C’mon, you know you want to


Can you approach someone you don’t know but want to speak to via email? Yes, you can. Just make sure you send a personal email, not a “form letter”.

Your first order of business is to get the email opened. A great way to do that is to write something that makes the recipient curious.

Like (I hope) the subject line of this email did you.

But then you and I “know” each other. I can be a little playful. If this was the first time I communicated with you I would (probably) not use that as the subject. Instead, I might use something like this:

“Quick question”.

I got an email with that subject not long ago and yes, I did open it.

Because I was curious.

This may not suit you, however, or your market. What then?

Well, you don’t want to appear too familiar. So “Hey there. . .” won’t make the cut.

You can’t bore someone into opening an email. So forget about using “I hope you’re doing well”.

And you don’t want to come off like you’re selling something, so, “May I send you some information about our xyz services?” is a dog that won’t hunt.

So what can you say to make ’em curious?

I’ll tell you tomorrow.

Okay, cheap trick. Having more fun. I’m not going to tell you what to say. That’s something you have to figure out.

If you were writing to me, what might you say to get my attention and make me curious to read your email (other than “Quick question”)? What’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Do you have an accountant? If he didn’t know you from Adam, what might you say to make him curious?

(“This is about your wife” would get your email opened, but. . .)

Start paying attention to (unsolicited) emails you get that make you curious enough to open. Write down the subject they used. Spend time brainstorming other ideas.

Put your list away for a week or two. When you come back to it, you’ll see a lot of subject lines that make you cringe and say, “Oy vey, what was I thinking” but you may also see a few gems.

Go ahead and try one.

C’mon, you know you want to.

Build your practice online


3 ways to tame your marketing beasts


There are two powerful marketing methods available to you that you’re probably not using. You’re not alone. Most lawyers don’t use them, either because there are rules that preclude them from doing so or because they aren’t comfortable doing them even when the rules permit it.

What if I could eliminate these two obstacles for you? What if I could show you how you could safely and comfortably use one or both of these marketing methods to bring in a steady stream of new clients?

Would you hear me out?

Great. I’m going to pull back the curtain and show you the faces of these beasts.

The first beast goes by the name “unsolicited email”. You may recoil in horror, but I urge you to gaze at the face of this beast. Examine him, though your stomach may churn, for he can make you rich.

Take a breath as I reveal the second beast, who many say is more hideous than the first.

In polite company, we refer to the second beast as “cold calling”. You may know him as the Devil himself.

I know, you thought I was going to show you things you could do and here I’m talking about things you would never consider.

Never say never.

You can use cold calling and unsolicited email to build your practice, without violating any rules or doing anything unprofessional or uncomfortable.

You can let your marketing beasts out of their cage and tame them. Here are three ways to do that.

Strategy number one: Contact someone other than a prospective client

As far as I know, there are no rules against contacting another professional, a business owner, or other center of influence in your community or market via cold call or cold email. As long as you’re not contacting a prospective client, you can contact anyone, unsolicited though that first contact might be.

With email, you have to follow CAN-SPAM rules, and there may be rules against calling too early or too late in the day, but these rules are easy to follow.

And, with the right approach, you should be completely comfortable doing it.

What’s the right approach? See below.

Strategy number two: Call or write about something other than you and your services

Don’t promote your services. Don’t ask for referrals. In fact, on the first contact, you should say very little about yourself.

What do you say? There are lots of options. Here are a few:

You can introduce yourself as a fellow professional in the community, say something nice you heard about them or saw on their website, and offer to buy them coffee. You could ask to interview them for your blog or for an article. You could ask them to recommend a vendor or expert or if they know anything about an arbitrator you are considering. You could offer to send them information on a subject that would benefit them or their clients.

Strategy number three: have someone else make the first contact for you

If you’re still gun-shy, have someone in your office or a VA make the call or send the email on your behalf. You don’t have to talk to anyone until someone says they’d like to talk to you.

And that’s how you can tame these powerful marketing beasts.

For more approaches, scripts, and additional strategies, get this


How to market by email (NOT)


I got an email this morning from a guy trying to sell me his Internet marketing services. You’ve probably seen emails like this a thousand times.

The subject says, “Schedule call”. The email starts, “Are you getting the most out of your Internet marketing efforts? More than 80% of businesses and consumers research products and services online before making a purchase, creating a massive opportunity from an effective campaign.”

Blah blah blah. Yada yada yada.

He goes on to tell me how great his company is and asks to schedule 30 minutes on the phone to tell me what they can do for me.

Now if this guy knew ANYthing about Internet marketing, he would not be doing this. This is NOT how to market by email.

Yeah, I know, he wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t working. Lucky for him, there are plenty of people who know even less than he does about marketing and if he sends enough of these emails, he will get some business. But not nearly as much as he could if he was doing things the right way.

I’m not being critical of his email because it arrived unsolicited. I don’t get bent out of shape when I receive unsolicited email. But. . . don’t subscribe me to your list without my permission and make me DO something to get off of it. So guess what this idiot did?

Oh no you didn’t! (Yes, he did.)

So. . . instead of simply deleting his email and parting friends, after I unsubscribed, I clicked and identified the email as SPAM. As others do the same, eventually none of his emails will get through to anyone’s inbox.

As I say, this dumb bastard doesn’t know anything about Internet marketing.

But the problem with the email isn’t that it arrived unsolicited. The problem is that the email is a stinker.

It should be blindfolded and executed by firing squad.

You don’t need to see the entire email. All you need to know is that it’s all about the company and not. . . about ME.

There are some bullet points that attempt to suggest benefits: “Maximizing social media for business development,” and “Ensuring your website stays up-to-date on search engine. . .”.


Boring. Weak. Trite.

Stuff we’ve seen so often our eyes glaze over.

And I don’t want to “maximize social media for business development”. I want clients. I want people to hire me and pay me. I want more people to find me and sign up for my list so that more people will hire me and pay me.

Okay, what is he offering? Even a poorly written email can be effective with a strong offer.

Hmm, . . a 30 minute phone call. . . so he can try to sell me something. . . yeah, thanks but I’m just going to have to pass.

Even if I liked his email, it’s too soon in our “relationship” to close for a phone call.

What could he have offered that might have gotten me to click?

Information. A report, for example, with tips and advice about how I could beef up my Internet marketing, get more traffic, more sign ups, and more clients.

I might have at least taken a look.

If the report delivered good information, I might have been open to learning more about his company and what he can do for me.

Most lawyers aren’t going to send out unsolicited emails. But if you do, that’s how to do it. The same goes for your ads, speeches, and articles. Or when you are networking.

Don’t talk about yourself. Don’t go for the close the first time you communicate. Talk about the prospect. Offer information.

Let the information demonstrate your knowledge and experience and sell the reader on hiring you or taking the next step.

There. Now you know more about Internet marketing than this guy. Please don’t subscribe me to your list.

Need help with Internet marketing? This shows you what to do and how to do it.