How to use clickbait to instantly get dozens of new clients

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If you’re reading this, my evil plan is working. I wrote something that made you curious and you wanted to know more.

Despite the obvious clickbait-y headline.

But my point isn’t to use trickery to fool people into reading your message. It is to illustrate the power of curiosity for getting attention.

When it comes to marketing, copywriting legend Gary Halbert said curiosity is even more powerful than self-interest.

Done right, your reader or audience “has to” know more.

How do you arouse curiosity? How do you compel the reader to open your email, play your video, or read your article?

You do it, ironically, by hinting at something that plays to their self-interest.

Mention something they care about, need or want. Give them a taste of something that will help them avoid pain or achieve gain. Add a touch of specificity that let’s them know “this is for them”.

For extra oomph, hint at something that sounds impossible or too good to be true. Make the reader “torture” themselves trying to figure out how this is done.

Example? Sure. Let’s say you’re a personal injury attorney writing a post or ad that offers a free report about increasing the settlement value of a case. You could make prospective clients curious with a headline like this:

“Injured? Free report reveals 5 easy ways to increase the value of your case (and ONE common mistake that can destroy it)”

What are those 5 easy ways? What is the one common mistake? Yep, they have to read the report to find out.

Of course, when they read the report, you make them curious to know if they have a good case (and how much it’s worth).

Yep, they have to hire you to find out.

Want to get more referrals without asking for referrals? Here’s how

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5 ways to build trust

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Marketing isn’t just telling people what you do and how you can help them. Marketing requires targeting the right people with the right problems and providing them with the right message and offer.

One of the biggest hurdles is building trust.

People are scared about their legal situation and skeptical about your ability to help them. They don’t know if you’re competent, honest, or charge reasonable fees.

They may like what you say but if they don’t trust you, they often keep looking.

It usually takes time to build trust, but here are 5 ways to speed up the process:

  1. Referrals. Prospective clients “borrow” trust from the people who refer them, thus making them more likely to hire you. Referral marketing shortens the sales process, saves time and money, and usually brings in better clients.
  2. Content marketing. Blog posts, articles, presentations, etc., allow you to show people what you know, what you do, and how you work with your clients. This works even better when you are published by or interviewed on authority sites or podcasts or speak at industry events.
  3. Social proof. Ask people to share your content with their friends and neighbors, colleagues, clients and customers. Get testimonials and reviews from clients and endorsements from influential people.
  4. Free consultations. Let people sample your advice and demeanor, hear more about what you can do to help them, and get their questions answered straight from the horse’s mouth.
  5. Build a list and stay in touch. A simple email newsletter allows you to build trust over time. It helps you get more clients, more referrals, more people sharing your content, book more free consultations, and get more testimonials and reviews.

If you want to see how to use a newsletter to build your practice, go here

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Questions are the answer

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When we have a problem, we’re told not to focus on that problem but to focus on possible solutions. But we can’t do that without spending time thinking about the problem.

More specifically, asking ourself questions.

Questions like, What happened, Why did it happen, Who caused it, Who can help fix it, and especially, What can I do about it?

If the problem is a drop in business and you ask why it happened, right now your answer would no doubt include the shutdown. Many people aren’t doing anything about their legal problems now because they don’t have the money or the presence of mind to deal with them.

Is that a problem you can do something about? I don’t know, but asking THAT question might lead you to some ideas.

Asking the right questions helps us to focus on what we can do, instead of what we can’t do.

Questions like, What can I do to bring in new clients right now? What can I do to lower my expenses or increase my revenue? What can I do to set the stage for the future once things return to a semblance of normalcy?

More.

What can I do or offer that other lawyers can’t or won’t? How can I position myself as the better solution? What can I do beyond my core services to attract and engage my ideal client? How can I become better known to my target market? How can I get more traffic and build my list? Where can I get more marketing ideas?

What if you don’t like the answers? Ask more questions.

Because questions are the answer. And because asking questions is better than stewing in negative thoughts.

Where do you go to find “next level” marketing strategies? Here

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The TRUTH about practicing law

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One of the simplest ways to get more people reading and sharing your posts, especially on social, is to make them controversial.

Challenge them, shock them, anger them–because everyone loves a good fight.

They most popular TV shows and online videos feature emotional content: anger and outrage, sex and love, pleasant surprises and massive disappointments.

People love conflict. And the algorithms promote posts and videos that feature it.

Platforms like Twitter have their entire business model built around people being angry at something. Or someone.

If you want to get more eyeballs and engagement and shares, write posts that “expose” the truth about something, including your practice area (especially your practice area).

Write about issues you know people disagree with, and tell them why YOU disagree with what other lawyers say or do: “Why I don’t agree with. . .” or “Why I don’t like/use/do. . .”

“Force” prospective clients who are searching for a lawyer to read your post with a title like, “Is [legal service] worth it?” or “What most [practice area] lawyers get wrong.”

Cruise through social media and record the titles of videos and posts that are being promoted or shared or that catch your eye, and adapt those titles and themes to your posts.

Throw some raw meat to the lions and watch them stick around for more.

There are more ways to attract and engage clients and prospects. In Email Marketing for Attorneys, I break these down and show you what to do.

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4 reasons you should read what other lawyers write

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Lawyers are writers and you should make time to read them.

Read their blogs, subscribe to their newsletters, follow them on social.

See what they’re saying and what they’re doing. Here are four good reasons:

  1. Law/legal news. Keep up with the law in your field and allied fields. Cases you need to read, proposed legislation, rules you need to know, emerging trends, etc.
  2. Content ideas. Get ideas for your own articles and posts. Agree or disagree with them, offer your own examples, slant, predictions, etc.
  3. Marketing and practice management ideas. Learn what your colleagues are doing to get clients and manage their practice. What marketing methods do they use? Which productivity methods do they use? Which vendors do they use?
  4. Networking opportunities. Find lawyers with whom you can conduct strategic alliances, e.g., cross-referring, writing for each other’s blogs, interviewing each other, creating an event together, promoting each other’s content.

My challenge: Before the end of the day, find one lawyer in your field and one lawyer in an allied field; spend 30 minutes reading their blog (and taking notes), (b) follow them on social, and (c) sign up for their newsletter.

You’ll thank me later.

Build your practice with an email newsletter

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I’d like to interview you

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I’ve been interviewed a fair number of times, by reporters and bloggers and podcasters. A couple of weeks ago, a long-time reader of this newsletter asked to interview me for his podcast/radio program.

We did the interview the other day.

The host read my bio, introduced me, and ask me questions, starting with how I got my start. He asked more questions, I shared some pearls of wisdom, he promoted my website, and in 30 minutes we were done.

I get some exposure and traffic to my site, he gets content, and a good time was had by all.

Yes, a good time. It was fun. Who says you can’t have fun while making money?

Anyway, if you’re not finding ways to get your bad self interviewed, you’re missing out. It’s an easy and professional way to build your practice.

Here are three simple ways to make this happen.

  1. Build a blog or newsletter or social media following. If you put out enough content, you will be discovered and someone in your niche will ask to interview you.
  2. Hang out with bloggers and podcasters and other content marketers who sell to, write for, or advise your target market.

    Consume their content, leave comments, offer praise, and promote their stuff on social and to your list. Your list will appreciate hearing about good content and the content providers will appreciate the exposure.

    Some will recognize your value and reciprocate by promoting your content to their audience; some will ask to interview you.
  3. Contact bloggers, podcasters, et. al., in your niche and ask to interview them for your blog or podcast, et. al.

Where do you start? Ask a friend or colleague if you can interview them for your blog or newsletter. Or just for fun. And let them interview you.

You’ll get some practice doing interviews and being interviewed and you’ll be ready for prime time.

Who do you know you could interview today?

I interviewed an attorney and turned it into a book

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What are your prospective clients thinking?

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Prospective clients see your ad or your website, read your article, or hear you speak.

What do you suppose is going through their minds?

No, they’re not thinking about how knowledgeable or experienced you are. They’re thinking about themselves and their problems.

They don’t care about you. They don’t care about what you want them to see or know or do.

They only care about themselves.

When you’re trying to sell them your services, opt in to your list, follow your posts, share your content, or do anything else, their default response is “no”.

Because, why?

You have to show them why, and that starts by getting their attention.

Common ways to do that are to ask a question, make a bold statement or prediction, share an interesting fact or statistic, or tell a story.

In other words, use a headline or subject line that makes them curious or offers a benefit that relates to their situation.

Then, once they’re reading your article or email, watching your video, or listening to your voice, get them interested in what you’re selling. You do that by telling them how you can help them, solve their problems, or help them get something they want.

Next, tell them more. More about the relief they will experience when they hire you, how they will be better off, and how easy it is to get started. Give them reasons to trust you; tell about other clients like them you have helped.

You do this to help them transition from merely listening to your message to desiring your help.

But you’re not done.

The final step is to get them to take action. To make the call, fill out the form, sign up for your webinar, or otherwise do something that eventually leads to their becoming a client.

Four steps. Attention, Interest, Desire and Action. Otherwise known in marketing circles as AIDA.

All four steps are necessary to take the prospective client from “I don’t care about you” to where you want them to go, and where they need to go to get what they want or need.

The next time you create an email, blog post, article, or anything else that’s designed to attract prospects and convert them to clients, go through this checklist and make sure you have all four elements.

If you need help with that, let me know.

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Slow is smooth and smooth is fast

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I just learned this is something taught to military snipers. I’ve heard (and used) a similar phrase: “Slow down to speed up”.

The both teach the value of doing the task slowly and deliberately, mastering the fundamentals first.

Indeed, that’s what will allow you to speed up.

In the context of building a law practice, some lawyers go for the gold right out of the gate. They run fast and break things, or try to spend their way to success.

They’d be better off slowing down and mastering the fundamentals.

Learn the basics of marketing, advertising (even if they don’t advertise), copywriting (even if they hire someone), and sales.

Get good at selling themselves before trying to sell their services.

Another way a lawyer can “slow down to speed up” is to focus on their warm market (clients, professional contacts, and others who “know, like, and trust” them), before venturing into the cold market.

Focus on repeat business and referrals first (and always) and get good at it. Use ads, social media, and other cold market methods (if you want to) only after you’ve mastered the basics.

And, when you’re ready to approach the cold market, don’t be in a hurry. Study the market, learn everything you can about it and the people in it.

And when you approach the market, use a high-powered sniper rifle, not a shotgun.

Here’s what to do

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The market’s the thing

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In marketing, the single most important factor in your success is your market. Who you target is far more important than what you say or what you offer.

Your marketing may be brilliant. You may spend a small fortune delivering your message. But unless it’s a good market (for you), you’ll never earn more than an average income.

Here’s a good formula to remember:

Great market + average marketing = big checks.
Average market + great marketing = average checks.

So, what’s a great market?

It is a market (list, group of people, etc.) that

  1. Needs and WANTS the outcomes and benefits you can deliver,
  2. Has lots of repeat business and/or referrals,
  3. Has the ability and willingness to pay what you ask, and
  4. Is a great fit for you.

What is a great fit? Mostly that you like the people and the work. You enjoy working with these folks.

When you find a great market (for you), everything else falls into place.

Your marketing is easier; almost unnecessary. You get most of your work from referrals and don’t need to do much else.

If that sounds good to you, go find the right market and fall in love with it. Learn everything you can about the market and the people in it, get to know some of the key people, and enjoy the rest of your career.

This will help

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Don’t “fact” people to death

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Lawyers are fact merchants. We dwell in the land of research and evidence. But while a thorough recitation of the law and the facts may be necessary in the courtroom, in marketing it’s the kiss of death.

And I do mean death.

When you give readers and listeners, prospects and clients, nothing but the facts, you murder them. They’ll ready for a dirt nap before they finish the third paragraph.

Your prospects don’t want to know everything you know. They want to know that YOU know the facts and the law, and that you know how to use them to help them get what they want.

Think about novels or screenplays. They need just enough narrative to set the stage but it’s the story that people pay to see.

Facts tell but stories sell.

There are exceptions. But they are rare.

So, give folks a smattering of the facts and intersperse them with your opinions and advice, quotes from others, and most of all, stories.

Tell your readers or audience what happened to your client or your friend or to you, and what might happen to them if they don’t do what you recommend.

Need more referrals? Start here

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