Speaker: Norm Rubenstein, Zeughauser Group
Program: Building and Maintaining Client Services Teams
How have client service standards grown within law firms today?
We live and work in a marketplace of increasing competition, and the result is that law firms today constantly are forced to re-evaluate and recommunicate their value propositions to clients, prospects, and prospective laterals. In a marketplace where the majority of firms are multi-practice and multi-office, one of the significant remaining differences among law firms is whether and how they anticipate their clients’ needs. The value-additive ways in which firms currently demonstrate commitment to their clients Include alternative fee arrangements and training for in-house legal staff, among others. The end result of all of this change in the marketplace for legal services is that law firms are doing more than ever before to validate claims that they deliver consistently higher level of service.
What do you foresee to be the top marketing and client-development initiatives five years from now?
The one thing that law firms do ineffectively is align marketing and business development. In recent years, the pendulum has swung from marketing towards business development, but an effective program combines both. Five years from now, I believe firms will be fine-turning programs that use marketing effectively to build a platform on which targeted business-development initiatives can succeed. It will be the true marriage of both marketing and business development—not the priority of one over the other.
What is your favorite aspect of being involved in legal marketing?
Hands down, it’s the people. For more than two decades, I have enjoyed extraordinary relationships with legal marketers and lawyers with whom I have worked. At the beginning of my career, other legal marketers and generous partners help shape my professional development and, over the years, they have become my closest friends. Legal marketing, and LMA specifically, is such a tightly-knit and supportive group, it’s not surprising that for those of us who have been in the industry for a while, the line between our professional and social lives has blurred. It comes down to the fact that I have fun when I go to work because I get to work with smart and informed members of our community who over time have come to be like members of a great extended family.