produce, from your website to your brochures and business cards.
- Establish a lead-generation process, including email campaigns or newsletters, posting to social media platforms, and speaking at workshops where potential clients are found.
- Create and maintain a client-centered law firm website. Make sure your firm’s website is easy to navigate, showcases a strong brand message, and shares your contact information.
- Find a marketing strategy that works for your firm. You may find that attracting clients by word-of-mouth works best for you, or you may find that you get most of your new clients through your website. Often, it’s a combination of efforts.
These are just a few ways you can effectively and efficiently grow your law practice. Hiring marketing professionals, like Law As a Business, to take over your firm’s marketing efforts is an easy way to free up your time and help you rise above your competition. Contact our team today to learn more about our creative and business solutions.
Learn how to increase the value of your law firm!
There is a right way and a wrong way to build and then exit a law practice. Join us on September 21 for a free webinar and learn the steps you should take to create value within your firm and increase desirability to a potential buyer.