Posts Tagged ‘Larry Bodine’

Final rites for the billable hour?

October 8, 2009

Probably not but alternative fee arrangements in “this economy” are definitely picking up steam.  Increasingly firms are welcoming the opportunity rather than dragging their feet into these alternative arrangements.  Big firms report that from 10% to 30% of their revenue comes from such billing sources.  News from O’Melveny leaked that it is working on a five year plan to become the industry leader in alternative fee arrangements.  Its estimated that the amount of revenue coming from alternative fees topped more than $13 billion so far this year compared to less than $9 billion for a comparable period for 2008.

And now Larry Bodine reports that its become a topic for a paid seminar to assist firms with making the transistion.   So now alternative fee arrangements are a premiere marketing tool definitely a sign of big change.

NOT ROI in one page

September 24, 2009

I’m not here to pick fights with name brand legal marketing consultants.  HOWEVER, when Larry Bodine includes as a headline, “Proving Marketing ROI in One Page” and then offers up a “report” to senior management of marketing activities, I have to speak up.

ROI is Return on Investment (sorry to restate the obvious but it seems necessary in this instance.)  An inventory of marketing activities is only the “investment” portion of the equation.  The “return” is the part that interests senior management.   So listing the RFPs that the marketing department prepared and sent out the door is only the first part.  The “return” is which of those activities resulted in more business. 

And here is the kicker: marketing departments don’t generate new business for the law firm.  They assist the attorneys to generate new business and the key to a successful ROI strategy is building strong partnerships with the attorneys so that they are targeting the right opportunities, pitching the firm’s service in a compelling way, including the appropriate attorneys in their pitches and proposals.

Also, a report just of marketing activities provides a deceptive picture of ROI.  A pitch or a newsletter may take years to pay off.  That doesn’t mean those efforts are wasted but its important for management to understand that successful marketing takes time, resources and persistence.   I would include a section above the list of marketing efforts that describes the in-roads attorneys are making with potential prospects and clients.  That requires communication with the attorneys about marketing efforts and that is far more important than providing a list of marketing department activities to senior management.

Larry Bodine responds to Twitter dust-up

September 23, 2009

Mr. Bodine’s argument is that Twitter is declining in usage and that only 4% of in-counsel use it so don’t bother with Twitter for client development. 

First, he undercuts his own argument by admitting that his article was, “all over Twitter” which suggests that there is plenty of interest in Twitter by folks doing legal business development. 

Second, 4% of in-counsel isn’t such an awful number.  Say, there are ten thousand in-house lawyers (very low estimate) then 400 use Twitter.  Say, you manage to get 10% or forty of them to follow you.   That’s a bad thing?

Third, if Twitter is simply a component of your business development strategy, one that you don’t sink much time or money into, how can you lose by using it? 

Larry Bodine’s response