The latest LPM (Legal Practice Management) report - ‘Legal IT Landscapes 2019’ – revealed the majority of respondents see risk and compliance alongside operations and administration were the support services that could benefit most from more automation. While the benefits of automating marketing and business development fell lower down in importance with only 11%.
But while marketing and business development automation is still low on the list of priorities with law firms, what is of interest is that its importance is being recognised. In the 2018 report, only 6% of respondents felt the benefits of automating marketing/PR and business development. So, compare that to this year having risen to 11%, the importance placed on this area of discipline has almost doubled.
So why place importance on automation of marketing and business development? Well, it’s a competitive market. You need to stand out from the crowd and this is where automation can really help nurture and provide a truly unique service. Do you know the best way to engage with your clients and prospects? This is where marketing automation helps by delivering intelligent workflows with all channels aligned from social media and email through to your website SEO helping you gain a clear picture and understanding of your client’s behaviour.
However, we can’t touch on the automation results without mentioning Artificial Intelligence (AI). We were interested in the reminder that LPM provided us on the adoption of AI technology in legal firms. A question posed two years ago in 2017 – over what timescale do you think your firm will be using some form of AI technology or machine learning technology? With 16% already using AI; a further quarter (25%) said within the next two years, and 31% stated within five years. So, if companies have lived up to these expectations over 70% of firms are on the case with adopting AI technology in some shape or form. We wonder, however, whether those who said ‘never’ two years ago have since changed their minds as technology has evolved?
So, if you’re striving for that holistic view of both outbound and inbound activities, then automation can offer legal firms and its rainmakers’ real benefits in terms of enhanced engagement with clients.
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