Many people mistakenly believe that a small or large law firm that enjoys success represents a multitude of clients in a variety of specialties and continually keeps busy, doesn't need to worry so much about legal marketing, networking, developing new contacts, or continually enhancing the function and services provided to clients. Nothing could be further from the truth. When it comes to legal marketing, law firms must continually invest time, effort, and money into developing, growing, and maintaining their business. Primerus Law Firms is one such example when it comes to legal marketing. Membership in such law firm groups is able to increase profile, visibility, and enhance increased client base and expertise throughout the country.
Brian Davidoff, a managing partner at the Los Angeles firm of Rutter Hobbs & Davidoff, says, "It's not inexpensive. But like any organization, in order to make it work, you've got to get involved." Davidoff is a firm supporter of networking. Legal marketing these days is also not limit limited to domestic firms, but global memberships such as ALFA International, which includes over a hundred firms from throughout Europe, Latin America, Canada and the United States as a result of legal marketing endeavors.
Russell Reiner, of Reiner, Simpson & Slaughter, clients of Primerus, believes that networking, legal marketing, and referrals have helped to increase business. Legal marketing is just as essential for small law firms that are as it is large ones. Legal marketing strategies that develop contacts, contracts, and referrals must not be ignored.
Opinion seems to be fairly divided over the issue of whether or not attorney marketing professionals should opt for heightened, more aggressive and up-to-date advertising strategies for their legal clients. Unfortunately, laws already on the books in many states prohibit a lawyer from advertising their services in the manner that they would prefer, which also greatly affects attorney marketing strategies. Is this fair? Some say no – after all, what is free speech worth if you can't advertise your business, skill or trade in a way that effectively, though appropriately, gets the message across?
Some consumers and opinion polls suggest that attorney marketing emphasizes profit over other things like compassion, character and integrity. A recent article regarding this issue of attorney marketing appeared on the Wall Street Journal's Law Blog. Decide for yourself; but why should lawyers be burdened with prohibited slogans or images? Florida, as the law blog article states, disallows certain images or characterizations to appear in many ads regarding legal attorney marketing services. Too suggestive? Too aggressive?
When attorney marketing experts design and promote campaigns, the purpose is to create powerful images that leave an impact with the consumer. Isn't that what marketing, and even more so, attorney marketing is all about? When it comes to marketing, who will be next to censor or prohibit content for public dissemination? Attorney marketing professionals will definitely be keeping a close eye on this ongoing debate.
Legal marketing experts often tout the importance of presenting interesting, substantive legal marketing seminars. Hosting seminars, booking speaking engagements and participating in trade group meetings are all, in fact, great legal marketing strategies. According to Johnny Manriquez, Esq., Sales Attorney for Scholefield Associates, P.C. in San Diego, California, failing to follow up with clients after these events is not uncommon for many attorneys. The lack of follow-up is quite costly to any legal marketing plan. Hoping that you have impressed attendees enough to call you and simply waiting for the phone to ring is, in effect, directly sabotaging legal marketing efforts. In his blog posting, Manriquez offers interesting insight into how some law firm marketing seems destined to fail.
After legal marketing events, Manriquez says “many lawyers fail to take the logical next steps”:
- “Further qualifying attendees and asking for future business”. This mistake can put a monkey wrench in even the best planned legal marketing business plan.
- “Ignoring or taking a passive approach to new business”. If law firm marketing techniques are expected to work, no firm can take a “wait and see if they call us” approach. While that approach to legal marketing might have been somewhat effective in the past, it is no longer – not in this super-competitive environment.
Passivity has no place in today’s law firm marketing; legal firms must take a decidedly active approach instead. To learn more about conducting professional and productive legal marketing seminars, please pay a visit to The Rainmaker Institute’s comprehensive and informative website.