How to Establish Your Law Firm as a Thought Leader

//How to Establish Your Law Firm as a Thought Leader

How-to-Establish-Your-Law-Firm-as-a-Thought-LeaderDriving business to your law firm, isn’t just about delivering the best legal services you can, it’s also about becoming a respected expert in your field.  Let’s take a look at a few ways that you can establish your law firm as a thought leader among lawyers and in the industries you serve.

Create Strong Branding for Your Law Firm

Before you can establish your law firm as a thought leader, you must have a focused mission. For example, if your practice area is family law with an emphasis on divorce and child custody, your mission may be to help families resolve issues amicably and affordably. With that focused mission, you can begin to create a strong brand around the ideas related to the mission.

  • Website. Law firm websites should state your mission clearly and include content that reinforces the message. This can include general web content, blogs, newsfeed, vlogs, podcasts and any other content that will help establish your law firm’s brand.
  • Social media. Your social media should have messaging that’s consistent with your website. Also, choose social media platforms where you’re mostly likely to find your clients. But don’t get carried away with establishing too wide of a social media presence if you don’t have the time or manpower to manage it consistently. Picking just two or three platforms to start (such as Facebook or LinkedIn) is a good choice if you’re short on time or staffing.
  • Offline presence. Having a strong brand isn’t just about the digital world—you also must have a real world, face-to-face presence if you want to establish yourself as a thought leader. Attend conferences, networking mixers, and other events related to your practice area and the industries that you serve. Get in front of the room by speaking on panels and giving workshops. Even if you’re not compensated for your time and effort, consider it an investment into your brand.

Innovative Thinking

Thought leaders are at the head of the pack because they have innovative ideas that buck conventional wisdom. If you want your law firm to be considered a thought leader, you must be willing to make bold statements and see things differently. Here are a few tips on cultivating an innovator’s mindset:

  • Banish arrogance. There is a difference between thinking you know it all and being confident in your ability to get the information you need to make sound judgments. Confident thought leaders seek out advice from people and institutions that have expertise they lack.
  • Listen to clients and staff. Thought leaders don’t rely on hierarchy when deciding which ideas are valid. They listen to everyone in their sphere of influence when trying to tackle a problem or get a fresh perspective.
  • Keep your emotions in check. When you’re an innovative thinker, there will always be people who don’t agree with you. Don’t allow yourself to get sidetracked by people who disagree with your conclusions. Not that you shouldn’t listen and consider opposing perspectives but you should do so as objectively as possible without being defensive.

Once you establish your law firm as an organization with innovative thinkers, you’ll be poised to corner a significant part of the legal market.

By |September 5th, 2017|

About the Author:

For years, Josh has helped lawyers become more organized, productive, and profitable. A trained litigator, Josh came to Smokeball from a large east-coast law firm where his practice focused on franchise, insurance, marine, and general litigation. His work with Smokeball, and his continued passion for what he does each day, is driven by a desire to help lawyers and their staff do better in every way. Knowing well the stress and strain put on today’s legal professional, he regularly focuses on improving work and life in the law. He has traveled the country working with and learning from lawyers and their staff. Josh speaks regularly to bar associations about successful law firm practices and other legal topics. Recent notable engagements have been with the Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, and the Missouri Bar’s Solo and Small Firm Conference. In addition to his work at Smokeball, Josh serves on the Writing Resource Center staff at The John Marshall Law School. Besides legal technology, his research interests include judicial decision-making, jury decision-making and psychology, and legal writing. He has written and overseen research exploring causal effects of sex/gender on federal appellate court decision-making, and assisted with research for a forthcoming textbook on judicial decision-making. Additionally, Josh sits on the Board of Directors of Chicago-based Community Activism Law Alliance and on the Board of Directors of Chicago Fringe Opera Company. Josh holds his J.D., cum laude, from Washington University in St. Louis, where he served as a Senior Editor of the Wash. U. Law Review, held the prestigious Thompson Coburn Research Fellowship, served as Research Assistant to then-Vice-Dean (now Chancellor) Andrew D. Martin, and clerked at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. He holds a B.A. in Political Science and a B.M. in Music Performance with Honors Scholar distinction from the University of Connecticut, making him a Huskies basketball fan through and through. Follow Josh’s activity on LinkedIn, and keep up with new articles on the Smokeball Blog.