Categorized | Shoestring Startup

The Journey of a Growing Firm

The Journey of a Growing FirmMy company, the Law Offices of Senen Garcia, PA, (www.sgarcialaw.com) was started on April 14, 2009. We are a law firm focusing on corporations, real estate transactions, and property insurance claims. My reason for starting my business emanated from a situation where I was defrauded by an individual in a business I started. This individual took advantage of my inexperience and caused me to lose a large amount of money. As a result of that situation, I decided I wanted to become an attorney to prevent others from having the same experience.

As for opening my own firm, I have been an, entrepreneur, for most of my life. Therefore, it was only natural I would open my own practice once I graduated from law school. Initially, I kept my expenses low so the amount of investment was very little. After my first client, I purchased a mail box and began working from the box for the next few months. In order to keep my expenses low, I took advantage of many resources such as the law library, free resources provided by the bar like online research tools and the ability to speak to attorneys regarding certain cases.

I started getting clients mainly from referrals and contacts from networking events I would attend on a regular basis to drum up support. While some clients helped me financially, others just gave me the ability to learn about drafting various documents. With every client I serviced, I saved as much of the sales as possible. After about 1 year, I started to think getting an office was the right move. Up and until this point, I would meet clients in their offices or at Starbucks or at Panera Bread locations. Considering my “office” was out of my home, I did not believe clients should be going there.

However, driving around seeing clients took its toll not only with paying for gas & parking but also the time spent on the road meeting clients. Therefore, when I felt I had grown enough to consider having an office, the next issue was finding something I could afford. So, I first started looking for an office location around my home. It was around this time, a friend suggested I look into a virtual office at location far from my home but in a very nice area. When I entered the location, I immediately expected the visit to be short-lived as I did not expect to afford the location.

As I entered the office, I informed the receptionist of my interest in the location. She took me on a tour with respect to the virtual office, and then offered me a price which was very affordable. She explained to me the price was so low because the office was recently remodeled and they wanted as many people in as possible. I considered the offer, thought about it for a day, and accept it the following day.

I began taking advantage of the office immediately by scheduling clients at the location. Simultaneously, I began looking into online marketing with the money I saved. It was here where I wish someone had given me advice. As I started to set everything up, I felt really awkward as I had no idea what was good marketing for my company and what was bad. In fact, it was here where my business nearly ended. I entered into agreements for very large monthly payments under the belief they would lead to a good return of clients. However, with the exception of one of those marketing initiatives, the marketing companies yielded very little in terms of clients and business. However, the one company that work did produce a significant amount of revenue did help considering the networking and referrals had started to decrease.

From that website directory, my company began to grow. I started to see some sharp increase in revenues and this justified me in hiring my assistant. Hiring my assistant was probably the best thing I did right both in hiring an assistant and the assistant I hired. Everything was going well until I hit another bump in the road when business started to slow down. For a period of 4 months, I struggled to make ends meet. My company was in the red. However, the situation did force me to negotiate every marketing contract since I felt I had nothing to lose considering I had little money and sales. But just when it seemed hopeless, business started to grow. Following those four months, I was in the black and have never looked back.

Currently, my business uses a combination of legal directories for marketing and an ever increasing use of search engines as the optimization continues to grow. My goal is for the search engine optimization to get my firm into the top 5 in search terms. If that goal is met, I believe my firm’s revenues could increase dramatically making the firm even more successful.

I also have expanded my staff to include a part-time attorney, another assistant, and a law clerk out of the first office. I have also expanded my office to include another office with its own staff. The biggest transition I have to make (and I continue to make it) is delegating more of the tasks I would normally do so I could focus on the firm’s growth. As of now, I expect my revenues to increase three times from the previous year.

As for the future, while I would be open to the idea or merging with another firm, I fully expect to continue to run and expand my firm on my own. As for reaching the capacity of my firm, I anticipate reaching that goal within the next one to two years.


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