There is an interesting transformation in the business development of the legal industry. This change is based on the wide, direct access that many clients have to lawyers globally. The current trends highlight that clients have made absolute changes to how they connect with legal service providers. This has led legal professionals to adopt new strategies to develop their law firms. What do these strategies mean for your practice? Here are some of the key implications: 

  • Gone are the days when a lawyer can handle everything for everyone; people favour specialised attorneys. 
  • Online development has become a crucial need, but it must be combined with your offline strategy. 
  • Competence and client services are not enough. Law firms need a robust business growth plan to compete effectively.

We are confident that the law firms that best adjust their strategies to these market conditions and perform per our recommended strategies will achieve unparalleled progress in growing their law firm in 2022 and beyond.

Here are the top five strategies that law firm owners need to take into account to boost their development in 2022

1- Define and Fully Understand your ROI numbers

It seems that legal professionals cannot pinpoint the results of the accurate return on investment (ROI) from each business development initiative within their practice.

It is time to change this. ROI should not only be measured within monetary parameters (but that subject is for another article). You need to learn to change practices based on these measurements because these measurements can help you reveal what works and what doesn’t. You will intensify successful practices and stop business development projects that bring no (or little) ROI to you and your practice.

The successful development of your practice will result from knowing your numbers. The ROI for your business development efforts is an important part of your legal practice numbers.

Lawyers who know their business development ROI numbers have a tremendous advantage over those who do not. The business development ROI numbers tell a story: understanding the story behind your numbers can be one of the most important ingredients for long-term business development success.

Calculating an ROI – tips and tricks

Above the Law shares a pretty in-depth breakdown of ROI calculation methods for law firms.

They advise the following method:

  • Start by totalling the investment:

Investment, or Annual Expense = Implementation Cost + Cash Cost

  • Then calculate the net annual savings:

Net Annual Savings = Annual Savings – Annual Expense

  • Time to calculate the ROI:

 Annual Return on Investment = Net Annual Savings / Investment

2- Switch from practice-focused to client-focused

The idea that client-centred law firms are more successful is not new. Forward-thinking lawyers have been taking this approach for years.

Running a client-centred law firm means putting your clients at the centre of your thinking. This goes beyond the legal deliverable you provide: Being client-centred means truly putting yourself in your client’s shoes and looking at the experience of hiring a lawyer and going through a legal matter from their point of view—and thinking through how you can provide a good client experience in a way that’s efficient for your firm.

As a lawyer, your job is to help your client resolve their particular legal issue in a timely—and hopefully affordable—fashion. A client-centred approach can help with this: Building trust with your clients can help make it easier to get the information you need, build a good working relationship with your clients, and leave them satisfied and willing to refer more clients to you once their case is closed.

Tips and Tricks to Create A Client-Focused Law Firm 
  • Simplify legal issues.  As part of your process, you should simplify legal issues so that an ordinary client can understand their problem and the law surrounding that problem. 
  • Explain the legal process. When you begin a case with a client, you should be prepared to help them understand the typical legal process. 
  • Explain the attorney process. Every attorney should have a fairly standard (and amendable) process to distribute to new clients. Your fees, office hours, expectations, and responsibilities to the client should be spelt out in writing.
  • Empathetic communication. When tackling several cases at once, it can be challenging to listen to clients truly. Lawyers who can remain empathetic are more likely to tap into the root issue, solve the problem, and put an anxious client’s mind at ease. And that’s the type of communication that is good for a client-centred law firm’s bottom line.

3- Be where your Clients are; Marketing, Marketing, Marketing

For Law firms,  marketing is the practice they do to be close and attract their potential clients. A law firm marketing plan covers a combination of marketing tasks such as offline and digital ads, SEO, podcasting, and blogging. Your marketing strategy can include many other tactics, including leveraging law firm marketing technology to automate various tasks.  But no matter how you approach it, marketing your firm can easily consume a lot of your time and energy. 

Deciding where to invest your resources and time in law firm marketing to enable you to focus on practising law and running your firm can be a tricky balance. The objective is to determine which methods are most effective, depending on your marketing goals—and knowing where to start is critical.

Tips and Tricks to kick start your marketing activities
  • Develop a strong positioning message to convey to your customers and potential clients.
  • Ensure that your website is user friendly and supports the languages your clients speak
  • Craft original content for your website and share it regularly with your clients and potential clients.
  • Use certain targeted keywords and strategies to rank your firm higher in internet search results.
  • Embrace the social media that you think your clients are using, such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, and post regular content on them.
  • Monitor your effort and know what you’re trying to achieve with your marketing, and set key performance indicators (KPIs)  to meet.

4- Network and figure out new opportunities

Many of your connections — people in your network that like and trust you — are willing to pay you money now for sharing with them your knowledge, experience and ideas. We have proven this repeatedly in recent years, with many lawyers.

Besides digital marketing,  making face-to-face connections is still a powerful way to generate leads. So, in addition to upping your digital marketing effort, don’t forget the value of getting out there and growing your practice the old-fashioned way.

Some ideas for places to network include:
  • Local events
  • Workshops
  • Virtual Webinars 
  • Conferences
  • Events 

5- Invest in Legal Technology 

The innovative legal technology helps law firms in many ways to increase efficiency and accuracy, allowing law firms to improve their workflows and achieve new business opportunities. Efficient legal matter management, contract lifecycle management, reporting, tasks and workflow automation, and other services that can be achieved by legal technology solutions can boost productivity and provide unbeatable competitive advantages.

Tips on how to choose the right technology that guarantees your growth!

The key here is to specify your needs and invest in the tools that can help you handle these needs efficiently and accurately. Below are some necessities to look for when choosing a legal technology solution.

  • The solution you invest in should support remote case management, time tracking, invoicing and accounting.
  • It makes contract management easier to create, track & eSign Online. So it removes the headaches of proposals & contracts. 
  • Document collaboration where you can easily draft, edit, review and track changes in documents that you share with colleagues and clients.
  • A multi-channel platform where you can access data on mobile phones, tablets, or computers on Android, iOS, and Windows platforms.
  • Supports workflow and tasks automation to collaborate on tasks while keeping team members in the loop with email notifications as tasks are updated.
  • Drive performance and get insightful reports. Analyse workflow performance and share the time tracking data.
  • Integrates with the tools you use daily such as Microsoft Outlook, Gmail, Microsoft teams, etc.
  • Provides a secure portal where you can securely collaborate with your clients, share documents, search for a specific client or any related information.
Try App4Legal; The complete law practice management software for all legal practitioners in law firms and in-house legal teams. Sign up for free

Get in touch with our legal tech experts to know more about App4Legal  how it will help you run a successful and productive law firm from anywhere.

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