If you aren’t better, be different

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I often talk about the value of showing prospective clients how you are “better or different” than other lawyers who do what you do. In The Attorney Marketing Formula, I show you how to do that, and how to construct your “Unique Selling Proposition” (U.S.P.)

Writer James Clear did a post recently with another take on this subject. He calls it, “Layering Your Skills,” and quotes Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, for explaining how someone who isn’t markedly better than their competition can stand out by being different:

“Everyone has at least a few areas in which they could be in the top 25% with some effort. In my case, I can draw better than most people, but I’m hardly an artist. And I’m not any funnier than the average standup comedian who never makes it big, but I’m funnier than most people. The magic is that few people can draw well and write jokes. It’s the combination of the two that makes what I do so rare. And when you add in my business background, suddenly I had a topic that few cartoonists could hope to understand without living it.”

As you consider your strengths, don’t ignore those that aren’t obviously relevant to the practice of law. Include your undergraduate fields of study, businesses and industries you’ve worked in, sports you play or avidly follow, your hobbies and other outside interests. They can also help you stand out, especially in many niche markets.

I’m not the best chess player in the world but I am better than most people. Even if I wasn’t, if I was practicing today I could use my knowledge of the game to relate to and attract other chess players. I could appeal to tournament directors, coaches, and vendors. I could attract the attention of bloggers, editors, and meeting planners who cater to those markets.

I could become one of the best-known lawyers in the chess world, without being the best chess player or the best lawyer.

What are you good at and how could you combine that skill with other skills to show the world how you are different?

Show the world how you are better or different

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