Book Review: Law Firm Marketing – Down among the Clown Fish!
Called Rainmakers and Trailblazers: a practical step-by-step guide to effective business development for lawyers, the book draws on Kim’s extensive experience as an independent marketing and business development consultant in the legal sector and delivers precisely what it promises on the cover.
Given that business development, when done properly, is such a hugely complex, multifaceted, Kim has done a fantastic job in dividing up the subject into a logical series of steps, sections and subsections. Although I have seen some of these topics covered in other books and guides, this is the first time I have seen a book that covers everything – marketing, selling, strategy, branding, relationship management, social media – in one easy-to-read pragmatic volume.
I’m also pleased to see Kim picks up on some of my personal hobby-horses: the importance of managing the client relationship – not just the client matters – firms with an Old School, Big Law “eat what you kill” mindset are frequently at a disadvantage here; the importance of understanding the financial metrics of client relationships – if 20% of your clients generate 80% of your profits, you need to be able to identify and target the Vital Few and not waste your energies pursuing the Trivial Many; plus the fact that unless you get the rest of the business development mix right, and that includes addressing any cultural/people issues, you are wasting your money on technology systems. As Kim point out: GIGO – garbage in, garbage out.
I’d also recommend law firms copy out and post on a wall one of the key lessons Kim sets out in her executive summary at the end of the book “Look for a niche and be clear about your message. The essence of a good business development strategy is to have a clear view of who you are trying to reach and why: what value can you bring them. These days the best way to do that is through a niche approach.”
On a lighter but still highly apposite note, read and enjoy Kim’s guide to and witty definitions, plus SWOT analysis, of the 9 classic lawyer marketing styles: the Butterfly or Bee, the Peacock, the Rock Star, the Technician, the Entertainer, the Clown Fish, the Shark, the Little Black Book, and the Blogger and Tweeter. We’ve all encountered them in our working lives – in fact some of us may have been them!
Incidentally although the book is written specifically written for lawyers, most of it lessons are equally applicable to anyone working in business development within professional services generally and to people selling their own products and services into law firms. There are certainly plenty of butterflies, peacocks, rock stars, entertainers, clown fish and sharks operating in the legal IT market!
At £175, this book is not cheap however this pales into insignificance if you counted up the cost (and time) of all the conferences, seminars and training courses you’d have to attend to glean this same information.
It is available to order from here http://legal-monitor.com/rainmaker-unique-practical-guide-business-development-law-firm-partners