LegalVision, an online law firm targeting small to medium Australian businesses, was crowned the 2015 ALPMA/InfoTrack Thought Leadership Award winner, ahead of finalists RMB Lawyers, The Conveyancing Shop and LawLab, at the ALPMA Summit Gala dinner in the Gold Coast on Thursday 10 September.
“The digital era means that the way law firms do business is rapidly changing,” Australasian Legal Practice Management Association (ALPMA) Vice President and Practice Manager at Ryan Carlisle Thomas, Ms Valmai Vickers said when presenting the Awards.
“LegalVision is a positive example of a firm that is embracing the opportunities this new era brings and reaping the rewards,” she said.
Ms Vickers also recognised the achievements of the Award finalists, RMB Lawyers, The Conveyancing Shop and LawLab, and all firms who put forward a nomination for the Awards taking positive action to adapt and improve their operations. “Congratulations to LegalVision for creating a market disruption that not only changed the way Australian SMBs can access legal support but that has driven strong revenue and market share at the same time”, InfoTrack Chairman, Stephen Wood said.
“Often companies think about thought leadership in an almost altruistic way, but at the end of the day an innovation that leads the market and drives business is the real leader,” he said.
LegalVision was recognised for their inbound content marketing program, which transformed legalvision.com.au into Australia’s most visited legal services website and drove a significant increase in new business for the online firm.
“LegalVision is more than just a legal practice - we’re a tech start-up disrupting the legal industry,” CEO and founder Lachlan McKnight said.
LegalVision is the brainchild of ex-corporate lawyer (Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer & Norton Rose), Lachlan McKnight, and tech-expert and software engineer, Evan Tait-Styles, who built LegalVision’s technology stack from ground-up. LegalVision provides high-quality, cost-effective, fixed-price legal services to Australian businesses seeking legal assistance, advice or documentation.
“LegalVision is a primarily online firm, which means we acquire most of our clients online,” Mr McKnight said.
“Paid digital marketing channels are increasingly expensive, meaning profit margins for all law firms spending on digital advertising are decreasing.”
To address this problem, LegalVision implemented an inbound content marketing strategy to increase the number of leads coming to the legalvision.com.au website from organic searches, decrease its customer acquisition cost, and position legalvision.com.au as the pre-eminent online resource for small and medium businesses looking for legal information and guidance.
This required a significant investment in creating a constant stream of legal articles for their website and designing landing pages which encourage business owners to contact the firm once they’ve read the article.
“Over the last year, we’ve had each lawyer spend 1/20th of their working month creating content. Convincing all of our lawyers that they could indeed write 10 legal articles in a day took - and continues to take - a considerable amount of time, and leadership ability,” he said.
“We’ve created over 1,000 pieces of unique content, a resource that Australian SMEs can now access completely free of charge. We’ve also hired a full-time head of legal content, and built an inbound client care team to deal with the huge number of queries coming through.”
The huge increase in leads generated by this strategy, combined with the leads received through other channels, has allowed LegalVision to scale up its offering rapidly.
“The type of work that our articles generate is generally contained and project based, for instance commercial lease reviews. We’ve hired two to three lead lawyers each month in the first six months of this year, most of whom work flexibly, remotely and on a part-time or casual basis.”
“We are proud of our ability to bring back talented lawyers into the profession who are looking for a more flexible lifestyle,” he said.
“The greatest impact of our inbound content strategy has been on the new clients LegalVision has acquired through it,” he said.
“Many small and medium businesses struggle to afford high quality legal services, and many decide to not use a lawyer at all. Our inbound content strategy is all about letting them know there is an affordable way to receive high-quality legal advice.”
The three finalists were:
Now in its third year, the Awards shine a light on innovative projects and new initiatives being conducted by firms across the legal sector in response to the changing legal landscape and provide recognition for firms and legal departments who have successfully implemented innovative projects and strategic initiatives that in response to the many and varied challenges facing the Australasian legal industry. There were 18 nominations for the 2015 ALPMA/InfoTrack Thought Leadership Awards.
The 2014 Award winner was Hive Legal, a start-up virtual law firm offering fixed-price legal services to corporate and commercial clients. The 2013 winner was Anderssens Lawyers, a Brisbane-based commercial and property law firm who created a secure, online operating environment that supports a 100% paperless and highly automated legal process accessible 24/7 for staff and clients.
The Awards were judged by an industry panel including: Shelley Dunstone, Principal Legal Circles and ALPMA Life Member; Dr Peter Lynch, Managing Director, dci lycon; Shirley Hamel, Principal Hamel Consulting and ALPMA Life Member; Stephen Wood, Chairman, InfoTrack and Brendan Smart, General Manager – Sales, InfoTrack.
The Australasian Legal Practice Management Association, (ALPMA), is the peak body representing law firm managers and leaders. ALPMA provides an authoritative voice on issues relevant to legal practice management. ALPMA delivers a comprehensive professional development program for members, which includes the annual ALPMA Summit, regular practice management seminars across Australia and New Zealand, the Leading Your Firm program, for smaller and regional law firms, online resources and a legal industry research program.
InfoTrack is a market leading information broker providing a superior fast and easy solution for all your Property, Corporate, Personal searching and affiliated services. Our search capabilities support customer productivity, profitably and growth. We have over 5,550 clients who range from the Legal and Conveyancing to Banking and Finance industries. We also service other professions such as Surveyors, Mercantile Agents, Accountants and Government departments.