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March 01, 2022 The Marketing Issue

Solo Marketing

Solos have many options for DIY, effective marketing.

Sarah Gold
Social media works particularly well in niche practices. Do not try to be everything to everyone.

Social media works particularly well in niche practices. Do not try to be everything to everyone.


Having been a solo for ten years now, I get asked by fellow attorneys all the time what I am doing for marketing. I don’t mind having those conversations, as it normally leads to some great ideas on both sides, and some ideas that have worked and not worked for each. The cold calls during which I am told what I should be doing for marketing are a completely different story. Many of those conversations turn into annoying time-wasters. Note: No one responds well to the line, “Don’t you want to make more money?” If it is a cold call, I do not need to justify my business practice to someone I do not know. So, given what we do know, what should we solos be doing, anyway?

Social Media

Let’s look at the low-hanging fruit first. Social media leads to easy money if you know some basics. Where is your audience? Are they the sort who ask questions of their friends on Facebook? Are they professional types who are normally found on LinkedIn seeking thought leaders in the field? Are they looking for quirky short videos on TikTok? I know attorneys who have been successful in all three places. Why?

Because they meet their audience where they are. You are selling yourself, you are selling your knowledge, and you are making yourself known to a broad audience where you will be top of mind when the area of law that you work in comes up. Social media works particularly well in niche practices. You can be that person who can answer the probate questions or the business law questions, but do not try to be everything to everybody. Yes, your clients will still ask you if you do traffic tickets and divorces, but they are thinking of you first, which is what you want.

Web Presence

Web presence is not going away. Even now, it amazes me when I go to look for another attorney by name and can find no website or recent contact information for them. I am not talking about generational aversions to the medium, but attorneys who have been out less than 10 years who do not have any website at all. In the age of easy DIY websites and cheap domain name registration, it is not hard to have at least one landing page that has your name, phone and email. Yes, you can spend thousands of dollars on a bespoke website that does everything but practice law, but if you are a solo on a budget, please do not skip this step. It is also important to realize what your website looks like on mobile devices. If your clients are coming to you from finding you on mobile, you want to make it easy for them to be able to tap a button and call you up or leave you a message directly without having to jump into another application.

Text Messaging

The newest elephant in the room is text messaging. Clients are finding you on their phones. Do you want your clients to text you? They probably already are, but to a phone number that does not allow for texting. The issue then becomes how will you provide them a number that lets them connect with you in a way they want? Many VoIP providers have begun to allow for this feature by providing text-enabled virtual phone numbers that are not assigned to a device, but rather to a user. And that user (or users) can send texts by using an internet connection. In short, it lets you send text messages to cellphones from your computer or a mobile app. It is important, however, that you capture these messages and keep that info with the client file, so that important information does not get lost on a separate platform.

Customer Relationship Management

The next best step and one that is finally starting to really catch hold in legal circles is the concept of customer relationship management (CRM). B2B businesses embraced this concept a long time ago, but like many other things, lawyers tend to be late to the technology party. The options in the area are as broad and expensive as you’d like, with Salesforce and Keap (formerly Infusionsoft) being huge players for all types of business, not just legal. For those looking to dip a toe, your current LPM software may have some CRM capabilities, but you might find additional utility in a HubSpot or Lawmatics. It is just good sense to track your intake and whether you are landing the clients who are coming to you. Once you have that sense of what those customers look like and where the data is leading, you can use it to better serve your current and potential clients.

Automated Marketing Chains

That brings me to automated marketing channels. Some opt for the concepts of click funnels and pop-ups to bring in information. To me, mobile device pop-ups are some of the most annoying things on the planet. They all have tiny spots to close the window and often they end up leading you somewhere you did not want to go. I understand you want them to connect with you and to get their information so that you can send them even more information, but you are not selling goods, you are selling services. Many of your clients are not there to sign up for your white paper, but rather to see who you are and where your office is. Making them jump through hoops to get that basic information will cause your bounce rates to soar because it will be easier to do business with someone else.

You can automate things when it comes to marketing. If the potential clients are reaching out and need to set up a time to meet, you can have them go directly to your calendar to make that appointment without any input from you. Watching your calendar book itself can be fun, and you can set the parameters to when and for how long they can book your availability. If you set it up on your website, they may forgo the original email and book directly there. People have legal problems that keep them up at night. Why not provide them some peace of mind by letting them know that you’ll be able to talk with them in the morning when they are free?

You Can Do It

This all can be a bit daunting, especially when you are first stepping into this technology, but you can make it happen. Make a list of what you would like to do and make a budget. Take it one step at a time. It can be easy to get overwhelmed with options but pick the ones that fit your practice style rather than trying to fit the software. Aspirations are nice, but not if they will never fit your firm. It just ends up being a frustrating waste of money and time trying to make it work.

And remember, this is why you work for yourself: You get to make the decisions. You may not have gone to school for this, but we are all learning together.

Sarah Gold


Sarah Gold is the founder of Gold Law Firm in Albany, New York, where she works with small for-profit and notfor-profit businesses to help them with their legal issues. She has also created Gold Piece Consulting where she helps small and solo law firms have the right technology and processes so they can focus on the practice of law. She attended the University at Albany and Albany Law School. [email protected]

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