Use more legalese, not less


Many experts tell you to “speak like your prospective clients speak,” mirroring and matching their language, word choices, and style, so they will more easily understand and relate to you. 

They say that most people don’t have a legal background and might be confused and/or intimated by your use of legal terminology and references. 

Basically, they’re saying “don’t talk like a lawyer”. 

I disagree. 

Prospects are looking for a lawyer or looking to learn something that might lead to hiring a lawyer. They expect you to act and speak like a lawyer, and if you don’t, they may think you don’t have the requisite experience and gravitas they’re seeking.

In addition, using appropriate legal terms will help people searching for those terms to find you.  

So don’t eschew Latin and legal terms-of-art. But make sure to explain what those terms mean and use examples and stories to give them context that might be important to your reader. 

You want your reader to understand you but you also want them to know you understand them. So, also make sure you speak like them.

Localize your message by using your target market’s terminology and references. Mention the names of well-known people in their industry or market, for example, as well as problems and solutions that are familiar to them.

Do both and not only will your readers and listeners better understand your message and how it applies to them, they will be more likely to see you as a better choice for them than other lawyers who don’t speak their language.