6 Defining Trends for the Litigation Market Ahead

Opportunity abounds in litigation despite an overall flat market. Companies are facing a mounting stream of new complex and bet-the-company matters, while adding 5 new law firms to their litigation rosters.

Clients demand you bring an understanding of their business, culture, and risk tolerance along with your strategy, to win litigation work. This understanding requires investing non-billable and billable time to make it happen—where the reward is a coveted lead position in the largest segment of the legal market.

Every law firm can take advantage of the 6 defining trends for the litigation market ahead:

1. Companies with Bet-the-Company Work Quadruple

More organizations than ever before are facing high-stakes litigation. 

50.6% of large companies report they have active bet-the company matters in 2016, up from 12.8% in 2014. This marks the continuing shift to new opportunities at the high end of the litigation market.


2. Resolution Rates Remain Robust

As top legal decision makers face more complex work—they are more resolute than ever in finding a path to settlement.

These settlements are as much a risk containment strategy as a cost management strategy. Settlement eliminates the risk and the cost—the only question is: at what price does settlement become worth it?


3. Little Change in Litigation Spend, But Opportunity Abounds

Clients see fewer matters and no change in spending. 

This translates into more spending on the matters which do arise. Most of this is going to the higher-rate, complex matters.


4. Twice as Many Companies Expecting Their Law Firms To Do Double Duty

The number clients looking for one firm to handle both the everyday litigation and the more complex and bet-the-company work doubled. 

This poses a challenge for high rate firms to use AFAs for the lower rate work. It also means all but a few firms may have to develop more of an appetite for routine litigation.


5. Employment, IP and Class Actions See Rare Increases in Spending

Spending increases are concentrated in 3 areas of litigation. 

Employment is grabbing more of the budget as clients face ever murkier issues and reinterpretation of existing regulations. IP is surging as companies see more patent trolls and a few activist operating companies. And Class Actions continues a multiyear uphill climb fueled by the scrutiny of financial services, global sales distribution, and more large-scale product failures.


6. Clients Add 5 New Law Firms to Litigation Rosters

Corporate counsel added 5 new law firms to their litigation roster bringing the total count up to a record 22.

Clients are auditioning law firms for future work by testing the 5 newly hired firms. This says clients are not getting what they want from existing firms—a clear opportunity to step in and give clients what they want: superior client service.

You can read all the details as well as the proven recommendations to take advantage of these trends in the just released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

The Class Actions Outlook

Ever-larger product failures, increasing regulatory actions, and a more aggressive plaintiffs bar are the main contributors to the skyrocketing magnitude of potential exposure. Paradoxically, the number of companies with ongoing Class Action cases dropped to 53.8% in 2016, down from 60.6% in 2015. This means that each individual case is bringing more spending and risk.

We congratulate the following firms named by corporate counsel and legal decision makers for their Class Actions prowess in the just-released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

Powerhouse Law Firms:

  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • Dentons
  • Jones Day
  • Sidley Austin
  • Skadden
  • Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz

Standout Law Firms:

  • Baker & McKenzie
  • BakerHostetler
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
  • Cooley
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell
  • Dechert
  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher
  • K&L Gates
  • Latham & Watkins
  • McDermott Will & Emery
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart
  • Simpson Thacher & Bartlett
  • Sullivan & Cromwell
  • Sutherland

The Employment Litigation Outlook

The reinterpretation of regulations and murky new challenges such as LGBT+ in the workplace is giving the overall market size an uptick. However, not all industries are created equal. The Chemical, Energy, High Tech, Pharmaceutical, Telecom, and Utilities industries are under the most budget pressure, while Health Care, Manufacturing and Retail Trade offer the best opportunities.

We congratulate the following firms named by corporate counsel and legal decision makers for strength in Complex Employment Litigation in the just-released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017:

Powerhouse Law Firms:

  • Dentons
  • Jones Day
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Littler Mendelson
  • Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart

Standout Law Firms:

  • Baker & McKenzie
  • BakerHostetler
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
  • Cooley
  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • DLA Piper
  • Fish & Richardson
  • Fisher Phillips
  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher
  • Jackson Lewis
  • Kirkland & Ellis
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Norton Rose Fulbright
  • Polsinelli
  • Skadden
  • Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
  • Weil, Gotshal & Manges

The Product Liability Litigation Outlook

Product liability litigation is one of the most competitive sectors. New technology, embedded technology, global supply chain issues, and increasing regulation, are causing more product liability cases. Despite the focus on increased due diligence, legal decision makers have not been able to contain the increase in these cases. The number of companies facing product liability cases jumped from nearly 42% last year to 45% in 2016.

We congratulate the following firms named by corporate counsel and legal decision makers for Product Liability litigation savvy in the just-released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

Powerhouse Law Firms:

  • Dentons
  • Jones Day
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Skadden
  • Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz

Standout Law Firms:

  • Baker & McKenzie
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
  • Cooley
  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell
  • DLA Piper
  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher
  • Greenberg Traurig
  • K&L Gates
  • Kirkland & Ellis
  • Norton Rose Fulbright
  • Sullivan & Cromwell
  • Venable

The Hidden Opportunities In A Shrinking Market

See exactly how clients are spending their budgets—and where their dollars are really going in the latest Mad Clientist Minute.

You can view the video below, or on YouTube directly here: https://youtu.be/6jnnrvtDXgQ

We’ll be releasing videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

The Commercial Litigation Outlook

Shrinking budgets for Commercial litigation continue for the 5th year, along with the related increase in demand for AFAs and smart staffing from law firms. Though the volume of cases is down, sectors such as Antitrust and Government Contracts still present an opportunity for well-positioned firms.

You will find the current Commercial litigation opportunities in the Energy, Health Care, Insurance, Pharmaceutical, and Telecom industries.

We congratulate the following firms named by corporate counsel and legal decision makers for strength in Complex Commercial Litigation in the just-released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

Powerhouse Law Firms:

  • Dentons
  • Jones Day
  • Kirkland & Ellis
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Polsinelli
  • Skadden

Standout Law Firms:

  • Baker & McKenzie
  • BakerHostetler
  • Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
  • Cooley
  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell
  • DLA Piper
  • Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson
  • Greenberg Traurig
  • K&L Gates
  • McDermott Will & Emery
  • McGuireWoods
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Reed Smith
  • Sullivan & Cromwell
  • Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
  • Weil, Gotshal & Manges

The IP Litigation Outlook

Patent trolls are driving a flurry of increased activity, sending a surge of new money into the IP Litigation market. Surges, by definition, are temporary. This will result in slower rates of spending moving forward.

You will find the IP litigation opportunities in the Banking, High Tech, Financial Services, and Pharmaceutical industries.

We congratulate the following firms named by corporate counsel and legal decision makers for IP Litigation in the just-released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

Powerhouse Law Firms:

  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • Dentons
  • Jones Day
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Skadden
  • Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz

Standout Law Firms:

  • Baker & McKenzie
  • Cooley
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell
  • Dechert
  • DLA Piper
  • Fish & Richardson
  • K&L Gates
  • Kirkland & Ellis
  • Norton Rose Fulbright
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman
  • Polsinelli
  • Simpson Thacher & Bartlett
  • Sullivan & Cromwell
  • WilmerHale

The Securities and Finance Litigation Outlook

Increasing SEC enforcement, activist investors and increased institutional scrutiny provide the impetus for a steady stream of Securities and Finance Litigation. However, the stream of new work is offset by earlier settlements which result in less legal fees being paid. The net effect is client spending on Securities Litigation dropped to $1.44B in 2016 from $1.66B in 2015.

Ensuring deep and continuing knowledge of a client’s risk tolerance and culture will keep your firm well-placed to win this work when an issue rockets to the forefront.

We congratulate the following firms named by corporate counsel and legal decision makers for Securities and Finance Litigation in the just-released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

Powerhouse Law Firms:

  • Dentons
  • Jones Day
  • Kirkland & Ellis
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Skadden
  • Sullivan & Cromwell

Standout Law Firms:

  • Baker & McKenzie
  • BakerHostetler
  • Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft
  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell
  • Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson
  • K&L Gates
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Norton Rose Fulbright
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman
  • Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
  • Weil, Gotshal & Manges

Clients Name New Firm to Fearsome Foursome, 10 New Awesome Opponents

Dentons Adds Fear to the Global Network

Creating a global network and linking up with Chinese law firms was just not enough. Dentons is adding a dose of fear as the firm earns a coveted spot on the BTI Fearsome Foursome. This makes 2 important points:

  1. Being aggressive to the extreme makes your law firm fearsome.
  2. Fear can be fleeting as we see 1 new firm join the 2017 Fearsome Foursome.

At the same time, being fearsome can be a cultural phenomenon: Jones Day, Kirkland & Ellis and Skadden have remained the most fearsome over the last 5 years of tracking.

Overall, clients see 70 law firms as substantially more fearsome than most—accounting for about 11% of all law firms serving large companies. A total of 11 firms managed to become more fearsome. These newly fearsome firms are:

  • Dentons (as discussed above)
  • Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld
  • Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft
  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore
  • Davis Polk & Wardwell
  • Fish & Richardson
  • K&L Gates
  • Latham & Watkins
  • Morgan Lewis
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman
  • White & Case

Except for Dentons, these firms moving up in ferocity jumped into the BTI Awesome Opponents (click for full list of BTI Awesome Opponents) this year. The Awesome Opponents nip at the heels of the Fearsome Foursome.

Making a Firm Fearsome

Clients talk about 3 reasons the Fearsome Foursome standout:

  1. These firms are especially savvy at pulling together multiple strategies to reach their goal—opponents sense this broad strategic approach.
     
  2. Aggressive and unrelenting approach—the Fearsome Foursome don’t take a breath and don’t stop. Opponents know they are in for 24/7 litigation made up of a stream of both new and continuing approaches.
     
  3. An ability to predict the future—top legal decision makers talk about how the most feared firms have an uncanny ability to anticipate what will happen next and ensure they are ready to respond well in advance.

A law firm’s ability to instill fear is emerging as a clear differentiator. Corporate counsel are on the lookout for more fearsome firms as complex and Bet-the-Company litigation has grown. Be sure to join us next week as we discuss the continued growth in Bet-the-Company work highlighted in our newly released BTI Litigation Outlook 2017.

The Danger of the Sputtering Client Service Experience

The Mad Clientist shares with you how the law firms with enduring client service initiatives are making everyone else look bad.

You can view the video below, or on YouTube directly here: https://youtu.be/d_RGm0sgE0g

We’ll be releasing videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

The Mad Clientist Minute: The Weekly Video to Help You Drive More Business

You spoke and we listened. After many requests for short, concise video clips—we are pleased to announce our brand-new video feature: The Mad Clientist Minute. These highly focused weekly videos offer an in-depth look at BTI’s research, experience, data, case studies, and analysis. BTI Principal Jennifer Petrone Dezso and I will be sharing our insights on a wide range of topics including business development, client service, marketing budgets, client feedback, and how to drive more business.

This week’s video, What Successful Client Teams Really Look Like, breaks down what it takes to build a superior client team, including the most important ingredient necessary for continued success:

You can also watch the videos we’ve already posted, including:

Why Big Law Is Winning the Battle for New Work and New Clients 

Big Law is not only doing things differently than they’ve done in the past, but they’re also doing things differently than other law firms. And why it’s working.

Where to Invest More to Build Superior Client Relationships

Hear exactly how law firms with the most successful client relationships allocate their marketing and business development budgets.

Clients: "To Get Hired Today Law Firms Must Understand My Business Needs"

The single biggest factor clients use when evaluating whether or not to hire a law firm.

How Big Law Uses Client Feedback Differently 

BTI's research finds big law uses client feedback in ways most firms typically don’t consider—while finding ways to push traditional client feedback a step further than expected.

We’ll be releasing these videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday—be sure not to miss a single one by subscribing in the upper right corner of this page.

MBR

What Successful Client Teams Really Look Like

The Mad Clientist breaks down what it takes to build a superior client team, including the most important factor necessary for continued success.

You can view the video below, or on YouTube directly here: https://youtu.be/375D-DGgs6w

We’ll be releasing videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

Clients Bring $4 Billion In-House: For All the Wrong Reasons

Corporate counsel are shifting big-time spending back in-house—resulting in $4 billion moving in-house*. This also marks the 8th year of legal spending moving in-house out of the last 10, the second largest move in-house in 16 years.

Top legal decision makers make no excuses—they want to save time and money. They tell us of increasing rates, runaway scopes of work, and an inability to leverage the relationships they have in place to benefit from their current firms’ institutional knowledge.

The move to save money may not come as a complete surprise. Just over one-half of clients think ­law firms don’t want to or can’t change. The big move in-house comes one year after the top hourly rate in the market hit $2,000 an hour. The headlines around increases in associate salaries also contribute to the aura of higher legal costs—whether real or not. Everyone can make the leap from higher salaries to higher hourly rates.

The work moving in-house is primarily in the following areas:

  • Commercial Litigation
  • IP Litigation
  • Investigations
  • Environmental
  • Real Estate
  • Smaller M&A
  • Licensing

This continuing flow of legal dollars in-house compels every law firm to step back and really look at the world from their clients’ point of view. Bringing work in-house is not easy. Clients have to recruit, hire, train, and invest in an in-house attorney and support staff. Clients have to feel strongly motivated to make this kind of investment and are sending a clear signal they want more value and lower costs.

You can add value and save your clients money even when they bring the work in-house. Reach out to them and offer to help educate these newly hired attorneys—maybe even develop training material. Get feedback about your client’s plan and start offering up potential candidates from your network.

Perhaps most powerful of all—find out why your clients are moving work in-house and where. Polish up your Alternative Fee Arrangement skills. Start thinking about secondments to meet your clients’ needs. Turn the move in-house into a business development opportunity.

Clients have now established a long history of in-sourcing work. This often feared trend presents one more opportunity to help your client. The firms who openly engage their clients about plans and intent will be the firms who find hidden work in one of the most unexpected places.

MBR

*Based on BTI research conducted on a rolling basis between February 2016 and August 2016. BTI conducted more than 330 independent, individual interviews with CLOs and General Counsel at Fortune 1000 companies and large organizations.

How Big Law Uses Client Feedback Differently

BTI's research finds big law uses client feedback in ways most firms typically don’t consider—while finding ways to push traditional client feedback a step further than expected.

You can view the video below or on YouTube directly, here: https://youtu.be/tYOkr9LK1CE

We’ll be releasing videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

Clients: "To Get Hired Today Law Firms Must Understand My Business Needs"

This week The Mad Clientist details the single biggest factor clients use when evaluating whether or not to hire a law firm.

You can view the video below or on YouTube directly, here: https://youtu.be/UjLQAuJC-CQ

We’ll be releasing videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

Better. Stronger. Faster. Building the Bionic Associate.

We have the technology. We talked about building a better, stronger, and faster practice leader here. Now it’s time to build a better, stronger, and faster associate.

We have little choice. We are forced to equip first year associates with every available tool to make them more billable. The 1900 billable hour target is the breaking point. The law firms who want to retain associates and reach these lofty goals will start building a better associate in year 1.

Even those firms with a lowly 1800 hour target can gain a leg up by helping new associates by giving them some unexpected but necessary training.

4 essential skills will turn any ordinary associate into a bionic associate—giving each the ability to find more billable hours. We recommend you develop monthly training to cover each of the 4 topics. By the time you reach month 12, you will have a crop of higher performing 2nd year associates who will have already started establishing demand for their time.

The 4 essential skills to create bionic associates are:

1. Listening

Listening is an art and a skill. The more you practice the better you get. Associates who learn to truly listen will hear what is being asked and also be able to understand what is not. A good listener asks questions to confirm their understanding and gives feedback to the speaker to let them know they are being heard.

This skill will help your associates produce more concise and focused deliverables in less time than those with less honed skills.

2. Writing

Writing for partners and clients poses different demands than writing in law school. Clients want short and relevant documents which get to the point quickly. Clients also want a summary of the document so they can decide whether to read it or not.

Make associates practice writing in a controlled and peer-reviewed environment. Suggest new associates find someone in the firm who has a writing style they like and can be comfortable with. Your associates will develop their own style as they go – but need to start with a proven approach. Experienced attorneys will tell you it takes great skill to write short and direct documents – long verbose documents are easier to create but mostly go unread or rewritten.

3. Anticipating

Teach associates to look ahead to see what comes next and be ready and prepared. Train associates to stick their necks out and volunteer to take the next logical step in the process. Teach these associates how to make their boss’s life easier. Anticipating needs is one of the skills which makes everyone’s life easier. Associates can learn to anticipate by taking time to think about current tasks, listen to others to see where it fits in the big picture, research the legal process in which they are engaged to learn all the steps in the process, and ask about overall objectives when first receiving an assignment.

4. Researching (Clients)

You can never know too much about your client’s business—even as a first-year associate. The research will make the work more interesting and relevant. Training associates to share their research with the other attorneys on the team helps everyone understand the client, and proves associates can be a resource to the client team and the relationship partner. An associate’s research also makes the partner look better to the client.

Associates can get started by tracking clients in Google News. The best research will come by tracking client news at the product name level, by names of executives and by tracking competitors. Look for news, product announcements, earnings announcements for public companies and Wall Street analyst comments and coverage. Be sure to read the trade publications for the client’s industry. And most importantly, share the research in an easily digestible form so the team can benefit as well.

These 4 skills are an essential part of the associate success kit. The associates become more skilled and busier. The biggest benefit goes beyond the extra billable hours gained. The most enduring benefit comes from teaching your new associates how important these 4 skills are for success early in their careers and, ultimately, changing your law firm’s culture to be more competitive and productive. 

MBR

Where to Invest More to Build Superior Client Relationships

This week’s Mad Clientist Minute features The Mad Clientist himself discussing exactly how law firms with the most successful client relationships allocate their marketing and business development budgets.

You can view the video below or on YouTube directly, here: https://youtu.be/ncJRWnXMgoo

We’ll be releasing videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

Law Firms Missing Best Source of Innovation

Innovation has a long and a short game. The long game is the sexy part. Few can argue how the ability to forever change, disrupt or even reinvent an industry isn’t a little exciting. But, as we wait for the long game to play out, we are all forced to play the short game. Today, we face clients who want new and never before seen ideas and approaches. Your clients love the long game, but earn their bonuses in the short game.

In the short game the only clear, constant source of innovation is your ability to bring truly new and original thinking to clients. This means you bring a continuing stream of new approaches to the previously unseen situations your clients currently face.

20% Higher Profits from the Short Game

The innovation short game is a client-by-client process. Each client offers you their own set of unique challenges in which you can invest your time and energy. Outside counsel delivering the newest, most novel and valuable approaches to client problems report 20% higher profits per partner than other firms.

Corporate counsel believe innovation will get them a better outcome. These better outcomes for clients translate into better outcomes for law firms, too, including:

New Business: Innovation is one of the few activities proven to attract new business. New and existing clients will seek you out once they learn you are doing something other firms don’t.

Premium Pricing: Clients are paying premiums for these innovative services. The value of your new approach or offering justifies a higher price tag.

Better Pricing across the Board: Your innovation creates a value umbrella. The innovation makes everything you do worth more to clients.

Clients Changing Definition of Innovation

Our 27 years of carefully listening to client feedback tells us innovation has become dramatically more important to clients than ever before. Today, client education—meaning customized for your specific client’s situation and delivered in person—dominates innovation. The top innovators also design continuing legal education sessions for their clients’ staff and provide tools—both online and offline—for clients to educate themselves. Client appetite for learning relevant information is insatiable.

4 years ago clients crowed about Alternative Fee Arrangements (AFAs). While still considered innovative, they don’t bring the same bang for the innovation buck as custom education.

Corporate counsel also value technological innovation centering on eDiscovery, document sharing, and project management—but not as much as they value education.

Finding the Best Sources of Innovation

There are few better sources of innovation than your clients—especially for the short game. Clients report the most impressive are client specific and designed for them. This makes talking to your clients one of the high-speed conduits to high-impact innovation. Probing clients for their needs and for the tools they would like to see developed or have developed themselves is a long-proven strategy for finding opportunities to innovate. The best-run firms bring this data together to find trends across the client base and help a large number of partners innovate—and inform their long game.

Industries and professions outside law are well known for reaching out to their customers and clients for sources of innovation. You can find numerous studies and statistics to drive this point home. Two of the more compelling examples include:

1.       A study of 1,193 commercially successful innovations across 9 industries, where 737 (60%) came from customers. (Users as Service Innovators: The Case of Banking Service by Pedro Oliveira and Eric von Hippel)

In their paper, Oliveira and von Hippel explore the histories of 47 functionally novel and important commercial and retail banking services. They find that, in 85% of these cases, users self-provided the service before any bank offered it. For example: “sweep” accounts (automatically transfer money between checking and savings accounts for max interest). Assets in such accounts grew from $20 billion in 1991 to $368 billion in 2005 and allowed banks to reduce their required reserves.

2.       “3M’s poorly performing Medical-Surgical Markets Division was looking for a way to kick start its lackluster innovation record in the 90s. Instead of taking the standard route (relying on internal, employee backed ideas), a separate team was formed to search for breakthrough innovation that consisted of the “lead users” (read: customers).

When the results of these two groups (users vs. employees) were compared side-by-side in terms of revenue generated, the differences were quite drastic:

        User-lead innovations had an average revenue of $146 million dollars (in 5 years).
        Internally generated innovations had an average revenue of $18 million (for the same span of time).

The results were clear: Customers were coming up with the winning ideas more often than not.”
(Courtesy of https://blog.kissmetrics.com/what-customers-want/)

Client feedback will make your short game more potent. Your skill in the short game will drive success in your long game, and reduce the time you need to develop your long game. Your ability to blend your long game and short game demands diligence and practice—just like any other sport. And, the more you and your partners practice, the higher your profits will go. Just ask the law firms getting the 20% premium now.

MBR

 

Why Big Law Is Winning the Battle for New Work and New Clients

Welcome to our brand-new feature: The Mad Clientist Minute—a short weekly video offering an in-depth look at our data, case studies, analysis, and insight on a wide range of topics including business development, client service, marketing budgets, client feedback, and much more.

We’ll be releasing these videos here on The Mad Clientist blog every Tuesday. Subscribe today (in the box at the upper right of your screen) and be sure you don't miss a single one.

You can view our first video: Why Big Law Is Winning the Battle for New Work and New Clients, below, or directly on YouTube here: https://youtu.be/yFy-6jKWHm0

26 Tips To Boost Client Service on BTI’s 27th Birthday

Today is day one of BTI’s 27th year. I have been lucky enough to help market leaders, market-leaders-to-be, the best-run professional service firms in the world, and all manner of organizations drive growth. The combination of this experience and BTI’s independent research with more than 14,000 top executives provides unmatched insights for our clients.

During BTI’s 25th anniversary, I published a long-form book, Clientelligence: How Superior Client Relationships Fuel Growth and Profits, which has become an Amazon Customer Service Top 30 Best Seller—and a Kirkus Best Book of 2015.

But my clients and friends wanted something more. The advice I got was, “Think short and pithy—focused suggestions on how to immediately boost client service, keep client relationships moving forward, and develop more business without ever using the dreaded sales pitch or hard sell. And make it easy and quick to read.”

You can see the results below, and in my latest book: The Mad Clientist’s ABCs of Client Service. 26 nuggets of insight—each tied to a word and letter of the alphabet. Each nugget, one for each year BTI just completed, tells its own story of how to boost at least one aspect of client service.

Please click each link below for the complete definition and its related illustration (just to reinforce the point):

A is for Action... Your Actions define your clients’ experience... 

B is for Bullet... Take one for your client... 

C is for Commitment to Help... Commitment to Help is the single most influential factor in any relationship... 

D is for Devotion... Devote at least 15 minutes every day to push your understanding of your top client’s industry and business...

E is for Expectations... Clients increase their Expectations with every wonderful act you perform... 

F is for Feedback... You can’t improve without client Feedback... 

G is for Goals... Clients’ Goals drive every aspect of what you do... 

H is for Hot Seat... Your best clients will, at some point, put you in the Hot Seat... 

I is for Inaction... Inaction speaks much louder than words...

J is for Joy... The sensation clients experience when they know the value of your service dwarfs the fee...

K is for Kryptonite... Kryptonite is widely accepted as the only known substance proven to render Superman vulnerable...

L is for Listen Listen Listen... Listen until it hurts...

M is for Motion... Make things happen. Move the mountains. Get it done.... 

N is for No... No drives clients crazy...

O is for Obvious... What is Obvious to you is oblivion to your client...

P is for Process... Process is often more important than the outcome...

Q is for Quality... Quality starts and ends with clients... 

R is for Relationship... Relationships are a state of connectedness... 

S is for Surprises... Clients hate them...

T is for Thousand Days... You improve your client service prowess by practicing for a Thousand Days, not practicing a thousand ways...

U is for Unprompted... The overwhelming majority of C-level executives will hire you based in a single Unprompted recommendation from a peer...  

V is for Value... The point where your client believes they have received substantially more than they pay... 

W is for W.I.T... Whatever It Takes...

X is for X-Factor... The X-Factor is the special quality unique to each and every one of your clients...

Y is for You... You are the most powerful component in delivering superior client service... 

Z is for Zeal... Your fervor and commitment to client service shines through everything you do and every action you take...

and... 

T is for Thank You... I’ll repeat one letter as I take this opportunity to thank all of you: my clients, friends, and colleagues who have taught me these lessons and helped me develop these insights along the way.

Spend just 26 minutes with the ABCs of Client Service and improve your client service immediately. My ABCs of Client Service opens your eyes to a whole new way of providing superior client service to each and every one of your clients—from the client perspective. And offers tactics to drive more business. Click here for more information—and to order your copy today.

And, just to add a bit more celebration to BTI’s birthday, we are giving the first 27 people to subscribe* to The Mad Clientist (in the box at the upper right of your screen) a copy of The Mad Clientist's ABCs of Client Service. As an added bonus you’ll also be included when we launch a brand new subscribers-only feature next week you won't want to miss.

MBR 

*If you're already a subscriber go ahead and add your email address again if you'd like the chance to be gifted a copy of the book.