The pandemic has been a challenge for all businesses—and law firms are no exception. But 2022 has not been short of challenges for companies. In it came the great resignation, inflation, and the risk of recession.
Many practices have gone out of business because of a lack of clients or low-paying cases. But some firms have managed to thrive in this climate by embracing change and adapting to new ways of doing things. These firms are taking advantage of the latest technology, strategies, and techniques, enabling them to adjust their business development and marketing functions to address these challenges.
In this article, we’ll look at why some law firms grow while others don’t and what you can do to ensure your practice grows.
Don’t peg success on luck
Business growth isn’t a matter of luck—it results from having the right people and culture to support it. If your law firm has these things and is still not growing, you need to take action.
The first thing to do is evaluate your firm’s current structure. Are you structured so that it makes it difficult to grow? Do you have too many layers between your clients and their needs? Are there any areas where you could be doing more?
Once you’ve identified where growth might come from, ensure all stakeholders are on board with the plan for achieving it.
Manage a pipeline with marketing and business development
Marketing and Business Development (BD) are two different functions that affect the growth of your law firm. Marketing is the front end of your funnel, bringing in clients and prospects, while BD is the back end, keeping them.
You can think of it like this: marketing is about getting people into your funnel, but BD is about keeping them there. That’s why it’s essential to have both a marketing team and a BD team working together on building relationships with potential clients.
Law firms that grow know how to utilize marketing and business development because they have developed processes that help them do so effectively and efficiently. They also understand how to use these processes in tandem with their legal services offerings to provide clients with value-added legal services at every stage of their business lifecycle.
Use marketing campaigns that deliver
The marketing department is not just responsible for lead generation but also for refining and qualifying those leads through the sales process. A law firm’s marketing team must understand how its efforts impact the bottom line regarding billable hours and revenue.
The sales cycle must be considered from start to finish when developing strategies—from initial outreach through conversion—instead of focusing on one piece at a time (or worse, thinking about it only once).
So why is this so important? Without a well-defined marketing strategy to drive qualified leads through your sales cycle, you’re missing out on an opportunity to optimize your revenue stream by targeting your most profitable clients.
Sell value and client experience
Client experience is vital in these economically uncertain times where clients have options. They don’t have loyalty or commitment anymore. They’re looking for something better every time they pick up their phone or walk through the door of another firm. So what can you do about it?
First, you need to sell value. Show your clients how much they’ll benefit from having you in their corner. This is not a one-time thing but a continuous process that begins with your initial consultation and ends with you completing the project.
Next, you must focus on the client’s needs—not just your own. You need to think like a client and consider what they want from you and how you can help them accomplish their goals.
And finally, you need to create an experience for your clients that will make them excited about coming back for more business, not just satisfied that they got what they needed from you at that one time.
The above points will help you to better understand why some law firms grow while others don’t. If you look at the commonalities between these companies and their practices, you may be able to use them as inspiration for your firm.
It’s important to remember that in every industry, growth is possible even when times are tough. So while it may seem like your clients’ needs have disappeared because of the pandemic, keep in mind that they still exist and will continue to do so long after things return to normal.