According to the Lexis Nexis 2017 Law Firm Marketing and Business Development Survey, the responding firms are currently spending 15% of their 2-5% total marketing budget on technology. And, answering the question, “How will your firm’s investment in [all] categories change in 2017 compared to prior years,” more than 80% (!!!) of the respondents said they would make a greater investment in technology. Digital marketing was the next highest, which is arguably also technology-related.
There are top-tier, top-priority tech tools that can help firms drive more business, such as a terrific website, proposal automation, experience management and CRM. This is the quadrifecta. And there are many other tools that fall into more supportive roles. Focus first on the systems – because you are building them with best practices in mind – that improve your people’s abilities and capabilities, and your processes.
There is one of the four tools that rises to the top, and it plays intimately well with all three others – the experience management database. Managing experience continues to be one of the most paralyzing undertakings in law firms of any size, yet it gets more mission-critical year after year. It is where the future cash lives in your firm.
Getting started and continuing to grow the relevancy of your database are not easy, but they aren’t nearly as paralyzing as you think. Re-frame your thinking about how to go about data gathering/management – don’t start with the lawyers and their many and assorted lists of deals and cases; start with the clients – the buyers of legal services. What do they want and need to make buying decisions in your various practice and industry areas? When your planning starts with the end in mind, it ensures that your focus, and consequently, your action is always relevant.
Deborah McMurray is the founder, CEO and Strategy Architect of Content Pilot LLC, a strategy, design, content and technology company serving the professions. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.