Benesch Law Deploys JumpStart to Foster Firm-Wide Use
Pre-populating profiles allows attorneys to benefit from the platform from day one of rollout, with impressive results.
If you travel in legal marketing circles in the mid-west, you’ve likely heard of Benesch Law. Over the years, the firm has built a reputation as a proactive, marketing and business development focused organization, not afraid to think outside of the proverbial box. It should be no surprise, then, that the firm was eager to take advantage of the efficiencies and insights afforded by content intelligence platforms.
“The last seven years, we’ve been focused on providing our attorneys with a wealth of intelligence to help them stay knowledgeable about clients and potential business opportunities,” said Elizabeth Boehm, the firm’s Director of Business Development. “We’re always reviewing the suite of tools we use to gather such intelligence, and last year we realized that we didn’t have a tool for gathering current news and developments. Most of our tools were geared toward gathering client and prospect financial data, executive backgrounds and corporate histories. We’d heard good things about Manzama, both from peers and the Legal Marketing Association. We had several demos of the product and were impressed with its ease of use and level of customization. It seemed as though it would provide the missing component from our overall suite of tools. Better yet, it was a tool that we could put at attorneys’ fingertips, something they could take ownership of and use on their own.”
That is, if you can get them to try it.
The annals of law firm technology are overflowing with cases of potentially powerful software applications that were purchased but never quite adopted… and were quietly forgotten. Benesch’s Marketing & Business Development Department, under the leadership of Chief Marketing Officer Jeanne Hammerstrom, knows the importance of an effective roll-out—the importance of making a strong first impression, with the lawyers.
“With 150 attorneys to support, we felt a lot of pressure,” she recalled. “Someone from Manzama suggested a roll-out plan they’d developed from their experience with other firms called JumpStart. If we could provide them with a spreadsheet with some basic information for each attorney – basically, each practitioner’s top five clients by billing – they could take it from there and get everyone’s account set up. My initial thought was ‘I’ll have to ask each attorney for this, and it will take forever!’ That was when Manzama suggested we use accounting records from last year.”
The Manzama client services team proactively set up profiles for each attorney, so the program would automatically perform extensive searches on clients each day, and deliver an Alert to each stakeholder. “The day after our introduction, each attorney received their first custom alert without having to do anything themselves. They were immediately impressed. Getting all the profiles loaded through JumpStart took a tremendous amount of stress off of my department. It made my department look good, as the system was up and running without attorneys having to do anything.”
After just a few months, a large percentage of the attorneys at Benesch have adopted Manzama into their everyday routines. Encouragement has come from the top. “One of the platform’s biggest champions has been our managing partner,” Ms. Boehm continued. “He’s very business development-oriented, and one of his goals has been to make sure that as a firm, we stay on top of what’s going on in client industries. When I sent out the email about the training, he hit “Reply All” and advocated that ‘Manzama is a wonderful tool, make sure you take advantage of this.’ He also reminded attorneys at every partner meeting that this tool enhances his/her client service and relationship.”
“We’ll often hear from attorneys who have gleaned intelligence important to a client from their Manzama daily alert. We’ll suggest that they send the client an email and perhaps a link to the article that addresses the issue at hand. If they know the client better, it might be worth using the article as an entrée to discuss this issue in person. On a number of occasions, clients have said that they weren’t even aware of an issue and were impressed that Benesch was able to bring it to their attention.” Boehm estimates that over half of Benesch’s 150 attorneys are using Manzama and close to 100% are receiving the Daily Alert, thanks to JumpStart. Several partners have already set up first meetings with prospects as a result of Manzama-driven outreach.
“A couple of times a week I get calls from attorneys saying ‘I love Manzama, can you stop by and show me how to set up more things to track?’ Ms. Boehm added. “This gives me another avenue to be in the loop with what they’re doing and find new ways to help. Our attorneys, after all, are our clients. If we add value, it’s appreciated. Manzama has been a feather in our cap.”
Benesch is a business law firm with 150 attorneys and offices in Cleveland, Columbus, Hackensack, Indianapolis, Philadelphia, Shanghai and Wilmington. The firm is dedicated to building a deep understanding of its clients, their businesses and their industries. It services national and international clients that include public and private, middle market and emerging companies as well as private equity funds, entrepreneurs, not-for-profit organizations, trusts and estates. Forty-eight Benesch attorneys were named as Best Lawyers in America®; Benesch also achieved first-tier rankings in 22 national and metropolitan categories, and was designated as one of the 2015 Go-To Law Firms® of the Top 500 Companies by ALM (American Lawyer Media).
Practice areas include:
• Business Succession Planning & Wealth Management
• Commercial Finance & Banking
• Corporate & Securities
• Executive Compensation & Benefits
• Insolvency & Creditors’ Rights
• Intellectual Property
• Labor & Employment
• Public Finance
• Real Estate & Environmental
Benesch Law serves a number of industries, including Private Equity, Banking, Health Care, Polymers, Transportation & Logistics, Energy & Natural Resources, Construction, Not-for-Profit and School Law.