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During 2013, I spent considerable time answering this question by writing a book called “Rainmakers & Trailblazers: A practical step-by-step guide to effective business development for lawyers showing how their support teams can help”.
These days lawyers have to be structured and sophisticated in their business development – and understand the integrated processes of strategic planning, marketing, selling and relationship management. They must also use a variety of digital methods and social media in an intelligent way.
They must understand how to develop their practice within the context of the fast-changing markets and the firm’s overall strategic ambitions and its cultural style and use the available resources within their support teams appropriately. I have touched on these points in the book, which has a structure that provides a trail through the business development process:
The lawyer perspective
- Marketing fundamentals as they apply to law firm business development
- Prepare yourself
- Deepen existing relationships
- Raise your profile
- Make connections
- Generate new business
- Get help
- Finalise your plan
In the context of the market, your firm and department
- The market
- Your firm’s strategy and plans
- Make friends with finance
- Love your marketing and PR team
- Who’s managing sales and relationship management?
- The need for information, research and knowledge management – and technology
- Help from human resources