Don’t wish it was easier, wish you were better

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Jim Rohn famously said, “Don’t wish it was easier, wish you were better.” I don’t think he was speaking to lawyers musing about the challenges of building a law practice in a highly competitive field or market, but he might as well have been.

If you’re in a seemingly oversaturated market, wondering if you should get out because there are too many lawyers who do what you do, take my advice: don’t. At least not until you consider why your field or market is so crowded.

The reason there is lots of competition in a given market is not a mystery. It’s because there are a lot of paying clients in it. Lawyers are making money in that market, which means you can, too.

Compare that to a market or practice area with very little competition. You might strike gold in a market like that but the market is unproven and it is more likely that you’ll go broke. (If there’s enough business in the market, you would see other lawyers in it.)

So rejoice that you are in a market with lots of competition. There are clients to be had and money to be made.

How do you stand out? How do you compete with all those lawyers trolling for clients in the same pond?

You know the answer. Marketing. Do a better job of it than your competition and the business will come to you instead of them.

Fortunately, that’s not hard to do. Most lawyers don’t know much about marketing and those who do often do it poorly. If you know what you’re doing, they’re easy to beat.

What if they have millions to spend on advertising and you don’t?

No problem. You have other ways to bring in clients. And those clients will be more profitable because you don’t have a big advertising budget (and the associated overhead) to cover. Your clients will often be better clients, too, because the kinds of advertising done by the big firms tends to attract the lower tiers of cases and clients.

Anyway, you know I’m preaching the truth. You also know that you don’t have to be a marketing genius to win the battle for new clients. You only need to be better than other lawyers who don’t know what you know and can’t be bothered to find out.

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