Day two is done and that’s the end of the Legal Marketing Association annual conference in Las Vegas. We are sorry it’s over! So much learned, so many good conversations! Here’s a recap of day two:

The ‘S’ Word

The role of sales in law firm business development was the topic of “The ‘S’ Word,” a panel comprised of sales leaders from two large and two small firms. For lawyers that are not accustomed to the concept of ‘selling’ their services, Jonathan Mattson, Chief Marketing and Business Development Officer at BakerHostetler tells them, “Marketing is creating awareness; business development is creating relationships.” He said that as a business development generator for a law firm, a person has to be energized by helping others (the lawyers) because they will be the ones getting the return from business development efforts.

Catherine Zinn, Chief Client Officer (a title you may see often in the near future) at Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP says that client and potential client in-person visits are key. “Hear the needs and bring them back” to the firm for business opportunities, she said.

Goldilocks and the Three Career Paths

In one of the most entertaining presentations we’ve seen in a while, “Goldilocks and the Three Career Paths” featured Jim Jarrell, Director of Marketing and Practice Development at Stark & Stark, Tricia M. Lilley, CMO at Fox Rothschild, and friend-of-LISI Jamie K. Mulholland, owner of Jamie Mulholland Marketing discussing their individual paths to where they are today and what lies ahead. This session featured career advice and war stories (most names were omitted to protect the guilty!) about the highs and lows of working in law firm marketing. Said Trish: Every marketer in a law firm should know how to write clearly and concisely and have above-average presentation skills.

Jim said that LinkedIn is a total waste of time — if it’s not used to its potential. Don’t just fill out your profile, become engaged in conversations and connect with people. Jamie discussed the benefits (and some pitfalls) of running your own marketing agency that caters to law firms. While you can take a day off when you want, she said, there’s also the concern that no billing happens when you do. She recommended the book, “The Gift of Fear” to describe how to understand your innate sense of which path to take. Speaking of books, we may see one from her sometime soon!

Best line of the session, from Trish, about how to communicate with the lawyers on their level: “You can’t use the word ‘juxtapose’ enough when talking with them.”

A Well-Oiled Machine: How Marketing Automation Improves Internal and External Marketing Operations

In a fascinating case study, “A Well-Oiled Machine: How Marketing Automation Improves Internal and External Marketing Operations,” Clayton Dodds, Director of Marketing at the Law Offices of Peter N. Brewer showed how his firm uses technology to market to clients to a level that would take dozens of marketers doing the work manually. He showed how automated emails, behavior tracking, and analytics allow his firm to discover the interest of potential clients and connect with them in a personalized way. He also reviewed marketing-automation systems, from enterprise level to those suitable for the solo practitioner.

How to Build a Thought Leadership Platform

At the final session of the day, “How to Build a Thought Leadership Platform,” Guy Alvarez, Chief Engagement Officer at Good2bSocial and Robert-Paul Sanger, Senior Manager, Business Development at Allen & Overy discussed the steps you should take to position yourself or your lawyers as the type of thought leaders that attract business. “A true thought leader is always learning,” Guy said. Thought leaders should be sharing with the world articles, blog posts, webinars, podcasts, videos, and importantly, other people’s content. Guy also showed platforms on which to publish and how to repurpose content across platforms.

After the closing-of-the-conference session, we said goodbye to the old and new friends and look forward to coming home to put our new information into action. Can’t wait for New Orleans in 2018!