Rainmakers & Trailblazers

Whether you work for a national or international law firm, business development is a vital aspect of your role as a partner or, as a senior associate with an eye to partnership. However, it is rarely touched on in law school or post-qualification training.

In an increasingly deregulated and competitive legal market, lawyers CANNOT expect business to simply walk through the door and, as a partner or senior lawyer, you cannot expect to delegate all of your business development responsibilities.

The ability to win business is key to your success as a practicing lawyer. As well as driving increased earnings, it allows you to push your practice in the direction you choose, and increases your influence and mobility.

In contrast, in a competitive environment, not winning business and retaining clients can impact your future within the partnership.

Rainmaker is a unique, in-depth report for law firm partners. It will provide you with peer-based insight and advice on how to create relationships with new clients and nurture existing client relationships and referral networks with other lawyers and professional service advisors. It will also give you practical insight into marketing strategies and the mindset of general counsel.

Part I – The lawyer perspective

1. Introduction

2. Marketing fundamentals as they apply to law firm business development

  •     What type of lawyer marketer are you?
  •     Know your strengths and preferences – what’s your style?
  •     What are the fundamental marketing concepts you need to know?
  •     Models of lawyer marketing

3. Prepare yourself

  •     Know your strengths and weaknesses
  •     Know yourself – what are you trying to achieve?
  •     Analyse information (internal) – Know your history
  •     Analyse information (external) – Understand the broad market
  •     Look for trends – Craft your market focus
  •     Know what you’re selling – preparing your proposition and key messages
  •     Agree aims and objectives (financial projections) and broad strategy
  •     Select targets and critical relationships
  •     Create a plan

4. Deepen existing relationships

  •     Deliver service excellence
  •     Research existing clients and referrers
  •     Understand buying processes (working with procurement)
  •     Network through organisations
  •     Manage your referrers
  •     Manage the account, not just the matters
  •     Build a team around the client
  •     Plan for collaboration and growth

5. Raise your profile

  •     Create “Brand Me”
  •     Manage your online profile
  •     Develop web content and use SEO
  •     A word about advertising
  •     Gain external recognition
  •     Stand in the spotlight – newsletters, media relations, blogs
  •     Press the flesh – speaking engagements, networking
  •     Why you need your own campaign

6. Make connections       

  •     Nurture internal relationships
  •     Network – on and off line
  •     Know when to request a meeting
  •     Productive first meetings
  •     Sales meeting checklist
  •     Follow up your meeting
  •     An overview of selling
  •     Manage the sales process

7. Generate new business

  •     Basic selling skills
  •     Find the pain/needs
  •     Pitch at opportunities
  •     Handle objections and close the deal
  •     Build the relationship once on a panel
  •     Work referrers for more

8. Get help

  •     Developing your business development skill set
  •     Targeting
  •     Communication (NVC/empathy)
  •     Rapport and trust
  •     Writing
  •     Persuasion
  •     Speaking and presenting
  •     Questions and active listening
  •     Negotiation
  •     Motivation
  •     Finalise your plan

Part II - In the context of the market, your firm and department

9. Introduction

10. The market

  •     Why you need an outside-in approach
  •     Fast review of changes in the business and consumer worlds
  •     Research on what legal buyers want
  •     The role of procurement

11. Your firm’s strategy and plans

  •     What’s strategic planning?
  •     Working as a team as part of a sector or practice group

12. Make friends with finance

  •     Understanding the numbers
  •     Information you need vs information they have
  •     The difference between forecasting and budgeting
  •     Monitoring investment time

13. Love your marketing and PR team

  •     The marketing team is on your side. Yes, really
  •     Strategy, plans and research
  •     Systems and information
  •     Brand and reputation
  •     Using the firm’s brand personality and design
  •     Supporting firm-wide reputation management
  •     Plugging into firm-wide channels of communication
  •     Working with the PR experts
  •     Legal directory entries
  •     Lead generation and client engagement
  •     Campaign management
  •     Thought leadership campaigns
  •     Driving web site traffic (SEO and social media)
  •     Digital marketing initiatives (newsletters etc)
  •     Advertising (and PPC)
  •     Events programme and entertainment
  •     Developing communities
  •     Product and service development
  •     The rise of risk and project management
  •     Pricing
  •     Focus on profitability
  •     Strategic pricing vs tactical pricing
  •     Measurement of effectiveness and return on investment
  •     Operational analytics

14. Who’s managing sales and relationship management?

  •     Managing the sales process and your pipeline
  •     Surviving large tenders and formal pitches
  •     Looking after major clients and key accounts

15. The need for information, research and knowledge management – and technology

  •     Market knowledge, analysis and commercial insight
  •     Legal know-how for systems
  •     Developing buyer profiles
  •     Client satisfaction surveys and service reviews

16. Help from human resources

  •     Working in the right environment – culture matters
  •     Feedback, fear and development
  •     The importance of motivation and reward

17. Summary        

  •     Key lessons
  •     Just do it

Appendix 1 – Business Development Competencies
Appendix 2 – Resources

  •     Recommended books
Rainmakers & Trailblazers

Price: £99
ISBN: 978-0-9570022-3-4
Format: Paperback