Are your services being upstaged by your brand?

It is natural for law firms to give their brand top billing in their marketing materials but it’s turning off droves of potential clients.

Law firms often feature their brand at the centre of their marketing materials because it is the one thing that brings all the partners and their teams together.

However, clients don’t buy brands they buy solutions to their problems. Certainly they need to see the brand but they don’t ‘buy’ the brand. Instead, they buy services that solve their problems and if you want to engage them and capture their attention you need to start talking about those services, in fact, you need to shout about them.

If you are not putting your services centre stage it’s little wonder that prospective clients look at your marketing materials and glaze over because all they see is soundbites and pictures of team members and endorsements from happy clients. Don’t misunderstand me, all these things have a role to play but it’s a supporting role not the main event.

Employment Lawyers are looking for clients that want ‘a Toolkit for managing redundancies from start to finish’ or ‘a set of contracts and policies to ensure legal compliance’ or ‘a complete HR management package’ so give those services top billing and demote the sound bites about quality and relationships to the supporting cast.

If you don’t believe me just take a few minutes to analyse your own buying behaviour. For instance, how do you go about buying a holiday? The likelihood is that like millions of other people you search Google for holidays to your preferred destination. In other words your primary interest is in the product not ‘quality travel agents’! Certainly you will carry out due diligence before buying, but it isn’t the first thing on your mind and the same goes for your clients.

Ten myths about marketing legal services

Specifically written for lawyers this article by Bruce W Marcus hits the nail on the head. He also explains the reasoning behind his arguments which is comforting for us lawyers!  Ten Myths That Impede Marketing Success | CoolAvenues.com | MBA Network of IIMs, ISB, Bajaj, XLRI, FMS, SPJAIN. He is releasing a new book which may be well worth reading. [Bruce W. Marcus is a Connecticut-based lawyer in marketing and strategic planning for professional firms, the author of Competing For Clients, and the forthcoming The New Professional Firm: Competing For Clients In The 21st Century.]

How to get clients to buy your services

You will enjoy increased revenues if you have a product ladder that provides your clients with an opportunity to spend small amounts on early purchases and builds up to higher priced services. This is how accountants work when they offer a low cost payroll service because it helps them build a relationship with the client before offering them higher priced accountancy services.

Last winter a lawyer I know had flu and stayed in bed for a few days on sick leave. She later told me that while watching TV she had bought an egg timer from a shopping channel and that this had led to a direct mail offer for a larger purchase which she also bought.

The reason that Amanda told me this story was because this was a ‘eureka!’ moment for her. It helped her understand how the product ladder works and how she could apply it to her employment law practice. She realised that she needed to develop a set of steps including a first rung on the ladder.

This first step would tempt employers to become her clients and would not require a big commitment from them. Since then she has launched a product ladder that spans all budgets and tells me that it has already increased her sales by 30% and works wonders for client retention. Not bad for a few days on sick leave!

Tempting employment law services can include products such as standalone toolkits (e.g. recruitment or redundancy), industry specific email briefings, stepping-up programmes for growth businesses and so forth. The key is that the product ladder should address all levels of need so that you can match the right service to the right client at the right time and build a long term profitable relationship.

Warm regards

Carolyn

P.S. why not check out more marketing services for lawyers at my website.