As we welcome in a new year many of us have set ourselves new goals. From losing weight and drinking less, to spending more time with family on the personal front. And on the business front, goals such as winning new clients, launching a new website or product and generating more profit.
There is something about being given a blank sheet of paper. It’s energising, it’s invigorating and it gives us confidence that we can achieve whatever we want. And we can, but only if we plan.
If I want to lose weight, simply stating this as a goal isn’t enough. How much weight do I want to lose and by when? Is my goal realistic? And now for the important bit, how am I going to achieve it? Typically, with a goal of weight loss, most of us will make adjustments to our eating and exercising routines, we will have a plan that will help us achieve our weight loss goal. Our plan will be specific.
Business is no different. Trying to achieve goals needs planning and you need to take a structured approach to your planning.
Take for example marketing and business development in a law firm. Too often I hear lawyers asking for things that might not actually be what they need.
“I want to run a seminar” or “I need a nice piece of literature”.
This should never be the start point of a conversation between a marketing person and a lawyer. Why? Because it’s an activity that may or may not achieve the outcome that the lawyer wants. Until you understand the ultimate goal, you can’t determine whether what is being asked for is actually what will drive the desired outcome.
Lawyers need their marketing and business development people to help them achieve their goals. Therefore lawyers need to expect to have different conversations with their marketing people in the future. Your marketing people are experts in their discipline. Use that expertise and work collaboratively to get better results from your marketing and business development activities. Expect your marketing people to ask questions, to say ‘no’ to some of your requests as they help you do ‘better’ marketing and business development that delivers the desired outcomes.
Over the coming weeks and months I will be writing a number of articles on law firm marketing and business development. I am passionate about the role marketing can and should play in every law firm. An effective marketing team working collaboratively with the lawyers with a common goal is a powerful combination. Two sets of experts working together to get results – imagine that!