A survey by the Legal Services Board, the body that supervises the legal profession, has found that reputation trumps price when it comes to choosing a lawyer.
If there was ever a ringing endorsement for the efforts of a firm's marketing team, this is it. And the reputation builders - the PR teams - should stand tall.
Anyone working in PR and comms in the legal sector will already know the value they bring. But in recent years, PR and comms has increasingly played second fiddle to what many believe to be the more 'grown-up' business development teams. The pay gap between the two shows that.
BD activity is, if course, vitally important - it drives and strengthens relationships and delivers measurable revenue growth.
But if nobody has heard of you, or the firm's reputation stinks, then BD activity is going to be an uphill struggle.
PR and BD activity, of course, do not compete with each other - they are entirely complimentary. PR has the power to shape BD campaigns, to build reputations and, ultimately, empower BD teams to drive revenue growth.
Cost was only the fourth most important factor for individuals or small businesses when choosing lawyers to instruct, research published yesterday revealed. Law firm fee rates came behind a lawyer’s reputation, which was cited as the most important factor, whether the client had used the practice or lawyer before, and the legal specialism required.