Local Yokel III: Be Present in Your Community
In-person networking remains a vital component of legal
marketing, despite (and, perhaps, more now, because of) the
omnipresence of the Internet. The personal connection created in
the modern world bespeaks effort, and essential engagement, more
than replying to someone via Twitter ever could. It is
time-consuming to generate these opportunities for in-person
networking, of course; it makes sense, then, to network where you
- One of the best ways to generate buzz about you and your
practice is to join local organizations and associations. The
thesis for getting what you want out of the relationship is the
same for any organization that you join; get respected: establish
your acumen, and willingness, and follow-through, in helping out.
Whether you're joining lawyers' groups or other professional or
community organizations, the ultimate objective is the same: to
gain clients, or referrals of clients.
- Organize presentations for specific groups. If you are a
regular churchgoer, organize an instructive course in one of your
practice area topics, and invite those that you worship with.
You've already established a foundation relationship; and, this is
an opportunity for you to show your local connections what you can
do for them as a professional. You may gain some immediate
business; and, you'll be available every Saturday or Sunday to
answer any additional questions.
- Paying for advertising in publications with large circulations
can be expensive; but, local newspapers and other targeted
periodicals can offer a cheaper solution, and one that is per
se focused on your community. Non-traditional advertising,
such as sponsoring a little league team, may also prove effective,
even beyond gaining you a roster full of little fans, and their
- Certainly, being the local guy, or gal, can itself be a selling
point. The 'buy local' argument still resonates within communities,
as long as you can show that you're just as good as those outsiders
- In order for this to work, of course, it helps if you're
actually determined to be in it for the long haul. Marketing
effectively in your locality is much about building trust; and,
that trust is not built overnight--neither is it meant to readily
To return to the web, in summation: You should be certain that
your internet presence agrees with your local presence. You can't
be a one-person tourism board when walking around town, and then
spout off online about how your city is a glorified toilet bowl.
Even if you just met someone in the next office building over from
yours, the first thing they'll do to verify what you've told them
will be to Google you.
Tip courtesy of Jared Correia, Law Practice Management
Office Management Assistance Program.
Published April 21, 2011
For more helpful tips, join the MBA's Law Practice Management
Section. Call MBA Member Services at (617) 338-0530 to join.
To learn more about the Law Practice Management Section,
contact Co-Chairs Andrea