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Grow your Immigration Law Firm by Growing Your Referral Network. Here’s How.

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Mon Aug 08 2022 5 min read

Marketing your immigration law firm is a multifaceted process, one that involves being visible and focusing on specific knowledge. And while it is possible to find clients through sharing your knowledge online, especially on social media and at community events, old-fashioned referrals should not be discounted nor forgotten, particularly referrals from other lawyers. 

But to get a referral from another lawyer, they need to be aware of what you do and also be able to see for themselves how well you do it, either through having worked with you, from client testimonials, or from your content through social media, at conference panels or elsewhere.

Building that awareness amongst other attorneys is what this article is about. Let’s discuss some of the ways you can do that to position yourself as an expert and stay at the forefront of other lawyers’ minds when it comes to referring your ideal client to them.

1. Use social media as a thought leader

Show that you’re an expert in your niche by sharing content from short-form posts to long-form articles to information videos or audio-only interviews. Of course social media has made this incredibly easy and effective. But which platforms should you use?

We’ve written about how to use social media to build an immigration law firm here and here, but in short, here are a few important tips on maximizing your brand amongst peers via social media.

  • Use a professional social media platform such as LinkedIn or Twitter to share thought leadership to your network or community.
  • Engage in immigration lawyer Facebook groups by helping other attorneys think through case strategies, law firm management challenges and other aspects of practicing immigration law.
  • Share your thoughts on regulatory changes or celebrate your clients’ successes.
  • Ask questions when you’re stuck so that you create a back-and-forth relationship with other attorneys on social media. Giving advice is professionally helpful, but asking for advice and taking it from others builds personal relationships too.

Simply make sure to engage with other immigration attorneys no matter what social media platform you’re on, and build relationships with them online just as you would in person. By doing that while also showcasing your expertise through your own content, more and more people will get to know you and what you specialize in simply through your online presence, and will begin to refer your ideal clients to you over time.

2. Speak at immigration and other conferences or events

Speaking at industry events is a great opportunity to show your knowledge to other lawyers and extend the reach of your professional network beyond your geographical area, as industry events are often regional or national. If you’re concerned about not being well known enough to get invited to speak at a conference, keep your eye open for announcements in industry newsletters with calls for panel ideas and new speakers at upcoming events. 

Conference organizers want their events to be as innovative as possible, so proposing panels on hot topics may increase your chances of getting an invitation to speak at an event even if you’ve never spoken before.

Also, don’t rule out industry conferences that your clients might attend, even if your attorney peers might not. For example, if you’re an immigration attorney focused on employment immigration in the medical field, apply to speak at a national nursing or physician conference. On the flip side, if you’re a family immigration lawyer working with a particular community, see if you can speak at a community meeting or gathering to spread the word about what you do and how you help individuals specifically within that community. And so forth.Last but not least, sharing your expertise through a published outlet can increase visibility for you and your firm. 

3. Get your writing in a publication or try to get on the news!

Here are some examples of what “getting published” could look like: 

  • Legal publications, such as the AILA Think Immigration blog, the ABA Journal, or other bar association publications, especially state bar associations can be a great place to start. There’s often publicly-available information about how to submit articles for publication, like:

  • Industry publications, such as the following: 

    • SHRM’s HR Magazine, the All Things Work newsletter, and the SRHM website. You can see their publishing guidelines and contact information for pitching content on their website. 
    • Worldwide ERC’s Mobility magazine: Not only does this organization provide opportunities to get published, but also speaking opportunities and social media ambassadorships. You can find guidelines and current opportunities on their website.
    • Tech publications such as Wired magazine. Here are Wired’s guidelines for pitching stories and opinion pieces
  • Local or mainstream news: This may require some help from a PR agency or someone in your network to get you in front of a video camera (or, these days, on Zoom), but being able to provide commentary and insight on new immigration policies or other breaking news specific to immigration stories can help you build rapport in front of millions of people who can then refer you if and when someone they know has an immigration question.

Ultimately, the goal of all this is to put your thought leadership out into the world in a way that allows your colleagues to learn about you and your area of expertise. Once they do that, they can then refer work to you instead of someone else when the opportunity presents itself.

Let Docketwise help you manage the immigration referrals that come your way.

If you’re an immigration lawyer, a forms and case management tool isn’t enough for you to handle referrals successfully and efficiently - you need a client relationship management system or a CRM, as well. That’s why at Docketwise we’ve built CRM capabilities on top of our best-in-class immigration forms and case management software.

All told, with our CRM, full library of immigration forms, easy-to-use client questionnaires and industry-leading API integrations, Docketwise helps you stay up to date on all your immigration cases, communicate easily with your clients, and otherwise build and manage your immigration law firm. 

If you want to learn more about Docketwise, schedule a demo at the link below, or sign up for our Immigration Briefings newsletter for daily and weekly immigration updates!

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