After years of pulling back on spending, there is a renewed interest in training, coaching and business education in law firms, banks and other professional service firms.
Several years ago there was push-back on the topics of marketing, networking, business development, and branding. Firms were so busy working with clients that they laughed off the thoughts that the future could ever be different from the land of milk and honey. Business was rolling in, and they never thought it would change.
Then the recession hit. It hit hard. Deals dried up and prospective clients held on tight to their current vendors. The risk of making a change was too great for most customers. Professional service providers found that there was not much in their pipeline and new business was allusive.
The new clients they did find came through their trusted referral partners. Suddenly the power of long-term mutually beneficial relationships became clear. They are now hungry to cultivate connections with others in their business communities.
I have had many conversations with law firms and other organizations the last several weeks who are seeking ways to create better marketing and business development plans. There is an interest in getting both partners and associates (senior and junior employees) engaged in creating a far reaching reputation that will lead the organization to more business.
My "Integrated Visibility" program (which combines Marketing, Sales, Business Development, Advertising, PR, Networking, Social Media, and Personal Branding) is suddenly of interest to many firms who in the past had ignored the power of business relationships. Some are looking for a short-cut or an automated system, but I have never a consultant who promises "nirvana" that can actually deliver the goods. In the end nobody can do this for you. The members of an organization need to own a visibility plan that will produce results. They must work, collectively and independently, to put the pieces together..... Some Assembly IS Required!!!
Second quarter is the ideal time to embrace a culture shift within a firm. The year is underway, and if they wait too long the year will be lost. Smart firms are addressing these topics now before 2010 is gone.
Have A Great Day.