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Building an Online Niche: The First Steps

Building an Online Niche: The First Steps

Niche marketing has tangible advantages for law firms. Focus on a specific industry segment or practice area and you can position your firm as an expert in that realm. Doing so will make it easier to identify and target prospective clients. And it will help offer potential customers with a built-in reason to choose your firm. It can also resonate with today’s consumers, who tend to search the Web for highly specific topics and sources of information.

So if the benefits of niche marketing are clear and plentiful, the question becomes how to do it. Seem daunting? It doesn’t have to. Here are some techniques and strategies to help you carve out a niche — or two.

Pay attention

The first step is to keep up with everything happening within the niche, including trends, national and local news, new or changed laws and the like. There’s certainly no shortage of information sources to pull from — newspapers, industry publications, blogs, social media posts, et al. One way to stay on top of the information oversupply: RSS readers and social media dashboards, which allow you to pick and choose the news sources, blog posts, Twitter feeds and other updates relevant to your niche. Another tip: Read blogs within your industry and check out the websites and other blogs they link to.

Get the word out

You can also use media resources to your advantage. Consider starting your own blog and use it to focus on your specialty. Showcase your knowledge and capabilities via social media tools such as Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. And don’t forget traditional media — reporters are constantly on the lookout for trusted experts and sources. Well-timed press releases, an active social media presence and a well-optimized website can all help attract media attention and position you and your firm as thought leaders within your chosen segment.

Refine your online presence

Given that most consumers search for local businesses via the Internet, your website can be your most practical and effective tool. On one hand, some firms have found success with a hyper-specific approach. To consider an entirely fictional example, consider the difference between a firm named Fedje & Becker PLLP vs. one named Southwestern Alaska DUI Attorneys PLLP. But that’s also where things can get complicated, particularly if your firm already has an established brand and a presence within multiple practice areas.

One alternative is to create a separate, standalone website that focuses exclusively on your desired niche. Doing so has several advantages. It can function as an effective and cost-efficient way to determine if the niche is worth pursuing. The tight focus can help provide improved search engine results, or you can leverage pay-per-click online advertising to quickly boost your online presence. And you can integrate it into a larger, more comprehensive marketing plan. Finally, there’s no reason why you need to limit yourself to one such site — or a single extra niche.

As for downsides, developing and maintaining one or more niche sites will require additional time and staff resources. Given the range of benefits, however, it’s an approach worth considering.

If you would like to learn more about how FindLaw can help with niche website solutions, please contact us for a free legal marketing consultation.

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