Four ways to get new clients

Ellen Keiley, The Daily Record Newswire

There are many elements to marketing and business development, and it’s important to make sure you’re communicating and marketing yourself in the most effective way. Below are four crucial areas that can set you apart from the competition in the search for new clients.

1) Relationship building/alliances


It’s no secret that referral relationships make up a key source of business development for attorneys, but the routes to developing them remain elusive to many in practice.

Start at the most obvious place: the connections that are already there.Referral relationships must continue to evolve as mutually beneficial, lest they diminish over time. Don’t take them for granted. Make it a priority to think about your existing relationships and whether or not you have been reciprocal to the full extent that you can, or at the very least been helpful to them in some way and shown appreciation each time a referral is made.

Here’s an example of how a mutually beneficial referral relationship should work: I met an attorney through a friend. Since then, we got to know each other better over time. The attorney has been a huge promoter of mine and has sent many clients and potential clients my way. I, in turn, regularly refer potential clients to her, connect her with speaking opportunities, and helped her friend by making strategic connections and opening doors to job interviews.

We are both regularly thinking of ways we can be helpful to each other, and we regularly express our mutual appreciation.

2) Elevator speech


Attorneys often get caught up with the term “elevator speech,” for understandable reasons, but it’s important to remember that you don’t have to tell others everything about yourself in the first 30 seconds — and you shouldn’t try!

Start by saying who you are, exactly what you do, and give an example. Know what your personal brand is, and tie that into the conversation to give people an idea of what it is like to work with you. Then weave in stories about you and your firm’s area of specialty and accomplishments throughout the conversation, all while placing as much focus as possible on the other person. Ask questions, be curious, really listen, and tailor what you say based on what you learn.

The 30 seconds is a guideline, not a rule. The settings in which to give your elevator speech vary (even in the literal example of an elevator, the building may be seven stories, or it may be 107).

Any time you interact with another person, it’s an opportunity to learn about them and tell them what you do. Adjust your elevator speech based on the situation and be mindful of timing, especially in a group setting.

3) Identifying your niche


As you mull your elevator speech, perhaps above all else think about what sets you apart. What you think of as your most impressive attribute may not make the same impression on others, simply because they know a dozen other lawyers who can claim the same. Ensure that people think of you for something specific and become the go-to person in that area. Consider the following when trying to establish a niche:

• What are you truly passionate about?

• Where is your true expertise?

• What areas or industries do you not only know, but actually enjoy?

• What types of clients do you want to work with, and where are they located?

• What is the legacy you want to leave behind?

Make sure your niche aligns with your values. You want to enjoy the work you do.

4) Your online presence

By now you’re heard it ad nauseum, and with good reason: Your virtual presence matters as much as your real one and should reflect your brand. People research potential service providers on the Internet just as they do travel plans or household products.

Writing, speaking, community involvement, social media, appearing in the media — the more, the better. How can you gauge how well you’re stacking up in cyberspace? Do a Google search on yourself and see what comes up. You may be surprised!

It’s crucial to make constant updates to your online bio and LinkedIn profile. A potential client could look you up anytime; you don’t want to miss the chance to hook one with your latest victory because you didn’t bother to type up a paragraph about it for your website until a week later.

Make sure your online information is up to date and reflects everything about you, from professional achievements and client successes to a summary of your expertise.

And add a picture. The Internet may have revolutionized the marketing game, but some things never change. People want to put a face with a name.

—————

Ellen Keiley is president of EMK Consulting Group, a provider of business-development coaching and consulting, public relations, and training for law firms and other professional services firms. She can be contacted at ellenkeiley@emkconsultinggroup.com.
 

Comments

  1. No comments
Sign in to post a comment »