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Rainmaking Basics

Marketing Tips: When You Don’t Know What to Write

By Theda C. Snyder

At a recent webinar in connection with my book “Women Rainmakers’ Best Marketing Tips,” an audience member said she wanted to write as part of her marketing plan, but couldn’t think of anything to write. What should she do? Fodder for your blog, email alerts, social media posts, and professional articles is everywhere. You only need to recognize it.

Courts

Surely you follow the activity of the courts in your jurisdiction so you can properly advise your clients. Even when a decision breaks no new ground, you can report it to your followers using plain language. Your readers love stories, and the underlying facts of this case provide a good one — plus, because this is a public document, you don’t need to worry about redacting. Reminding clients and prospects of settled law is always helpful and a good way to spotlight your expertise and availability.

Legislature

When your state legislature or Congress passes a law that will affect your practice area, you should let clients and prospects know that you are on top of it. If you have important insight about the effect of the law, great! But merely recounting what the law does is fine, too, particularly if you represent clients on both sides of an issue.

You Went to a Conference

Virtual and in-person conference attendance is an excellent way to learn about new developments, hear expert analysis and quickly self-immerse in a new niche. While the information is fresh in your mind, recycle that information into plain language that emphasizes the impact on your clients and prospects.

Your Inbox

You should be subscribing to multiple newsletters to keep up with developments and your competition. These might be from other law firms, law publishers, professional associations like the state bar, or complementary professionals such as accountants. Use a Google Alert to catch news about a specific issue no matter where that information has appeared. Tell people about news and conflicting views on pertinent issues.

Everybody’s Talking

But there’s already so much out there on this topic, you may cry. So what? Important developments will get reported by many media. CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and local electronic and legacy news outlets don’t refrain from reporting news just because the others do, too.

If your clients hear about news only from others, they may assume you don’t know what’s happening. When an administrative agency in my state resumed in-person hearings, I got an official notice from the agency plus two law firm newsletters announcing the development.

Prompt reporting of new developments is most valuable, but clients also appreciate information roundups. That’s why you probably see articles like “The Most Important Cases of the Past Year.” Having the resources to create both prompt reports and roundups would be ideal.

Not Plagiarism — Research*

When you see information in a secondary source, such as a newsletter, make sure to check the primary source before reporting to your clients and prospects. Read the actual statute or opinion. You probably won’t be able to verify an interview, but you can let your own readers know, for example, that “in an interview with Local Daily News reporter Catty Cakes, the governor reportedly said ….” Passing on incorrect information could be ruinous to your readers and to you.

Put your own spin on your message. Never lift text verbatim from elsewhere. Regular transmittal of fresh information marks you as an expert and keeps your name at the forefront of people’s minds.

*Extra points for recognizing the Tom Lehrer musical reference.

Illustration ©iStockPhoto.com 

For more writing tips, read Get to the Point’s top 10 grammar posts, here.

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Theda C. Snyder

Theda “Teddy” Snyder mediates civil disputes, workers’ compensation and insurance coverage cases, including COVID-19 related coverage disputes, in person or by video. Teddy has practiced in a variety of settings and frequently speaks and writes about settlements and the business of law. She was a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management and is the author of four ABA books, including “Women Rainmakers’ Best Marketing Tips, 4th Edition” as well as “Personal Injury Case Evaluation” available on Amazon.com. Based in Los Angeles, Teddy can be found at SnyderMediations.com and on Twitter @SnyderMediation.

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