Four Ways to Get Lawyers More Engaged in Using Your CRM System
In law firms, time is money, literally, and everyone is incredibly busy leaving them with little or no time to regularly update or fully utilize the CRM system. Lawyers’ highly expensive time isn’t best spent entering or updating contact data. Their time is best spent doing legal work, spending time with clients, developing business and growing relationships. As legal marketing professionals, we must recognize this and come up with different ways to utilize CRM systems to accommodate attorneys’ busy schedules.
For more than 15 years, we have served some of the nation’s top firms helping them increase attorney and stakeholder satisfaction while achieving CRM success. Here are four easy ways you can free up your attorney’s time, let lawyers be lawyers and increase the efficiency of your CRM.
1 – Regular Reporting
Legal marketers should think of different ways they can provide attorneys with information that will allow them to do their job better. This may be providing them with client intelligence reports, and who-knows-who reports, and configuring these reports so attorneys get this information when and where they need it.
Regular reporting delivers the key information and value that CRM users expect. These reports can yield insightful information and reveal “low-hanging fruit” opportunities that may have gone unnoticed. You can circulate these reports among attorneys or practice groups to help build more support for CRM adoption and encourage greater data sharing in your organization.
2 – Increase of Marketing Managers
Many firms are hiring or have already hired capable marketing technology managers who can translate attorney needs and requirements into business needs and requirements which can then be addressed by various CRM features and functions. Further, these professionals can configure the report and dashboards to adequately meet the attorney’s needs.
But hiring in-house marketing technology managers can be very expensive. That’s why more and more firms are turning to outsourcing to fill these positions and to assist with their current marketing technology infrastructure.
Outsourcing is a cost-effective solution that provides firms with the flexibility and ability to tap into resources with experience and expertise when there are challenges finding candidates with the requisite experience, or when budgets prevent hiring full-time or part-time internal staff.
3 – Use of External Feeds & Pipelines
Another way we can let lawyers be lawyers is to enhance data with information feeds from external sources like email marketing tools or pipelines. These feeds may be who-knows-who relationships, company size, revenue and time and billing integrations so activities can be tracked and client lists can be pulled.
The good news about integrated data feeds is that they just get better, but it is important to be cautious of the work that needs to be done upfront. They can be expensive, and a lot of data cleaning needs to be done initially in order to match up the records and the data will never be 100% clean.
If your email marketing system does not support bi-directional synchronization with your CRM, you’ll be left maintaining multiple ‘silos’ of data. Each will have to be updated manually, which is inefficient and can create duplicative data.
Sophisticated pipelines can also help to predict deal outcomes and project expected revenue. They can even be used to create dashboards and generate reports. By utilizing these types of analytics, lawyers can identify which opportunities may have become stalled or inactive and which ones will most likely yield the best results with the least effort.
Pipelines also provide a good way to hold attorneys accountable for developing business. Many firms have found that pipeline activity and progress reports can be effective tools to improve results and foster a bit of healthy competition within or among practices
4 – Don’t Do it Alone
If you are struggling to find ways to free up your attorney’s time or to increase the efficiency of your CRM, you aren’t alone. Circulating regular reports, finding the right people to manage your marketing technology and implementing meaningful integrations can all be very difficult and resource exhaustive. Fortunately, we have the benefit of such a supportive industry where you can reach out to colleagues, system providers or experienced subject matter experts for assistance on your own project or advice on their past failures or successes.