Marketing Comment: How the legal profession can bring sales to order with marketing automation
David Gilroy of Conscious Solutions looks at how the legal profession can get to grips with the world of marketing automation…
If you are in the business of selling to the legal profession, or are involved in marketing legal services, then you will know that those working in this sector generally play to a strict set of rules. I’ve built up a good nose for what works (straight-talking, know your stuff, don’t waste their time) and what doesn’t (hyperbole, cold-calling, winging it).
Lawyers and solicitors are incredibly busy and, in the main, take responsibility for marketing and sales on top of their legal work. This means that the marketing function within many law firms is often neglected and selling can be sporadic, hit and miss and low down on the priority list.
A perfect storm for marketing automation
Law practitioners, with their love of precision, lack of time and overall dislike of one size fits all marketing techniques, offer up the perfect set of conditions for taking advantage of marketing automation tools and processes.
Far from a mass, anonymised approach to sales and prospecting for business, today’s marketing automation techniques shorten sales processes by identifying and tracking potential and existing customers. This results in insightful and helpful sales and marketing activities: ideal for selling legal services.
Tracking tools and software that identify who is landing on a website, what they do when they get there and how often they return can build up customer and prospect profiles. These are warm leads with real intelligence behind them as to what the individual is interested in.
By monitoring this activity, law practitioners can assess what kind of follow-up will work best: perhaps a call if it is an existing customer, or an email on a specific service that they have been browsing through. The more savvy firms may look at remarketing techniques such as online ad placement that puts their adverts on the other websites and search engines that their prospect goes on to visit.
The beauty of this approach is that it is manageable and flexible – there is no mass, blunt tool approach (unless that’s what you want). It is also highly measurable with tracking and insight down to an individual level. There are lots of tools available; we recommend CANDDi to our customers – it provides a wealth of data, is intuitive, easy to use and highly affordable compared to most of the competition.
One line of code, one hour per day, one client per week
When I am speaking to prospects in the legal sector, I introduce the concept of marketing automation by asking them if they can allocate one hour each day to their marketing and sales efforts. In the first instance, this hour is to be spent seeding out opportunities – perhaps an email newsletter issued to a customer database, or direct emails to individual prospects who have recently enquired through the company website. These soft marketing approaches can be easily tagged with a individually generated CANDDi code that then tracks who clicks on the hyperlink contained in the email and what they then go on to do.
Once a stream of prospect data starts to filter through the CANDDi system, the sales follow-up process becomes easier, and can be tailored to be more relevant to the needs of the individual. The lawyer or solicitor is also forearmed with some data – where the prospect is located, what services they are interested in, which company they work for etc. All of this data is either gathered through online form capture or appended from other data sources.
With this approach, my customers who use this technique are bringing on board at least one new client each week and feel comfortable that this technique is manageable, effective and fits with how they want to be seen to be marketing their business.
Putting in the groundwork
What may sound daunting and well out of the comfort zone of many legal professionals is actually pretty straightforward when you get into the nuts and bolts of what you need to do. You don’t have to be an online techy whizz to be able to take advantage of the latest marketing technologies. These tools are designed to be user friendly, save time and bring measurable results. You just need to put the groundwork in and the returns will follow.