Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Stacey Burke, owner of Stacey E. Burke, P.C., located in Houston, TX, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Stacey E. Burke, P.C. is a law firm consulting business headquartered in Houston, Texas, that serves lawyers, law firms, and legal industry vendors throughout the United States and occasionally elsewhere. We focus our services on marketing, advertising, and business development strategy and implementation across all practice areas, including but not limited to social media marketing and advertising, website design and development, content marketing, search engine optimization, Google Ads, logos, and branding, print collateral including brochures, and more.
What makes us different is that I am a 20-year licensed Texas lawyer who practiced law and understands the needs of firms, knows how to speak to and understand the pain points of individual lawyers, and has an expert-level understanding of the advertising rules that govern the legal industry's communications with the public.
Tell us about yourself
I began my legal practice in 2001 and worked primarily for two law firms. I gradually transitioned from a full focus on personal injury litigation to partially litigating and partially handling intake, marketing, and business development. Throughout my career, I found I enjoyed the business side of law firm operations more than litigation, although I very much excelled at and remained an active part of client interactions.
Once I left my position as a partner with my last firm, I had planned to take a break from working for a time and assumed I would eventually work for another law firm. However, my former competitors immediately approached me for advice about their digital marketing strategies and internal operations. I enjoyed this consulting work, and thus my consulting business was truly unplanned but came about to fill a need that presented itself to me - and it has grown tremendously over the past nine-plus years.
What motivates me most about my company's work is when we help those in need of legal help find good lawyers through our work on behalf of those lawyers. By building up a law firm's search engine credibility and presence, they will be able to attract more of the right type of clients who need them, and in turn, the clients in need find better options to reach out to.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I have felt that several accomplishments have been "big" across the past nine years, including signing my first (and second) lease for office space after sharing free space in trade for my services with two law firms beforehand. Growing my full-time team to eight employees from the two (including me) I started with has also felt like a tremendous accomplishment.
Individually, I have won numerous industry awards, given a large number of presentations, and been published in many publications I could have only dreamed of. Company-wide, we have won marketing awards for our work for our clients and even for our own business, which is also very rewarding.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest aspects of being a business owner for me is vetting, hiring, and onboarding the right people in the right way. Over the years, we have created a very thorough process - including a skills test - that has dramatically increased the quality of our hires, but the onboarding and corresponding learning curve for those who have not worked in the legal industry before working with my business remains challenging.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Work with a lawyer to form the appropriate entity for your business for liability and tax purposes.
- Spend the money on professional logo design, website design, and other aspects of your digital presence. It will be one of your business's primary - if not the sole - representations to the public.
- Develop a business plan. Determine what strategic objectives you want to undertake, what tactics you will use, and how you will measure success - and continue to modify it as you progress in your business growth.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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