The TRUTH Behind Marketing an Estate Planning Law Practice

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Too many marketers/experts/consultants make it sound like it’s easy to market an estate planning practice so that each month the attorney gains a steady flow of new, ideal estate planning clients.

The reality, though, is it’s hard. Many lawyers fail. Why do they fail? For lots of reasons…competition, fee resistance, information and alternative services available online, and lawyers are among the least trusted professions.

Many vendors of marketing services proclaim that with minimal effort, you can have the estate planning practice of your dreams. One vendor said that you can build the ideal estate planning practice by “investing” 15-20 minutes each month in your marketing program. Another national vendor described the 3 keys to building a successful solo law practice were to keep overhead low, become involved in your legal community, and education yourself about billing software and firm management. I’ve never seen waves of clients enter a law firm because they had superior billing software.

I’ve been fortunate to be an estate planning attorney for more than a quarter of a century, serving thousands of clients, and I’ve asked almost every one of them one of the following questions: Why did you hire us? How did you hear about me? What led you to pick up the phone and call my office?

We get many, many different answers to those questions. In fact, that is the key to building a successful practice…to set yourself and your content up in a way so that your prospective ideal estate planning clients find you and hire you from any one of the variety of ways that clients find lawyers.

When we ask clients why they chose us, we hear one of about 20 different answers. Some get referred by their financial advisor. Others attend a speaking engagement or read my book. Others find my stuff on Google, while others say they were referred by their parents or relatives. Some say they hire me because they watched several of my YouTube videos, while others say they watched a webinar I gave. Some say they liked the blogposts and articles on my website, while others say we helped their neighbor. And some recently said they hired us because they listened to my podcast, read my newsletter, or viewed a LinkedIn article I put together. Others tell us they were referred by another lawyer, while some say they liked our law firms facebook page. Others will tell me that they occasionally get emails from me and the latest email prompted them to call my office.

In fact, most of the clients that we get were exposed to more than one piece of content prior to engaging us. For example, maybe they were referred to us, and then they read my book, and then they watched a few videos, and then hired us after getting a timely and valuable email.

The absolute key is that all of the marketing content must be your authentic content. Don’t buy marketing content from a third party and paste it as your own. Your content needs to be authentic in order to build trust and establish a relationship with your prospective client.

Don’t believe everything you read, see, or hear about building an estate planning law practice. If you think it is hard to build massive amounts of valuable and authentic content across many different platforms, you are right. So if it’s what you have to do, embrace it and enjoy the process. Doing the work to build the content will improve your knowledge and skill, enabling you to provide better service to your estate planning legal clients.


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