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7 Things to Consider Before Starting Your Own Business

starting your own business

Starting your own business can be an exciting endeavor. As a small business owner, you’re free to make your own decisions, guide the company in the direction you see fit, and benefit from complete creative freedom.

Despite the myriad of positive benefits, starting a company isn’t a decision you should be taking lightly. With that in mind, here are seven important things you should consider before starting your own business:

Can You Solve a Problem?

Far too often, prospective business owners are so excited about their idea that they throw themselves (and their money) into making it happen. But one of the first things you need to consider is whether your business idea actually solves a problem. Why do customers or clients need your service or product? Can they get it elsewhere? What is your value proposition (as in, what makes you more valuable than your competitors)? These are all questions you should consider before you jump into entrepreneurship.

Start Small

It’s always a good idea to test the market before you invest too much of your personal money and start searching for loans. For example, if you’ve created a line of custom frames, why not try selling on a platform like Etsy before you open a brick and mortar shop or create your own ecommerce store?

Starting small lets you get a better idea of what it takes to run a business. It also makes it easy for you to work out the kinks before you become an official, legal business entity.

The basic idea is getting a feel for what you enjoy and what you aren’t willing to do as a business. For instance, if you invested $10,000, you might find that you don’t enjoy being an entrepreneur or that you want to pivot your business but don’t know how to reverse your initial investment. Think of starting small as an insurance policy against potential pitfalls.

Business Name

It might seem like a simple tip but creating a business name is much harder than you think. Most people don’t realize it until they start to brainstorm their business name and have taken the first step towards becoming a serious business owner. The fact is, your business name stays with you forever and sets the tone for your brand. If you’re starting your own business and having trouble coming up with a catchy name that isn’t already taken, try using a business name generator for hundreds of potential ideas.

When choosing business names, try to stay away from names that are difficult to spell. You also want to avoid names that could limit business growth in the future. For instance, if you want to sell cruelty-free lipstick, you might not want to have a brand name that insinuates you only sell lipstick if you plan to expand your product line in the future.

Set SMART Goals

The SMART acronym stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. Your business goals should all be SMART. For example, let’s say you’ve created a website and want to generate more leads for your landing page. In this situation “generate more leads� is a specific goal. You can choose to measure with a time-bound goal by saying, “I want to grow leads from our landing page by 20% this quarter.� To make it attainable, be sure your goal isn’t a far cry from what you’re already achieving. And just like that, you’ve created a SMART goal.

Search for a Mentor

Some of the most well-known business owners had mentors. Did you know Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was mentored by Apple founder Steve Jobs? Steve Jobs also had a mentor named Bill Campbell. Mentors are there to offer guidance as you navigate the treacherous waters of starting your own business. They’ll give you honest feedback because they care about the success and growth of you and your startup. You can find mentors on platforms like Facebook or SCORE.

There’s No Fast Lane to Cash

No matter how great your business plan is, there is no fast way to get money. If you think you can get rich quickly, chances are you’ll fail. As it stands, the statistics are stacked against you; half of all new businesses fail within five years. If you’re in it for the money, not only will you be disappointed, but you’ll also lose momentum.

To start a business, you need to be passionate about your work as well as potential customers. Passion and hard work are what keep you moving during the tough early days of low to no revenue.

Create a Financial Plan

It goes without saying, you need money to make money. When you’re starting your own business, create a business model that doesn’t put too much burden on your financial resources. After all, as previously mentioned, the goal is to start small.

Use your personal savings for early funding and be sure to save up and accommodate for negative cash flow during the first few months. Create a budget to ensure you stay on track as you build out the business. Before long, you mays start to see the signs of an emerging, successful business.

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How to Optimize a Startup for Remote Work

startup remote work

Increasingly, startups are adopting a fully remote work model. With no headquarters, no central office, and no physical location for operations, startups rely entirely on digital forms of production and communication. Here is how to optimize a startup for remote work.

It’s a viable model and potentially a very profitable, efficient, and fulfilling one for everyone involved. But if you want to be successful, it’s not enough to simply adopt a remote work strategy—you have to optimize your startup for remote work.

Why Remote Work?

Remote work is in fashion these days, so many people already know the benefits — or at least some of the benefits. But if you want to make the most of your remote work optimization strategy, you should be familiar with the setup’s greatest strengths.

  • Lower costs. Naturally, working remotely allows a startup to save money. You won’t have to pay thousands of dollars per month to lease an office. You won’t have to pay for office supplies or utilities. And your employees can save money too—they won’t need to pay as much for transportation, parking, or attire (in most cases).
  • Bigger talent pool. Operating remotely also gives you access to a wider talent pool. Without a central location, you can feasibly hire employees from all over the world. That means you’ll have a much higher likelihood of finding the right person for each role on your team.
  • Higher productivity. Studies show that people who work from home tend to be more productive than their counterparts in traditional workplaces. There are many proposed explanations for this effect, including greater employee comfort, fewer distractions, or even a sense of pressure to perform—so employees can retain the perceived benefit.
  • Finally, remote work affords employees and employers with significant flexibility. Without a central office, consistent hours become less of a concern, and people feel more capable of utilizing a wide range of communication tools—rather than heading to the meeting room every time someone has a question or comment.

Of course, there are some downsides to remote work as well. For example, communication can be more challenging, you won’t benefit from the physical presence and brand exposure of an office building, and over time, your employees may suffer from burnout and/or loneliness. However, you can compensate for these with the right remote work optimization strategy.

The Nature of Remote Work Optimization

Remote work optimization is all about restructuring your business in a way that makes remote work even more efficient. It’s a way to play to the strengths of remote work while minimizing the weaknesses.

Note that remote work optimization isn’t just about making your business functional in a remote work environment. Many businesses transition to a remote work model in an overly straightforward and seemingly efficient way — but it’s the wrong way. In this approach, businesses simply take operations as they know them in a traditional work environment and shoehorn them into a remote work mold. It’s like fitting a square-shaped peg into a circle-shaped hole.

In this inefficient model, you might translate all previous in-person meetings into video conferences. You might make all employees work 9 to 5 like usual. You might even have lunch breaks at the exact same time and in the exact same way.

But if you want to achieve your true potential as an organization, you need to take a different approach. You need to structure your organization with remote work in mind, rethinking or restructuring work aspects from a fundamental level.

Key Principles for Success

How can you do this?

  • Build a remote organization from the ground up. As a short-term, duct-tape style fix, it’s okay to create a remote work environment based on your traditional approach to work. But as a long-term fix, this is much harder to pull off successfully. Instead, tear down everything and try to rebuild from the ground up. With no traditions or expectations to fulfill, does it really make sense to have this daily meeting? Is there a better system of communication and collaboration that you can create?
  • Prioritize digital visibility. Without a physical office, you’re not going to have much of a ground presence. That means you’ll be almost exclusively reliant on digital strategies for increasing visibility (like search engine optimization—SEO). Fortunately, there’s no shortage of digital marketing strategies to choose from, and many of them are highly cost-efficient. Try using a combination of content marketing, SEO, social media marketing, email marketing, and other digital outlets to make up the difference.
  • Invest in the right tools. Without the office to bring people together, your team will rely on digital tools to accomplish their tasks, including communicating with other workers. Your choice of tools will dictate your team’s success; intuitive, efficient, functional tools will increase productivity, while inefficient, clunky ones can make remote work practically impossible. Don’t be afraid to invest a little more to get the right tools for your team.
  • Embrace minimalism. That said, it’s possible to go overboard. If your team is overloaded with apps to use and tools to leverage, it’s going to be more of a burden than a help. It’s important to invest in good tools, but those tools should also be minimal and streamlined. There’s no reason to add a new tool to a system that works perfectly well as is.
  • Rethink basic assumptions. Take the time to question and rethink even your most basic assumptions about work. For example, is the 9 to 5 workday really the optimal way for your team to spend their time? Are emails truly the most viable mode of consistent communication?

Hours and Compensation

One of the most important areas to consider is how your employees spend their hours. In many roles, the sheer number of hours a person spends doesn’t really matter. They have a set of responsibilities and a set of tasks to accomplish; as long as they accomplish these, they shouldn’t need to spend a certain number of hours or be present at certain hours of the day.

Many workplaces can afford to grant workers some flexibility in this regard. You may allow employees to set their own hours, or at least be accommodating with occasional deviations from the standard schedule. You may even change how you compensate employees, accordingly, paying them based on what they accomplish, rather than with a set salary or on an hourly basis.

Communication

Communication can make or break your remote team’s productivity, so it needs to be one of your biggest areas for development. Utilize many different communication channels, including things like email, project management platforms, video chats, phone calls, and instant message platforms. Each channel has strengths and weaknesses, so using many platforms simultaneously can balance.

However, you should know that while technology can solve many communication problems, it can also introduce some problems of its own. Scrutinize your communication channels carefully, and be careful not to overwhelm employees with too many apps or too many notifications.

Security

Working remotely introduces new security risks, so you’ll need to adjust your standards and procedures. Document new security policies for all employees to follow, and educate them on best practices like network connectivity and password management. Additionally, you’ll need to invest in tools like VPNs and firewalls to ensure your remote organization remains secure.

Feedback and Ongoing Changes

If you want to maximize productivity, efficiency, and morale in your remote organization, you’ll need to commit to making ongoing changes. Your initial systems and procedures won’t be perfect, and the only way to accommodate and improve those imperfections is to evolve.

Collect feedback from your employees to get a feel for how your remote work changes are playing out in practice. They may have suggestions for further changes to make or complaints about specific tools or setups. Listen to these notes and be prepared to address them, one way or another.

Optimizing a tech startup for remote work is much more than just saying goodbye to the office. If you want to succeed in this increasingly popular and competitive space, it’s important to take your strategic planning seriously.

Image Credit: anna shvets; pexels

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Covid-19 – 5 Ways Startups Can Tackle the Effects of the Outbreak

covid effect on startups

The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic problems have negatively affected millions of people globally — not only did it affect people, but it also harmed many businesses and startups, disrupting their day to day activities. The global pandemic has hurt businesses and the economy as a whole, but this is more worrying and sparks a lot of fear in the hearts of startup CEOs, founders, and team members as startups are less likely to survive in times of crisis. Here are five ways startups can tackle the effects of the outbreak.

One major effect the virus has had on startups is how it has disrupted team members’ normal day-to-day activities. Every startup longs for a culture founded on and promotes teamwork through in-office collaboration, but with recent worldwide shutdowns, companies have turned to remote working to compensate.

The magic of in-house collaboration, peer to peer conversations, and lunch breaks would be gone, affecting employee morale. Many employees simply won’t be able to adapt to a new way of working.

The pandemic has also affected the quarterly earnings of top companies. Startups are far more likely to record a plateau or a tremendous drop in growth, thereby increasing the chances of you missing your monthly or quarterly goals.

The virus has also stopped many supply chains in various countries, including China, one of the world’s biggest suppliers; this has affected startups that deal with hardware and the production or manufacture of physical goods. Many startups had shut down totally or minimize their local and international business travel plans to reduce the chances of an employee getting the virus.

How startups can tackle the effects of the pandemic

Even with the various negative impacts of Covid-19, startup founders and CEOs can reduce the effects of the virus and their startups’ chances of closing down.

1. Remote working

In-office collaboration can simply not be overstated; it’s essential for building personal relationships between coworkers, thereby boosting employee productivity; it is also essential for the creation of company culture, but what’s more important to you as CEO is keeping your customers and employees safe.

With social distancing policies that ban public gatherings being implemented, startups have had no other choice than to turn to remote working to keep their startups running. The popularity of Zoom, Slack, and Skype, apps great for remote working, have skyrocketed since lockdowns have been in place.

2. Limiting in-office work

Limiting the number or set of people required to come to the office is important for reducing employee risk of getting the virus. Employees should only go to the office when a project is crucial and cannot be done from home.

Offering your team unlimited sick time can also incentivize workers to stay at home when feeling ill, thereby lowering the risk of spreading the virus to other team members.

3. Inform your investors

As a CEO and founder, it is important to communicate what’s happening with your startup to investors, your plans, cash runway, new business strategy, and overview of how the pandemic is affecting your startup.

This is essential in letting your investors know if you’ll need money anytime soon, and the overall impact the coronavirus would have on your startup. It is important to communicate openly and on time with investors.

4. Create a new business plan

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.� — Charles Darwin.

Scrapping your old business plan and strategy and creating a new one from scratch is essential for the survival of a startup at this time, as former business plans were made with a normal worldview and might not work well in such times.

How you as a founder completely restructure how your startup operates depends on few factors; your burn rate and cash runway, how long your startup can survive assuming this problem lasts longer, and analyzing risk and resources expected. This ensures that if the present situation persists, your business won’t go out of business. Even though we don’t have enough info on the present situation, it’s important to change plans and adjust as new updates are released.

5. Effective Communication and Transparency

As a startup leader, you have to be transparent with your team as they are also in fear of what the future holds for their startup; this means being completely honest and open about what’s going on, regular updates on the state of your startup.

When it comes to communicating with your team and investors, It’s best to find the balance where you, as a founder, can be compassionate without sugarcoating and being too optimistic, harsh, or negative. Effective communication helps employees keep calm as they are less likely to make assumptions and panic about the startup’s future because they are being told what’s going on.

In Conclusion

We can’t possibly know how long startups and businesses will suffer from the effects of the pandemic, or even when the global economy will heal anytime soon as it might take a few months for the virus to be fully contained.

However, CEOs and founders of startups need to learn from this by adapting their plans, increasing the flexibility of their future business activities, and how they operate.

Now more than ever, your team needs leadership. You panicking will only harm employee morale. You need to restructure your startup, reevaluate your expenses, be transparent, communicate effectively with the team, be compassionate, and, most of all, learn from the many lessons that are to be learned from this pandemic.

Image Credit: pexels

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5 Essential Inbound Marketing Tools for Startups and Entrepreneurs

marketing tools

Startups and entrepreneurs have a unique challenge they need to face to effectively promote their solutions in a digital environment. The days of creating amazing content, paying for advertisement, and then leaning back on your chair to get great results are essentially over. Here are five essential inbound marketing tools for startups and entrepreneurs.

Today—and particularly in the pandemic context—you need to put a little more work to build a relationship with your audience.

Rarely will you turn cold leads into happy customers if you don’t address their concerns and questions throughout their buying process.

But how to get started? Let us help you with that!

In the guide (below), we’ve compiled five key marketing tools you can’t miss adding to your social media and video marketing strategy. By using vids, not only will you create excellent content to display in your pages and networks— but you will also attract new and returning customers.

Display Your Competence with Downloadable Written Material

Whether your business consists of marketing solutions to gardening tools or grilling equipment, you can deliver great value to your prospects by giving them long-form written content.

This is a staple that many brands use today to showcase their expertise on a particular subject. There are countless options you can go for, including:

  • Compilations of your best blog posts or essays that dive deep into important topics.
  • ‘Ultimate guides’ and workbooks to help those interested in developing a particular skill.
  • Manuals to show your prospects how to best take advantage of your product.

The benefit of the free written material is that visitors must subscribe to your email list to get it. Rather, if your content is great and easy to consume, prospects will likely see you as a reliable provider and consider your services when comparing your brand to other options.

To succeed with eBooks, you don’t have to offer something completely revolutionary, try to create content that sets you apart from the rest. For example, there are many writing guides out there; but perhaps not many offer specific advice on crafting an effective hook.

Bonus tip: You can repurpose the eBook’s long-form content to produce shorter blog posts, infographics, newsletters, or videos—anything that helps you keep your content up to date. Just be sure to give them a different perspective or expand even further on the eBook’s ideas.

Convey Your Ideas with Powerful Animation

As with eBooks, the purpose of creating videos for your brand is not to shamelessly advertise your services, but to present yourself as a useful and knowledgeable provider.

Adding videos to your marketing toolkit is a very versatile solution. Your vid will provide insights, tips, and tricks on topics related to your brand. There are many types of videos you can produce to follow prospects during every stage of their buying journey.

An animated video production comes particularly in handy for framing a problem. Then you show how your solution can ease the viewers’ lives. With the use of colorful visuals, sympathetic characters, and an engaging story, you can help your prospects better understand their needs and identify their pain points—all while watching a fun video!

Having this content on your landing pages and social media accounts will help you differentiate your ideas and solutions to those of other brands.

Bonus tip: Audiences love interacting with videos. When you create them, be sure to upload them everywhere, and don’t be afraid to repurpose your vids as shorts, for marketing and fun.

Enjoyable, informative videos tailored to a social media platform are great material to generate interactions and shares.

Create Amazing Sweepstakes and Contests to Entice Your Prospects

The chance of winning an awesome prize gives your prospects a unique incentive to engage with your brand. Now, with services like Rafflecopter and ShortStack, launching sweepstakes and contests events via email, social media is easier than ever.

One question you may have, though, is whether this is an effective strategy. After all, isn’t marketing more about gaining than giving away?

The answer is that sweepstakes and contests can be useful not only for generating buzz about your brand but for research purposes. You can collect valuable information from participants, which you can later use for developing a targeted content marketing strategy. Some essential entry options include:

  • The participant’s name.
  • Email address.
  • Phone number.
  • Address and zip code.

Now the trick to creating killer sweepstakes and contests that attract valuable leads is the prize. You will surely gain lots of entries with a MacBook or Super Bowl tickets, but hardly any of them will become potential customers.

Instead, you need to offer something more relevant to your audience. One good idea is to give away a product that complements yours. For example, if you specialize in selling drinks, a set of custom glasses would create a great response.

Bonus tip: As you start in the business, consider partnering up with other people to provide the prize for you. There are many brands out there who are eager to promote their products via other users.

Entice Visitor with Optimized Landing Pages

A landing page is a great place to showcase your content and explain your ideas in full detail. In general, landing pages should be very informative and direct to communicate what your product or service is about.

When you design one, focus on clear goals: tell visitors what your value proposition can do for them and what steps they can take to learn more. In practice, that means having your most important content front-loaded.

Prioritize clean, minimalist designs that draw attention to your product and CTA. For example, if you’ve produced videos and images related to your product, they should be in the center of the page and not have intrusive elements that distract visitors.

Bonus tip: It’s critical to define the right spot to place your forms: that’s where visitors interested in learning more will subscribe to your list and/or download your content.

Visitors shouldn’t have to scroll down to the bottom of the page to find the form. Place the form in the upper right corner. Pay attention to your metrics and data to gauge response and interaction with the content positioning as well.

Launch Social Media Promotions and Offers

Having a solid social media presence is an essential component for any startup or entrepreneur’s success that aims to build a strong relationship and trust with their prospects.

You can use social media to give your followers preferential treatment by keeping them up with your news and big announcements. But you can also provide value with special promotions and offers, such as discounts, coupons, and promo codes.

Some of you may feel that social media promos are no more than an inconvenience every startup goes through to reap benefits in a very distant future eventually. I get it, and that’s true for many people—unless you learn how to strategically launch your promos.

To run successful social media promotions and offers, you first need to define your goals.

Although promos are very effective for attracting new clients, you can also use recurrent promo cycles to target your existing customers and encourage retention.

The key is not to launch promotions for their own sake, but to identify real marketing gaps and develop targeted promos and offers to address them.

Bonus tip: Often, we need real-time experience to assess whether we are using promos effectively. Fortunately, services like RevLifter and Rignite not only help you generate and share promos easily—they also give you comprehensive reports that let you track and analyze data. Or you could use live-streaming platforms as promotional venues and get instant feedback and metrics you can use to improve your future campaigns.

Time to Get Started

We’ve reviewed the purpose of the marketing tools to turn casual websites or social media visitors into eventual clients and committed promoters of your brand.

You really need to work on your social media platforms, since those are the places where users will most likely first hear about your brand. Give your followers an entertaining yet informative video and make them feel special by promoting your promos and giveaways in those platforms.

When users decide to pay you a visit to your website, be sure to have optimized landing pages and a value you can offer them for free, such as an eBook.

Together, these tools will allow you to successfully navigate your first experience with your online business.

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Killer Tips to Keep Your Startup Team Motivated

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If you are running a startup, there is a good chance that you may have hired a few employees. For these employees, you would be able to provide opportunities and experiences that will shape their future.

It would not be wrong to say that there’s a dark side to startups since even the owner of a business does not know what the future holds. Hence, working for a startup business can be overwhelming and frightening at the same time.

So the leaders must go out of their way to keep their teams motivated. Keeping employees motivated at all times not only makes them happy, but it also increases their productivity like never before. This is, without a doubt, a great way to take an edge over the competition.

A motivated employee is capable enough to achieve his/her goals. Needless to say, only employers can help their team deal with the feelings of apprehension. Here are a few tips that you can use to ensure that all your team member are not only on the same page but are also driven to work hard along with their peers

Have Regular Meetings with Your Team

Meeting with your startup team members on a regular basis is one of the best ways to keep them motivated. When you have a meeting every morning with your team, it simply means that everyone is likely to stay on the same page. This is something that is crucial to success.

When the founders of a startup fail to arrange meetings, there is a communication gap and the business suffers as a result. If you want to keep the business running, it is important to ensure that schedule regular meetings b with your team. It is a great way to show them that you actually care about their professional well-being, and believe it or not, it goes a long way.

Go for Virtual Meetings

In case, it is not possible to arrange a meeting regularly, then try checking in daily through phone calls and email. You would be amazed to see how your employees will be able to stay motivated throughout the day.

To stay connected with your employees, you are certainly going to need a reliable internet connection. One of the best and trustworthy internet providers is Cox Communication in Las Vegas. Make sure that you check Buy TV Internet Phone to know everything about their services.

Also, you should ensure that you make an attempt to meet with the team at least every week. If it’s not possible, then every two weeks would be helpful. If formal meetings in a professional environment sound too boring, then it would be ideal to dine out with employees and have a casual discussion about work in a great ambiance.

Keep Your Team in the Loop

There are a variety of traits that a manager needs to have. It is essential that a good leader finds numerous ways to show that they trust their team members. One of the easiest ways to do so is to keep all employees in the loop regarding different projects, clients, and not to mention company updates.

This way, your team will start believing that they are trusted enough to have an honest discussion regarding both the current situation and future of the company. Not only that, but they would also be happy to know they have a say in various choices, and their opinions truly matter.

When they are aware of this fact, it will not only help them stay motivated but also boost their productivity. When your startup team is able to see the impact they have on the company in a clear way, it is going to have a great impact on overall operations.

Award Your Employees from Time to Time

Of course, you pay a handsome salary to your employees for the work they do, but what you need to keep in mind is that money is not everything. According to different studies, money is not enough to motivate your employees for doing quality work.

The best way to motivate your employees to keep up with their good work is to appreciate them. Let them know that they are a valuable and integral part of the company’s success. Knowing that you are valued and respected is a feeling that does not only increase motivation and one which money cannot buy.

So now you may be wondering how to reward an employee other than giving them bonuses? There are multiple ways to do so. The boss should be willing to go out of his/her way to ensure that their employees are happy.

If your employee’s performance has been outstanding throughout the month or week, then you should praise them verbally. You could say something like ‘You are doing a great job and I really appreciate it’ or ‘You are an integral part of our team. Without your unfathomable performance, we wouldn’t be able to achieve our goals’.

At times, giving detailed feedback and suggestions when an employee excels at what he does go a long way. If you want to give them tangible rewards, then you can give it in the form of awards and chocolates for good performance.

Success Awaits You

Now that you know everything that can keep your employees at all times, so it will be a whole lot easier for you to pave the way for your business success.

Image Credit: fauxels; Pexels

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How Legal Tech Companies Are Re-Shaping the Legal World

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Legal tech includes software and other tools that help attorneys and their support staff to provide legal services to clients. Many new applications empower reputable firms to improve their efficiency and adapt to mobile working environments. Here’s how legal tech companies are re-shaping the legal world.

Legal tech also gives small firms and individual practitioners a chance to compete with larger competitors. It grants them access to powerful research tools. And, the right tech tools are essential for law firms that want to stay competitive. 

Understanding and embracing these innovations in technology can be the key to success in today’s legal profession. 

What are Companies Considered Legal Tech Companies?

While there are many legal tech companies in the world, what we are looking for is to be provided with technology that genuinely stands out in a crowded market. For instance, Relativity gives specific technology to lawyers.

With the Relativity tech, lawyers can store and search for documents, automate contract reviews, and perform other regulatory work and due diligence. 

Major U.S. law firms use the service. Some large firms and in-house corporate legal departments have hired experts from Relativity to help them set up eDiscovery departments. 

Other essential legal tech companies are Apttus, Everlaw, HighQ, and iManage. These companies produce software that simplifies the way companies manage their sales processes and contracts, collaborate on litigation, and handle important documents. 

The legal technology allows lawyers to focus on their cases and reduce their time in document review and management. 

How Have These Developments Affected the Legal Profession?

Technology has caused a revolution in the legal profession that has reshaped its culture, composition, delivery, skill sets, and priorities. These developments have not only bolstered departments within law firms but have also improved their reputations. 

Firms go global

Firms are now able to operate globally, collaborate with other lawyers, and improve service delivery. They are no longer stuck in the limited geographic markets established long ago by significant law firms. Now lawyers can provide services to clients on a more global scale, which benefits clients who conduct business internationally. 

The expansion of law firms into global markets has also made legal services somewhat more uniform. Furthermore, clients can now review their lawyers online, forcing attorneys to perform at a consistently high level. 

Customer satisfaction and AI move to the front.

Additionally, this new technology has given lawyers and law firms new service models that are customer-centric and that meld human resources with tech to optimize performance. In these new models, profit flows from customer satisfaction rather than hours billed. 

Lawyers are no longer tasked with brute force labor. They can rely on automation to maximize their resources. Technology has replaced the repetitive tasks of a lawyer’s work with new software. This can make lawyers more efficient and save both clients and firms money.

The arrival of technology in the legal world is transforming the profession from a pedigree-centric, tradition-bound, labor-intensive field into something entirely different.

Tech has made legal services more flexible and given lawyers access to effective automation. With new delivery models and methods, practices are shrinking while clientele is expanding.

The result is the promotion of efficiency, risk prediction, enhanced value, and cost reduction. With this expansion comes the availability of legal services to everyone. 

Furthermore, technology makes both primary and secondary legal source materials easier to access. For example, Harvard Law School decided to digitize their collection of 40 million pages of case law and give everyone free online access to them. 

Moreover, the use of legal tech and software can automate many parts of a lawyer’s job. Many legal tech tools have begun incorporating artificial intelligence, cloud computing, legal research and automation.

The rise in automation has caused some lawyers to fear it’s only a matter of time before tech disrupts the delivery of legal services. Despite this worry, thus far, legal technology has not taken jobs from human attorneys. Instead, it has improved the work for those who are willing to accept it. 

What Is a Legal Tech Incubator?

A general tech incubator involves a larger business providing support and mentorship to small start-up tech companies. Legal tech incubators include well-established law firms creating space for the rapidly increasing number of start-ups providing legal tech. 

For instance, global law firms such as Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance, and Mischon de Reya have each created incubator programs for up and coming legal tech companies. These incubators help member businesses grow and succeed.

However, that success requires more than just space and positive intentions. Successful incubators must focus on solving issues commonly faced by law firms.

Focusing on the issues is often accomplished by providing human resources and mentorship. In these programs, the host company regularly teaches smaller companies to face their problems. The teaching, training, and mentorship are accomplished through meticulous planning, organization skills, a technical focus, and consideration of consumer opinions. 

What Are Some Legal Tech Start-Ups?

In addition to the established legal tech companies, there are many start-ups as well. Legal start-ups rose in popularity in recent years. Some examples include Luminance, Libryo, Lexoo, CrowdJustice, Alacrity, and Advokatguiden. 

  • Luminance is a relatively new company that provides artificial intelligence for the legal profession. 
  • Libryo offers software that helps individuals in any organization to understand applicable legal obligations. 
  • Lexoo is an online platform that gives individuals access to international lawyers and is also used by companies to compare and recruit lawyers for their in-house legal departments. 
  • CrowdJustice is a crowdfunding platform for public interest litigation. 
  • Alacrity is a web-based platform that lets major corporations and law firms connect and improve their service delivery. 
  • Advokatguiden is a Norwegian website that publishes client reviews of lawyers and firms. Advokatguiden.no has forced transparency onto the legal profession and gives individuals insight into a lawyer’s pricing, skills, and track record. 

Embracing Legal Tech

The rising popularity of legal tech has contributed to the globalization of legal practice. The implementation of legal tech has also created new delivery models that focus on efficiency and the customer.

Legal tech opened these services to a broader client base and led to the adoption of automation.

While some are concerned about this new technology, other firms are embracing it. Legal tech incubators now help startups provide new legal technology to the profession. 

Image Credit: August de Richelieu; Pexels

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