Many young lawyers in practice and who have set up their law firm will agree that to get clients as a new lawyer is tough.
To get clients as a new lawyer, you must be willing to take some steps that will make you stand out from the crowd.
One of the characteristics of a good lawyer is the ability to attract clients to his/her law firm.
Come to think of it – with thousands of lawyers around, why would any client decide to settle for you?
You can learn how to get clients as a new lawyer by studying lawyers who have managed to build up a huge clientele base.
Mastering how to get clients is a slow but consistent act of positioning yourself at the right place and time to solve your clients’ problems.
Unlike most professions that advertise their products and services, the legal profession allows little or no advert for its members.
The process of attracting clients is particularly hard for new lawyers who have just finished law school or who’ve decided to set up their own office.
Getting clients in the legal profession, therefore, is an art, and only those who have mastered it thrive.
Below are a few tips to help you get clients as a new lawyer and break-even in the profession.
Do your Pupilage in a Busy Office.
The advantages of cutting your teeth under an experienced lawyer are enormous. The exposure you gain by working in a senior lawyer’s office is invaluable and cannot be quantified in monetary terms.
Just like most professions, doing your pupilage in a busy law office is one of the easiest ways to start building your clientele.
The old law firms that have tons of clients have spent years of hard work to get and grow their clientele base.
By working in a busy law firm, those clients will get to know you and if you distinguish yourself, they’ll be glad to refer you to others.
Again some law firms have many clients that the senior lawyers have no time to attend to them all.
So when you eventually set up your law firm, some of the clients will prefer to come to you than to the seniors who have little or no time.
Don’t be deceived; it is difficult for many clients to take a chance on a new lawyer who just set up a law firm.
This is understandable because the clients are scared and skeptical of the new lawyer’s ability to handle the matter.
If you are lucky, the client that may come your way will be those with small briefs and matter. But you know what, don’t neglect them.
If you expect big clients to start walking into your brand new law firm with fat briefs, then you aren’t being realistic.
New lawyers should never underestimate the importance of any case. Do not reject any matter because you consider it a small case.
Remember that the lawyers handling the so-called big cases started with the small cases and worked their way up.
By taking the small cases and giving it your best, you will be announcing yourself to the world and many potential clients will take notice.
Work for Free.
There are some lawyers who after they left law school refused to work for any law firm that will not pay them good money.
Some spent years searching for their dream jobs only to realize that their mates who started with little have made much progress.
The best currency a young lawyer should seek is experience. It is the experience that will bring clients to your office and eventually the money.
So when you have an opportunity to work for free in a busy office, grab it. You see, you are not working for free. You are getting something that will last and nobody can take away from you.
Young lawyers should focus less on money and more on building the skills necessary to succeed as lawyers.
Network and Join Organizations.
The importance of networking in attracting clients to your law firm cannot be underestimated.
Networking is the process of building and nurturing mutually valuable relationships with other people.
There are several ways to network. So decide on the best one for you and make yourself visible and available.
If you observe closely, you’ll discover that most if not all lawyers with many clients are members of several social, religious, sporting, and professional bodies.
As busy as these lawyers are, they still find a way to attend the functions organized by the association they belong to.
You may think they are wasting their time and energy. Wrong! They are carefully building their network and making themselves visible for future clients.
So the ball is in your court. Decide today where you want to network. If your only network is your local bar where gossip is the order of the day, then that’s where most of your clients will come from.
Expand your network today. Join social as well as elite clubs. Let them know you are a lawyer. Give out your business cards.
Believe me, when they need legal services, you’ll be the first on their list.
Create an Online Presence.
Unfortunately, legal practitioners seem to be one of the few professions yet take full advantage of the vast potentials of the internet.
While many lawyers use the internet for social interaction, only a few utilize it for their professional growth.
The seeming reluctance of lawyers to have an online presence has a lot to do with the old legal practice of not advertising.
But there are great ways to use the internet without running afoul of the restrictions on an advertisement.
One of the advantages of the internet is that it is a good place to get clients as a new lawyer. There are professional platforms where people meet to exchange ideas, goods, and services. Some of these professional platforms include:
- Upwork, etc.
Once you sign up with any of these social media channels, the best way to attract clients is to constantly create good content and information.
With time you will have distinguished yourself as an expert in that field and people will trust you well enough to engage your services.
Be a Good Lawyer.
Being a good lawyer is one of the best ways to get clients as a new lawyer. A good lawyer is always efficient and professional in handling his/her clients’ cases.
When you have a satisfied client, you turn that client into your marketer who will tell others of your efficient services.
Some researches show that a large proportion of satisfied customers share their positive experiences with others.
Resting My Case.
As a young lawyer with a new law firm, clients are the oil that will keep your legal practice in motion.
Although young lawyers are disadvantaged when it comes to attracting clients, they however have some advantages they can leverage on.
One such advantage is the use of social media. Sadly, many use it for recreation instead of business.
If you want to get clients as a new lawyer, start by implementing the above tips and in no time you’ll have your office filled with clients.
Photo by In Memoriam: PhillipC