Cross-selling is a key goal for most professional service firms and especially the law firms I talk to. Done well, it can generate significantly more revenue and deepen relationships with important clients.
From the outside I have always thought it should be kind of easy. If you are a lawyer you work alongside very clever colleagues who specialise in a niche that is different to yours. When you think there might be an angle for one of them to help one of your clients, all you need to do is mention them to your client, introduce them and get them to solve your client's problem. Everyone wins.
So, why doesn’t it happen more often? The feedback I have had is that process, communication and the way lawyers work get in the way; lawyers hate sales and they are not salespeople.
So what is the solution? Well, a great way to communicate the breadth of your firm's knowledge is for the relationship-holders to communicate client issues to other subject-matter experts for them to comment on. That way, a library of highly-relevant expert content can be created. Then when a lawyer is asked a question about a different area of expertise, all they have to do is be helpful; send a nice piece of timely, expert-led content that addresses the client need and introduces the person who can help them.
Here at Passle I talk to experts every day and we recommend the following process:
As a lawyer, you can do all three of the above or just one or two of them to open the door to a wider relationship.