We know you’re a lawyer, so what? That’s not enough. What makes you stand out? Gyi and Conrad share tips on making your practice stand out in a country awash in lawyers. Know the difference between simple branding and real positioning.
Also, a BIG change is coming to Google searches. It’s driving SEO specialists nuts. Plus, new findings from Clio show the importance of marketing your tech capabilities in a post-pandemic world. What are prospective clients looking for? Learn more at Clio.com/solo.
And of course, “Dumb Sh*t Lawyers Do” (like, say … not reading their marketing agency contracts).
Need to bone up on your marketing basics? Check out our prior LHLM 101 episode on Pay-Per-Click.
Special thanks to our sponsors Alert Communications, LawYaw, and Clio.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Conrad, would you like to make $100,000?
Conrad Saam: Yes, I would love to make $100,000, Gyi. Bring it, what are you offering me today?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Can you sing?
Conrad Saam: Let us put it this way, no one is going to pay me a $100,000. People might pay me a dollar to shut up saying I do not sing in public. I know you do, well one of my favorite pics of you is dropping some beats. That is a great, great photograph of you. I do not sing in public, never have, never will.
Gyi Tsakalakis: But would you for $100,000?
Conrad Saam: Again, we’re going back to the talent. I would do it, but I don’t think anyone’s going to pay me for it. What would it take — I know the answer here, what would it take for me to get $100,000 for singing, Gyi?
Gyi Tsakalakis: John Morgan is offering $100,000 if you win his jingle contest. So, I’ve seen this around the web. Where can we learn more about this and more importantly, just to get right into the marketing, why is he doing this?
Conrad Saam: Well, you go to MorganJingle.com and there’s a lot of reasons he’s doing it and here we are talking about it, right? The reason he is doing it is so that Conrad and Gyi and the three other people that listen to us, we’ll talk about it.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Are we going to link to the John Morgan Jingle?
Conrad Saam: We might have to; I feel compelled to. If you guys would like to debut your jingle on Lunch Hour Legal Marketing. Please submit it to us and if we get something outlandish —
Gyi Tsakalakis: He is hijacking the jingle contest.
Conrad Saam: Game on. We can preview the jingle and get feedback, okay.
Gyi Tsakalakis: We should do an LHLM jingle contest.
Conrad Saam: No, we already decided we’re not going to change it, it what the makes the world go around baby.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah, good point. Maybe we should just have people sing that? What are we talking about today, Conrad?
Conrad Saam: We are going to talk about some news coming out of Google that has all the SEO is pulling their hair out. We are going to go over courtesy of recent experience from my good friend, Gyi, dumb shit lawyers, do with bad agency contract. As a preview, I’m going to try to push, bully, kejul(ph) and otherwise incite Gyi into sharing the agency contract that we will be reviewing. Finally, and I am really excited about this because I had a really good conversation about this. If I could do one thing and one thing only, it would be talking about positioning for lawyers with Lunch Hour Legal Marketing 101. But now, let’s listen to our jingle.
Intro: Welcome to Lunch Hour Legal Marketing. Teaching you how to promote, market and make fat stacks for your legal practice, here on Legal Talk Network.
Conrad Saam: I know it’s not — singing the song but I swear that sounds like (00:02:53). Welcome to Lunch Hour Legal Marketing. Before we get started, we wanted to thank our sponsors. LawYaw, Alert Communications and Clio. Okay folks let’s do some news.
Gyi, coming out of mountain view, Google is making the lives of SEO’s miserable yet again by rewriting title tags. Gyi, can you tell me what a title tag is and why we care or do we care about Google’s changes when how they’re handling title tags?
Gyi Tsakalakis: The title tag is an HTML tag that lives between the bracket’s title and end-title and it’s the title of your page. What Google has traditionally used as the link text in there, 10 blue links in a search result.
Conrad Saam: And what are they doing now?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Now, they seem to be mostly using your H1 tag, but they’re essentially rewriting your title tag, they’ve done this before, but they’re doing it much more system-wide now. In fact, I think I’ve seen reports of up to 80% of title tags being rewritten. Now, they do say that is not impacting rankings. I don’t know if I believe that but you know, that’s what they say. But I think the two big things to think about, one is if you don’t have H1 tags on your site, I think it’s going to be the wild west of wherever they serve.
I don’t know how they’re going to make that decision. They’ll use a fancy math and will probably get it wrong but two, and you know, this is my, “put my tinfoil hat” on here. I generally don’t think you need to say it’s tinfoil hat anymore. The engagement with your listing in Google is likely to be impacted by this because what’s in your title tag is one of the things that you can influence to grab people’s attention. So, if you have a city plus your practice area, plus lawyer, and that turns into like your H1 tag, which might be free consultation. That’s going to impact the user in terms of whether or not they’re going to click. To me, if it impacts engagement, it impacts rankings.
Conrad Saam: So, the SEO community is kind of going bananas over this because you know, there are a lot of people who spent a lot of time optimizing, rewriting testing this title tag versus that title tag. It’s kind of been thrown out the window for us. They’re taking a tool out of our toolkit, correct.
Gyi Tsakalakis: That’s what it sounds like, again, it’s still early on this but some of the reports I’ve seen is like they’re not doing it as aggressively for larger sites. So, you know, we talk about this all the time and she gives a little bit of deference to Google. They got a big job organizing the world’s information and they come across sites all the time, where either title tags are grossly manipulated or missing, or gobbledygook or it’s just — home is the one I love to see, it’s just home because that’s what the default title tag is I think in WordPress.
But the point is that their goal is –well, their real goal is to sell ads, but their secondary goal is to deliver great results for their search users and so, if a bunch of the websites on the web have title tags, that really don’t describe what the page is about. They feel compelled to rewrite the title tag to make it better from their perspective. Of course, you know, what’s better from their perspective doesn’t always line up and the machine isn’t quite as intuitive as a human being yet.
And so, you know, SEOs and people that have relied on organic search traffic are frustrated because it’s like, you have these title tags that are, as you mentioned are carefully crafted to compel eyeballs and clicks and conversions. And now they’re rewriting those and you’re like wait, “I just did all this work and now it’s showing up like this and now — I just noticed my click-through rate went down.” That’s I think is going to be the real test, right? Do click-through rates go down for pages that Google writes, versus the pages human rights? My guess is yes, but TBD I suppose.
Conrad Saam: Yeah, we will find out and I think it probably depends on how much time you spent optimizing your title tags for those click-throughs, right?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah. Sure, will beat home.
Conrad Saam: Hello world.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Hello world’s a classic. Actually no, it’s funny. “Hello world.” I think is the default H1. So, I think it actually would also populate. Hello world.
Conrad Saam: Okay, for those of you who don’t know “Hello World” is a default page in WordPress. So, some of you who have a hello world site like you’re doing it all wrong. Okay, speaking of doing it all wrong. My favorite segment ever is Dumb Shit Lawyers and this one is brought to you by my co-host, Gyi Tsakalakis. I would like you to read the language, what I really want you to do is read — it tells who the agency is but we’ll have to have a couple scotches before you, let that one slip. But I would like you to read the language of one of your new clients, the previous agencies contract includes what heinous stipulation? Alex.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yes, for the record. Not our contract, even though I’ve been accused that our contracts are draconian, people have said that to me, which I think is funny. But anyway, here’s the language, “If client fails to pay any monthly payment within 10 days of his due date, agency may terminate their ongoing optimization service. Client understands that if his service has been terminated, the optimization will be removed and site rankings in the search engines will fall.” You want me to keep reading this?
Conrad Saam: Does it get worse?
Gyi Tsakalakis: I mean, it says client agrees not to overwrite the optimization if you overwrite it, placement guarantee is voided. It’s like a placement guarantee in there.
Conrad Saam: There is a guarantee?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah, client understands that agency reserves the right to remove the optimization from the website at its discretion in order to place with a company requesting subscribe to agency. So, I don’t even know what that one means but —
Conrad Saam: But they’re proactively removing work that they have done.
Gyi Tsakalakis: They’re going to undo it. I mean, I have a question, is this — you can go back to the history of this. By the way, this is stupid across the board. Here’s my thing that’s funny to me about it. So, you do all this work and then the client quits and now you’re going to spend more time on doing it? Like well, maybe they have like — just going to restore to a previous version, right?
Conrad Saam: Well, so here’s my question Gyi, if this is in there, I mean you want to have this once or twice a year, I get that law firm who walks away from a bunch of money that they owe us and with the middle finger and you’re like, it’s hard not to take that personally. Do you feel that this contract here is in the like, “Hey, I’m walking away with money owed in order to compel you to actually pay that money” or do you think this is just like sour grapes? This is like the worst case of me trying to hold on to a client.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Well, I don’t think I — gosh, I hope that clients are staying with this kind of stuff. But you know, think about this, you’re the client here.
You’re 10 days late on your payment, this company is going to be like, “I’m going back and undoing all the work that we’ve done.” You know, one I think too like, this goes back to something we talked about all the time, which is if this is in your contract, you’re renting your SEO updates, right? You’re renting your title tags because they apparently own them and they are going to switch them back.
Conrad Saam: Yeah, this is the same as not owning your domain, right? That’s an old, old dirty trick brought to you by some of the big providers and some of the smaller providers.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Old and still existing.
Conrad Saam: Yeah, gross.
Gyi Tsakalakis: You have a whole thing about contracts, right? You help people get out of their contracts, right?
Conrad Saam: I don’t help, I wouldn’t even encourage people to. I literally just had this conversation. So, I had this conversation right before we recorded this. I was talking about a guy who’s working with FindLaw(ph). And I said, “When is your contract up?” And he said, “Well, they keep coming back and telling me different things at different terms. So, like, I have three or four different contracts that all expired different points in the year. So, I’m not sure when my relationship with FindLaw ever actually ends,” right?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Have you ever been sued by a competitor for —
Conrad Saam: Have I ever been sued by a competitor?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Or cease and desist?
Conrad Saam: Have I ever — I’ve received cease and desist and the reason, you know, I’ve received cease and desist is because, as soon as I get them, I post them. They’re my favorite thing.
Gyi Tsakalakis: So, send Conrad a cease and desist.
Conrad Saam: If you want backlinks to your website, send me a cease-and-desist letter. Ask lawyers of distinction about my joy of posting their cease-and-desist letters, but I think what you’re asking me obliquely. So Gyi pushes me obliquely and it still works. FindLaw has never sent me a cease-and-desist letter for my “Escape FindLaw Guide.” Although I did, when I published that, I did watch with a level of Interest the traffic from — I want to say Eastern Minnesota, Eagan, Minnesota just blew up that day. But no, I haven’t heard from them, mainly because they know I would publish it.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Because they don’t visit your website? Actually, you know that they do?
Conrad Saam: I definitely know that they do.
Gyi Tsakalakis: You know, my thing about all this stuff is what a terrible way to create a relationship with your clients. I mean, can you imagine — I mean, sadly, I’m sure that we can find really terrible contract language with the attorney-client relationship as well. But you know, it all comes back to the same thing like if you see this kind of thing in agreement. Number one, did you even read the agreement? Because the changes are I think a lot of these lawyers don’t even read them, which is again, another episode for another day. Like, dumb stuff lawyers do not read the agreements when they’re lawyers. But you know, you should just see this and be like if you’re not going to build anything on trust here because they’re trying to gut(ph) you at every corner, right? You’re 10 days late, we’re going to undo the work. 10 days late, we own your domain, we are going to take your website down. 10 days late, we are going to keep your Google ads account — content there, all the stuff.
Conrad Saam: Your agency is working on your stuff and the relationship should be defined as such and this is — I mean it’s appalling. Are you going to show the agency — you want to name names?
Gyi Tsakalakis: I haven’t had any scotch today so no I’m not.
Conrad Saam: I mean what good does it do? Like they’re not the only ones —
Gyi Tsakalakis: Don’t give me that bullshit because it does —
Conrad Saam: You’re all about name and shame. Well, I mean come on. Like if you’re going to play this game, this should be on the homepage of your website, right? People should know that this is what you do and how you think about your clients. And if you’re not going to do that which You won’t like — we damn well should like this is garbage. It just aggravates the crap out of me.
Gyi Tsakalakis: I’m hoping by not naming the firm that all of our listeners are going and pulling up their agreements and reading their agreements to see if there is this language and I’m sure you’ll find all sorts of other fun stuff in there. By the way, if you’re pulling up your agreement and you want to send it to us, please do.
Conrad Saam: Oh yeah.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Because would love to read contract language on our podcast.
Conrad Saam: Send us some awful contracts and we will read it by all means. Do you know what I have in our contract? We have a $450.00 negotiation fee. If you don’t like our contract, which is heavily skewed in your favor. Here’s my negotiation fee if you would like to read line(ph) that contract.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Have you ever had abused that?
Conrad Saam: Yeah. And every time I’ve tried to use it, the prospective client has gone away — like they’re no longer a prospective client because if you want to negotiate something that’s so heavily in your favor, we’re probably not the right fit for you, like you should be able to see that.
Gyi Tsakalakis: There you go. Anything else on contracts?
Conrad Saam: Oh, we could go on and on but as you know, I’m not an attorney product — so I’ve been talking out of church.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Fair enough, let us now move to our legal trends report brought to you by Clio.
I guess technically it’s the Legal Trends Report Minute, hence the ticking and toking(ph).
Conrad Saam: Can we do this in one-minute?
Gyi Tsakalakis: I’ll try. Here is our big number from our Legal Trends Report this week, this episode. 58 percent of surveyed legal services consumer respondents sad that technology was more important to them now than before the pandemic in the context of working with legal professionals from what I understand. So you know, we talk about this all the time. We’ve talked about another context, but if you’re not convinced that technology is table stakes for clients now, more than it’s ever been, there you go. Six out of ten people say it’s more important now than it was two years ago.
Conrad Saam: And I mean most of the technology pieces that Clio has been feeding us have been about law firms do better when they use technology which is a no-brainer; but B, important for us to focus on. But this is a marketing thing, right? People care that I can talk to you on Zoom easily. People care that you can make payments online, people care that you look functional from a tech perspective. That gets part of the expectation, it’s not a surprise but it is a marketing, we’re going to get into positioning in a second.
We can tie this back to this, but it is a marketing advantage and I don’t think many of you are thinking about embracing technology — on the consumer side, showing that you’re embracing technology on the consumer side as a marketing advantage and yet it clearly is.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah, and if you need another example of — yet, another example of this, pull out your phone, do a little search, for whatever, type of lawyer you are near me. Look at the local pack listings, and I bet you some of them say things like “online appointments available,” right? And then think about it, if your legal service is consumer and your COVID-conscious, who are you going to pick? You’re not going to just going to necessarily pick the number one lawyer, you might pick the one that actually has technology enabled services book an online appointment, delivering online services, don’t have to come to our office to sign documents, or retainer, or to have a conversation. That’s a huge competitive advantage.
Conrad Saam: And the key here is a lot of you may be doing those things in your firm, but you’re not demonstrating in the blink of an eye that that’s how you operate. And that’s where this becomes a marketing advantage.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Good point. To learn more about the unique advantages that solo attorneys have over other law firms and much more for free, download Clio’s Legal Trends Report for solo law firms at clio.com/solo. That’s Clio spelled; C-L-I-O. Let’s take a break.
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Gyi Tsakalakis: Okay class, come on in. Have a seat everyone, welcome back, it’s back to school time. Welcome back to another edition of LHLM 101. As you know, I’m your illustrious professor, Gyi Tsakalakis and with me today, as always is my favorite teacher’s pet, Conrad. Conrad, say hello.
Conrad Saam: Hi there, Mr. Tsakalakis, how are you?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Welcome back, back to school. Today’s topic is positioning. So positioning, let’s go. Like, what does Wikipedia say positioning means?
Let’s go to the source, the internet. All right, here we go. Positioning, is the place that a brand occupies in the minds of the customers and how it is distinguished, from the products of the competitors and different from the concept of brand awareness.
Conrad Saam: All right, so different from the concept of brand awareness. We’re going to get into that. This has been rolling around the web recently a lot and I like it because it’s a little less academic sounding and it’s more instructive. To me, the definition of positioning marketing is asking someone out. Positioning is why they say yes, right? And you know, your Wikipedia piece talked about the difference between branding and positioning. I think this is really important because it is frequently conflated and a lot of times. Actually Gyi, I’m curious two days ago I had a conversation about branding, right? And I think what the client was really talking about, was positioning. I think these concepts are frequently conflated in the minds of lawyers. Do you frequently have discussions about positioning or branding?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Well, you know, branding is kind of like the marketing buzz word du jour and I think positioning is starting to enter that space. You know — I frame it and this is — I just had tipped Matt Holman(ph). He had this thing — that he’s calling it the “haiku of what you do.” I think it’s still online if you look for it, but you know what, I’m thinking through this, you start with the who you help, the how you help them and the why you’re uniquely qualified to help and the positioning to me is that last one. It’s the why you’re uniquely qualified to help. It’s the thing that really sets you apart. US talks about the three unique — you know, David C. Baker who we both has a whole book about positioning. He talks horizontal positioning, vertical positioning in the context of creative firms. I think there’s a lot of application for lawyers, but it’s the “why you’re different,” what makes you different? For us, we’re digital marketing agencies well, that’s not positioning.
Conrad Saam: Right?
Gyi Tsakalakis: There so there you go.
Conrad Saam: So, I mean there’s all flavors of different types of positioning. One of the most obvious ones is first best or most, right? Are you the biggest? Have you been around forever or are you the best, right? Can you genuinely live in one of those worlds? Those different positions, you know with branding, its logo typeface colors, those types of things that people have a familiarity with. People talk about brand recall, right? Is there a familiarity there? Positioning is really — you know, I’ll use Red Bull. I’ve never drank a Red Bull in my life. But Red Bull is the brand, it’s got the Bull, it’s got the silver and the circle, like everyone recognizes what that is.
Their positioning however is around extreme sports, right? And frankly, liquids and extreme sports have nothing to do with each other, but they have leaned into that community and that aspirational community of people are into that as their positioning and so they’re very, very different. In legal, we were just talking about technology, some of the positioning for a law firm could be “We are so easy to work with because we adopt technology,” right? There’s Jeannie Mucklestone out of Seattle who does her entire business of traffic tickets and her whole thing is, “you’ll never talk to us, you never come into us, it is all done online” and it’s just seamless, right? And that is a great position because it’s different. It’s a differentiator.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah, and I think David C. Baker talks about this. US talks about it. It’s all the parts that people can’t copy, like what do you do that truly other people either can’t do ideally — I mean that’s the ideal one, right? Because the best positioning is it can’t be copied. But if you can’t come up with something that’s unique to that degree, what are you doing that very few of your competitors are doing? I think Baker says, if you can identify a couple hundred competitors and maybe you’re in the right spot. But you know, if you’re a criminal defense lawyer, for example, a criminal defense lawyer, that’s not positioning, right?
Conrad Saam: — Yeah.
Gyi Tsakalakis: That’s the how you help, you help with criminal defense, you help people deal with criminal defense issues. But why are you uniquely qualified? As noticed, you put up there the ex-prosecutor is now a criminal defense lawyer. That’s an interesting one. I actually think that that’s more common. I think if you’re like ex-prosecutor, the technology-enabled ex-prosecutor, now you’re thinking you’re going a little bit deeper. But I think too if you’re kind of playing around with this at home, the way Baker articulates this is, it’s like there’s kind of two different things you can do, there’s vertical positioning. So that might be like, “we only help Spanish-speaking people dealing with car accidents.” I’m sorry, I already screwed up. The horizontal positioning would be car accidents, right?
So, it would be like, Spanish-speaking people that are dealing with serious injuries from car accidents, that’s a little closer. I’m not telling that’s a great example, but I think that kind of at least shows you the idea of vertical and horizontal. So vertical is like the demographic that you’re serving; horizontal is the service that you’re providing and going deep on that.
Conrad Saam: And you know, let me ask you a question. Let me say a classic PI comment is we won more money —
Gyi Tsakalakis: So, does everybody, yes. Is that positioning or branding? Is there any PI lawyer that puts that they win less than millions of dollars on their website? Like who — that would actually be an interesting positioning. “We win thousands of dollars.”
Conrad Saam: Our clients have recovered tens. We lose on the regular. My point being, I mean I see this all day long, right?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Right, that’s not positioning then.
Conrad Saam: So, the question Gyi. That’s not good positioning. We’re talking about positioning and branding and appealing to the consumer. Does that fall flat?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah. I mean does it fall flat? I don’t know. My thing is like, you should be striving to set yourself apart. I mean, how many times on this show and you and I talked about this all the time. There are more lawyers per capita in the United States than there is anywhere in the world. I don’t know, I actually haven’t checked an update on that number. We should double check; we’ll get our fact checkers on that one. But the point is like, you don’t even need to check the facts, right? You drive down the highway in South Florida or you flip open your — I don’t know, any social media app. Tons of lawyers everywhere, lawyer, lawyer, lawyer lawyer ads, TV, you got lawyer ads if you’re watching your afternoon television programs, we know that there are tons of layers.
If you’re just saying I’m a personal injury lawyer, you’re answering your phone. I’m a personal injury lawyer whatever you’re doing. You’re not thinking about positioning at all.
Conrad Saam: Yeah.
Gyi Tsakalakis: So, when you say “fall flat,” what do you mean? I just think you’re a part of the background.
Conrad Saam: I mean it doesn’t resonate, right?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Right.
Conrad Saam: Like the people actually care and my gut tells me that they really — that is not a distinguishing factor in making you a reason I would hire you, right? I don’t see it as being a differentiator because everyone has a number. The numbers are different. But I mean, you could argue that I said first best or most, right? So that may fall into the most Morgan & Morgan has done this. I think kind of crassly but it’s clear, bigger is better, right?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah. Well, I’ll say this, I worked at a firm that actually did hold at one point in time the biggest verdict for a particular type of case.
Conrad Saam: Okay.
Gyi Tsakalakis: And so, they were the only ones who could say that. So, in that respect most was positioning there. I don’t know how compelling it was but people like winners.
Conrad Saam: I think the point here is like, those number games that lawyers talk about. I think it mostly resonates with the lawyers in comparing themselves against each other and Morgan’s flipped that and used an asset which is size, right? Bigger is better, right? As opposed to a dollar figure and I think that’s the difference between saying something that your audience, doesn’t really care about and positioning yourself with something that they do care about, right? The value of size there.
Gyi Tsakalakis: It’s also interesting though is Morgan the largest personal injury law firm in the world? I don’t know, which is interesting, right? Because —
Conrad Saam: — fact checkers, someone get on this and what size they are? Just number of attorneys that we’re talking about or is it dollars? Right? Or is it TV ad spend?
Gyi Tsakalakis: It’s GMBs(ph) in various cities. I’m not sure that even Morgan would — I suspect the largest law firm by GMBs in number of cities is some — in Russia cranking out GMB locations.
Conrad Saam: That’s right, they should use bigger is better in their —
Gyi Tsakalakis: That’s a whole different conversation. So, I mean other positionings. You can be the most expensive lawyer, right? That’s a great positioning, “we’re more expensive because we’re better,” right? There’s frequently association — I mean, think about how people buy watches and cars, right? There’s frequently in association with quality, as well as cost right there, whether that’s accurate or not is thought about. One of my favorite examples on positionings, Byrone Brown. I think Byron Browne is out of Utah. If you go to antilawyer.com, you will get a great lesson in positioning. He is not a client of mine. Actually, when I saw his stuff initially, I tracked down who did his work and it’s not a law firm marketing agency. In fact, I had this conversation, I don’t think there are any legal-specific, branding positioning agencies out there, that I know of.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Oh, I think there.
Conrad Saam: Like that that’s all they do on the consumer law side?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Oh yeah.
Conrad Saam: All right.
Gyi Tsakalakis: But you know, what kind of things can we tell — also, folks who are immigration lawyer, criminal defense lawyer, plaintiff lawyer sitting here listening to us rant about this stuff, what kind of tips do we have? I mean, my thing is I come back to the EOS(ph) stuff. Do the exercise of three — what are three things taken together that make you truly different from the overwhelming majority of your competitors? And I think the other thing too is like, part of this is like an identity thing. Like what can you truly do that’s unique instead of just being like, “You know, I work harder, I’m more experienced, I win more money.” Like no, I can show you 10 different websites in 20 seconds that say all those things. What can you truly do that’s unique? The other thing that I would say is — remember, positioning is not just about the cases that you might take, it’s about how you’re going to the market to distinguish yourself. And so, the point there is that people get confused and they’re like “Well if I say I’m the Spanish-speaking car accident attorney for Chicago, then people that don’t speak Spanish are never going to contact me.” I don’t think that that’s exactly, right.
So, I like to think of it in the context of what truly makes you unique, how deep can you go down in a very targeted demographic and service offer and let that permeate everything you do. What kind of tips do you have for an exercise to tease out your positioning?
Conrad Saam: So, I mean, one of the things that you said that I think is really important is this fear that if you position yourself for something that you’re going to lose the rest, right? There’s a great book on service marketing by a guy named Harry Beckwith. I’ve mentioned this book probably on one out of every four or five podcast. It’s called “Selling the Invisible.” One of Harry’s quotes that I’ve used over and over again is “If you narrow your focus, you broaden your appeal,” meaning that the more specialized you are, the more people want to — and specialized can be in a positioning. It doesn’t need to be like tactically within the practice of law. But the more narrowly you focus and this is why Gyi and I run a legal marketing agency.
I mean, how many times have people asked me “why do you not go into doctors? Why don’t you go into plumbing?” Right? Like because I have no business being in plumbing and doctors, right? We only work with lawyers, right? And that is important to a lot of our clients. So, as you narrow your focus, you broaden your appeal. In terms of things that I would do, how much of who you are matters to your audience, right?
So, if you’re an immigration attorney, did you go through that path yourself? If you’re a family attorney, have you gone through that divorce journey yourself, like that’s an easy one, right? And it’s not that like lots of immigration attorneys haven’t done that. But like, lean into where did you come from? What was the experience? Right? That whole “who you are,” just lean into the who you are. Another one that’s really important and this is not practice area. This is like depth of expertise in something that is very, very specific and I’ll use Beckwith again as an example for that. You Want the person who is positioned as the expert in the hardest thing to handle your humdrum case, right? And I’ll use medical. You’re very, very happy to have the brain surgeon do the stitches on your arm, right? Because presumably putting in a couple stitches is really easy compared to brain surgery.
Now that may or may not actually be the case, but that very, very clear depth of expertise in something that is extremely advanced, can be a great positioning. So, think about where you can be there and just be different, try and be — I mean, the counterpoint is if you have leatherbound books, like the books behind Gyi’s head right now, as I’m looking at him in the video.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Great books of the Western World.
Conrad Saam: Okay, so it’s not Martindale’s(ph) leather-bound book?
Gyi Tsakalakis: No. Leather-bound books gavels, scales of justice with their top falling off. Like all of those things, white columns actually, here’s the key. Your positioning is not “I’m a lawyer.” Most of you try and use accoutrement to convince people that you’re a lawyer, that is not positioning, right? They already know your lawyer, why you? All right classes out, ring that bell, Lockwood. There it is. Thanks again so much, hit us up on the hashtag LHLM on Twitter and the other socials. Leave us a review and again, we hope you enjoyed this. We hope that you go a little bit deeper in your positioning and if you need to get stitches, get a plastic surgeon to give them, not a brain surgeon. Until next time, Gyi and Conrad, Lunch Hour Legal Marketing.