Necessary 9: Acquisition
by Justin Martin January 13, 2018
Big money starts with having a big heart. Too often a lawyer’s system for achieving prosperity starts with the question “What can I get?” when it should start with “What can I give?” Don’t miss an opportunity to build the lowest cost of acquisition ever – through referrals from people who appreciate your heart.
Adapt your campaigns to your market. Don’t expect the market to adapt to your campaigns. If you’re using an agency, and your agency isn’t in or doesn’t thoroughly understand your community, how could they craft the most effective messages for it? Speak the market’s language.
Nature beats nurture. We’re born with the requisite amount of compassion for others. In law school, we’re nurtured to take on the lawyer persona, which often includes training to remain professionally detached. But, in business, successful operations require empathy, compassion and meaningful connections with our clients.
Don’t always try to predict campaign results. Instead, follow along and adapt. Not every campaign is about what you get. Some are about what you learn trying to get it.
Statistics count. Deploy them conservatively, but deploy them nevertheless. Successful campaigns are more about probability than they are about certainty. Always build campaign pro formas around conservative probabilities. With this approach you’re not totally dependent upon success. And any surprises are usually to the upside.
Market bubbles and busts are your friend. Sometimes client supply is bountiful. Sometimes the market is not so kind. Competition comes. Competition goes. Attorneys and practices rise and fall. The mythological “100 Year Flood” happens all the time. Embrace all markets. Stay lean in times of irrational exuberance. When times get tough, attack, and take market share.
Speculation is not your enemy. Well planned risk taking should be a constant part of your model. A small percentage of your marketing budget and time should be consistently committed to measurable tests for areas of opportunity. The process of mining for fertile territory should be constant but iterative. Test. Measure results. Modify. Test. Measure results. Modify.
Fundamentals are paramount. Eye contact. Firm handshakes. Follow up calls. Introductory emails. Asking for the meeting. Handwritten thank you cards. Asking for the business. Surveying the client about their satisfaction. Asking the client to refer other clients. Never starting a conversation without first asking for time. Never get off a call without asking if there’s anything else the client needs.
The market is never wrong. Don’t sit around praying that the market goes in your favor. If it doesn’t, it’s you that needs to modify, not the market. The market doesn’t differentiate between an ineffective campaign and a horrible one. They just don’t call. You’ve got to figure out where you went wrong. Don’t just monitor results. Monitor execution. Modify and try again.