Busy Season Marketing: Industries of all kinds deal with seasonality, and lawyers, accountants and consultants are not immune from busy season, or the need to maintain their marketing through busy season. In this post, Heather explains how to deal with business development when your case load is high or you are in your peak season.
Whenever I’m talking with particularly lawyers but you know it’s often accountants about making partner and the need to do business development, this is the number one issue, the absolute number one issue that I, you know, I come across: it’s “How do I do my business development when I have a really high caseload?”. So this could be “how do I do business development in my peak season, particularly if you’re a tax person?”. You know at the moment as I’m speaking, the US are in peak tax season for accountants. But it could be that you’ve got a deal going on. You know, maybe you’re deal driven and I see this very much with insolvency practitioners, corporate finance, auditors that they’re in their peak audit season but also lawyers when their caseload goes sky-high. So how do you do that? Well the first thing is, it’s about a mindset shift. If you don’t do the mindset shift first and foremost, it’s never gonna happen. And that mindset shift is realising that business development is part of your day job. If you don’t have that mentality, then it’s going to be really difficult. The second thing to realise is that it’s all about focusing yourself on doing one little bit of business development a day. Just one little bit a day. So that could be going onto LinkedIn and liking something. It doesn’t need to be the grand gesture. It doesn’t need to be the the lunch or something that takes time. Just one little thing a day when your caseload is high. The second thing is also think laterally. So, say you’re in the middle of a deal, you know, how about we’d say you’re the lawyer in the deal how about on your side the accountant instead of having a long one-hour phone call, say should we do this over coffee when you know we both got to meet the clients. Or should we have this after and do it over coffee and use that as a bit of a relationship building time, you know. What about your commute to work, you know that’s perfect if you go by train. To be on LinkedIn. To maybe jotting down some thoughts. And it is about making sure that I talk about to people about having these two levels of business development: stuff you do normally and then the stuff that you do when you’re really really busy and that you won’t go beneath. I also talked about people taking down, you know, if in your activity it says, you know, you’re gonna have two networking meetings every week, we’ll take that down to two networking phone calls or one networking meeting or one networking phone call or two emails. you know, you’ve got to be pragmatic. And you know when you’re at partner, you’re always going to be balancing client work, team needs, business development and this is just practice for you to do that. The other thing is, as well as make sure that you’re doing stuff that you really enjoy. When it comes to business development you know, if you’re the sort of person that loves going out talking to people but the thought of sitting there and writing three articles on a topic to demonstrate your expertise is something you hate, you know, more often it’s the other way around is that you know as long as you’re not damaging by not you know, by not doing any of the writing yes of course you’ve got to build your expertise but could you speak about it could you go on to LinkedIn and be talking about it there you know, pick stuff that you enjoy because if you’re doing stuff that you enjoy you’re more likely to get the business development done when your case load is high. But don’t beat yourself up. It all starts from that mindset shift.