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LOMA : Articles
PLANNING AND WHAT TO INCLUDE
IN A MARKETING PLAN
By Patricia Yevics
Director, Law Office Management
Maryland State Bar Association, Inc.
Planning is necessary regardless of the size of the firm
a. Planning is just as important for new practitioners
as for experienced practitioners
b. Planning can be as simple or as sophisticated as you wish to
Planning must be in writing.
If it is not in writing, it is just wishful thinking. The written
plan can be as simple as a marketing to-do list which you have
with you or in front of you at all times.
It must have specific goals, such as "I am going to take
one referral source to lunch every two weeks". You must know
what you hope to accomplish.
The plan can be a document that is the result of working with
a consultant working on your own.
Regardless of how it is written or who is involved in the process,
the plan must be easy to follow and monitor.
The plan must be fluid and reviewed continuously. This reviewing
process can mean different things to different firms. Review you"plan"
quarterly to make certain you are on target. Do not become discouraged
if you have not completed every task.
Do not make the goals too difficult to achieve. It is not realistic
to think that you are going to talk with 10 prospects a week.
You need to monitor your tasks on a regular basis.
SOME BASIC ITEMS TO CONSIDER FOR YOUR MARKETING PLAN
Even if you choose to work with a marketing consultant or agency,
you need to be able to answer the questions listed.
A Marketing plan should include some of the following questions:
- What type of practice or what type of firm do we have now?
- What services do we offer?
- What types of clients do we have? You might consider putting
them into categories by size, geographic location, type
of matter, profitability.
- Which of our current clients offer the greatest potential
- What type of employees do we have? Do they have the same
enthusiasm for client service as you do?
(Every person who works for you should be able to answer
- How are we currently viewed in the marketplace?
- Who is your competition?
- How do you currently get clients?
- Which clients refer you business? If you have clients
who never refer you business, what is the reason?
- What are your other business referrals?
- Have you referred to business to other professionals who
have never referred you business? If yes, why?
- Why do clients choose you over other attorneys?
- Why do clients not choose you over other attorneys and why
do clients leave?
- What type of firm do you want to be?
- Do you wish to explore new areas of the law to practice?
If yes, what will you need to do to develop a new area?
- Do you wish to more into other geographical locations?
Do you wish to attract a different type of client? What type
of client do you wish to attract?
- Be very specific. Clients who pay is not specific enough.
- Make a list of clients you would realistically like to
have. Find out how to get in front of them.
- What specific activities are you going to do to make the plan
- have lunch with two referral sources a week
- contact two clients who you have not spoken to in the
past two months
- write an article each quarter and get it printed in a
newsletter or journal
- communicate with all clients quarterly
- How will you monitor your progress?