Why using a Local Law Society is a great way to communicate with the Legal Profession
Five reasons why using a Local Law Society is an effective way to communicate with the Legal profession
If you’re in the business of providing services to the legal profession, it’s vital you get your message in front of the people that matter: solicitors. They need to understand your brand and trust you enough to engage with you. So what’s the best way of grabbing their attention?
A huge number of the solicitors in the areas you work in will be members of their local law society. For solicitors outside London, their local law society is the central hub for the legal profession in their region - a kind of mix between a professional body and networking group.
Most law firms have ties with their local law society. If you develop a good relationship with a local society you’re a step closer to connecting with law businesses of all sizes, from sole practitioners to firms of 500 or more staff.
So, if you’re targeting the legal profession, here are five reasons why communicating with a local law society is a great addition to your marketing mix.
1. By connecting with your local law society you’ll get known by local solicitors
Get involved with your local law society, for example by sponsoring an event, and you’ll get noticed by its members. By showing you have an active interest in their area, you’ll get closer to potential clients
Each local society focuses on the welfare of its solicitors, and offers them professional opportunities, including the chance for social networking within their region. They lay on society dinners, networking events and CPD training for their solicitors, who even get the chance to represent their Society at cricket or golf against neighbouring societies, or a local medical society. There’s lots of opportunity for suppliers to join in.
And every Society has a committee of around a dozen members, each of whom is responsible for a particular area of specialism. Making good connections with the committee members most relevant to your sphere of expertise will give you a competitive edge – they’re key to getting through to the right people in the local area.
2. You’ll gain a competitive edge by being the go-to solution for local problems
By featuring in local law society publications (newsletters, blogs, event sponsorship etc), you’ll be at the forefront of the service or product you provide.
Networking with local solicitors in this way can really open doors, and give you the chance to show how you can solve local firms’ problems and improve their overall business performance.
As with every sales process, because you’ve shown an interest in them, say by advertising in their newsletter or blog, or sponsoring one of their events, they’re more likely to listen attentively to what you have to say when pitching your product or service.
Competitors who only target the legal profession nationally miss out on getting close to local firms with local problems, which means you’ll get a head start on them.
3. You’ll keep on top of local issues that are important to your clients
It’s important to know what your potential clients are talking about – what’s ‘trending’. If you don’t know, it could seem like you don’t care.
Working with local law societies is a great way of keeping up-to-date with the things that really matter to solicitors, and their clients, locally. With this insight, you can be more targeted in your marketing messages: issues in Norfolk could be completely different from those in Liverpool or Derbyshire. Knowledge is power, as you know your clients’ main concerns and how they vary regionally. You can only gain this knowledge by working with different societies.
In each of the regions there are large firms who will have niche specialisms, and will often be leading experts in a particular field. There are different focuses such as rural issues, flooding or social deprivation, all of which will have a varying degree of importance depending on the region.
To focus in on an issue of particular relevance in a region will gain you respect from the legal community practising there.
4. You can show off your expertise to the people who matter
Local law societies are there to support every specialism of the legal profession. The specialists will all have issues that need to be solved, whether it’s new legislation and reforms, natural disasters such as flooding, or political change such as Brexit.
Your product or service is designed to help them in the ever-changing world, so it needs to be promoted and demonstrated in a professional and informative manner. This can be done in a number of ways, and ideally combined to ensure you have a grip of the people you want to inform.
For best results, and to make sure the members are fully aware of you as an organisation, consider a three-pronged attack.
• Sponsor an event and give an informative talk, predominantly highlighting the need to solve a problem, rather than focus purely on your business, as this can put people off. But do make it clear you have experience in this area and can help.
• Build a presence in local society newsletters. It’s a great way of raising your profile. And if you don’t, you risk leaving a big chink in your armour, as your competitors may well take up the opportunity. There are regularly opportunities to submit editorial articles in these publications, which is a much better way of demonstrating your expertise than through advertising alone.
• More recently, there are local law society blogs running alongside their magazines. Their big advantage over traditional newsletters is they can be read on multi-platforms (phone, tablet, laptop etc), and, importantly, allow banner adverts with click-throughs to landing pages. This new method opens up exciting new ways of keeping solicitors constantly aware or your service.
5. You can be part of your law clients’ professional development
Every solicitor has to attend continual professional development seminars to ensure they’re up-to-date with the latest legislation and developments in their specialism. All local law societies hold a number of seminars each quarter, which the relevant lawyers attend.
Sponsorship of these events is always welcome, and if you have relevant expert knowledge, there are usually opportunities to speak. As an expert speaker, you’ll grab the attention of the audience as they need to gain their CPD points and stay ahead of the game.
If you’re a source of useful advice and relevant information to with their career development, you’ll forge strong links with local solicitors. They’re much more likely to contact you if they have a problem they think you can solve.
Simon Castell is sales manager at East Park Communications, a company specialising in providing free on- and off-line magazines to the legal profession. www.eastparkcommunications.com info@ eastparkcommunications.com 0151 651 2776
For our tips on how to make the best use of technology to target solicitors, look out for our next blog: Why using a Local Law Society’s blog is the most effective way to target solicitors in a multi-platform age.