Scaling up a law practice without spending an egregiously large sum of money on overhead and advertising is not an easy feat. The addition of new clients necessitates hiring more support staff, more legal practitioners, inbound/outbound marketing, adding new computing equipment and possibly even expanding your firm’s office space. If you aren’t careful, this scaling process will take a massive chunk out of your bottomline. Let’s take a look at how to keep your firm’s costs in check while expanding your client base.
Conventional outbound ads placed on TV, radio, newspapers and billboards are being replaced by inbound ads on the web. Inbound marketing is comparably affordable as it focuses on steering the online traffic of those who have already expressed an interest in hiring an attorney to your law firm’s website.
Instead of spending thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars for traditional outbound ads, you can spend significantly less with a search engine optimization (SEO) campaign, pay-per-click ads, social media and content marketing with a law firm blog. Though it will take some time for inbound marketing to build momentum, it is the gift that keeps on giving, ultimately steering that much more online traffic to your website law firm in the months and years ahead.
Instead of paying administrators and paralegals to perform repetitive data entry, mailings, billing and other monotonous tasks, automate those projects. Software advances have made such automation quick, easy and affordable.
Unexpected expense a will arise as your law firm grows. Attorneys and paralegals might demand raises, your computing equipment might break and the rent for your office space could jump much higher than anticipated. Add in the slew of additional expenses necessary to scale up your law firm in the months and years ahead and there is the potential to run out of money.
Instead of assuming you will be able to obtain a bank loan, make an effort to build and maintain a financial nest egg. This way, you will have a financial buffer in the event that your costs start to skyrocket as a result of rapid growth. In fact, there is a good argument to be made this financial nest egg should be in place before your law firm starts to scale upward as it will be accessible to offset those seemingly inevitable unanticipated expenses as well as the expected costs that are a natural component of the growth process.
Instead of paying a salary and benefits to a litany of paralegals and litigation assistants while expanding your law firm, bring on some interns. Reach out to local law schools, paralegal certificate providers and other colleges and universities in your area to make it clear your practice is willing to provide those interested in the legal field with a hands-on experience at your practice. Even if you were to compensate these interns at minimum wage, it would prove much cheaper than paying a salary and benefits to paralegals and other support staff.
Word-of-mouth advertising in which people recommend attorney services to friends and colleagues still exists yet it has been partially replaced thanks to the rise of online review directories. If your law firm clients seem happy with your services, encourage them to write positive reviews of your practice to the web’s slew of online review directories.
Glowing reviews will encourage prospects to schedule an initial consultation with your firm where you can convert them into paying clients who also post positive reviews on the web. This approach to scaling up your firm will prove much cheaper than paying for absurdly expensive conventional outbound ads on TV, billboards, radio, etc.