In all type of businesses including virtual paralegals, you must know the needs of your clients before you can market to them. The best way to know your clients is to ask them directly what you can do to improve their legal practice or research how you can make their work-life easier so that they can focus on practicing law.
Most virtual paralegals have years of experience working with attorneys. They know that attorneys are often busy and have very little time for certain tasks; therefore, they rely heavily on their support staff. There is no difference in the type of support that an attorney needs from his in-office paralegal than he will require from his virtual paralegal.
A virtual paralegal would be an asset to any legal team but first you need to educate your clients on the benefits you would bring to their legal practice. For example, a virtual paralegal already offers all the benefits of a staff paralegal just for a lower cost. Virtual paralegals can significantly lower their clients over-head costs by at least 50%.
Training and confidentiality are usually the most concerned issues for attorneys when hiring and working with virtual paralegals. It is important that you are qualified and experienced in the services that you offer. The standard requirement for virtual paralegals are a minimum of 3 years’ experience in a specialized practice area.
In addition to your qualifications; you must have a confidentiality policy in place to assure the attorney that using your services will not violate any laws or harm their clients.
When marketing to an attorney or law office, you should first find out if they already have a paralegal or legal assistant on staff.
- The paralegals in the law offices are usually the attorneys’ gate-keepers.
- They get rid of the junk before forwarding the “important” mail to their attorneys.
- So, how should you package your marketing materials so that the paralegal would want to forward it to their attorneys?
- First you need to outline the benefits you can offer the law office even if they already have a paralegal on staff.
- Offer to cover for the paralegal on sick days, vacations and after-hours.
- Offer to assist the paralegal when the office gets busy without the attorney incurring the overhead costs that comes with hiring additional staff, temporary paralegal or paying overtime.