If you’ve been searching for an intake specialist, please read on. For all others at law firms, this could be an eye opener for you too!
Here at Sangfroid!, we work with many professional service providers–law firms, PR agencies, talent agencies, and the like. Across the board these are savvy entrepreneurs working to grow their businesses and specialists in their fields. Another thing they have in common? Almost all midsize growing firms are making at least one of these errors that could be hampering their growth.
As an Agile growth team, our mandate extends beyond our clients' SEO to ensuring they have the proper toolkit to win and capitalize on the leads they generate.
Professional services aren’t alone–we also discuss our other major vertical, tech startups, earlier in this series: Top Marketing Technology Stack Mistakes Made by Startups | Sangfroid! (sangfroidstudio.com)
Let’s jump in.
#1 Lacking a CRM
By far, the biggest missed opportunity we see is growing professional services firms operating without a CRM, or with a poorly chosen CRM.
A CRM, or Customer Relationship Management software, is a powerful operating system for any service business. At its most basic level, it’s a database of all of your customers and potential customers, but a modern CRM is so much more. It allows all of your teams to share access to a single tech powered record of every customer, for example:
- The marketing source they originated from (automatically reported)
- The stage of the customer onboarding process they are in
- All communication, emails and phone calls, between your team and the customer (automatically logged)
- How much revenue they represent
- Any support tickets or escalations
- Case data or other documents
- Quotes, signatures and invoices
- Pertinent information particular to the customer
As I’ve written before, there is simply no reason for any business with more than a handful of customers or users to be without a modern CRM. It’d be like not having email or a telephone. Or being a busy business person who claims they don’t need a calendar and can remember every appointment.
I am being dramatic to make a point–of course, many teams have some solution. Very often they use spreadsheets, that are messy half-baked solutions that don’t offer any of the benefits of modern technology, such as automatically identifying the marketing source of a lead or calculating ROI. Again, imagine how you may distrust a colleague who built their own calendar spreadsheet instead of using Google Calendar or Outlook.
Another common issue is a CRM that is just poorly chosen, and I don’t blame anyone for this as the space is crowded! There are numerous CRM options, and it’s tempting to choose a smaller less competent option for price or any other reason. At Sangfroid! we like HubSpot for any marketing leading to a live sales cycle, and of course the behemoth Salesforce for very large sales teams.
#2 Not Owning Your Own Website or Analytics
The next most common error we observe is firms using an off the shelf website product. Often these are peddled by lead generation companies, as an upsell on your ad with them. Sometimes they are provided for free, as an add-on to another piece of software.
Not that all templated sites are bad, but there are several questions to ask yourself:
Does my website look like a templated website? We encounter smaller law firms who have purchased a web marketing package from a behemoth company, and end up with a reskinned version of every other lawyers’ site, missing a huge opportunity to differentiate and stand out.
Can I easily update the site as needed? Paying for a company to update your website for you can be a great use of resources (we are a marketing agency after all), but you don’t want to be wed to that particular provider. Your website should be dynamic, sustainable and scalable.
And most importantly, do I own the traffic analytics? It might be (See Point #1) that you need a CRM in the first place to get actionable analytics. But you also have to ensure that the website you purchase allows you to track metrics important to your growth. You should distrust providers that encourage you to not worry about the analytics and to let them handle it, as growth marketing is fundamentally an exercise of identifying what marketing initiatives produce the highest value customers.
#3 Not Fully Utilizing a Project Management Tool
Lastly, it’s important to have the operational toolkit in place to handle the volume generated by marketing. For large ticket sales and professional services like legal that may generate a project that lasts months or years, we find it’s important to supplement a CRM with a task management or project management tool.
Too often we see teams managing projects over email, text or chat, when they could be deploying a project template that helps them track deadlines and ownership. At Sangfroid! we like Asana and ClickUp.
The last step of great marketing for law firms is to deliver a great service, and tools like Asana can be integrated into tools like HubSpot so that everything plays nice.
By simply picking the right tools, (and maybe the right consultants to set it all up and train your team) your workflow could be a CRM populated with new leads; information on how they encountered you; plus their various needs and where to invest your marketing dollars. This then feeds into a templatized workflow to cater to these lead and delegate tasks to your team.