Find Your Practice Niche and Secure Your Position with PR
Law school students often hear the same career advice: Go a to a top law school, get a clerkship, and land a job with a big law firm, says legal tech influencer Alex Su. Yet Su believes a successful career in law is more about choosing “a place that’s aligned with your superpowers.”
He emphasizes the importance of finding your niche, whether it’s a specialized practice area or a specific industry. Once lawyers take Su’s advice to identify a niche, we would advise them to harness the power of communications to secure and leverage that position in the market.
Lawyers and legal marketers can proactively use PR and marketing to build and bolster a niche brand, increasing awareness of specialized skills and strengthening the lawyer’s and the firm’s reputation among prospective clients. Here’s how to do it:
- Identify your audience and showcase your skills and experience. Whether your niche is aviation law or transgender rights, find out what keeps people in your audience up at night. Then, develop targeted thought-leadership content to showcase your knowledge. Discuss the concerns and challenges facing your audience and offer solutions to address them. And make sure you publish content where your audience will see it. Reach your audience through niche industry publications and blogs, social media platforms and podcasts, and newsletters from professional organizations.
- Learn to love LinkedIn. This is key to positioning yourself as a thought leader. Engage with others in your niche area by participating in group discussions on LinkedIn and sharing your thoughts — offer an opinion or share resources. Share industry articles to show that you’re up on developments and trends in your niche area. And when you attend webinars or industry conferences, share your top takeaways or lessons learned.
- Apply for awards. Look for awards bestowed by trusted industry publications and organizations, and make sure they’re aligned with your practice’s vision, strategic plan, and values. Consider which brand characteristics you want to emphasize. Once you narrow down which awards will reinforce your practice, research each nomination’s requirements and deadlines. Then create a calendar for each step of the process — from scheduling interviews to writing recommendation letters and routing them through the necessary approvals. Award nominations can be a lot of work, but they are powerful opportunities to build brand awareness and credibility.
- Update your bio. Keep your bio current on LinkedIn and the firm’s website. Niche clients and prospects are looking for practitioners with specific skills and experience, and your bio should focus on the areas you know best and the value you deliver. Highlight your experience by linking to published thought-leadership pieces, speaking engagements, and conference appearances. And demonstrate how you’ve solved problems for clients to show that you have the skills and knowledge needed to serve your niche.PR and marketing are crucial to showcasing your specialized skills and, in turn, to winning new business. If potential clients don’t know you have a specific niche, they won’t reach out when they have a need. So identify it and then, most importantly, spread the word.