In this podcast John Witts, Marketing Technology Director for Fox Rothschild LLP, joins us to talk about the role of marketing technologists in law firms, the challenges they face, and the future of legal marketing technology.
Podcast Show Notes
John Witts is Marketing Technology Director for Fox Rothschild LLP, an AmLaw 100 firm. In his role, he manages development, maintenance and administration of the firm’s external website, blog network and other web properties, CRM and emarketing solutions, client-facing webinars, mobile applications and other resources. He oversees intersections of marketing and technology with a focus on internal efficiencies and integration of technology to support the business development function at the firm. John currently serves as co-chair of the Legal Marketing Association’s Marketing Technology SIG.
The role of marketing technologists in law firms
A marketing technologist’s responsibility is to enable technology for the business development process. This role has been more of a recent development in the legal space. Within law firms, software and platforms can be used to enhance marketing and business development efforts.
Marketing technologists often act as the liaison between the marketing and technology departments. Their role is ensuring that the technology available is consistently used as effectively as possible throughout the firm. Integration is key when it comes to marketing technology.
Legal marketing is still in its infancy in a way due to the number of restrictions when it comes to attorney advertising. In terms of data management, law firms are beginning to catch up and use their data firm wide in order to retain existing clients and generate new business.
How can someone get into a marketing tech role?
Traditional education in marketing and technology can help individuals who are interested in a marketing tech role at a law firm. However, the most important step to take is learning all of the available technology within the legal space. You need to have a keen interest in technology and be a jack of all trades in order to be a successful marketing technologist.
The challenges marketing technologists face
Legal marketers are still setting the stage for what legal marketing means. There are walls to knock down when it comes to investing and budgeting for big ticket software and platforms. The challenges faced by marketing technologists in law firms are similar to other legal marketers, but with added challenges. Often lawyers don’t understand or appreciate what a technology does or they have an overwhelming number of suggestions. You have to filter through suggestions and advocate for what will work best for your firm.
What advice would you give to legal technology vendors out there?
Legal vendors need to understand how law firms work and how the legal industry works as it’s different from other sectors. They should know that often the marketing or technology departments don’t have the final say on whether or not a firm can purchase big ticket technologies. They need to recognize the issues law firms have and position their tech as a valuable solution. Legal vendors can’t just sell without trying to provide value in terms of free resources and tools.
The future of marketing technology
There’s going to be a huge push in breaking down the current technology barriers law firms face. Hopefully technology will become more integrated throughout firms in order to make business decisions based on the data available. Rather than using more technology, firms will be able to better evaluate the best tools for marketing efforts and overall firm efficiency. Data regulations will continue to play a major role in future marketing technologies. However, all of these challenges will only make legal marketers better.
Find new resources and don’t be afraid to get out of the legal industry to find the technologies that work best for your law firm.