Legal Networking for Business Development


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This presentation focuses on networking tips and strategies attorneys can use to build their business and enhance client relationships.
Key Topics include:
-How to identify and build your network
-Building your personal brand to improve relationships
-Online and offline tools for effective client development
-Effective strategies for maintaining relationships

Published in: Business
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  • Things I am not going to talk about include: How to dress; eat; walk and shake hands. These are lessons
  • Legal Networking for Business Development

    1. 1. Networking to Build Your Business Strategies for Client Development March 17, 2010
    2. 2. <ul><li>Co-Founder of Maven, a full service, strategic communications agency located in Philadelphia </li></ul><ul><li>Big agency experience, entrepreneurial attitude </li></ul><ul><li>Specialized experience in legal and professional service communications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Public relations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Message development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Strategic planning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Crisis management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Corporate and executive branding and media training </li></ul></ul>Rebecca Devine, Principal Maven Communications
    3. 3. <ul><li>Statistically, all of us have a network of at least 200 people </li></ul>Networking <ul><li>The key is to foster your network into active RELATIONSHIPS </li></ul><ul><li>It’s not about selling; it’s about connecting </li></ul>
    4. 4. Who is in your network? <ul><li>Clients </li></ul><ul><li>Other attorneys </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-competing firms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Attorneys with conflicts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Opposing counsel </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law school contacts </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Colleagues </li></ul><ul><li>Judges </li></ul><ul><li>Consultants (accountants, bankers, financial advisors, executive recruiters) </li></ul><ul><li>Alumni </li></ul><ul><li>Neighbors </li></ul><ul><li>Friends and Family </li></ul>
    5. 5. Where are your opportunities? <ul><li>CLE events </li></ul><ul><li>Bar Association events </li></ul><ul><li>Fundraisers </li></ul><ul><li>Charity functions </li></ul><ul><li>HASP sponsored events </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sponsorship Tickets </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Coffee shop </li></ul><ul><li>… and pretty much every public space </li></ul>
    6. 6. Building Your Network <ul><li>Focus on Current Clients and Referral Relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Current Clients are your biggest source of potential new business </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3 – 5 times cheaper than obtaining new clients </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>You already know them </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Referrals can help grow your business and make you an invaluable resource to others </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Referrals are the people you know – accountants, friends, alumni, etc. </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. Building Your Network <ul><li>Focus on Current Clients and Referral Relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Remember – most successful relationships are like plants – they need constant tending to grow. </li></ul><ul><li>It doesn’t happen overnight! </li></ul>
    8. 8. Networking Basics <ul><li>Preparation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Build your brand first </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Set goals and expectations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Learn about current clients and referral sources </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Get involved </li></ul><ul><li>Use social media tools </li></ul><ul><li>Follow up </li></ul><ul><li>Be patient – ongoing persistence and consistency are key. </li></ul><ul><li>Periodically check in on goals </li></ul>
    9. 9. Preparation <ul><li>Build Your Brand First </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Look and act the part </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>First impressions are still important </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Preparation <ul><li>Build Your Brand First </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Competence: Describe your knowledge, skills and expertise and experience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Approach: Describe your strengths. Describe your experience. What are you known for at the firm? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Firm Knowledge: Do you know what is going on at HASP? Do you know what other attorneys are working on? Be able to communicate your colleagues strengths and experience. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Remember: Your first priority should be mastering the craft. </li></ul></ul>
    11. 11. Preparation <ul><li>Create your elevator speech </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Describe what you do in 30 seconds or less </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use it as a tool to promote conversation </li></ul></ul>
    12. 12. Preparation <ul><li>Good: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>I am an attorney that helps keep people out of prison </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I save businesses money </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I protect small businesses from being taken advantage of </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bad: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>I am a lawyer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I am a litigator </li></ul></ul>
    13. 13. Preparation <ul><li>Sample Elevator Speeches </li></ul><ul><li>My name is Rebecca Devine. I help corporations , non-profits and individuals build better relationships to improve bottom line business results. As a principal of Maven, I help clients connect with internal and external audiences via public relations, message development and marketing consulting. </li></ul>
    14. 14. Preparation <ul><li>Sample Elevator Speeches – Legal </li></ul><ul><li>My name is Andy the Ampersand and I help businesses and business owners address disputes that affect their bottom line. As an attorney at HASP, I help clients find the best solution – whether its to settle a case or take it to trial – so they can sleep at night. </li></ul>
    15. 15. Preparation <ul><li>Set Goals & Expectations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Who do you want to talk to at each event? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Who do you know at the event that you can introduce someone to? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What action item do you want to take away from the encounter? </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Preparation <ul><li>Research participants you want to talk to before the event </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Who is the host? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Who will be attending? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is going on with their business? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Who do you want as your client? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Size: Small to medium regional businesses; large, public corporations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Industry: Health care, financial, manufacturing, law </li></ul></ul></ul>
    17. 17. Preparation <ul><li>Don’t forget to bring - AND TAKE - business cards to each event </li></ul><ul><li>Pack a pen! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Make notes on cards you receive so you know who they are </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Enter their information into your database after the event </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Periodically check in with contacts to stay top of mind </li></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Tips for Success: #1 - Get Involved <ul><li>Don’t just join – increase your visibility by getting involved </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bar Association committees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-profit boards </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pro-bono case boards </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Industry trade groups </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alumni association groups </li></ul></ul>
    19. 19. Tips for Success: #2 - Let me tell you a little story about a man named Shhhh
    20. 20. Tips for Success: #3: Listen for Business
    21. 21. Tips for Success: #4 - Know Thy Client <ul><li>Before you meet a client: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get to know your clients business – what makes them tick? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ask thoughtful questions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Demonstrate your knowledge of the industry, the company </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No Fishing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer referrals where you can </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide insight on what you’re hearing about the market </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Take notes – writing things down demonstrates an active interest </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>LISTEN, LEARN, REPEAT </li></ul></ul>
    22. 22. Tips for Success: #4 - Know Thy Client <ul><li>Sample Questions: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What are your future goals for the company in the next 12 months? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tell me a little about some obstacles your company has encountered in the past. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Are there any foreseeable changes you see that may impact the firm? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I’ve been reading a lot about XYZ company issue in the news. How have you been handling this issue internally? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How can HASP help make your job easier? </li></ul></ul>
    23. 23. Tips for Success: #4 - Know Thy Client <ul><li>Avoid : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Dominating the conversation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The hard sell </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ignoring non-verbal cues </li></ul></ul>
    24. 24. So You’ve Connected…Now What? <ul><li>Follow up after each encounter </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Thank you notes - old school yet effective </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Add each contact to InterAction with notes on where you met them and relevant details (met at PBA event; likes scotch; may need accountant referral) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Connect on LinkedIn or other social media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Set a reminder on your calendar to follow up with specific contacts </li></ul></ul>
    25. 25. So You’ve Connected…Now What? <ul><li>Stay Top Of Mind - Send relevant news and firm updates REGULARLY that impact their business </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Use your resources to demonstrate to clients/referrals you are thinking of them </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Google Alerts ( </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Lexis Nexis </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>RSS </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>LinkedIn and Social Media </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep issues top of mind, proactively contact them when you see relevant news in the marketplace </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Personally send relevant thought leadership materials and client alerts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Invite them to HASP hosted client events or HASP sponsored events </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Schedule follow up meetings or calls </li></ul></ul>
    26. 26. So You’ve Connected…Now What? <ul><li>Consistently monitor and check in on your relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Match them up with your goals and assess how they are working for you </li></ul>
    27. 27. So You’ve Connected…Now What? <ul><li>MAKE THE ASK </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Once you’ve established a trusted relationship, you have to take the plunge </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not feel awkward about asking referral sources, friends and contacts for business in the right way - you are sending them business as well! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Ask - How can we help you? </li></ul></ul></ul>
    28. 28. <ul><ul><li>Keep at it </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Have an entrepreneurial mindset – set goals; know who your targets are </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Learn about your clients and referral sources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow up after each activity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Think of ways to keep in touch </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>News on the client, legislative updates, client alerts </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Leverage online tools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Treat networking like any other legal matter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>4-6 hours week </li></ul></ul></ul>Tips for Success
    29. 29. Discussion/Q&A
    30. 30. Discussion/Q&A <ul><li>Doesn’t this take up too much time? </li></ul><ul><li>I’m already involved with several associations, but nothing has happened – what gives? </li></ul><ul><li>Can’t I just wait for business to come to me? </li></ul><ul><li>How do I know what to ask for? </li></ul><ul><li>What about social media? </li></ul>