How a Data-Driven Mindset Can Turn a Law Firm into a Successful Business with Kerri Coby White

Your business decisions today, whether big or small, compound over time. How you take advantage of the resources and data available to you now impacts the success of your law firm. As a business owner, you need to get behind new technology and strategies to ensure your firm keeps its trajectory toward your performance goals. One way to achieve this is through managing and tracking your data.

What will the legal industry look like ten years from now? For Kerri Coby White, it’s all about data. In this episode, she shares the importance of a data-driven mindset for a law firm owner. She also discusses how implementing data-driven strategies can optimize your systems. Kerri also talks about technology in the legal industry and working with specialists to take your business to another level.

Are you a law firm owner who is hungry for growth? Make sure you don’t miss this episode!

Here are three reasons why you should listen to this episode

  1. Discover how a data-driven mindset and systems can boost your law firm’s growth.
  2. Learn the role of technology and automation in the future of law firms.
  3. Find out how you can overcome hurdles in your business and achieve long-term success by managing and optimizing data.


Episode Highlights

How Kerri Became a Shareholder

Kerri: “As any good business developing attorney will know, when you meet people and build relationships, you push your brand.”

  • Kerri enjoyed meeting new people and connecting with people in the industry. 
  • Through these connections and business opportunities, she and her business partner got through the legal innovation sandbox in Utah. It’s a policy tool and test market for business models and services for the legal industry.
  • They implemented their ideas to grow and expand law firms through the program, which in a way became their innovation lab.
  • Attorneys don’t have the training or education to grow and expand a business. Outsourcing this skill can help your law firm expand and grow.

Moshe: “The typical attorney law firm owner doesn’t have access to the amount of capital required to bring on all of this top talent. When you allow ownership to be shared, all of the sudden, it unlocks the vast resources of the overall investment industry.”

The Impact of Capital and Partnerships on the Industry

  • The influx of capital and the shifting direction of partnerships in law firms influence the future of the industry.
  • A shared interest in the firm's growth can move the needle for your law firm’s success.
  • Partnering with specialists in fields like finance and marketing — who also have a vested interest in your firm — can take your success to new heights.

Keeping up with Technology and Automation

  • We can look at other industries to find new strategies, ideas, and concepts to adopt and implement.
  • Adopting new technology into manageable systems can bring your law firm to the next level.
  • Using data-driven solutions and technology solutions, Kerri’s company helps smaller law firms compete with bigger companies.

Kerri: “If we have more data, we can make better solutions.”

  • The trends in your firm can help you identify where to spend more time and money and how you can compete better.
  • Many technological strategies are now well-tested and predictable. These are viable solutions for law firms to get ahead of the competition.

Data Management and Compounding Data

  • Many business models can promote growth. Law firms can merge, buy a practice, or invest in marketing campaigns.
  • Likewise, law firm owners need to understand the impact of data and a data-driven mindset to boost your firm’s growth.
  • It’s never too late to incorporate data management strategies into your practice.

Kerri: “It’s such an important lesson to learn. The tiny little things that we do grow over time. The impact of those tiny little things has a substantially greater impact over time. So whether it’s saving for retirement or collecting data, we need to start now.”

  • It’s essential to start early, no matter how small. Implementing a data-driven strategy and mindset influences the long-term success of your law firm.

Kerri: “If the things that we do feel like they’re not moving the needle enough, just imagine if you kept doing them for 10 years . . . We overestimate what we can do in one year and underestimate what we can do in 10.”

  • Being clear about your plans and career goals can also help track and plot your law firm’s growth.

Data Points

  • Data is the trail of digital footprint we leave on the internet.
  • A data translator looks at a company’s aggregated data, gives insights for business intelligence, and creates data-driven strategies for the company’s success.
  • Data-driven decisions may involve ad spend, finding high value leads, where your brand is strongest, and team performance, among others.
  • When you collect data from different sources, there is a tendency to make isolated decisions. Thus, it’s important to understand the context of an event and the data gleaned from it.

Having a Data-Driven Mindset

  • Attorneys are trained to have a judgment-based mindset to interpret and judge cases, which is not helpful around numbers.
  • When you have data, you can make decisions to get the outcomes you want.
  • The next step for a firm’s growth is pulling data from various sources, centralizing it, and hiring a data translator to understand the data.

How to Extrapolate Data

  • Most practice management systems are not built for intake. Thus, most attorney owners are unable to put this data into a meaningful context.
  • Kerri’s company creates dashboards so that you can have the information you want on hand. By connecting structured data, they can put it into a centralized location so you can make sense of it.
  • KPIs (key performance indicators) help you set your goals, as well as set a scale to help you reach those goals.

Kerri: “Every system is built on the five Ts: teams, tools, tactics, targets, and tracking. Where are we going? And did we get there?”

  • It’s motivating to see the impact of structured data on your firm’s teams, decision-making, and overall growth.
  • Besides monitoring your firm’s progress, you can also create a rewards system for employees.

Building a Better Law Firm

  • People work harder with a rewards system. Data systems can keep track of your team’s metrics and boost motivation in the workplace.
  • It also gives you more training opportunities, allows you to improve your practice, and shores up the foundations of your system.

Reconciling Marketing and Intake Data

  • Marketing teams make data driven-decisions. However, you’ll often find a tremendous gap between marketing and intake data.
  • Kerri’s consultancy firm works with law firms to bridge this gap.

Kerri: “If you think you’re doing a good job as a marketing firm because you’ve had a 25% on-page conversion, you’re feeling great about it, but that doesn’t mean that the law firm has closed those clients. That disconnect . . . is profound.

  • They use Loop with firms and practices of any size to close the gap between intake and marketing.
  • The data provided by the software allows them to look at trends, position the budget accordingly, and plan for strategic growth.

The Importance of Data Consultants for a Law Firm

Kerri: “I think it’s great to be one of the latecomers to technology related to tracking automation integrations between technologies. It’s all there. You just need someone to come in and connect the dots for you.”

  • Data systems and management are all an upfront investment for the long-term success of your business. Having systems in place ensures that your teams are more efficient and successful.
  • Optimize your practice with automation and data management.
  • When marketing isn’t producing the outcomes you expected, the problem lies in intake. Analyzing your data to find solutions.

About Kerri

Kerri Coby White is co-founder and CEO of KerriJames, a consulting firm providing growth-hungry law firms with custom intake and data solutions that improve lead conversions, save time, and propel growth. In 2022, Kerri and her partner founded BRITE CAPITAL INC, which invests in companies in the legal industry. Additionally, Kerri and her partner are shareholders in a personal injury firm themselves.

A graduate of NYU’s Steinhardt School and a member of the board at Trusted Legal Partners, Kerri works with new attorneys to develop skills and practices that grow their professional brand and increase case acquisition. She frequently speaks on the small, consistent strategies that, compounded over time, result in deeply satisfying careers.

As CEO of KerriJames, Kerri works closely within the industry to build new relationships and connect attorneys and colleagues to trusted partners that help them move the needle in their business. It is her personal belief that technology must be leveraged in ways that enable firms to do the important work of seeking justice, supporting clients, and growing organizations that serve their communities.

Connect with Kerri on LinkedIn. Check the work she does for law firms on the KerriJames website.

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