All you can do is all you can do 


You hear about what other lawyers are doing for marketing and you realize you can’t do what they do. Or you don’t want to. 

That’s okay. You don’t have to do what they do. Or as much or as often. 

Just do something. 

You can’t write a weekly blog? Don’t even try. Post 5 or 10 articles on your website, to show visitors you know something about your practice area and give them some insights about what you can do to help them. 

It’s better than doing nothing. Better than what a lot of attorneys do (which is nothing). And it could bring some clients to your door.

You hate networking with a passion? Forget about it. You’re not going to get anywhere, forcing yourself to go places you don’t want to be and shake hands with people you don’t want to talk to.

But maybe you’re open to meeting someone once in a while for coffee. Coffee is good. No pressure. No agenda. And it might lead to something good.

You know nothing about social media and you don’t want to? Cross it off your list. But maybe before you do that, you choose a platform or two, set up an account and post your contact information, in case someone goes looking for you. 

Someone might. And call or message you. 

You don’t have to be “all in” on any kind of marketing (except the kind where you take good care of your clients). Many a successful practice is built that way. 

Do what you can do, but do something. If you hate it, stop doing it and do something else. 

And don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. But don’t ignore them completely. They might show you something you can do, and you might choose to do it. 

Do what you can do, but only if you want to. Because doing things you don’t want to do isn’t a recipe for success.  

All you can do is all you can do, but it is often enough.


Ad Nauseum


Why do I tell you things I’ve told you before? While will I tell you again?

And why should you do the same with your subscribers, followers, clients, and prospects?

Because people don’t always hear us the first time. They might not get our email, or read it. They might read it but not believe they need to do anything, now or ever. They may have other things on their mind and can’t deal with anything else.

Maybe they see the need but don’t have the money. Maybe they need to get someone else’s okay. Or maybe the problem isn’t that bad and they think they can live with it or it will resolve by itself.

And then, things change. The problem worsens. The threats increase. Their desire grows. Or they finally have more time to take care of something you’ve been telling about but had forgotten until you mention it again.

You’ve heard me talk about the value of having a newsletter so many times, I’m sure you could write that message yourself. But you haven’t started a newsletter (or improved the one you have) because you were busy as hell last year and didn’t see the need. Or have the time to do it.

But this year, business has slowed, and you realize that it’s time.

Sometimes, people hear your message, need what you offer, have the money, but still hesitate. Then they hear the same message or advice from someone else. Or they hear about someone who did what you’re telling them to and were very glad they did.

And, let’s not forget that every day, new people find you, join your list, and hear your message for the first time. Some people call you and make an appointment immediately. Others might not do that for years.  

Stay in their mailbox or feed, keep reminding them, and when they’re ready, they’ll give you a holler. 

People are ready when they’re ready, not before. 

How to use a newsletter to build your practice


3 a day


Marketing your law practice doesn’t require you to do big, difficult, or time-consuming things. At least not all the time. As I regularly note, you can accomplish a lot in just 15 minutes a day.

The key is to do it consistently. 

Schedule 15 minutes in your calendar every workday for marketing. It is arguably the most important appointment of your day. 

During those 15 minutes, you can do anything related to growing or improving your practice. If this is a new habit, however, I suggest you decide in advance what you will do. 

One way to do that is to pick a number. I suggest the number 3. 3 calls, 3 emails, 3 pages. That’s easy, isn’t it?

Here are some examples of what you could do:

  • Comment on 3 social media posts by people you know or would like to know
  • Call 3 old clients and say hello
  • Email 3 professionals in your target market—invite them to (something), ask them a question, share something you have in common
  • Collect 3 business cards
  • Like, comment, or share 3 videos of people in your target market (as a precursor to connecting with them)
  • Contact 3 people in your existing referral network and ask how/what they’re doing
  • Follow-up with 3 prospective clients you’ve spoken with
  • Send 3 thank-you notes, birthday cards, or holiday cards

3 calls or comments or emails today, another 3 tomorrow. Or mix and match, one comment, one call, one email.

Over time, you’ll connect or re-connect with a lot of people. Some will want more information, some will want to speak to you about their situation, some will see how you can help one of their clients or friends.

You could also use your 15 minutes to

  • Brainstorm 3 ideas for an article, blog post, or presentation
  • Write 3 pages (or paragraphs) for your new lead magnet, report, or book
  • Find 3 keywords to add to one of your ad campaigns
  • Find 3 groups that need guest speakers at their event
  • Find 3 blogs in your target market that accept guest posts
  • Find 3 podcasts or channels that interview lawyers

It’s just 3. It’s just 15 minutes. But it might be all the marketing you need to do. 

Marketing is easy when you know The Formula


Talk it into existence


There’s something to be said for being the “strong silent type” and letting your work speak for itself. There’s also something to be said for talking about what you do and how you help people. 

Because people who need your help want to know what you can do to help them.

That doesn’t mean you should talk about yourself all the time. We all know people who do that and wish they would stop. It does mean finding ways to communicate the benefits you offer without talking about them directly. At least not all the time.

An effective way to do that is to collect and use testimonials and reviews from satisfied clients, and endorsements from lawyers and other influential people who know you and your work. 

Let others do (most of) the talking for you.

You can also share success stories about the cases and clients you’ve helped. Not to brag, but to illustrate what you do in the context of real cases and clients. 

Success stories are implied testimonials.

You can also use this strategy to get more referrals. 


It’s simple. When you talk about a case you’re handling, or have done in the past, simply mention that the case was referred to you (by a client with a similar case, or by another lawyer, etc.) 

This tells people that others think enough of you and your work that they tell others about you. It suggests that you have experience helping people with the same or similar issue.

You get more referrals not by asking because you are “referrable.” 

What else can you do to talk it (referrals) into existence? When you sign up a new client, give them some extra business cards (reports, brochures, etc.), and say, “I’m giving you a few extras in case you talk to someone who needs my help”. 

That’s it.

You plant the seed that they might speak to someone who needs your help and equip them to tell them about you.

How to get more referrals from your clients


More leads or better leads? 


It’s complicated. You might get more leads, but pay so much for them (and this includes the cost of your time) they don’t seem worth it. But before you say, “I’ll take better leads for $200,” there’s something else to consider. 

Actually, two things.

The first is the “back end”. 

A lead may turn into a small case or client, providing barely enough revenue to cover the cost of acquiring them, but bring you enough work after that (on the back end) to make them exceedingly profitable. 

You need to consider the lifetime value of a new client. That includes all the work they hire you to do, all the direct referrals they send you, and all the leads they send you.

The second thing to consider is what you do (and don’t do) with your leads. 

Two lawyers. Lawyer number one gets a lead, sends out information, talks to the prospect, shows them some dogs and some ponies, and the prospect signs up. Or they don’t.  

Lawyer number two goes through a similar process, but when the prospect doesn’t sign up, follows up with them, and continues to follow-up with them until they do sign up. 

As a result, lawyer number two converts more leads into clients. 

Lawyer number two does something else lawyer number one doesn’t do. He follows up with leads that do sign up. He stays in touch with them, generating repeat business, referrals, traffic to his website, attendees at his presentations, and subscribers to his newsletter.

All of which generate more revenue and more profit.

The number and quality of your leads are important. But just as important, and often more so, is what you do with those leads.

How to use email to get more leads and convert them to clients


You cost more because you’re worth more


If you can show prospective clients why it costs them more to NOT hire you, do you think more clients would choose you? 

I do too. 

One way to do that is to show them how “doing nothing,” i.e., ignoring their legal problem, or trying to fix it themselves, often costs them more in the long run. Their problems can worsen, they can develop secondary issues, and the additional damages they incur, and the additional legal fees that come with them, can be fear greater than what they might pay by taking care of the problem immediately.

Give them examples of people who waited and it cost them.

(Note, it is a better overall strategy to focus on prospective clients who know they need an attorney and are willing and able to pay them, and ignore the ones who don’t. But sometimes you might need to have a conversation with someone about “why legal fees are so high,” etc.)

Then, show them why they should choose you instead of any other lawyer. Show them that you cost more than other lawyers because you’re worth more.

Show them you have greater skills, experience, higher settlements and judgements, and more success stories. Show them that you “specialize” in their industry or niche, and your reputation and contacts can deliver better results for your clients.

You can also show them how your clients get additional benefits other lawyers don’t provide.

Extra services, better payment terms, and how you keep your clients informed, might not be the sole reason a client will choose you, but it can tip the balance in your favor if they are comparing you to other lawyers who don’t offer these benefits.

Show prospective clients that while it costs more to hire you than other attorneys, it actually costs more to NOT hire you.


Alternatives to a free consultation?


It is axiomatic that if you talk to more prospects, you’ll sign up more clients. Does this mean you should offer free consultations across the board? Or, if you already do that, you should look for ways to do more of them? 

Not necessarily. 

Because while these consultations are free for the prospective client, there is a cost to you. Especially if you ordinarily get paid for consultations.

For some lawyers, free consultations are an anathema. For others, they are a simple and profitable marketing strategy. And necessary for lawyers who practice in areas where most lawyers offer them.

But does it have to be so black and white? Are there any other options?

Maybe there are.

Instead of offering free consultations to everyone who asks, perhaps you could set up a screening process whereby the prospect has to first fill out a questionnaire or speak to someone in your office, to allow you to determine if they are qualified to speak to you personally.  

Another option is to offer discounted consultations, a nominal fee perhaps, fully credited if the prospect becomes a client. 

You might offer ten-minute free consultations and a paid consultation option if they need or want more.

What if you allow prospective clients to dial into a scheduled conference call where they can describe their situation and ask questions anonymously? The way some lawyers do it on radio call-in shows, or when a lawyer takes questions from the audience after a presentation. 

Prospective clients get some feedback about their situation and you get to determine if you want to speak to them further. 

Maybe you can record these and put them (or transcripts) on your website. Prospective clients can get some general feedback about their situation, and a sense of what it would be like speaking to you personally. 

These options might not give you enough information to allow meaningful feedback, or help the prospective client decide if they want to hire you, but they are clearly better than the alternative. 

Ask yourself, what else could I do to talk to more prospective clients?


Soft call-to-action 


When you tell your readers, audience, subscribers, or website visitors to do something you want them to do, e.g., Call to schedule an appointment, you’re using a call-to-action. And you should because the more you tell people what to do, the more likely it is that they’ll do it. 

Clearly, not everyone is ready to do what you ask when you ask it, which is why you should ask again. Put calls-to-action in most or all of your marketing communications. Remind them (often) to call, sign-up, or download something. And tell them why—the benefits they get or the problems this can help them solve. 

When (if) they’re ready, they will respond. Your job is to stay in touch with them and continually make the case for taking action by repeating your call-to-action, providing additional arguments and examples, reminding them about the benefits, and otherwise “selling” them on doing what you ask.  

Telling them to call for an appointment is a ‘hard’ call to action. If they call, there is an expectation that this will lead to them signing up for something and paying something, and this may not be easy for them because it requires a commitment they might not be willing (yet) to make.

Which is why you should also use the ‘soft call-to-action’. Asking (telling) them to do something that doesn’t require a big commitment. Something relatively easy for them to do:

  • Like, share, comment
  • Download this report
  • Fill out our survey
  • Hit reply and ask your question
  • Sign up for our free seminar
  • Watch this video, listen to this podcast, read this article
  • And others. 

Why use these? First, because they help you build a list, which gives you permission to follow-up and send additional information. 

And second, because the more often you ask them to do something, and they do it, the more likely it is that they will do something else you ask.  

Get a visitor to your website to give you their email address and download your report today. Tomorrow, it will be easier to get them to sign up for your seminar or listen to your replay. Eventually, it will be easier to get them to schedule that appointment. 

What’s interesting is that even if they don’t do the things you ask, the more you ask, the more they become conditioned to hearing you ask and the less resistant they become to (eventually) doing something you ask. 

The lesson? Ask visitors and readers and prospects to do things and never stop asking. 

Each time they hear you ask, they take a step closer to becoming your next client.

Marketing legal services is easier when you know The Formula


Revenue generating activity


Business advisors of all stripes talk about the primacy of revenue generating activity for sustaining and growing a business. They tell you to should spend most of your time doing this because it is the only thing that brings in income.

“Everything else is an expense.”

Literally, that’s true. If you spend most of your time and resources on creating value for your clients, your business will be profitable and grow.

So, how do we define revenue generating activities? 

For lawyers in private practice, anything you do that allows you to bill a client clearly qualifies. Admin tasks might be necessary for managing the people and processes for creating and collecting that revenue, but don’t qualify as revenue generating by themselves.

Okay, so you want to spend most of your time doing billable work. But how much?

If you spend 80% of your time doing billable work, is that enough? Is spending 20% of your gross income (and time) on admin too much? 

Ultimately, this is the debate we have with ourselves, our partners and advisors.

But it doesn’t only come down to doing the work vs. the cost of getting it done. There are other activities that come into play.

Continuing education, personal development, and business development, for example. 

These aren’t revenue generating in the classical sense, but they can create significant revenue, arguably with significantly less effort than it takes to do the billable work. 

It’s true. 

When you improve your marketing skills, you can get more leads and prospective clients, attract bigger cases and better clients, expand into additional markets, and increase profits by being able to hire more help and/or open more offices.  

When you improve your personal skills, e.g., sales, networking, speaking, writing, productivity, etc., you can attract even more prospects and close a higher percentage of them, get more repeat business, streamline your workflows, and build deeper relationships with other professionals who can lead you to additional opportunities to develop your practice and career. 

And when you improve your core legal skills and knowledge, you can increase your value to your clients, allowing you to bill higher rates. 

Revenue generating activities, to be sure.

I can’t tell you how much time to spend on these activities, only that if you want to grow, you should consider spending more. 

When you’re ready to take a quantum leap in your practice, here’s what to do


How to build a law practice without social media


Extremely successful, perpetually cranky copywriter Ben Settle, who I have followed for a long time, famously built his list, top-shelf newsletter and businesses without social media. 

He was recently asked how he does it. 

By doing things people did to build their lists before social media.
It’s okay to use it, if you want to.
But only amateurs buy into “needing” social media for list-building.“

Ah, a man after my own heart. 

What did people do before social media? About what you think:   

Advertising, networking, public speaking, interviews, joint ventures, seminars, sponsorships, writing articles/books. . . and mentioning their offer (website, newsletter, services, etc.) to people connected with their target market. 

Things that work just as well today, and arguably better. For building a business, a newsletter, or a law practice.

There’s also SEO and publicity and direct mail and handouts. Some work better than others. Some require money but very little time. And some are incredibly labor intensive and not a lot of fun. But work.

What you should do depends on your field, your niche, what you offer, your budget (and tolerance for risk) and what you like and are good at. 

I know, too many choices. Pick something that’s not social media and run with it. 

On the other hand, if you’re okay with social media but find it challenging to find time to do it, your best bet might be advertising on social media.

Could be the best of both worlds.