Networking shouldn’t be for the ‘traditional fee earners’ only and firms who think that way are missing out on a wide range of advantages that could benefit their businesses, says Sophie Hudson. Here are a few reasons why networking is good for your marketing teams.
Working in a professional services firm can be traditional by nature but we can learn from others outside of our sphere to keep things fresh. Just like Mishcon de Reya’s Elliot Moss with his ingenious Jazz Shapers, or Setfords hiring former journalist and PR powerhouse Eric Woollard-White as their Brand, Communications and PR Leader, professional services need to look ‘outside of their traditional boxes’ to thrive, to better serve clients and to continue to attract top talent. Networking across sectors helps you to think outside of that box.
We need to grow our network.
It is never a bad idea to bounce ideas off people who have lived through it. Having a group of local marketeers that you can count on will help you no end. I am sure that if you find yourself against a challenge, someone in your group will have ‘been there, done it, sold the t-shirt!’
We need to mingle with other generations.
That guy who worked in marketing in the 90s has oodles of experience, but equally that Gen Z apprentice will have ideas that some of your current and future clients will reflect and adore. Diversity of thought brought about by various generations and backgrounds coming together is important to ensure you think outside of the box you find yourself in.
We need to be treated as one of the team.
When you work in-house, networking with other businesspeople often means invites only to those who bill in a traditional way (for example, lawyers in a law firm). However, professional services firms must realise that their assets lie in not just those that bill fees.
Learning, networking and BD opportunities should be offered to all for the good of developing and building relationships with other businesses, and to help with the retention of your marketing teams. It shows that you are a modern employer. Also, your marketing teams are likely very good at networking and your fee-earning teams can learn from them.
We can hear it straight from the horse’s mouth and then do something about it!
As Paul Roberts, CEO of MyCustomerLens says ‘Client listening should always be on’. If your marketing and BD teams are in a room with local businesses and face-to-face with clients they can gauge intelligence on recent campaigns, matters and projects – you’ve nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Your marketers are trained to bring back market intelligence you can use to develop and adapt your strategies, this can positively impact your bottom line.
Can you afford to not invite them?
Sophie Hudson is Head of Marketing and Business Development at solicitors Sherrards. Visit https://sherrards.com/.