You know your area of law really, really well – that badge ‘Expert’ suits you nicely.
The knowledge, wisdom and expertise that you have gathered would fill a small house (there may even be a best seller lurking somewhere beneath all that baggage).
Your clients, once they find you, are prepared to pay handsomely for your advice, and you have contributed, in your time, to some stellar billing at your firm.
You would like to feel that you are one of the best in your field.
But the market doesn’t feel or look right.
When you last did a Google search for your area of law, there were, surprisingly, quite a few more lawyers than you anticipated, espousing a degree of knowledge or calling in your specialist area. And to you, what once felt special, now feels like every other area of law – a commodity.
Of course, this is no different to the life-cycle of any product. You only have to look at the electronics industry to see a clear correlation.
If you are feeling that you area of law is just another run of the mill service then the situation is likely to get a lot worse. In a moment when more services are driven on line, the client will begin to disassociate the brand solicitor with the delivery of legal services. They will not assume that you know anything more than the legal portal through which they engage.
Now is the time to consider how, and in what form, you should leverage those short-cuts and silver bullets that have saved your clients time and money.
Your gut instinct is to keep things locked down: “These are my most prized pearls of [valuable] wisdom” but you are missing a huge trick.
In Web 2.0 world, with the plethora of free legal information, you can expect that most clients will be informed to a greater extent than ever before, and what was once locked away amongst a secret cabal, is now out in the open.
If you truly want to steal a march on your competitors, and that includes your on-line bedfellows, then you need to consider how you can package your intelligence in such a way that clients feel obliged to stay with you or new clients instruct you. This means going beyond the ubiquitous free download that has become common place, the tired question and answer and understand that information would truly float your clients’ boat. It may be a White Paper, a survey or even some intelligence that repackages a case or two, but you need to consider the idea of giving away for free something that has true value.
~ JS ~