Editor’s Note: As 2017 winds down, we’re taking a look back at some of our favorite content over the years. This post, part II of a series, was written by education-based marketing expert Trey Ryder for the Winter 2014 edition of PILMMA’s Insiders’ Journal.
Superstar lawyers didn’t get that way by accident. Instead, they’ve made use of some important secrets of their profession to help them rise to the top. In this series, we’ll take a look at some of the best strategies for joining the ranks of the “superstar lawyers.”
SUPERSTAR SECRET #13
They provide client service beyond compare. They return phone calls quickly. They work day and night to finish projects. They have backup plans for their backup plans. They error on the side of caution. They hire a bright, responsive support staff. And they always go the extra mile. Whatever it takes, they get the job done. And the superstar’s staff is equally committed to bring the client the best result on time, on budget.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #14
They make sure everybody knows they welcome new business. One obstacle successful lawyers face is that other lawyers think they don’t want new clients. As a result, they quit referring cases. When prospecting for new clients, superstar lawyers know it is far better to receive too many inquiries than too few. They make sure their current clients, past clients, prospects and referral sources know they welcome new clients. This allows them to skim the cream off the top and refer the rest.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #15
They turn people on their contact/mailing list into goodwill ambassadors. Every person on a lawyer’s mailing list knows one or two other people who are prospects for the lawyer’s services. Superstar lawyers ask clients and referral sources to invite prospects to call for the lawyer’s educational materials.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #16
They send a monthly newsletter, alert or bulletin. Superstar lawyers know the value of keeping everybody on their mailing list informed and up to date. In their newsletter, they offer (1) facts and advice about the law, (2) summaries of successful cases they have handled, (3) dates of future seminars and retreats, (4) educational articles available from their office, (5) their web site address, (6) answers to questions, and (7) facts about their background. Superstar lawyers keep lines of communication open so clients come in for services and colleagues refer their friends.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #17
They carry out an aggressive publicity program. Superstar lawyers know their ability to gain ongoing media publicity depends on supplying editors and producers with news releases and articles every month. This requires that they maintain a current mailing list and fax numbers of publications and broadcast outlets that reach their target audience. At the end of each news release, they offer their free fact kit to anyone who calls their office. This is another way they attract an ongoing flow of inquiries.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #18
They deliver their marketing message through educational seminars. Superstar lawyers communicate by seminar in a variety of ways: in person, by phone, and by video-conferencing. Phone seminars and webinars allow clients, prospects and referral sources to take in new information without leaving their offices, which saves the cost of a hotel and airfare.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #19
They develop powerful listening skills. Whenever a client or prospect calls, superstar lawyers drop whatever they are doing and focus their entire attention on the caller’s concerns. By their actions, superstar lawyers convey that the other person is the most important person in their world.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #20
They charge what the market will bear – and then some. One way prospects determine value is by price. Superstar lawyers know it is better to be the most expensive lawyer in town and have people appreciate their knowledge than to be the cheapest lawyer in town and have people question their skill. Superstar lawyers get superstar fees because they deliver value to their clients in the form of results, service, quality, attention, access and responsiveness. They know it doesn’t matter how much they charge as long as their clients believe they receive even more value in return.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #21
They are dignified, professional and confident. Superstar lawyers pay close attention to detail and appearance. They understand the importance of first impressions. They don’t let clients or prospects see anything that might reflect poorly on them or hurt their credibility. They know that prospects are moved by the lawyers’ belief, conviction and self-confidence. As a result, they know their value and know how to help prospects achieve their goals.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #22
They are warm and friendly. Superstar lawyers know their chances of earning a new client increase dramatically when the prospect likes them. They call prospects by name, smile, and maintain good eye contact because eye contact conveys honesty and trust. The sense of relationship that develops between superstar lawyers and their clients is a bond that is not easily broken.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #23
They genuinely respect and care about their clients and prospects. Superstar lawyers know when people see dollar signs in a lawyer’s eyes, they grow defensive and resist the lawyer’s efforts to help. But when the lawyer really cares, this feeling comes through loud and clear. Superstar lawyers don’t talk down to prospects. They maintain an attitude of helpfulness and make prospects feel special. Their respect and caring give prospects a powerful emotional reason to choose them over other lawyers.
SUPERSTAR SECRET #24
They stay positive, grateful and polite. The superstar lawyers’ outlook is always positive and optimistic. They appreciate their success and are grateful to the many people who helped them along the way. Superstar lawyers are genuine. They express themselves with the refinement you would expect of a highly educated, highly polished professional. All in all, most people find them nice to be around.
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