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March 22, 2011 Practice Points

Don't Be a Forgotten Law Firm

By Virginia Sierra

The Rainmaker Blog identifies the forgotten law firm as "the biggest crime in law firms today." The blog makes several suggestions as to how to market your firm.

Clients want to know what you are going to do for them. Make your intentions well known to your clients, broadcast it on your website, and promote it by any other means possible. If clients are required to search for the benefit your firm provides, you have lost them already. Make the separation between your firm's features (i.e., what your firm does) and your benefits (i.e., why your client needs you). Your client will have a hard time forgetting you if they know how you can benefit them.

Your firm must also have a "unique competitive advantage" (UCA), or something that separates your firm from others that are providing the same services. Do not make your UCA statements about "quality" or "service," as these terms are overused and under-exercised. Be honest and creative when developing your UCA; use your individuality and skills to develop it. Next, work to connect emotionally with your clients, attempt to understand what is difficult for them, and work with them to address these issues. Clients may also feel they are taking a risk when choosing a small firm over a larger one. They may fear your firm will not be around in five years if they need you again. As a result, you should develop ways to make the risk of your firm's disappearance small.

Use these strategies for remaining unforgotten and identify them on the back of your business card and on your website. These inexpensive forms of advertisement are great ways to be remembered. By being remembered, you are keeping your small firm running and your clients coming back for more.

Virginia Sierra is with Cohen Kennedy Dowd & Quigley, PC in Phoenix, Arizona.

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