In this episode of the Legal Marketing 2.0 Podcast, Guy is joined by Koree Khongphand-Buckman, the CMBDO at Foley & Lardner LLP. Koree is responsible for leading the firm’s business development, marketing, client service, and branding efforts for Foley & Lardner. She’s been involved in legal marketing for about 16 years and has been leading at Foley & Lardner for a little over a year now. The 5 key priorities she covers at her firm is: to drive business through their four major sectors (healthcare, life sciences, manufacturing, innovative technology, and energy), to enhance their brand in the market, capture and leverage data so they can support clients, to improve the client journey, and lastly, to recruit and retain the best talent.
1. Talk a little bit more about how you’re improving the client journey and making your services more client-centric through data. What kind of role is data playing today in your digital strategy?
We do a lot of client interviews so that we can understand more about how our clients like to interact with us as a firm. How do they want us to engage with them? What types of thought leadership do they want, but also how do they get their messaging? So capturing all those data points is helping us drive our media strategy. By knowing exactly how people are interacting with the firm and the digital space. We realized people are coming to our website more than they used to, so we have changed a lot of things to best respond to how clients are spending their time getting information about the firm. We’re also going through a bio refresh right now because we have the data to prove that it’s worth spending the time updating. Those files are one of the top things people are looking at, the bios and the headshots. In addition to that is thinking about things like social. That was something we launched recently through LinkedIn and it came down to data points from our own internal people saying, “Here’s why I can’t post on social media; I can’t remember my login every day, I don’t even have a LinkedIn page, I don’t have time to write little blurbs, I’m not even sure what I would put out there.” Internal people helped us drive what we needed to do in order to make this much easier for them so that they can post about what’s going on at the firm. We also capture more information from them, so we can handle the messaging back out to digital and through social media.
2. If you’re going to send me an email about a new tax law, can you summarize why your pitch book would be helpful?
It shapes how we, as the marketing and BD team, are creating outputs for our clients. We’re also driving the lawyers to have more personal engagement so that the client will interact with our information versus 10 other firms that just also sent them an email about the new tax law that just came out. The clients will tell you exactly what they want. It’s our job to actually listen to them and adjust how we interact with them.
3. Talk about how you’re able to digitally support your strategy to raise the firm’s profile and brand awareness for the firm and its attorneys as well.
Foley is an AMLaw 100 firm and a fantastic firm with a great reputation. One of the things that we are really focused on is driving our brand more. We showcase the great things we’re working on, the great clients we work for, and how we solve business problems for our clients. We do that through digital media, creating more videos, and creating more interactive touch points. It is gathering information from our clients and then being able to produce things for them that are tailored. All that is digital, primarily nobody’s printing anything now. Events pretty much have a video component or they have presentation styles that have video worked in. It’s what clients have been asking for, but it meant taking a firm that first didn’t interact with our clients that way, but now we’re really driving those decisions. The clients are telling us that’s how they want to get their information. It’s just a different approach than what we’ve seen in the last 5 or 10 years through legal marketing. People also want things that are really short. That’s why the podcasts have short information, little nuggets they can use and a video to use. You want somebody to tell you the three things you need to know about an article. It’s just a different way to interact and digital really helps with that.
4. How are you using that data to impact what you’re doing from an overall digital strategy?
I wouldn’t say we’re perfect, but we’re trying to really harness all the data we have. One of the things that has been really helpful and is really working is to cross the functions of the firm to figure out what data we have in the firm. We haven’t necessarily even tapped into that use for our digital media strategy. But the coordination between the CIO and the CFO has been invaluable to me because there are certain data points that we can link up to be able to use as information for driving the digital platform. An example of that would be, looking at a certain client, or at clients within a sector, we weren’t necessarily looking at our top 50 clients within a sector or breaking it down by who’s had a client interview. Maybe who’s attended particular events, who are looking at particular information, who are interacting with our blogs. Now we have an opportunity because all of our data is now synced up in one place. I can look at the top 25 clients of our healthcare sector, and I can see what blogs those people are reading, I can see if they have interacted with any of our LinkedIn posts or if they are watching the videos or reading the article. That helps us think about where we are going to put our budget next year, do we put it more in, or do we need to hire a video team. We may need to think about investing in a different type of software because people are really engaging in blogs. That’s what I mean by how we’re starting to use our data, but a lot of it had to do with capturing the data and actually making it work. We’re still in the infancy stages, but definitely have the right team of people because we’re working across the different functions in the firm to collect the data in one place
Koree’s key advice is to link up with your CIO and your CFO and brainstorm ideas about making sure your technology stack is all in sync so that your data isn’t living in different places. For Foley & Lardner, their CIO helped ensure that everything in the firm is coordinated in a way where the people who need to use it can use it and that it’s functional for how they need to use it. Legal marketers can benefit from doing a technology stack audit, in which they can learn how they can improve their stack in a way that maximizes their data’s potential.
You can find Koree Khongphand-Buckman on LinkedIn.