Here is the final installment of my responses to questions by freelance writer John Egan for an article to be published in CPAmerica International’s newsletter relating to “marketing for law firms.” The first three questions related to suggestions and mistakes, and budgeting. The final two questions address the hiring of a marketing person and a viable trend in legal marketing:
4. “When should a law firm hire a dedicated marketing person?”
The day they open their law office. And the size of the firm doesn’t matter. Of course, it doesn’t have to be a full time, in-house person in every case. It could be an outsourced position or consultant. The important thing is that the firm be serious about getting professional marketing help.
As to when a law firm should hire an in-house staff person should be based on the firm’s needs and economics. Historically, there was a time when it seemed to be based on the size of the firm, and firms with less than 100 lawyers rarely had an in-house person. Now, there are firms with fewer than 30 lawyers that have a dedicated marketing person on staff. That decision should be based on when a staff position or positions make more economic sense than using outside help.
5. “What are some of the latest (viable) trends you’re seeing in legal marketing?”
I’ve never been one to believe in the “marketing idea of the week/month/year” mentality. And “trends” often are just that, the latest fad. Having said that, I see blogging as a viable trend in obtaining legal work. In essence, though, it is just a new vehicle for some of the more traditional means of developing business; that is, writing articles, making speeches, etc., all of which are ways of demonstrating one’s expertise and establishing credibility so clients will hire you.