Robins Kaplan LLP In today’s competitive market for legal services, lawyers must balance two roles that are sometimes at odds: legal adviser and salesperson.
That’s where people like Emily Lawson fit in. As a business development manager at Robins Kaplan LLP, Lawson helps busy attorneys market their skills and services to meet ever-changing client needs.
In particular, she is the dedicated business development force for the firm’s intellectual property and antitrust groups, as well as a specialized group of experts known as Acumen Powered by Robins Kaplan LLP.
“I help practice group leaders set and execute strategies that will raise the firm’s profile,” Lawson said. “That includes anything from working on pitches and proposals and securing valuable speaking opportunities to scoping and pursuing opportunities in emerging industries or areas of litigation.”
Lawson said one of the challenges inherent to her role is helping exceptionally busy professionals maximize their involvement in non-billable marketing activities that by their nature do not always have an immediate return on investment.
“Relationships are key,” said Lawson. “It’s about building trust and demonstrating the value of investing what is already a scarce resource — time — in the activities that will help generate revenue in ways that provide additional value for clients, often in the long term.”
One of Lawson’s most significant projects was leading the marketing launch of Acumen, the firm’s in-house suite of interdisciplinary professional services. Launched last year, Acumen brings together under one banner various litigation-aligned services that the firm has long offered to clients, such as e-discovery and trial support, as well as newer offerings like proprietary IP analytics services.
Through the creation of new materials and case studies, Lawson told the story of Acumen such that attorneys could better articulate the benefits to clients. And publications like The National Law Journal, The American Lawyer and New York Law Journal were quick to recognize the firm for its innovation in the alternative legal services space.
“I consider myself lucky to have found a career that is equal parts meaningful, challenging, and downright fun,” Lawson said.
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