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The three marketeers: Whom you’ll need to market your law practice

Three has always been held up as a mystical number: the Trinity; Larry Bird; the titular reworking of the Three Musketeers; etc. It just so happens that you also need three people to market a modern law practice. The good thing is: there's very little mysticism about it.  

Content. A modern marketing platform starts with content. The most successful lawyers have always used publication as a mechanism for becoming known for their expertise in their fields. It still works. The difference now is that there are so many more publication options, especially for self-publishing, including the still-popular blogging. Content draws people in; it is the carrot for your stick. Give something away, and charge for the good stuff/specific advice.

In order to leverage content marketing, you'll need someone who is a prolific writer and content curator.

Social. A modern marketing platform incorporates the social web. The simplest argument for using social media is that everybody else does. This is not to say that you should split your efforts across every social network you can find. Rather, you should focus on one medium, or a few or more popular ones, to begin to create the organic growth required of a personalized, professional web presence. But, there is an art to using social media well, including to market your business.

In order to leverage social media marketing, you'll need someone who can distribute curated content and engage naturally online. Many people believe that this person must be a digital native; but, that's not necessarily the case: it's more about ease of influence, than it is about the medium.

Networking. A modern marketing platform includes mandates for in-person networking. While your web presence will allow you to supplement your marketing, it does not replace the traditional in-person networking that attorneys have always relied on to drive business. If anything, the prevalence of internet marketing makes personal connections even more valuable, because they've become rarer. And, the best way to cement an online relationship remains to meet in-person.

In order to leverage in-person networking, you'll need someone who is comfortable in a crowded room, filled with strange faces. Many people believe that this person must be a traditionalist (an ol' boy (or gal), as it were); but, that's not necessarily the case: it's more about ease of influence than it is about the medium.

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Solo attorneys now very worried about commencing hiring searches need not be. Certainly, all of these abilities can be wrapped up in one person; it's just that . . . the 'one musketeer' sounded so lame when I was brainstorming titles. But, even if you don't have all of these access skills in spades, you can concentrate on one, as you build up the others. That being said, there is an advantage for larger firms in this regard: those firms can source the best talent in each of these areas, and allow attorneys to hone in on particular marketing skills. Separating marketing functions also allows firms to become more efficient, since they're more favorably leveraging the skills of their staff. Of course, that sort of specialization would not necessarily help departing attorneys.

. . .

If you're looking for additional marketing tips, and for a way to network with your colleagues, there is still room to R.S.V.P. for the Massachusetts Bar Association's 'Third Annual Super Marketing Conference: Accelerate Your Marketing', featuring Mark Britton, founder and CEO of Avvo, as the keynote speaker.

In-person and web attendance options are available. In-person attendees will be provided breakfast and lunch.

For a full agenda, and to R.S.V.P., visit the event page.

Tip courtesy of Jared Correia, Law Office Management Assistance Program.

Published May 9, 2013

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To learn more about the Law Practice Management Section, which is complimentary for all MBA members, contact LPM Section Chair Thomas J. Barbar or Vice Chair Cynthia E. MacCausland.
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