5 Ways to Make Business Development More Successful

Legal firms are more focused than ever when it comes to creating business development strategies for the coming year, especially with the increased pressure that many firms are facing from new market entrants offering volume services at low cost.

To compete, it is crucial that firms have targeted plans with clear objectives about the type of customers they want to attract, how they plan to attract them and, importantly, how they keep them once they have been acquired.  Data is central to making those plans successful.

Here are our top 5 ways to harness data and business intelligence for more successful sales development programs:

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Leverage the Right Kind of Social media for Your Customers

Social media shouldn’t be your only marketing strategy, despite the popularity and hype surrounding its importance in revenue generation activities. In fact, only 4% of lawyers surveyed by Attorney at Work (2015) cited social media as being very responsible for customer acquisition. However, it does have a part to play in a wider, strategic marketing plan. The same survey found that 60% of interviewees said that social media formed part of their marketing activities, and 39% said LinkedIn was the most effective channel.

Additionally, different social media platforms will produce different results depending on your customers. It is widely recognized that Facebook is a great business to consumer marketing platform, whereas LinkedIn is generally more business to business focused. But of course, there are exceptions to the rule.

Data analytics can help you see what channels are producing the best results for you so that your marketing teams can focus their attention on the most appropriate platforms. Also, data tools can be employed to analyze social media sentiment and see what customers, prospects, and industry contacts are saying about your firm.

Keep Your Enemies Close

A key part of any business development activity is having up-to-date, relevant information about your competitors. This can cover a wide range of areas, including:

  • What type of customers they tend to work with
  • Their marketing strategies
  • Their branding, mission statements, and strategic messaging
  • Their client engagement approach
  • Industry perspectives and news items on your competitor
  • Business developments such as published case studies

By being informed about your competitor, you can compete more effectively and pre-empt negative positioning against your company before it has a chance to sway potential customers. Many social selling tools now exist to help keep track of competitors so that sales teams can stay informed.

Keep Your Friends Closer

Your clients are your number one priority, and business analytics can help ensure that you always deliver a consistent customer experience to clients. For instance, law firms are starting to use big data to look at how customers interact with their brand, such as when they telephone your help desk, how long they are kept waiting on the phone, how long it takes a member of your team to respond to their email through your Web site, etc. This means that organizations can start to plan resources around improving responsiveness to potential new clients, in an informed and calculated manner.

Data also can aid in the sales strategy development by helping to compile a target customer list, based on demographics, location, and type of services customers tend to purchase, among many other traits. For business to business firms, sales teams can analyze customer spend across different departments and create plans to increase the share of wallet within customer accounts if they spot that certain services are purchased elsewhere.

Keep Current Clients

It is a well known fact that it is much cheaper to retain an existing client than it is to acquire a new customer (think about the costs and resources involved in tender processes, sales cycles, and demand generation).  However, client expectations are rising.

Clients today are demanding better access to information across their accounts, performance against KPIs, and case updates. Data analytics can aid in governing, administering, and delivering this information to customers in an automated and timely fashion.

With more and more client interactions being conducted online, through Web portals, and over email, the expectation from clients is that they should have instant access to the information they want, when they want it, and from wherever they may be. Therefore, providing real-time info to clients through a mobile app or Web interface can help ensure that clients keep coming back to you rather than looking elsewhere for better service.

Additionally, data collected about your customers can ensure that your firm responds quickly to certain trends that could indicate a customer is considering leaving your firm, based on historic data.

In short, analytics can put your sales teams in the driver’s seat when it comes to customer engagement and service delivery.

Monitor, Refine, and Improve

Data is a great tool in constantly refining your sales and business development processes, by showing progress against targets and against historic performance. By laying analytics across a firm’s marketing channels, sales teams can get an accurate view of where their main source of sales leads are being generated from. This can indicate that more investment would be pertinent in certain areas based on ROI ratios.

Analytics also can help with driving sales behaviors across your organization by providing sales people with access to win/loss ratios within their account base. This can help them identify trends and patterns that result in more successful sales cycles. If sales people get into the habit of reviewing their data and current performance positions prior to engaging with a client, it can guide their conversations based on client spend in certain areas, trends within the customer’s account, or general industry sentiment gained from social media streams.


Data can bring a new perspective to existing sales processes, shedding fresh light on a current client base and creating new sales opportunities with prospects. The key to leveraging all of the data that a firm currently has is to integrate internal data sources with external data sources, such as social media, news streams, and client engagement details. For more information, C24 published a white paper titled, “EMPLOYING BUSINESS ANALYTICS TO ACHIEVE BETTER SALES RESULTS” available here, which goes into more detail about how legal firms can harness business analytics for better sales and revenue generation results.

C24 Ltd

C24 is an application delivery specialist, specializing in application hosting, on-premise deployments and business intelligence. We deliver business applications across the globe. We operate out of the UK from two tier IV data centers (tier IV been the highest accreditation for data centers), delivering business applications to numerous UK professional service companies, European manufactures and many other vertically specific organizations. Click here for more information.

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