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Marketplaces Achieve Network Effects From Trust

Marketplaces Achieve Network Effects From Trust

A Conversation with EJ Lawless for the HR Tech GTM podcast

EJ: Does this create any network effects, as you sell into lawyers? Obviously if they want to, they can go start their own practice and use Lawtrades. Do you see that happening?

Raad: That's an interesting question. We've actually had people in both ways. We have had people on the supply side get hired by a company and become the GC there who then use Lawtrades to hire another team of remote freelancers. There's definitely network effects from a traditional platform perspective.

The more talent and supply side you have, the faster matches the better experience and all of that. Even on the customer side it's a very referral driven industry. You're not going to be able to sell to general counsels via a LinkedIn ad or a cold email.

That helps for little bit of brand awareness, but it really is word of mouth driven. So for us, getting a couple of customers and making them really happy and exceeding all of their expectations in terms of price, in terms of quality, in terms of product experience, and really blowing them away led to a lot of our growth because they went around and told all their friends- and their friends told their friends.

That's why a lot of our focus is on community building through virtual events and in-person events. Not only is it fun to hang out with your customers and grab a drink with them, but it adds more fuel to the fire in terms of spreading via word of mouth.

The same thing happens on the talent side. If somebody gets on the platform and they get hired and land an amazing gig- they tell their friends about it. LinkedIn is our main platform.

So we see people posting about us from a talent perspective-

This was amazing. It was life changing. And so much better than the traditional staffing model or so much better than working at a Big Law firm.

People take note of that and then apply themselves. They'll often share different opportunities with their friends if it wasn't a fit for them. I think for these very vertical marketplaces, it really is important to provide an amazing experience for both sides because they're the ones that are going to drive most of your growth.

It's not a SEO play. It's not an ad-words play. It really is just brick after brick- building community, gaining trust, and then giving them the tools to go out there and spread the word.

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Raad on philosophy, startups, and life. On Twitter @r44d.
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