- Posted by Ioana Good
- On March 23, 2020
- business development, legal marketing, public relations
You went to law school to practice law, not sales and public relations, right? Well, not so fast! Your clients expect you to offer impeccable legal services, but they also need you to understand their businesses, help them grow and advise them on mitigating risks. Law firm clients want you to be an industry expert in their industries.
Here are three easy ways you can start incorporating these concepts into your law practice:
Be in it to win it
Even if you don’t meet regularly with your marketing and public relations team or are not part of a practice group that meets monthly, set one hour aside each week to outline goals, review client needs and create a plan for the following week. For instance, if you work in a specific area like Senior Housing, jot down the top three industry conferences, outline who you want to meet and think about potential speaking and writing opportunities. You don’t have to do everything at once. Simply map out a plan to tackle some of your initiatives one step at a time.
If you still find that you don’t have time to make these things happen, enlist the help of a public relations practitioner who understands the intersection of media relations and business development to help you.
Research shows that the more products or services that customers purchase from you, the longer they will continue to do so. Look around your firm and identify other areas of law where you can help. Say you are a tax attorney who meets regularly with other tax attorneys. Step outside of your comfort zone and take your colleague who practices intellectual property to lunch and discuss how you can help each other.
Many existing firm clients already have questions about your area of practice, so ask your partners with the closest relationships to make introductions so that you can invite those clients to speak on panels with you or co-author bylined articles.
Know your client’s business
This may be obvious, but in the age of customer-centricity, companies are fighting for competitive advantage to help build relationships with clients. Like you, customers are looking to improve their services and win more work, so stay up-to-date on their businesses and offer to introduce them to people who can help them get ahead.
Offer to highlight clients on your website, firm newsletter, social media platforms and even in a media story you are interviewing for or writing. According to a Gallup study, vendors who significantly impact business have a 31% higher chance of winning more work. Once you build trust, clients will pay it forward and highlight you in their circles.
By implementing some of these ideas and setting time aside, you will be able to help your clients better and position yourself as an industry expert. Consider reading this your first win!
Ioana Good is vice president at Poston Communications, based in Orlando.