Three in five consumers would consider buying legal services from a range of consumer brands, a major piece of market research from YouGov has revealed.
The work also found low recognition of any current legal brands, while a third of consumers said they would be attracted by online legal services.
YouGov’s SixthSense division has only provided Legal Futures with some partial results from its 62-page report, which it is selling for £2,500. As part of the research, it polled 2,336 members of the public on 30 questions.
The pollster asked consumers to rank a list of 16 retail and banking brands in order of their willingness to buy legal products or seek advice from the brands. Overall 60% of consumers said they would use at least one of them. YouGov refused to say which came top, but revealed that 19% said Barclays, 18% said both the Co-operative and the AA, while 15% said Virgin.
Strongest interest in the AA came from men over the age of 55, 25% of whom would consider using the AA for legal services.
The other brands in the list were Waitrose, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, RAC, Powergen, NatWest, Lloyds TSB, Kwikfit, HSBC, Halifax, BUPA and BT.
The report explores the need for a greater commitment on behalf of retail brands to channel more effectively loyalty data and current user recognition from other markets to consolidate their position in the legal services sector.
Looking at the current state of the market, the report says: “Law firms build their business on their reputation not on their brands and, in a highly fragmented market, recognisable legal brands are few and far between. The large non-legal brands could follow the Co-op’s example and build a strong presence relatively quickly in a market where no strong brands currently exist.”
When panellists were asked to comment on whether specific brand names were legal or accountancy brands, very few spotted the legal brands. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the names, 36% identified QualitySolicitors and 68% InjuryLawyers4u as legal brands. Some 58% said they had not heard of QualitySolicitors.
We understand that Irwin Mitchell had the best recognised brand of existing law firms, with 11% identifying it as a legal brand, but 79% said they had not heard of it.
On online legal services, 34% of respondents said they would be more likely to choose a law firm that offered the convenience of online access to legal documents over one that had no online capability; 22% disagreed and 37% neither agreed nor disagreed.
Younger males were the most likely to choose a law firm with online services and access: 44% of 25-to-39 year-old males (and 40% of such women), along with 40% of 16-to-24 year-old males, would choose a law firm offering online access to documents over another law firm.
To see the report’s contents and for information about ordering it, click here.