Small Steps = Giant Leaps

Small Steps = Giant Leaps

Clear & Convincing Feature Article


In 1969, Neil Armstrong took a step onto the surface of the moon and said, "That's one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind."

It was a small step from the ladder to the moon's surface, just as the planning of the flight, the manufacture of the rocket, and the details of the project were a series of small steps. However, when those small steps were added together, they made "one giant leap for mankind."

Marketing for your law firm is comprised of both large and small steps. There are several small marketing steps you can take in this the last quarter of the year—small in cost and time commitment—that will help you make giant marketing steps for 2016.

Here's a look at 10.

  1. Be the best lawyer you can be. First and foremost, your clients deserve your best work. Treat every client as if he or she were your only client and they will remember you.
  2. When thinking of referral sources, focus on good lawyers who are your contemporaries; more experienced lawyers already have people to whom they refer cases.
  3. Volunteer with various legal and community groups. Contribute as much as you can and to the best of your ability.
  4. End a conversation with someone at a networking event after you finish a statement rather than when they finish one; they won't feel offended and think you're cutting them off.
  5. Sometimes, people must be convinced that their legal problem is serious enough to hire you; conversely, it builds trust and good business to turn someone away when they don't really need a lawyer.


  1. Current clients are your best sales agents. Assuming you did your best for each client, ask for reviews, referrals, and invite them to subscribe to your blog or newsletter.
  2. Specialize. You can't be all things to all people, but how narrow your practice is depends on where you live. If you live in a small, rural area you can be a general practitioner if only by necessity; however, if you live in a metropolitan city, you will need to pick a niche practice you can be good at and enjoy.
  3. Meet people every day and you will succeed; there will be days you don't feel like it, but consistency is the key. Remember relationship building and word-of-mouth are still the best ways to get clients.
  4. If your community offers free community education, offer to teach a course in your area of the law.
  5. Read your local chamber of commerce newsletter and other business publications to get a sense for where legal needs are not being met.

Practice these small, basic marketing steps and you will make one giant leap for the success of your practice.

Roberta GubbinsRoberta Gubbins has served as the editor of the Ingham County Legal News. Since leaving the paper, she provides services as a ghostwriter editing articles, blogs, and e-blasts for lawyers and law firms. She is the editor of Briefs, the Ingham County Bar Association e-newsletter, and The Mentor, SBM Master Lawyers Section newsletter.

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