A Step-By-Step Guide To Creating A Business Development Plan For Your Firm
If you want to pivot your law firm toward success in 2023, then now is the perfect time to assemble a business development plan. After all, this will provide you with a simple guide to follow month-to-month.
What is a Business Development Plan?
A business development plan outlines your long and short-term business goals alongside the steps you will take to achieve them. The more detailed-orientated your plan is, the easier it will be to follow.
Without this kind of plan in place, your business will lack direction. As such, it’s no surprise that “companies that plan grow 30 percent faster than those that don’t plan. ”
How To Create A Business Development Plan for Your Law Firm
To create the perfect business development plan for your law firm, you should:
- Assess your current plan.
- Establish clear, measurable Goals.
- Evaluate your finances.
- Focus on your clients.
- Consider industry trends.
- Build upon your marketing strategy.
Assess Your Current Plan
Many firm owners put together a business plan when first opening their practice but fail to implement it once operations have taken off. However, the truth is that, as long as your firm is open, you need a plan in place, especially if you are looking to grow and scale your business and profits.
As a result, the first step to creating the perfect business development plan is assessing the effectiveness of your current plan. For example, are you on track to meet your 2023 goals?
If the answer is “no,” you need to figure out what it is within your plan that may be limiting your success. For example, you may not have enough guidance outlined on what to do when things go wrong.
Establish Clear Goals
To curate a business development plan that works for you, you must have a clear idea what you are working toward and your end goals. Vague goals, such as ‘to obtain more clients,’ are often not sufficient because without including specific details, such as how many clients you’d like to add to your roster, “there is no plan, no action, and no progress that can be tracked” to ascertain whether or not you truly achieved this goal.
If you are still trying to figure out where to start, set SMART goals for your firm. That is, goals that are:
S = Specific.
A = Achievable.
R = Relevant.
Think about your finances
Many of the goals you set for your firm will likely be rooted in financial security. For example, you may want to improve cash flow or find a way to generate more revenue. As a result, these goals must be factored into your plan sooner rather than later.
For example, you should outline a plan to improve cash flow within your firm. This could include taking action on unpaid or late invoices or accepting digital payments in addition to transfers.
Focus on your clients
Your clients are the backbone of your firm, which means they should be front and center in your business development plan. After all, the changes you implement during this time are designed to keep your clients happy or to widen your client base.
As such, you should ensure your plan contains a detailed analysis of your target audience and client base. This will vary depending upon your practice areas and industries that you serve but could include details such as:
The more you understand your clients, the easier it will be to provide for them.
Consider Industry Trends
Being able to predict oncoming industry trends can protect your business. This is because you’ll already have a plan in place to deal with these challenges as they arise instead of responding retroactively.
Despite the importance of this, a recent study found that “just 36% or fewer lawyers believe their organization is prepared to keep pace” with industry changes.
Thankfully, there are many different ways to tap into industry trends. For example, you can subscribe to legal newsletters and journals or research trending topics online.
Improve upon your marketing strategy
In the digital age, your marketing strategy should also be a key component in your business development plan. After all, everything from paid web advertisements and your social media presence contribute significantly to lead generation. For example, a recent report found that “49% of law firms say their best marketing channel is buying web leads.“
As a result, you should update your marketing strategy, paying attention to current trends and how your target audience spends time online.
As we reach the end of Q1, it’s essential that you move forward with your year-end goals in sight by updating your business development plan.
At FinOp Group, we can make this process a little easier for you by ensuring your finances are in good order. Our services include tax planning, bookkeeping, and more.