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How to Effectively Market a Litigation Practice
Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Marketing a litigation practice presents unique challenges and opportunities. Unlike other legal services, litigation can often seem like a distress purchase to potential clients, who hope they’ll never need such services. This perception is compounded by the fact that litigation is frequently a one-time need—clients facing a lawsuit or legal issue may require immediate help but might not need such services again.

In addition, a significant portion of a litigation firm’s business tends to come through referrals rather than direct marketing efforts. Colleagues, previous clients and professional networks often play a critical role in recommending a firm when someone in their circle faces legal challenges.

Despite these challenges, understanding a few core principles can transform how a litigation practice develops and markets itself, turning these challenges into opportunities for growth and connection.

Understanding the Market Challenges

Litigation practices face several market-specific challenges:

  • Broad Potential Client Base: For example, an employment litigation firm might see any well-run company as a potential client, adding complexity to target marketing.
  • Unpredictable Client Needs: Potential clients may need services at any time, from immediately to years in the future or possibly never.
  • Engagement Nature: Many litigators find themselves consumed by cases for long periods, often making it challenging to focus on business development.
  • One-Time Engagements: Unlike areas with recurring transactions, litigators may work with a client just once, without clear opportunities for repeat business.

Ten Tips for Effective Marketing for Litigators

  1. Cast a Wide Net: Make your firm’s capabilities known to a broad audience. Given the diverse potential client base, establishing widespread recognition is crucial.
  2. Maintain Visibility: Regularly engage in activities that highlight your firm’s litigation strengths. This constant visibility ensures you’re top of mind when potential clients face relevant issues.
  3. Continue Marketing Efforts: Even during busy periods, it’s vital to keep up marketing efforts. After a case concludes, there can be a significant lull before new business comes in.
  4. 4. Showcase Successful Outcomes: Publicize significant victories such as dismissed suits or protected patents. Develop case studies and share these successes in client alerts, articles or press releases to illustrate your firm’s competency.
  5. Target Your Efforts: Focus on specific referral sources, niches or industries. This targeted approach helps concentrate your marketing resources more effectively.
  6. Identify Key Influencers: Network with professionals who frequently encounter your prospective clients. This strategy can be more effective than direct marketing to potential clients.
  7. Collaborate Internally: Work with other departments within your firm to create niche groups where litigation is a key service. This multidisciplinary approach can open new avenues for client engagement.
  8. Promote Internally: Ensure that your colleagues are aware of your work and can relay this information to their clients, potentially opening up new channels for case referrals.
  9. Build and Maintain Contacts: Develop a system to stay in touch with contacts such as referring lawyers, opposing counsel and experts, using tools like newsletters or holiday cards.
  10. Have a Strategic Plan: Develop a succinct marketing plan with clear objectives and strategies. This plan should be adaptable, allowing you to maintain focus on marketing alongside your caseload.

Leveraging Modern Tools

In addition to traditional strategies, modern marketing tools can significantly boost a litigation practice’s profile:

  • Digital Marketing: Utilize platforms like Google AdWords to reach potential clients at the moment they are seeking legal help.
  • Social Media Engagement: Use platforms, especially LinkedIn, to share expertise, connect with other professionals and promote content like articles and videos.
  • Content Creation: Regularly publish articles and client alerts, and consider creating podcasts or videos to discuss key legal issues and cases. Distribute this content via email marketing.
  • Professional Development: Engage in speaking opportunities, CLE teaching and active participation in legal associations to bolster your professional profile.


Marketing a litigation practice effectively requires a blend of traditional and modern approaches tailored to the unique aspects of litigation services. By maintaining visibility, focusing efforts on suitable targets and leveraging digital tools, litigators can not only attract more clients but also build lasting professional relationships. Remember, a successful practice isn’t just about winning cases—it’s also about consistently developing and executing a thoughtful marketing strategy.

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