How should brand management work? What are the specifics of brand management in the law firm? And who should be responsible for such an area in a law firm?
Anastasia Zhulina, Marketing Director and PR EVRIS, specially for the “Ukrainian Yurist”, shared their opinion on this subject.
These are the most frequently asked questions for all professionals in the market. In recent years, law firms have begun to understand the need for branding. Most of them are trying to differentiate themselves by the client’s benefits that do not distinguish them from the real market competition. And even more, top-level firms offer the same range of services or less on the same internationally recognized price ranges. But when it comes to picking a law firm, the dominant model for choosing is clients engagement basis on partners individual reputation. In this case, the name of the firm has little or no value at all for the client. In part, this strategy is clear and even inevitable, because in this case business connection, friends or just a sympathy may play the main role.
Branding is one of the most overloaded and overrated themes in the market of ideas. Paradoxically, this is also one of the most obscure topics. There is a consensus that the brand "is the sum of what others think about you." That is, such a process requires to be concerted, strategic and active efforts, positioning and advancement through the skills and experience of what is important and unique to solving customer problems. It’s not just about making your reputation speak for itself. It purposefully brings to the market your unique value proposition. Although reputation is what’s happening to you, a brand is what you do.
Who can be in charge of the firm’s reputation and brand awareness on the market? What are the key requirements for a brand manager and how to choose an effective one?
The generally accepted practice is to attract so-called brand ambassadors, which represent a brand in a positive light and by doing so help to increase brand awareness and sales. These people can be not only internal specialists who are responsible for strategy and implementation but also can embody the corporate identity in appearance, demeanor, values, and ethics. Such specialists support the integrity of the brand in all marketing initiatives and communications of the company and can manage the portfolio of services and answer at a partial level for the client service.
Of course, on average most of the firms stop at one internal professional who is responsible for adapting the brand strategy to the company’s target market. The title of a position may differ from the wishes of the employer or the specialist. In general, such a function corresponds with marketers or BD managers, there is no clear segmentation, as in other areas.
So, in case, you will decide to hire a brand manager for your law firm, you will need to identify key attributes of such position.
The key personal attributes of a successful brand manager include:
- a clear understanding of a brand and marketing (theory and practical aspects);
- personal determination and perseverance;
- relationship-building skills;
- multi-tasking in a high-pressure work environment;
- international mindset.
The types of activities that are part of the brand manager’s role include:
- brand strategy, including guiding styles, brand guides, brand vision and value propositions for the short and long terms;
- planning and execution of all communication and media actions on all channels, including online and social media;
- help in product development, pricing and launch of new products, as well as developing new business opportunities;
- creation and management of advertising support for the creation and maintenance of product branding;
- budget management for advertising;
- analysis of competitors and clients;
- analysis of sales forecasts and relevant financial statements and sales reports.
As you can see, the qualities and skills demanded by the market are plentiful and require some experience, and therefore you need to study every second. Importantly to remember that there are simply no universal professionals or those who are knowledgeable with all the intricacies. So, take risks, try something new and always analyze your actions. But remember that your brand, like your reputation, is developing daily – do not waste time and start creating your own unique success story now.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.