Veteran Lawyer Joining A Firm? Ramp Up That Personal Selling Effort
June 26, 2012
When a veteran lawyer joins your firm there are specific marketing steps to take to ensure the maximum number of clients and referral sources continue their relationships with that lawyer, and that the new capabilities that lawyer provides within your firm are learned by your firm’s existing clients.
Here’s a basic checklist to follow. It’s best if you start these activities as soon as ethically and legally allowed prior to the lawyer’s arrival at your firm.
- Get a new photo taken unless the lawyer has a current suitable picture
- Update the lawyer’s database/mailing list to ensure it’s accurate and comprehensive, meaning it includes all clients, past clients, prospects, and bar and non-bar referrals sources
- Have the new lawyer compose a letter, or email with downloadable vcard, to everyone in that database giving new contact information. It should explain added capabilities and value of his/her move. Consider mentioning key cases or files the new firm has handled
- The lawyer should phone their most important contacts when appropriate. The message: “Ed, I wanted to you to hear this from me rather than through the grapevine or by reading about it. As of today…”
- Key clients and referral sources of the firm should be reviewed. If the new lawyer’s arrival will affect them or the perception of your firm they should receive phone calls. The message: “Ed, I wanted to you to hear this from me rather than through the grapevine or by reading about it. Today…” make sure to consider those clients and referrals sources you will likely try to cross-sell in the future
- Send a news release to legal and local media, also consider the lawyer’s alumni publications, on the day he/she arrives at work
- Place tombstone or, if your firm’s has a branding campaign or your creative genes are flowing, differentiating ads in your local and state bar publications. If possible, explain in the ad why the lawyer is joining the firm. “Lawyer Miriam Smith joins our firm to (accomplish what for her clients, or for existing clients of the firm?).”
- Update all of the lawyer’s social media profiles and directory listings
- Create a mailed or emailed announcement sent to the firm’s marketing database. The messaging and content here should mirror that in the lawyer’s communications discussed above
- Add the new lawyer’s contacts to the firm database
- Write an Update for LinkedIn and provide to all lawyers to post
This list represents a solid start. Every firm will do things a bit differently but the key is to make sure what you do reflect your firm’s and the lawyer’s culture.
Although these efforts create overlap and some repetition, keep in mind the words of Dale Carnegie: “Tell the audience what you are going to say; say it; then tell them what you’ve said.”