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She’s sitting in front of her computer, pulling out her hair–one strand at a time. This day is not going well.
The phone Is. Not. Ringing.
It’s time to act. She needs some clients. NOW!
She turns her focus to back to her screen, types “Marketing” in the search bar, and is underway.
Buried in Google results, with a dozen tabs open in Chrome, she’s finding lawyers who say they have the greatest marketing tactic since the invention of the internet. Of course, she’s also finding an equal number of lawyers who are trashing that same approach as a complete waste of money. One lawyer says the vendor is a fraud.
She’s ready to spend her marketing money, but she’s not sure how to spend it. Waiting isn’t an option. It’s time for her to conjure up some results. She needs to take action, but she has no idea what to do. She’s paralyzed by indecision.
Failing to act is worse than making a mistake
There’s too much thinking, planning, organizing, and agonizing going into her marketing.
She wants to get it right so she researches, asks for recommendations, interviews vendors, gets price quotes, charts out comparisons, digs into online reviews, and then thinks about it. She’s hoping for a gut feeling that will tell her what to do.
That feeling isn’t going to come.
Marketing doesn’t work
We all want the magic bullet. We want to spend $1 on the marketing and have $100 appear in the checking account.
Sorry. It doesn’t work that way.
Most marketing works a little. Doing lots of marketing, each piece of which works a little, results in a lot of results. It’s the aggregation of effort that achieves the goal.
She needs to make a decision, jump in, take action, and let the chips fall where they fall. Something will happen.
You need to do the same thing. More marketing brings you more clients. More clients bring you more money. Taking action–lots of action–is imperative.
Making more happen makes more happen
Do more, do it faster, measure the results, and then do even more of the things that work, even if they only work a little.
While you’re doing the things that work, do more of the other things as well, and do them faster. Do, do, do, do, and keep doing.
Be a prolific marketer. Keep trying, keep moving, do this while you do that, and let different efforts and activities overlap.
One experiment at a time is slow going
There’s no reason to run your experiments in sequence, one after another.
Run your experiments in parallel. Do them all at once; don’t wait around to see how prior experiments pan out.
I know a lawyer who decided to speak at a Rotary Club, and then waited to see if it brought in business before deciding whether he should offer more speeches. That’s the slow path to success.
He’ll generate faster results if he schedules five Rotary speeches, plus a Civitan, a Jaycees, and a Lions Club speech. He’ll go even faster if he mixes in some online advertising, some lunches with other lawyers who might refer, and a few articles in the bar journal or on his website.
Lots of effort moves you forward faster. It’s possible that no single project will be a big hit. But most will inevitably generate some interest, even if it’s just a small bump in awareness. Each marketing effort results in a nudge forward. The small nudges, together, ultimately result in progress.
Nudge, push, shove, and nudge some more. It’s the persistent effort that pays off. If you nudge a bit each and every day, you will build a reputation, which is how you build a practice.
Be a prolific marketer
Expect failure from most of your efforts. Don’t stress if you don’t get a referral from a Rotary Club speech or a referral source lunch. A single failure is only significant if you’re only doing one thing. If you’re doing many things, then one of them will, at least in a small way, move you closer to the goal.
You can’t accurately predict what’s going to work. The gurus can’t tell you. Different approaches work differently for different lawyers, in different practice areas, in different markets, at different times.
There is only one way to find out what works. Experiments are the key to figuring out your marketing approach. The more experiments you run, the more you learn. The faster you learn, the faster you get where you’re going. Plus, each failed experiment inevitably contains small elements of success or lessons to absorb.
True, the Rotary Club speech didn’t generate a referral that day. But the club treasurer told his wife’s sister about something you said. She told her boss. He Googled you. He told his son, and four weeks later, his son scheduled a consultation.
Most marketing works a little
Don’t expect amazing results from every effort. Expect amazing results from amazingly prolific marketing efforts. Do lots of things, each of which is a tiny bit successful, and you’ll soon have many clients.
Overnight success is rare, and even when it happens, we often find out that what looked like overnight was actually years of preparation, determination and effort.
There is a guaranteed path to success. It comes from doing the work today, and then doing it again tomorrow, and again the day after. Being a prolific marketer works, even if it often feels like it doesn’t.
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