Simplicity is the Key to Marketing Success

You don’t have to be a professor of English literature to come up with language that communicates what you do. In fact a complex message is likely to get lost.  We are bombarded all day long with marketing messages. The ones that stick (and the ones that will lead to quality  referrals–i.e. work you want to do), should be understood by a child in elementary school.

Here are two slides from a great presentation I heard in the Fall (“Sizzle or Suck”) that elaborate on this point in a very meta way (simplicity to get across the point that simplicity is key).  The presenters included

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Introducing “The Jennys”-For Creativity in Professional Services Marketing (Because “The Stevies” Was Already Taken”)

Some of my best (and worst ) inspirations come to me at 4:30 a.m.  That happened to me in early February when I woke up thinking about all of the creative marketing ideas I’ve heard about in the last 12 months.  Some of them have come from clients, some from fellow ProVisors members, and some from lawyers and other professionals I meet who have a flair for garnering attention.

I decided at that moment that it would be great to give out awards for all of this creativity.  I then began ruminating in bed about Latin phrases I could adapt (“The Juris Doctor Awards”, “Marketing In Limine”, “In Re: Marketing”).  Suddenly, I was hit with a brilliant inspiration!  I’ll call it “The Stevies”.  Later that day, in a moment of greater clarity, I reached out to a graphic designer to start working on the artwork.  Several days later, I received the sad news:  The Stevies was already taken.

Despite the fact that my award was really just for fun (?parody), I decided that it was better idea to use another name and not risk a cease-and-desist letter (thank you Dan Batterman for that advice).  After some deep thought

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Battling an Epidemic of Spam Filtering (and “User Error”)-Tips to Improve Your Communication

I’ve always made a habit of responding to email messages within a day (even if just to say I’m sorry but I’m busy right now and will try to get back to you next week–or something like that).  While I don’t always live up to this standard,  I believe it is common courtesy to acknowledge that someone is trying to communicate with me (unless they are simply trying to sell me something).

While I consider responding to emails in a timely fashion the professional thing to do, I recognize that some of the people I am trying to reach are overwhelmed and simply don’t have the bandwidth to respond.

Many lawyers make effective use of auto replies

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Recycling Can Increase Your Marketing Efficiency

For many lawyers, carving out time for marketing activities is challenging. When there is billable work to do, spending time on things that don’t immediately generate revenue is hard to prioritize. Of course as I’ve written many times, making marketing a habit will ensure more marketing success in the long run (see Mindlessness is the Key to Marketing Success).

One hack that can help you generate more marketing activity without adding a lot of time to your day is to recycle. If you have some content that you can use in a variety of ways, that enables you to better leverage your time.

For example, if many clients are asking questions about a particular subject, you can turn that into a blog post. That blog post can become a LinkedIn post. Similarly you can then turn that into a presentation and maybe include links in a newsletter to a workshop you are planning.

Another marketing hack is to take evergreen marketing content and promote it more than once. If you post on LinkedIn, different people in your network will see it and are online at different times. Posting the same contact more than once is a

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Creative Ways to Differentiate your Law Practice (without showcasing your expertise)

I joined the ProVisors business network in June of 2019.  There are many things I love about the group and during the pandemic, it has been a great way to stay connected to a very giving group of professionals. While meeting wonderful people has been the best part, my involvement with ProVisors has also been a great lesson in how to differentiate yourself.   In the network, there are many lawyers, accountants, financial planners and other trusted advisors who do similar things.  So “choosing your lane” and making yourself memorable is important.  Many ProVisors members do that well.

Sometimes I hear great tag lines that describe the expertise that the professionals bring to the table (e.g. Call me when you need to manage your client’s message with a megaphone or a muzzle.- Judy Rakowsky, a public relations professional; Call me when you are in the back of a police car or in the back of an ambulance– Chris Murphy, a lawyer who does criminal defense and plaintiff’s personal injury; I bring death and taxes to life-Jenn Taddeo, a trusts and estates lawyer; When the Feds come knocking, I’ll do the blocking-Jose Sierra, a white collar attorney—who is now in-house.)

I have also met a number of lawyers and other professionals who have found very creative ways

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“Mindlessness” is the Key to Marketing Success

If you want to grow your law practice, having a good strategy is important. Figuring out who are your ideal clients and what are the ideal matters you want to work on is an important first step in building a marketing plan.  Creating a niche practice area is an important way to ensure that you have differentiated yourself from the competition. Mapping out who are your key referral sources and how you can build relationships with these referral sources is essential. The process of coming up with a marketing plan is anything but mindless. A scattershot approach that lacks focus is far less likely to be effective.

But once you have a strategy and you move to implementation, it is important to shift gears. Successful execution requires consistency.  Short bursts of activity followed by long breaks where you just focus on billable work, is not a good way to keep your name top of mind with your network.  Since it is hard to predict when your clients, prospective clients, and referral sources will hear about a legal problem that you might be able to solve, slow and steady wins the race.

Shear willpower is unlikely to ensure that you will have the consistency you need to remain visible.  Given the time pressures on most

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Business Development in 2021 with the Law Firm Success Group [on the C2C podcast]

 

The New Year is finally here and without getting into it, let’s just say that many of us are happy to welcome 2021.  A new year brings hope, a chance for a new beginning, and if you are in private practice, a great opportunity to ramp up your marketing and business development. In the latest episode of the C2C Podcast, I speak with Alay Yajnik, award-winning business coach and founder of Law Firm Success Group. Alay’s firm helps law firms owners across the country make more money, get better clients, and take more vacations.  I’ve already appeared as a guest on his podcast  the Lawyer Business Advantage.  Alay and I discuss

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Finding Your Niche-My Interview on the Lawyer Business Advantage Podcast

I was recently a guest on Alay Yanjnik’s Lawyer Business Advantage Podcast.  Like me, Alay is an experienced attorney coach and an active member of the ProVisors business network.  We spoke about business development for lawyers, the importance of developing a niche, some of the career related coaching that I do and a number of other related

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How to Build a Life Sciences Practice in a New City [on the C2C podcast]

How do you move to a new city and build a law practice?  Do what Dave Dykeman has done over the last 20 years.  Dave is Co-Managing Partner of the Boston Office of Greenberg Traurig where he also Co-Chairs the firm’s Global Life Sciences & Medical Technology Group.  In the latest episode of the Counsel to Counsel Podcast, Dave and I talk about building a niche IP practice in medical devices and other technologies.  He describes how his  early marketing efforts yielded great results over time.

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The C2C Podcast Now Has 10K Downloads; But the Number I Care About is 43

This month marks the 10,000th download of the Counsel to Counsel Podcast. While I’m proud to have passed that threshold and very pleased that so many lawyers are finding it useful, the number I really care about is 43.  Since launching C2C in 2018, I have interviewed 43 guests. With each recording, I have come to appreciate the great value I receive from the guests who are willing to participate.

Podcasting is similar to other forms of marketing.  Producing a podcast is a great way to highlight your expertise and to differentiate yourself in the marketplace. I have certainly gotten clients who have listened to episodes of C2C. Some of these are individuals who I already knew; but others are individuals I might never have reached.

For me, however, the greatest value in producing podcasts is that I get to learn something from the guests that I choose to interview. I choose topics that I want to learn about, and the person I interview gives me a tutorial.

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