Use Niche Marketing to Find More Clients
Niche Market: a focused, targetable portion of a market. It is a narrowly defined group of potential customers who have specific needs. A law firm that focuses on a niche is addressing a need for a service not being addressed by mainstream providers.
Lawyers, like other professionals, can no longer be generalists. Because the law is too complex for you to be all things to all clients, it is necessary to select an area of practice that suits you and your firm. Once that decision is made, your marketing should be selective—aimed at your niche market.
A niche market is a target market that can be classified by demographics such as age, location, gender, socioeconomic factors, or by industry or hobby. It can be as narrow or as broad as you want it to be as long as it is a well-described part of the population with similar wants, needs, or behaviors.
How do I select a niche?
You can start by visualizing your ideal client. If you’ve been in practice for a while, think about the clients you liked working with, think about the ones that made you smile. Who would benefit from your legal services? What area of law are you passionate about? If you’re new to the practice of law, think of the practice areas you liked in law school, the people you met in internships, and create a description of the type of client you want to attract.
You can narrow your field of law down to a particular type of individual, socioeconomic group, or even industry. For example, if your area of practice is criminal law, you could specialize in DUI, the new marijuana laws, or homicide. Or, if you like working with businesses, you could narrow the field by the type of business, internet, brick and mortar, or by size such as start-ups or businesses with over 50 employees. Once you narrow the niche down, search the internet to determine the size of your market.
You also must look at the competition. How many lawyers are competing for the same clients in the same location? Don’t be discouraged, it helps to be aware so you can offer something the others don’t.
Why should I niche market?
Using a narrow approach can help you focus your marketing efforts to a specific group or industry so you become known and recognized in that group. Niche marketing is cost effective. Rather than mass marketing to a large audience, you are concentrating your time and money on one area of the market, thus saving both precious commodities—time and money.
You can become an expert in that group—the go-to lawyer for their legal needs. Through social media, your website, blog, and your SBM Member Directory expanded profile, you can become known as the industry expert, whether you’re a solo or a partner in large firm.
By narrowing your market efforts to a particular niche, your chances of dominating that niche become much more likely. Over time, your expertise in your niche will become more known, clients will call, and your practice will grow.
Roberta 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 The Mentor, SBM Master Lawyers Section newsletter.
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