Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for the ‘Legal Marketing’ Columns

Planning for Succession: Part One

Over half of my clients are focussed on how to survive the transition from a first to a second-generation law firm. This is a critical and difficult business subject to deal with so I will explain the issue and its solutions over two SLAW postings. In this first one, I’ll seek to broaden your perspective of succession, describe why its implementation is so critical to a firm, and set the framework for meeting this business need.

This Shouldn’t Be Emergency Planning

Lawyers are of course human beings, and they age just like the rest of us. That means that they . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing, Practice of Law

Our Relaunched Intranet – One Year Later

In April of 2016, I wrote about our ambitious project of re-building our corporate intranet. Our previous site had become a dumping ground of information that was poorly maintained and was woefully out of date. During the project, we removed nearly 85% of the content, upgraded a number of internal applications, made the site user friendly and improved the overall usability. We held focus groups and engaged junior, intermediate and senior staff in our decision to ensure the product we delivered would meet their needs.

In May this year, we asked staff for their opinion of the new site. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Get SMART About Setting Marketing Goals

New clients will often ask me: “What do you need from us?” I do an intake interview to learn about their practice groups, their clients, and their current profitability. Then I ask them for their marketing goal.

Before the relieved look of “That’s it? That’s all it’s going to take?” leaves their faces, I hasten to tell them that they must thrash out a SMART goal. That’s Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely. It’s anything but easy, yet without it, most firms’ marketing initiatives will degenerate into unfocussed, ad hoc, pet projects that don’t . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Client Relationship Report Card: A for Effort?

Though the market is more competitive now than ever, new revenue opportunities arise regularly. One of the keys to taking advantage of them is through strong relationships and a robust network of contacts. It should also go without saying that having strong client relationships is the best defensive tactic to guard against encroachment by competitors.

As we head into the summer months, it’s a good time to pause and reflect on your client relationship building and business development activities so far this year. If you had to grade your efforts, would you get an A or a C? If a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

2017 Legal Marketing Trends: Are They Resonating With You?

The state of legal marketing is in constant flux. New strategies emerge, opportunities arise, and tech continues to disrupt even the most established business practices. You can’t make changes if you don’t see them coming, which is why every year we bring together leading marketing strategists and technologists to discuss their thoughts on the most important marketing trends. Back in January, our experts predicted that we would be in for a disruptive year. They weren’t wrong, but with half of the year already behind us, I wonder which of these predicted trends you feel has come to pass and which . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Is Your Law Firm Brand Reflected in All the Right Places and Spaces?

So you’ve hired an external consultant to help you with your law firm brand. If they are any good, they’ll have worked with you not just to build a great visual brand that involves your brand identity (logo, colours and fonts), website and marketing collateral but they’ll have taken a more holistic approach ensuring that the visual brand supports a verbal brand that included the key messaging of the firm. These days prospects find their lawyers online, or if by word of mouth, verified online. If all they see and read meet their needs and expectations then often you have . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Building Word-of-Mouth Referrals

Research shows that about 80% of buying decisions, from cars to legal services, are made on recommendation from someone else. It’s that elusive ‘word of mouth’ that everyone says is the best way to promote a law practice, but few know how to generate.

The place to start is with your referral sources.

Do you know who referred your firm’s top 25 clients to you? Does it matter? If your firm is doing well, you may not think so. But successful firms look ahead: if your biggest source of referrals has just been taken over by an international conglomerate with . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Multichannel Communication

Companies have stories to tell, pitches to make and information to be shared. Using a “multichannel communication” program sounds pretty cool, but what is it? Is this new? And what channels are available?

To understand multichannel communication, it is important to appreciate that there are different ways of sharing information – push, passive and interactive. Email and social are great ways to push content, whereas as passive methods such as an intranet or posters require people have to seek your content. In person, either through meetings or tools such as YouTube Live, allow for interaction which generally offer the most . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Ode to Client-Focussed Programs

When asked, most firms would say that their #1 business goal is to get more work. The only way to get more work for the firm is to get it from existing clients, or to develop new client relationships. It’s well-documented that it’s far easier to get more work out of an existing client than to try to land a new client. But how? Doing good work for your client is a great start, but if it hasn’t expanded the work by now, it probably won’t in future.

Over the years I’ve seen a range of studies by research organizations . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Business Development: Do Something Every Single Day

Do something every single day, has been my mantra for many years. Why, because it’s much easier to commit to small tasks. And those small tasks can accumulate and become a tidal wave. As the saying goes, How do you eat an elephant… one bite at a time.

That is what business development can feel like… eating an elephant! It doesn’t have to feel that way if you do something every single day. So here is a 7-Day Action Plan to get you started.

In this 7 – Day Plan I present you with the tools to make marketing a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Marketing Strategy II: Do You Know Where Your Clients Are?

If your firm has been around for a while, how has it changed? Let’s say you’re in a mid-sized Canadian city and the firm has been in existence since the 1970s. Chances are that at least one set of partners has retired from the firm and new recruits have brought new interests (and new clients) into the firm. New industrial developments on the outskirts of town have yielded new clients, who in turn have referred other new clients from even further out of town. Before anyone has realized it, your firm is serving clients province-wide, yet you’re still promoting yourselves . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Proposal Resumes

Building an effective resume for proposals is hard but it doesn’t have to be. Resumes used for proposals and resumes used for job seekers may offer similar content but they are two very different documents. Understanding the difference and how to present “you” is key to delivering an effective proposal resume.

Often the marketing team is tasked to draft resumes for the lawyers that will be part of a proposal. The goal should be to balance the desire of the lawyer to include what they want while ensuring brand consistency that the firm requires. Resumes are personal and people have . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing