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The Zero to 140 interview series has been on a truly global tour de discourse, picking the minds of some of the leading legal heads in the UK and America.

The latest up is Paul King (@PaulKingCEO) of April King which has offices in London and around England.

Brian John Spencer (BJS): Paul, great to have you onboard with #Zeroto140. So tell us: where are you right now?

Paul King (PK): Physically – Nottingham. Professionally – Optimistic. Mentally – Focused.

BJS: I’ve got to admit it – I love the April King website, totally different. Tell us about the firm’s thinking.

PK: Keep it simple. Don’t underestimate how quickly you can bore/confuse/alienate clients with jargon.

BJS: Not only is the website active and responsive but fully integrated with Twitter – how does the social web come into the firm’s strategy?

PK: It’s the perfect platform to showcase our philosophy…Traditional values, modern approach.

BJS: The new partnership between Riverview Law and DMH Stallard came about through Twitter (read all about that here). So have you ever done deals or won business over Twitter or any of the other social media for that matter?

PK: Yes, have formed similar strategic partnerships thanks to Twitter. Reading a timeline indicates if someone is like-minded. Love Riverview.

BJS: Advice to other lawyers and law firms on Twitter and social media?

PK: Let the personality of the firm/individual shine through. We’re in the people business.

BJS: With 5 offices and great online activity I’ve always had the impression that business development is very important to April King. How does business development place on the firm’s list of priorities?

PK: High. We are always on the lookout for good new JV partners that can help us achieve our objectives. So many opportunities, so little time.

BJS: How do you feel the legal economy in the UK is holding up?

PK: Good, all things considered and I believe the legal economy will benefit as new business models enter the market. There is pent-up demand.

BJS: Thoughts on ABS and LPO and the future of law practice in the UK?

PK: I’m a fan. It’s the “legal Cambrian explosion”. We will all benefit from the diversity of new business models both large and small.

BJS: Are other firms doing enough to differentiate themselves from competitors and offer accessible fee arrangement and price points?

PK: I think key is to focus on your own clients. Ask yourself “what do my clients really want?” then offer creative solutions. Aim for Wow!

BJS: Author of ‘The Lawyer Bubble’ Stephen J. Harper wrote about the ‘Tyranny of the Billable Hour’ in the New York Times. This is something you recognise – Care to explain?

PK: Creates too much focus on short term profits rather than building long term (profitable) client relationships.

BJS: Quick comment on Mr Grayling?

PK: Sure he’s listening to the concerns of the profession. I confess I don’t share some of the legal Armageddon scenarios some lawyers suggest.

BJS: Ok you’re a social lawyer; you have a nice website and offer flexible fees and products. What about internally – what working processes and software are you working with?

PK: Wholesale change for us right now in this regard. Developing bespoke systems in preparation for future growth.

BJS: Looking forward – what are the plans and goals?

PK: Expand branch network and increase range of services through Joint Ventures/White label. Interactive web videos/AI are on my radar.

BJS: Finally, we at Elephant have been hugely impressed by you. You’re really doing something different and shaking things up – any last words of advice for lawyers and legal marketing people reading this?

PK: Thanks and I with you! You can be braver than you think. There’s a world out there waiting to hear from you… Connect!

 

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