In the previous articles, I focused on how being too close to the business and how time/priority limitations both pose serious challenges for many legal service providers. In this final article, I’ll concentrate on the infrastructure necessary for measuring results.
Marketing is more science than art. In the legal vertical it’s not about winning awards for the best (read pretty) artwork, nor the company that throws the biggest party at a conference, it’s about strategy, executing the strategy, and at the end-of-the-day…results. Knowing what’s working (and doing more of it) and what’s not (and doing less of it) are the keys to marketing success.
Why is it so difficult for DIY marketing to succeed?
- Failing to build a proper foundation
Creating an integrated marketing strategy that is appropriate for your market segment is commonly overlooked by DIY marketers. Looking down the road to an exit strategy makes good sense even for the earliest of start-ups. After all, how many races are won by runners who haven’t studied the course? Whether it’s a sprint or a marathon, you have to have a clear vision of where you’re going in order to get there in the shortest possible time.
Identifying the mid-points helps you keep a check on the results and adjust both your goals and strategies. Knowing what you want to achieve and when gives you the tools to analyze and improve your results.
- Lacking the time and/or proper tools to measure results
One of my early mentors taught me to measure, measure, and measure. It was invaluable advice then, and it’s even more valuable now. Most DIY marketers I speak with have little or no knowledge of or access to the metrics they need to make sound marketing decisions. Without them, how do you determine what is a cost-effective investment, and what’s not. Understanding customer acquisition costs, customer lifetime values, and how those costs impact your marketing efforts is critical to reaching your goals.
You don’t necessarily need expensive or sophisticated tools, but you do need a clear understanding of what you’re trying to achieve. How many leads do you need to get one sale? What are the best tactics to achieve your goals? How does branding fit in to the equation? All are important questions to ask and answer before you spend another marketing dollar.
The science of marketing doesn’t have to be a full time job, but it does require the focus and market knowledge of an experienced marketing professional. If you don’t have the qualifications, it may be time to find one. Your company’s success depends on it.