The economy is bad—that’s what they say. They’re probably right: it’s bad.
What does that mean for you?
Nothing: it means nothing at all.
Here’s the deal: you work in a market. It’s a market of a certain size. Let’s say, for instance, that there are 550 divorces (or bankruptcies, or criminal cases, or whatever) in your service area each year. Of the 550, we determine that a certain number of those cases involve lawyers. Let’s say it’s 200 total cases in which lawyers are hired on both sides. That’s 400 engagements per year for family law attorneys in your area. You with me?
Now, hypothetically, there are five lawyers in your market handling family law cases and five dabblers who have general practices. Let’s estimate that 300 of these engagements go the family law specialists. The fees in those cases amount to $3,000,000 per year in your example. On average, each specialist takes $600,000 of that revenue. In a bad year, the overall revenue drops by 20% so, on average, each specialist sees a drop in revenue to $480,000.
What if instead of your revenues going down, in a bad year, you drive them up? Could that happen? Sure, it could: you can win even when others are losing. The market can shrink while you grow.
Marketing, that’s how. You’ve got to keep exerting pressure on the competition so that you don’t experience the downturn and, in fact, experience growth. I talk to lawyers every day who have spent the past four years driving revenues up by 20% per year, each year. They’re doing it while other lawyers whine and complain about the economy.
Those lawyers are networking, blogging, email marketing, advertising, etc. They decided to ignore the overall economy while working on their personal economic situation. While the market was shrinking, they were expanding. I’m certain you know of some firms where the number of attorneys and staff has grown while others stagnate or decline.
Don’t let the economic talk bring you down. Don’t believe that a down economy means anything negative for your practice. When others hunker down and slow their marketing, it’s time for you to turn on the jets and grow, grow, grow. Now is a good time to break out of the doldrums and experience the growth. Don’t let the worry about the economy turn you into a loser. Now is the time to win.