In many an industry, the most important thing to do is come out on top. King of the hill, cream of the crop, winner winner chicken dinner. Unfortunately, some attempts to come out on top can prove to be a rather pyrrhic victory at best, where you spend too much money and get too little back from it, or where you even wind up losing despite all of your efforts. Sometimes, the best thing to do for your law firm is work together with the competition using a collaborative marketing strategy. All boats rise in a storm, after all.

What are the benefits of going with a collaborative marketing strategy?

It is ultimately a matter of determining the risks and benefits of going with this strategy. As mentioned above, being overly competitive can be a net loss for you and your law firm, and perhaps even see you not even getting the holy grail you were anticipating. Instead of going cutthroat with the competition, you can try to work with them, strategize about how best to benefit your law firms while minimizing the negative impact you all make on each other’s.

Typically, this approach is not one that a major law firm is going to use, as they already have a solid-enough foothold that they don’t need it. They can pretty comfortably stay in their niche, or if they are more ambitious, they can actually try for the cutthroat tactics. But when it comes to the smaller law firms, there are a lot of hurdles that they will experience on their way to potential success.

Since you’re all competing with each other and not the major law firms, that results in the major law firms benefiting from competition that is too busy fighting amongst each other, potentially knocking some of these smaller law firms out of commission in the process. Instead, aim for mutual sustainment.

Sustaining one another is a valuable tool; by working together, you can make up for the large gap your and their law firms have between them and the major law firms, thereby reducing the potential risk of being smaller and more vulnerable to potential failure. Losing a substantial percentage of income hits a lot harder for a smaller law firm than a bigger one, after all. The former simply cannot absorb the hit nearly as well.

Now comes the actual tricks of pulling off a successful collaborative marketing campaign strategy. One trick is that you save a whole lot of money when you are all collaborating on a like-minded marketing strategy.

You can also plan how you want to price your services, instead of trying to undercut each other all the time. Better to do okay than to take a loss, after all. It may take some tinkering and butting heads, but if you can arrive at a consensus over a campaign, the investment will be a lot less costly.

You should also be aware that the process does not cause anyone to step on each other’s toes. For instance, what if you are aiming to do marketing for employment attorneys, and you have another law firm in this campaign doing the same. Rather than being the equivalent of ex-girlfriends deciding who gets to go to the nearby Starbucks to not run into each other, you can work out an agreement that allows you both to tap into a potential market.

For example, what if you live in different districts? Or even different neighborhoods? You can just as well decide that each should keep their eyes set on those specific areas instead of accidentally stepping foot on the other’s side of the proverbial line.

And remember you can NOT go into this half-cocked. While trying too hard can certainly affect your law firm’s potential for success, so too can taking it too easy mess it up. This is something that you want to be positively sure goes perfectly well, that every t is crossed and every i dotted.

So from the very beginning, make sure that every law firm you can get on board for this is in full agreement and aligns with each other’s interests, and plan everything out well in advance. And don’t just plan for the celebration, plan for the disappointment too, because that is a very real possibility. And we mean that — preparing for any and all reasonable eventualities increases the chances of this marketing strategy’s success exponentially.

Anticipate potential problems that may cause the plan to go awry and prepare ideas for how to solve the problems should they arise. One of the biggest problems that a collaborative marketing strategy may face is that the above-mentioned butting of heads may be more difficult to resolve than you hope.

And heck, what if one or more of the participants in this marketing campaign decide after the fact that they are not down with it, or what if they demand changes that completely turn everything end up? The ability to properly negotiate with your collaborators is vitally important, where it serves as glue to keep things together.