Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The 'Be Attitudes' for Plaintiff Attorneys

Thank you to David Swammer for publishing this short list of 'Be Attitudes' on his Trial Law Blog alongside the intelligent and insightful tips of Larry Bodine of the Law Marketing Portal and Larry Bodine’s Professional Marketing Blog, Andy Havens of Sanestorm Marketing and Andy Haven’s legal marketing blog, Tom Kane of the Legal Marketing Blog, Jim Logan of JSLogan Blog, Kerry Randall of The Lawyer Marketing Guy, and Tom St. Louis of Zerald Communications.

The 'Be Attitudes' for Plaintiff Attorneys
  • Be Real – Plaintiff attorneys are in the business of first impressions. You are measured by opposing counsel, by juries, judges, recorders, reporters, and most importantly, prospective clients. If you try to be something you are not, you will be found out, and that never works for you. You can try to be too slick, too folksy, too intellectual, too connected... whatever. If it’s not you. Don’t do it.

    Your marketing materials, the words you use, the advertisements you place, have to match your personality. The first impression that counts is when someone meets you face to face. If your how you represent yourself in print or word doesn’t match who they meet, you lose. Be real. Be yourself

  • Be A Story Teller – Every client you represent has a story. It’s probably a good story… and people love to read a good story. When you make connections with the media don’t tell them a story about you; tell them the stories of your clients. Don’t talk about how you’ll bring them justice; talk about how they haven’t had any. To be the most visible, point at someone else and the attention will come back to you.

  • Be The Expert – Keep narrowing the type of cases you represent until you become the biggest name in that segment. It is a lot easier to aim your marketing 1% of the market than 50%, or %100.

  • Be Visible – Become an advocate. Support causes that will bring reward to the clients you represent. Become a mentor to other attorneys on their way up and you’ll benefit from the referrals. Advertise about the success of your clients, not the success of your practice. Get a PR agency to place you on podiums and get you quoted in news stories. And most of all, be accessible to your clients when they need you. Clients talk about who they see, so it better be you.

  • Be Caring – In the heart of every client you represent is at least a little fear. Probably a lot of fear. There is nothing more powerful than the word-of-mouth from someone that is a true believer. To make them a true believer in you, you’ll need to care about what happens to them.
When it comes to marketing a plaintiff practice it would be easy to simply run through all of the basics of marketing, but that could not be nearly enough. A plaintiff attorney WILL live and die (professionally) by their ability to connect with people and quickly earn trust. Do not ever believe that ‘marketing’ can make you anything you are not.

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