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feature article
By Karen Eutsler
get it. You went to law school to be a
lawyer. If you wanted to be a market-
er, you would have earned an MBA
Even the strongest, most successful
attorneys will have some difficulty with
business development in an economic
downturn. This makes the prior market-
ing and relationship-building they’ve
done the very thing that will sustain their
business through the rough patches and
allow them to soar once things improve.
Even if you are lucky enough to have
a marketing person or team at your dis-
posal, professional marketers are just one
of the tools in your business development
arsenal. A marketer’s job is to ensure that
the firm and your practice are visible and
positively perceived. In reality of course,
clients don’t hire marketers. Clients hire
attorneys. While they may find their way
to your firm because of marketing, they
stay at your firm because of their rela-
tionship with an attorney, not a brand.
As a result, every attorney must
also be a marketer and the most crucial
time for you to be marketing is when
a qualified prospect has an immediate
legal need. Unfortunately, it is difficult to
predict when that time will come. There-
fore, you must remain “top of mind” at
all times, without seeming obnoxious.
But how?
Tell people you what you do
. If
people are not aware of your profes-
sion they will not know to hire you when
they need legal services.
Sounds obvious, right? Well, let’s
self-reflect. Do your neighbors know you
are an attorney? Does your church? What
about the woman sitting next to you on
the plane?
Recently, I attended a meeting where
I cringed for the attorney who admitted
he is part of a non-profit organization
who just hired another law firm. When
he told the director, “I could have done
that for you; why did you hire that other
guy?” the response was, “We didn’t know
you did that or we would have come
to you.” Ouch. Lesson learned: Make
everyone around you aware that you are
an attorney and what kind of law you
Open a LinkedIn account and up-
date it regularly
. A basic LinkedIn
account is free. The people connected to
you are linked because they choose to
be – they
to know what’s going on
with you professionally. So, give them
what they want. Note updates about
seminars you’ll be speaking at, post links
to informative articles (especially the
ones you author), publically praise your
support staff on Administrative Profes-
sionals Day, etc. Your updates will find
their way to your connections’ inboxes,
allowing you to send a virtual “Hey,
remember me?” on a regular basis. How
frequently should you post updates? At
least once a week. How long will this
take? Less than 3 minutes. Via the free
mobile app, you can update your status
on your mobile phone while you wait for
the elevator.
Send hand-written notes.
If you
do not have a stack of note cards
or personalized stationary in your top
desk drawer, you are missing an easy
opportunity to impress a prospect. In
this electronic age, the hand-written note
carries more influence than ever.
To whom should you be writing?
Your clients. Your prospects. Your refer-
ral sources. Your poker buddy. Your
mechanic. Catch my drift?
What should you write to them
about? Recognize them for the feature
profile the
Business Courier
wrote. Let
them know you just nominated them
for an award. Send an article they might
be interested in. Congratulate them on
their new product launch. Clip and mail
a comic you think would make them
laugh. Simply thank them for their busi-
ness. Really, the actual content matters
less than the point: You were thinking
about them and they will appreciate the
Your goal should be one hand-
written, non-legal business note (and
envelope) per year to everyone with
whom you want to deepen a relationship.
Marketing does not need to be
complicated or overly time-consuming;
however, it is an essential facet of devel-
oping your practice that can’t be ignored.
Karen Eutsler is the director of marketing and client
service at Rendigs Fry Kiely &Dennis. Previous to her
role at Rendigs, Eutsler spent 10 years in a sales and
marketing capacity for a local consulting firm. She
earned a MBA from Xavier University and has taught
marketing and sales classes on an adjunct basis for the
university since 2006. For more marketing resources,
contact her at
Lawyers Need to Remain
‘Top of Mind’
to Prospective Clients
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