Business Development

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Business Plan Basics

Every business should have a plan—from tech start-ups to law firms. The process of creating a document that details the thoughts and ideas of the owners or founders of the business allows for a realistic appraisal of the...more

Finding Clients by Telling Stories

On the morning of Halloween 2003, 13-year-old Bethany Hamilton was surfing close to her home on the island of Kauai. Bethany had big plans. She was training for her next surf competition, a stepping stone for bigger...more

Don’t Neglect Old Clients in Search of a Shiny New Penny

How much time do you typically spend each month seeking new clients? If you’re like many other firm lawyers, you are devoting great blocks of time to RFPs, speaking engagements, industry conferences, entertainment and much...more

Recap: How our Business Survived Three Generations of Family Leadership and Ownership

Two generations of the Hemingway family recently shared their experiences with partnering for growth and developing the next generation. On January 20, 2016, at Davis Wright Tremaine’s Seattle Office, Jon Hemingway, Chairman...more

The Importance of a Business Plan

A business plan is a very important component of a start-up business. It can and should be used as a tool for understanding how your business is put together. It can be used to monitor progress and hold yourself accountable....more

5 Essential Steps to Keeping your Client-Centric Resolutions

January 17 has been designated Ditch New Year’s Resolutions Day because that is about how long most people who make resolutions actually stick with them. According to research conducted by Statistic Brain, only 8% of...more

You’re So Vain: Why Some Law Firm Metrics Aren’t Advancing the Practice

A blog post (oddly from 2009) resurfaced in my newsfeed recently from Tim Ferris, author of The Four-Hour Work Week. The featured content highlighted the difference between vanity metrics – those that give the appearance that...more

Why Your Clients Hate to Call You

The year is still new, but the refrain remains the same. Lawyers in firms are finally back at work, catching up from the protracted holiday break and now excited about the promise the new year brings. Yet I’ve already had the...more

Leveraging Lessons Learned is Like Turning on a Light

If you learn a lesson, you are unlikely to repeat the mistake you made. Consider this like turning on a flashlight while walking around in the dark. It helps you avoid running into a piece of furniture. If you learn a lesson...more

Be Prepared to Answer the AFA Question

Alternative fee arrangements (AFAs) are often studied, often debated and only sometimes tried. But with clients becoming more sophisticated in their choice of outside counsel and use of fee arrangements, you need to be...more

The ONE Thing You Must Do In Your Practice Every Day

You already know that you have to turn on the lights in your office. You have to turn on your laptop. You have to wake up the copier. You have to pay your bills. …and dozens of other duties that...more

2016, A Big Year For Relationship Building

Project work is fine, whether it’s responding to an overreaching trademark cease and desist letter, helping out with a re-branding project, drafting changes to a license agreement, reclaiming a domain name, assisting with...more

Trust in this business takes time

Suppose someone you never met before comes up to you and asks whether they can stay at your house or someone you never heard of, all of a sudden wants to be your partner and best friend. Any business relationship and any...more

Talk is Cheap—But Often Highly Valuable

Towards the end of the year, our interview schedules slow down and we spend our days developing new content, cleaning up files and planning for the New Year. It is a great time to reflect and focus. A recent week of events...more

Partners in Service: Benefits of a Lawyer-Client Pro Bono Team

As attorneys, we are fortunate to be in a profession that provides a unique and meaningful opportunity to serve our community. Pro bono service allows us to put our specialized skills and experience to work to better the...more

JDB 085: Proven Strategies for Getting Clients NOW!

My practice is proof that creating a robust content marketing strategy and then following through on it can be very effective and profitable in building a law practice. But it takes time – a lot of time. And when bills...more

Five Free Tools for Attorneys to Create Better Client Invoices

In general, as attorneys there are certain things we’re good at, and certain things that, as a general rule, we struggle with. When it comes to crafting a creative argument, reading a jury, or responding to a curveball thrown...more

The GC’s Perspective: Relationships Are Key

In my annual year-end scramble to obtain the required Continuing Legal Education credits, I attended a GC panel hosted by our local Legal Marketing Association. As the moderator asked the panel members questions about how...more

JDB 084: 3 Powerful Ways to Turn Law Firm Website Visitors into Clients

When it comes to law firm advertising there is a lot of focus on increasing the traffic to your website and helping you reach the coveted first page of the Google search engine rankings. However getting potential clients to...more

Your Solo Law Practice Can Compete Against Big Budget Law Firms

I regularly speak with solo and mid-sized firms who feel they won’t be able to compete against those who have large marketing budgets. This concern is more than understandable. It is, after all, intimidating to think...more

Advice for the Lawyer Who Hates Business Development

I believe many—if not most—lawyers choose to attend law school in part because they hate the idea of having to sell something. They go to law school to learn about the complex system of laws and rules and the subtleties of...more

JDB 079: Can Lawyers Really Get Clients through Social Media?

For many lawyers the whole concept of social media is just a big waste to time. And it can be. Whether it is Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+ social media is a guilty pleasure for most, but can it actually be a...more

Date Your Way to Cross-Selling Success

Earlier this year, a CMO friend asked for help designing and delivering a two-hour session on business development at the annual women partners’ retreat. Business development had been a topic at every retreat for a number of...more

JDB 074: Content Marketing – How Much, How Often?

A few weeks ago I sent out an email to all of the subscribers to the JDBlogger Podcast asking one question – “what is your number one question and/or problem when it comes to marketing a solo practice.” The response was...more

Speculation: Why Gaining Competitive Advantage Demands More than Efficiencies

As many traditional law firms grapple with how to do what they do now better or more efficiently, there are only a handful (read: almost none) who are truly preparing themselves for the future. Why? Because doing the same...more

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