Firm Size Matters

Law firms are not all the same. Each one has a unique dynamic that creates different needs, wants, problems, and budgets. In developing the right sales approach for each firm you visit, it’s important to remember that the size of the firm is an essential element. There is no one-size-fits-all approach, so you need to understand to whom you are selling and how their purchasing decisions are made.

Large Firms

Law firms are typically flat organizations, which means that decisions are often made by committee. The sales cycle can take longer because more players have a stake in the decision-making process. Larger firms also tend to have more staff, such as finance, administration and IT, involved in the process. It is important to determine who the key decision-makers and influencers are and spend the majority of your time focusing on them. They can help you better understand the needs of the firm, and also how best to present your product or solution to the rest of the stakeholders. While larger firms have larger budgets, they also often require extensive due diligence in approving spending.

Small Firms

Smaller firms usually have fewer decision-makers and can often be more agile. But attorneys in small firms are usually pressed for time. Where a larger firm might have additional administrative staff, a small firm may have just one person running the business, which can mean fewer resources to dedicate towards implementation and roll-out. That decision-maker may not fully understand the benefits of utilizing your product or service because they could also be an attorney or responsible for running other aspects of the business outside of document scanning and cost recovery. Smaller firms also typically have tighter budgets, making it necessary to fully demonstrate the lifetime cost of your product or service and how that product or service can benefit them in the long run – both budget-wise and from a technology or time-saving angle. Remember, especially at small firms, the partners feel like they are spending their own money, so delivering clear value counts.

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At the end of the day, selling to law firms is really about developing relationships. Word of mouth and relationship building is how law firms have grown their businesses for years, and they understand that type of business development, even if they are on the receiving end.

Most importantly , at firms of all sizes, making the effort to demonstrate subject matter expertise and understand the unique challenges involved will pay dividends. The principals of the firm will feel confident in the ability of the sales rep to deliver the right products and services to address their particular pain points.

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