I’m in Las Vegas for the Legal Marketing Association (LMA) Annual conference this week. Not my favorite city, but I always enjoy LMA Annual for any number of reasons.

As always with conferences, it’s about the people. Relationships are what make the world go round. I’m pretty active on social media, but there’s no substitute for meeting face to face. Even hugging a long time customer (yes, there’s a lot of hugging) can mean a lot.

Drinks or dinner with industry colleagues we work with or want to work with is where business gets done. It’s wild that we don’t often talk business, but talk more about family, sports and where people grew up. Business discussion follows over the phone days later.

Getting feedback from customers, most often unsoliciated, comes face to face pretty quickly over a beer. Customers don’t shy from letting me know where we need to get better. While customers may not open up to my success team, folks want to get heard at the top and see something change. Most often it’s because they care. They want us to be successful.

I also want to brief customers on what’s become nothing short of a LexBlog revolution with our move from an agency model to a managed WordPress platform for legal. Customers receive all they have in the past, yet improved with more options, more quickly and at lower prices. We email folks, but things don’t always resonate.

Our products and marketing folks were nice enough to put together a brief deck that David Cuthbert and I can walk customers through in 5 or 10 minutes. We’re not trying to sell, I just want customers know the impact (all good) on them. Key for me is not selling here, but letting marketing professionals enjoy their time and catching up with each other.

Knowing the mood and trends of law firms when it comes to marketing, business development and technology is one of the most important things I do. Getting a hundred people in a room, listening to a speaker or a panel discussion and how they engage the presenters with questions and comments tells me a lot.

In Monday’s pre-conference technology track it was all about marketing automation. Law firms were all over it. Made clear that LexBlog needs to educate our customers on what they already have available from us and how easy it is to do integration with our platform so it’s working in harmony with whatever automated marketing platform they’re going to use. We also should reach out to the providers so they know we are there for integration.

Kudos to conference chairs, Cynthia Voth and Paul Grabowski, and their teams/committee members and LMA executive director, Betsi Roach and her team for pulling together another good show. Almost 2000 people, 160 sessions, and a crowded exhibit hall of companies/sponsors makes for a great event.

If you want to get together, drop me a note on social media works (Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn) and my phone to call or text is 206 321 3627. My email is kevin@lexblog.com. I’d welcome catching up and if a customer to walk you through our evolution.