CFM Advocates is not one of the largest Washington, DC lobby houses, but it does have one of the best reputations for client retention, according to a Bloomberg Government survey of lobby firm performance in 2019.
CFM is one of only 30 federal lobby firms that retained 100 percent of its short-term clients and one of 10 firms that retained 100 percent of its long-term clients. It was the only Pacific Northwest lobby firm listed in either category.
“Client retention reflects client satisfaction,” says CFM Partner Joel Rubin, who manages the firm’s full-time DC lobby operation. “Client satisfaction is the metric we use internally to measure our performance on behalf of clients.”
The Bloomberg survey indicated two-thirds of DC lobby firms retained at least 50 percent of their long-term clients in 2019. The remainder retained even fewer long-term clients.
The Bloomberg survey also ranked lobby firms based on total revenue, revenue growth, growth in average revenue per client and employee profitability.
“Client retention reflects client satisfaction. Client satisfaction is the metric we use internally to measure our performance on behalf of clients.”
“CFM’s federal affairs practice has continued to grow year-to-year in terms of clients and revenue,” Rubin says. “But we aren’t trying to be the biggest, fastest growing or richest lobby firm. We keep clients and add new ones based on getting tangible results through principled advocacy and hard work. In our view, that’s the best way to serve clients and to earn client satisfaction.”
At the federal level, CFM primarily represents municipal clients from the Pacific Northwest, plus a major local corporation and a national coalition of transit agencies. “Our job is straightforward,” Rubin explains. “We help our clients navigate the legislative and federal grantmaking processes, provide strategic guidance to solve problems and communicate regularly with the Pacific Northwest congressional delegation and its staff.”
“Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 has been a difficult and stressful year,” Rubin adds. “We’re proud our clients have retained our services to represent their interests during these challenging times and circumstances.”
Client satisfaction is also the metric for CFM’s state affairs and public affairs business lines. “Client satisfaction is the reason we can keep our doors open in Washington, DC, the Portland metropolitan area and Salem,” says CFM Partner Dale Penn II.