What is actually meant by a business development campaign?

on 9 June, 2010 Email this Email this - Print this Print this

The first in a series of articles to help you build a strong, strategic foundation for one of the greatest challenges facing law firms.

THE RIGHT STARTING POINT, THE RIGHT ATTITUDE

Successful business development is about managing a process and getting the best out of those involved. To maximise a campaign’s chances of success, however, consider a few fundamental questions first.

•      Are you looking at attracting new clients or getting more from existing ones?

•      Who will be taking responsibility for this in your firm?

Obvious questions maybe, but often overlooked. And one reason they are often not addressed is because of a prevailing attitude within many law firms towards business development – you may recognise some of them.

SPECIFIC ISSUES FOR LAW FIRMS

There are some particular issues for law firms

•      Some may feel that fee earning is more vital and that ‘Lawyers shouldn’t have to do this’. But, fee earning must be supported by business development to maintain its growth.

•      Within the firm, there may be a lack of awareness of the sales process or difficulty in differentiating the firm’s services from others.

•      Some may consider people to be ‘my clients’ rather than ‘the firm’s clients’. Inadequate training in business development techniques is also quite common. And, indeed, some may simply feel that their resources are too limited to put business development on the agenda.

•      Understanding the process of building a relationship from prospects through potential clients to advocates for your firm is key to success. Your marketing programs should reflect this and the messages you communicate should be suitably differentiated as the relationship progresses.

‘THE RIGHT TOOLS FOR THE JOB’

A client relationship goes through a number of stages requiring different messages as the relationship progresses and here are examples of the specific marketing messages on this relationship ladder.

GROUP ACTIVITY CATEGORY SPECIFIC MARKETING ACTIVITIES
Prospects Raising profile Networking, advertising, PR, sponsorship
Contacts Specific Marketing Direct mail, newsletters
Potential Clients Demonstrate expertise Seminars, submit tenders, hospitality
Clients Sell your services Targeted proposals, focused hospitality
Advocates Active dialogue Bespoke activities, joint seminars, events


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Topics: Business development · Law Firm marketing · Marketing planning
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