The recent economic crisis has had significant impact on the competitive environment for lawyers and law firms. Clients are more discretionary with their financial resources and a larger number of lawyers are competing for a smaller number of clients.
To excel in a competitive market, lawyers and law firms need to separate themselves from the pack.
Successful firms differentiate themselves and leave a memorable impression in the minds of their prospective clients and referral sources. This is achieved through an effective law firm brand.
For many lawyers, the term law firm brand is synonymous with logos and tag lines, symbols that are an outcome of a brand but are not the brand. An over reliance on a tag line, developed without a brand focus, can result in a generic, over used and undistinguishable message such as “experienced, caring and hard working law firm.”
Your law firm brand is your reputation and distinguishes you in the mind of your prospective clients and referral sources. A strong law firm brand will allow you to establish a significant and differentiated presence in your market that will attract desirable clients and referral sources.
Not creating a law firm brand can result in the following problems:
- Other people will create your brand for you.
- Your firm will not be distinguished in a competitive market
- You will not attract clients who value what you do best
- Marketing efforts will not be focused resulting in a lower ROI
- Members of your firm may not be communicating a consistent message
- Partners may be working on different strategies that drain resources and minimize results
Look at the above list. Do any of these themes sound familiar? If so, it may be time to take a step back from working in your business to working on your business. This will allow you to clarify who you are and what makes you unique so your target clients, employees and colleagues know what separates you from the pack.