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Partners weren’t the only ones swapping firms. CMOs were just as active as the attorneys — maybe even more. Our new LinkedIn research about law firm CMOs reveals all the changes. We took a deep dive in each of the last three years to track how law firms and their CMOS are doing.

The Numbers Give Law Firms a Reason to Pause:
    • 28% of CMOs changed firms
    • Of this 28%, 1/3 were promotions and 2/3 were lateral moves
    • Another 18% left the legal world
The Biggest Reasons for the Changes:
    • Compensation
    • New challenges
    • Perceived a more welcoming environment
    • Unappreciated in current role
    • Leadership change at their existing firm
Lasting Implications for Law Firms:
    • A successful CMO will strive to execute their strategy — which can lead to significant improvements and drive new law firm behaviors
    • Keeping a good CMO will be challenging as comp continues to rise
    • More firms are investing in strategic marketing initiatives — they need talent to develop and execute successful marketing plans
    • The best CMOs need two years to get their sea legs — demanding patience and investment in the process from law firms
    • Law firm leaders will embrace their CMOs — giving them a voice and implicit authority to act —an amazing strategy for retaining talented individuals
More Than a Trend: Fundamental Industry Shift 

The number of law firms cutting marketing staff and budgets is roughly equal to the number increasing their commitment. The cutters are making big bets they can stand up against firms investing. It is harder than ever to acquire and keep clients.

Clients have had substantial turnover — and 1/3 don’t know who their relationship attorney is. These firms are at risk. Only 21% of clients report having meaningful dialogue with their primary law firms outside of required case-related communication. These are serious obstacles to overcome — and a skilled, savvy CMO is one of the essential tools to remove these barriers.

CMOs are now part of the strategic battleground for market success. Their market value is up — as is their value to law firms. CMOs will go where they are most respected — and more CMOs know this than law firms. Until this equation reverses, look for the turnover rates to remain high.

Best in the market ahead –

The Mad Clientist

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