Thursday 03 October 2019, London

This breakfast seminar was chaired by Charlotte Green, Head of Clients & Markets at Gowling WLG and hosted by Mazars. Our speakers decided to focus on specific campaigns and talk about them in depth. 

Rebecca Scully, Head of Communications, Gowling WLG 

Rebecca talked about a specific campaign for General Counsel & C-suite people – the firm wanted strong engagement with them. There were five attributes to the campaign:

  1. Raise brand awareness (have the right media coverage)
  2. Drive data capture
  3. Work internationally
  4. Have longevity
  5. Have a macro rather than sector wider issue.

They identified Protectionism which at the time had few mentions. This was done through desk research  - and they found £4bn is spent on protectionist issues and measures. They spoke to clients, wrote a report and use that to generate media coverage in FT, on BBC and NY Times. They targeted in particular high quality lapsed clients and drove 1k hits to the website. Used the FT; organised a GC event – to talk directly to lawyers. Now protectionism is a buzzword. 

They targeted those who would get the most value out of the insights and then really focused on them. “What digital gives you is data and you can’t argue with data”. 

Engagement – engage with fee earners; pick your ambassadors from within the firm to cascade it down and stop people challenging it and scepticism. It was a conceptual campaign – so we needed those ambassadors to sell the campaign internally. And to really walk the talk and explain what’s in it for them to fellow partners and people across the firm. Rebecca found that “people really got on board when they see it working!”. Partners now asking for digital when they weren’t before. 

What to do when it fails? Be honest. At the outset be really clear what you aim to deliver on  - don’t just throw things in. You have to be a bit agile – you may need to change the campaign, the Partners need to trust you. And if it doesn’t work? Then that’s fine as long as you learn something. 

Amit Champaneri, Senior Manager, PwC 

Amit shared insights from various campaigns. 

Engage with clients directly

e.g. he held 18 meetings with clients to listen to their issues and then feed that information into his campaign

e.g. have an opinion about business issues that are happening now. What does it mean for your clients and prospects’ business? Demonstrate you understand the industry. 

Measures of success

  • Downloads – think about a defined list, what quality of leads you want, what you want the content to deliver; focus on the client journey, on their pain points
  • Post campaign launch -  with one project they had more workshops and more roundtables than planned as they worked so well; held events specific to an industry
  • Take 15-20 key clients and have an objective to liaise with 75% - and convert those to meetings; bring the list to account teams, find a good industry partner to visit them and bring back the feedback to inform your account approach and campaign
  • PR – blogs/videos/ profile – views and downloads for an opinion leader in your business who can comment on the market.
  • Cross selling – think about what’s the follow up, what’s next?
  • Use digital channels to address knowledge gap, demonstrate that it works. 

Jeroen Olijrhook, Global Key Account Manager, DLA Piper 

Jeroen spoke about a specific international internal campaign. 

The issues were:

  • the transfer of information about accounts was not happening
  • partners didn’t feel included – that there was nothing to support them
  • not enough sharing of information or sharing with clients; clients weren’t embracing all the services. 

Approach

  • mapped best practice with key clients across the firm and came up with five steps – a five step process
  • thought about the engagement and communications mix; worked with a design and communications agency; agreed distinctive branding for the process – it fitted in with the visual identity of the DLA brand but was distinctive; conscious of it being an internal communication – i.e. it was communicated without talking about the process as a process. Very careful use of language e.g. not calling the fee earners fee earners!
  • the process became Client Development Methodology and all comms tools were delivered in a consistent design for the campaign. 

Tools

  • CEO blog – to trigger attention and to back the campaign, demonstrate senior buy-in; i.e. they do the talking for you
  • Launch animation which auto-played when people logged in for a week; had a skip option; this gave the What’s in it for me messages
  • Screensaver background – which referred to the handbook
  • Handbook workshops – worked to embed the approach by running half day workshops where 40 people attended from various teams; this was co-presented by BD or Marketing person with an external consultant; noticed that workshops were being requested by Managing Partners from countries or cities not included in the first roll-out. Measures were in place and included a satisfaction survey
  • Narrow casting in offices
  • Intranet
  • Partner meetings
  • Portal – a home for all the materials on the methodology; visits measured (number, duration, what was downloaded)
  • Email campaign each month featuring a different BD tool to drive people to the portal; tracked and measured the conversion to the portal
  • E-learning – interactive learning for those who weren’t invited to the workshops 

Results

  • Increased rate of cross-selling across practice groups
  • 2017 external recognition from Legal Week – shortlisted at the BD Awards; used this to persuade Partners internally
  • With hindsight, would have had a better campaign if they had engaged more with clients voices. 

Written by: Francesca Ayers, Bid Director, Get Serious