By Chris Richardson • February 02, 2018•Law School, Choosing a Career and Landing a Job
When you’re trying to make your law practice more successful, there’s one main thing you should do: become an expert in your legal specialty. It’s surprising to see how many lawyers are trying to work on all kinds of cases instead of focusing on a single specialty.
When you achieve expertise and you start promoting it, clients will trust you more. You will have the reputation and reliability you’re after.
So how do you become an expert in your legal specialty? Let’s list 7 steps that will take you there.
1. Pick Your Specialty
What cases do you prefer dealing with? Do you have an inclination towards business law, international law, labor law, criminal justice, or any other legal specialty? You probably know your preferences by now. If you’re not sure, you can give yourself some time to think. Take as much time as you need and keep working on different cases until you find out what you really want.
You may join specialty groups at the website of the American Bar Association. They focus on various practice areas and give you access to an immense base of online resources and legal analyses you can explore.
2. Know the Rules
Most state bar associations do not allow lawyers to describe themselves as specialists. You may still promote yourself in a way that implies you’re a specialist, but you’ll have to take the legal marketing ethics into consideration.
In essence, a lawyer must not state or imply that they are certified as a specialist in a particular field of law unless they’ve been certified by an organization accredited by the American Bar Association.
So before you start promoting yourself as a specialist, you must know the rules. You’re a lawyer, after all, so make sure you understand the rules. In particular, you must understand the Rule 7.4: Communication of Fields of Practice & Specialization.
3. Read Everything on Your Specialty
You made your pick? Great! Now, you’ll have to read all regulations and case studies you can find. Legal experts write great books on different specialty, so stock up on that reading material and start exploring it.
The specialty groups we mentioned in the first tip will give you access to great webinars that will help you expand your understanding of this aspect of the law.
4. Get Certified
Find an accredited certification program and get your certificate. Since you already went through the reading and learning stage and you already have experience working on such cases, the certification program shouldn’t be a huge burden.
5. Show People How You Can Help Them
Clearly, you’re becoming an expert not only because you want to make progress in your career, but also because you want to make your business more successful. The practice of law is a business and a profession, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
All strong business relationships are being built in the same way: the client wants to know how the business will help them solve an issue or improve their lifestyle. So explain how you can help people. When you help them achieve their goals, you’ll be in a good position for getting their trust.
6. Invest in a Great Website
Your website is the most important marketing tool you have. When people need a legal expert, the first thing they do is hit Google. That’s your chance. If they find you, you’ll get their attention.
The website has to be great. It should promote you and your knowledge to the target audience. Remember: you’re competing with big law firms, so the content you feature on this website has to be absolutely outstanding. You can provide case studies, free legal advice, and more content that will make you look trustworthy. If you have zero time for writing, you can hire professional legal writers from Essay Geeks. They will work under your instructions, and they will deliver fresh content for your website on a regular basis.
7. Work on Your Reputation
When you’re a lawyer, your reputation is everything. It takes years to build it, and a single case to destroy it. Protect your reputation. Take cases you’re certain you can benefit from. Remember: you’re not doing this just for the money. You’re doing it to help people find justice… and to grow into a more successful lawyer. Those two goals should always be in mind when you’re choosing the cases to work on.
You’ll be making tons of decisions as a lawyer. The choice of specialty is one of the most important ones you’ll need to make. The sooner you make that decision, the sooner you’ll start improving your practice.