Criminal Defense Marketing: Lessons from an Attorney

Recently at a networking event, a Berbay team member reconnected with an attorney named Troy.  Troy is currently employed as a criminal defense attorney, but he used to work for the other side: the District Attorney’s office.

During his time with the DA, Troy spent a great deal of time getting to know heavy-hitters in his industry, gaining an understanding of common business practices, and unknowingly studying his future competition from the inside.  He observed many criminal defense attorneys in action – teaching him which arguments were effective and which were a waste of time.  Troy adopted the best negotiation tactics and trial strategies in his own practice.

The experience gained at the DA’s office proved vital to Troy’s own professional success, but the lessons learned in criminal defense marketing apply to professionals in all fields.

Get to know the competition. Although he didn’t realize it at the time, Troy was learning the strategies of his future competitors: other defense attorneys.  Taking the time to learn about your competition can help you develop a stronger marketing strategy.  What can you glean from the marketing efforts of the top players in your industry?

Foster relationships. Troy still keeps in contact with colleagues from the DA.  Networking with industry peers can lead to referrals and a web of support, but don’t limit yourself to the familiar.  For example, if you’re looking to target clients in the restaurant industry, consider sponsoring or exhibiting at related trade shows or conferences.  If you’re looking to reach attorneys, think about leading an MCLE presentation at a law firm.  Creating visibility for yourself will keep you top-of-mind when a potential client has a need.

Branch out. Although he was happy during his time with the DA, Troy decided that he would benefit in the long-run by changing jobs.  Similarly, it’s important to make sure your business is ready for the future by implementing effective marketing today.  How will you ensure your business is thriving 10 or 20 years from now?

No matter your industry or area of expertise, remember that marketing opportunities can pop up when you least expect.  Great strategies are often emulated –  numbered among Troy’s new co‑workers are former police officers and even other former DAs like himself.  Keep an open mind or risk being left behind.

– By Berbay Assistant Account Manager Matt Aguirre

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