Trends in legal marketing 201713th April 2017
In response to the challenges of current markets, lawyers are having to adopt new approaches to marketing and business development. Whilst the first priority should always be the protection and nurturing of existing clients by better understanding their needs, there is growing recognition that a detailed marketing strategy needs to be in place to produce a continuing flow of new business opportunities.
A coherent plan can get everyone aligned, and will help refine goals, objectives, strategies and tactics. It will act as a route map for the whole firm, and provide a real sense of business direction.
Building and maintaining a distinctive brand
With pressure mounting from all angles, lawyers are realising that they need to have a compelling brand proposition to maintain market share. Carrying out regular brand audits, assessing how the firm’s performance is viewed by clients and correcting any gaps or failings identified, goes a long way towards building a strong marketplace profile.
The aim is to develop a clear strategy for the business that defines how the firm should position itself in terms of services, markets, clients and service delivery. The resulting brand proposition should then be the basis for all marketing and business development activity.
It’s the role of everyone within your organisation to act as ‘brand ambassadors’ and ensure they convey these brand values to clients and prospects on every occasion.
Finding your voice
Having a clear understanding of your core brand principles is a springboard into many other valuable marketing channels. Blogs, case studies and news articles regularly posted on your website will help establish your market profile. As well as offering useful, relevant information that clients will want to read, they enhance credibility and pre-sell your services. If done with personality and flair, they help to establish you as helpful, positive, client-focused and user-friendly.
Learning to love social media
Many lawyers are still reluctant to dip more than a toe into the social media space, often viewing it as a waste of time. But when integrated with your blogs and website, it can be a powerful way to network, win referrals and make your organisation look welcoming, rather than daunting, to potential clients.
With so many people now using LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter in a business context, having a social media presence is becoming much more important. Many potential clients check out an organisation’s on-line profile as part of their screening process, so not being there can be a huge detriment and prevent you getting on to a client’s short -list.
In addition to having a corporate presence on these sites, encourage lawyers to participate too. Tweeting interesting, relevant and shareable information will drive traffic to your firm’s account.
By Margaret Emmens