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by Monisha Parker |

LM Feature: Heather McCullough & Jill Huse | Society 54

society 54

We had the opportunity to pick the brains of Society 54's very own, Jill Huse and Heather McCullough. Check out our interview for great insight into legal marketing trends and tips for your firm.

1) What has been the biggest marketing success you've seen at a law firm?  

In working with a firm based in the Carolina’s, we were able to help them establish a firm-wide program that focused on building an internal culture that supported business development at various stages of attorneys’ careers. We were ecstatic to see this firm of nearly 200 attorneys embrace the challenge that was put forth.  They had 94% participation in the program— attorneys reported a 80% increase in cross-servicing initiatives and participated in over 40 different programs that were geared toward developing and enhancing client development skills.

2) What social media channels have you found to be the most effective in law firm marketing?  

 This really depends on the firm and those who will be actively participating in using social media (notice the word “actively”!). Twitter is great to connect with audiences who want information in bite-sized pieces and are willing to follow links that you’ve posted.  LinkedIn works well for posting thought leadership pieces and connecting with very specific groups.  Facebook is a great avenue for firms looking to promote their firm culture and community involvement.  The key to being effective in any of these channels is to be actively engaged with other users so that there is online dialogue.  In addition, don’t try to be everywhere.  Choose one or two channels where you can best promote your firm and encourage the attorneys to engage and stay involved.

3) What advice do you have for attorneys who are considering blogging as part of their marketing efforts? 

 The most important thing is to be prepared. Don’t decide to start a blog and jump online with one post and then wait another month or two before posting again.  Have a plan set before you launch, along with several months of pre-drafted material, and then work the plan.  When something occurs that is time sensitive and needs to be posted, you will have the flexibility to utilize some of the pre-drafted material so that you are able to stay on track.  Also, keep the content brief (two paragraphs maximum) and provide links to articles that help to underscore the points that you are making.  These external links will be helpful in raising SEO for the post to drive more viewing traffic.

4) If you could tell attorneys one thing about the importance of legal marketing what would it be? 

It is a key component of a firm’s plan which works to build better and stronger relationships both externally and internally.

5) Fill in the blank. “The most important thing to remember in legal marketing is _____________. Explain. 

 To find your champion.  It is difficult to promote and execute firm initiatives when they are “owned” solely by the marketing department.  Having an attorney within the firm who believes in the cause and who can champion your efforts is critical to getting buy-in from the firm as a whole.

6) What would you say are the top 3 things for lawyers to keep in mind when developing a marketing plan? 

1) Create 3-4 long term goals (write them down).

2) List the activities that you will undertake to achieve your long-term goals. Choose 3-5 of these activities and assign them to the next 3 months; the next 3-5 activities to the following 3 months, etc. 

3) Give this plan to someone (your assistant, colleague, spouse) who will hold you accountable to following through on your plan.

7) In looking at the current industry trends and evolving technology, what is your suggestion to firms as to the best use of their marketing dollars? 

First, look at your firm’s strategic plan and only spend money for technology that will help you achieve your objectives.  There are lots of resources available but if they aren’t helping you move the firm in the right direction, they serve no purpose for you.

8) What resources would you recommend for attorneys who may have ethical concerns when it comes to marketing? 

Make friends with those serving on your State Bar Ethics Committee. They are a wealth of information and can guide you in the right direction.

9)  What is the best way for attorneys at small firms and solo practitioners to develop business?

 Relationships and client care. Networking with current clients and referral sources is one of the most important things that you can do along with treating your current clients with the very best service that you can provide.  Your  current clients are critical to long-term success as they are your best source for work as well as future referrals - - as long as you are making sure that your service is top-notch.  It is also important to to to be credentialing yourself through various thought leadership opportunities and utilizing social media to broaden your reach to prospective clients. 

 

jill huse


Society 54 Co-Founder Jill Huse is renowned as a trusted professional services advisor.  Jill, a certified Worldwide Association of Business Coaches Coach, is highly regarded for her progressive ingenuity, research-based strategy and, most importantly, her ability to deliver results for clients.Society 54 Co-Founder Jill Huse is renowned as a trusted professional services advisor.  Jill, a certified Worldwide Association of Business Coaches Coach, is highly regarded for her progressive ingenuity, research-based strategy and, most importantly, her ability to deliver results for clients. Contact Jill at jill@society54.com


heather mccullough


Society 54 Co-Founder Heather McCullough is two parts wit and one part tenacity, with heaping doses of creativity and intellect on the side. Heather represents the power of hard work, strategy and collaboration. For more than 14 years, she has brought game-changing results to professional services firms across the Southeast. As the director of business and practice development at one of the most well-respected law firms in the Carolinas, Heather oversaw all aspects of firm branding and business development, including communications, client relations, events and business development – – all while keeping a keen eye on budgets and ROI. Contact Heather at heather@society54.com.

Follow Society 54 on Twitter @Society54. Visit Society 54 online at http://society54.com/.


About the Author

Monisha Parker

Monisha Parker is the Marketing Coordinator for Lawyers Mutual. Monisha connects Lawyers Mutual with our insureds and the legal community through the use of social media. You can reach Monisha at 800.662.8843 or monisha@lawyersmutualnc.com.

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