Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we're talking with Lachlan McKnight, CEO of LegalVision.
In 128 words or less, explain your business idea.
LegalVision is a tech-driven, full-service commercial law firm operating primarily online. We offer fixed-fee services to corporate and commercial clients, including startups, SMEs and franchises.
Unlike other law firms, we conduct most of our work online. This means lower overheads, faster turnaround and specialist counsel from across Australia. We offer over 50 free legal documents, including Website Privacy Policies, Shareholders Agreements and Confidentiality Agreements. We’ve also published thousands of free legal articles to help businesses grow. We’re big in the start-up scene and have helped hundreds of start-ups get off the ground, providing advice on business structuring to capital raising.
What strategies are you using to grow and finance your idea?
LegalVision’s approach in marketing innovation has never been seen before in the legal industry. We publish unique content daily to educate visitors and business owners on different aspects of the law. With over 1500 articles published already by ex-top tier lawyers, this incremental marketing approach has helped to drive sales, increase our customer base and improve our brand awareness. Our content has also been published by third parties and in print by media outlets. No other law firm in Australia publishes the quantity of high-quality legal content as LegalVision, which provides an invaluable service to the general public.
What's the biggest challenge facing your business?
The most challenging situation has been maintaining our growth rate at 8% month on month. As the business grows, it is much harder to be doing this 2.5 years in, as our revenue numbers are constantly growing, and the dollar increase in revenue required to maintain a 8% growth rate therefore keeps growing.
We aim to maximise cash flow by keeping the business running efficiently. We focus on putting time and money in the innovation pipeline, improving systems and minimising waste. As a start-up, we can capitalise on our agility to overcome our short-term challenges.
How do your differentiate your business from your competitors?
Fixed-Fees: Most law firms charge on an hourly rate. This incentivises lawyers to work inefficiently. By working on a fixed-fee basis, we take ownership of our product and we are incentivised to drive efficiencies.
Specialist Lawyers: At our price point we compete with suburban lawyers who are generalists. Our model allows us to provide our clients with access to specialist lawyers, who have experience in top-tier law firms, at the price of a suburban lawyer.
Free Legal Info and Documents: Because we understand not everyone can afford a lawyer, we provide a huge amount of free legal information on our website, including over 50 free legal documents. These are customised with technology and provide a great alternative to micro businesses.
What one phone, tablet or PC application could you not live without?
What's the best piece of business advice you've ever received?
Don’t plan too much. In the face of the unknown, there is a risk in making an assumption that you can forecast the future with a high level of uncertainty. Don’t let administration of the business plan stand in the way of executing and acting on opportunity. Being fast and agile is key for scaling a start-up aggressively.
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