13 Marketing Tips For Successful Rainmaking (Part II)

To quell your marketing fears, here is the second half of my marketing tips for successful rainmaking.

  1. Follow-Up: If you don’t follow-up with the people you have met, then what was the point of “getting out and about” and being enthusiastic and talking about your Power Niche? You just wasted the chances you created. Your follow-up will help turn these new contacts into potential clients.
  2. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Referrals: It can seem scary or you may think you’re being annoying asking friends/colleagues/family for a referral, but it’s very simple. Think about it — if you asked for one referral every business day, then you would be asking for about 250 referral requests a year. If you convert even 5 percent of these referrals to clients, you have 10 to 15 clients. Not too shabby. This is a phenomenal technique and dramatically underutilized, which is surprising since a large percentage of clients come from referrals.
  1. Never Lose a Contact: In my view, it is a terrible thing, a Marketing Felony, to let contacts in your core industry wither and slip away. You should never, ever let this happen because, as noted at the beginning, marketing is an unpredictable game of statistics. Every contact could lead somewhere. Today’s competitor at a law firm is tomorrow’s in-house counsel. You don’t know what will happen, so keeping as many contacts as possible maximizes your opportunities.
  1. Stand Out: One of the most important lessons I ever learned about marketing was from a book I read called Purple Cow by Seth Godin. YOU MUST STAND OUT. You have to be a purple cow rather than a garden variety brown cow. And the way you stand out has to be by being different in a memorable way. This is terrifying for most people, but it is the price of admission for rainmaking success. The choice is stark: blend in and fade away or stand out and either fail big time or success big time. I know what I have chosen.
  2. Don’t Work Alone: Build a team of people you can work with — your colleagues, family, and friends. Make sure it is a group that you trust and you all have the same goal.  It is always easier to accomplish something as a team — there is power in it. Even for things like going to a networking event, you just look “cooler” and more relaxed if there are two of you. You have someone to talk to if things get awkward. You have another person with whom to bounce ideas around. If you both have different skillsets, you can divide up what each person does, etc.
  1. Remember You Are Always Pitching: Some people may say, “Oh, it’s just drinks,” or “It’s just coffee.” Whether you like it or not, you are always “making a first impression,” and even if you aren’t formally “pitching,” you are de facto sort-of pitching by the impression you make. Do you come off as a winner — dressed sharp — and knowledgeable (with your Power Niche) or a sloppy guy who hardly adds anything to the conversation? Bottom line is that even in the most informal setting you still are giving an impression of yourself to the person you meet with.
  1. Put on a Show: Think of all your prospect/client interactions as performances. Consider making it a core part of your job that when you meet someone, make the meeting so exciting and interesting that the guy or gal you met will want to tell their family/friends about it that evening at dinner. “Honey, I met these crazy lawyers today. Here is what they did….”

Hope you find these tips useful.  Now start marketing!

13 Marketing Tips For Successful Rainmaking (Part I)

It is Halloween time and there is certainly nothing scarier than worrying about how to be a successful rainmaker. So, in my next two articles — straddling Halloween — I will give you 13 tips to help you.  I have written about a few of these before, but they are always worth repeating and remembering (see tip number three!).

  1. Marketing is Pure Statistics: Ask anyone — I mean anyone — how they got their clients or customers, especially the first ones, and it is almost always completely serendipitous. There is no consistency. Indeed, there is a joke that 80 percent of your marketing budget/time is wasted — you just don’t know which is the 80 percent. It is all so completely unpredictable. But this should not cause despair.  By use of pure mathematics, if you know you cannot predict outcomes from independent trials, then the best chances of success will come from making as many marketing attempts as possible.
  2. It is OK to Fail: I even recommend it! Don’t be beaten down by failure. Most of your marketing attempts — especially at first — will end in failure. Indeed, the odds are that 99 percent, or even 100 percent, of your attempts will fail for quite a while. Use them as a learning tool — be brutally honest with yourself why something didn’t work — and continuously rework your marketing strategy until you become a major success.
  1. Repeat Yourself: I recently wrote an article about this — and I mentioned it above — and I am re-mentioning it here. It is kind of something you don’t like to really think about, but like it or not you are not front-and-center in the minds of others. They have their own lives to lead. So if you want your messages to be heard and remembered you have to constantly tell people about what your expertise is — and then repeat it multiple times. Of course, you want to do it in a way that is not annoying.
  2. Get Out & About: This is simpler math. If you “get out and about” something “might” happen. If you don’t “get out and about” then it is pretty certain that nothing will happen. You have to get out of your chair and out into the community of your industry or the odds of success fall dramatically.
  3. Knowledge is Power: When you are out and about, you need something to talk about that is both interesting and useful. This is essentially the Power Niche that I have written extensively about — and yes, my book on this is coming out soon. I will not go over it here, but you can see my prior articles on this subject or wait for the book, only a few months away. Once you are “out and about” talking about your Power Niche, you become unstoppable as a rainmaking force.
  1. Be Enthusiastic: Who wants to hang out with a sad sack? Answer: no one! So don’t be that. Instead, let your passion and joie de vivre out. Have fun. Make it clear how much you love what you are doing — perhaps the thrill in your Power Niche. You will be astonished how contagious your enthusiasm is. And even if you are faking it a bit at first, you will find to your amazement that pretty soon you aren’t faking it at all. That’s how it works.

Okay, happy Halloween everyone.  Hopefully this will ease your rainmaking fears if you have any to begin with.

Research Who You Are Meeting With Before You Meet

Whenever a law firm is contemplating hiring someone, it asks for a résumé and a cover letter.  This is standard.  This is because any law firm that is contemplating hiring anyone wants to know as much as possible about that person before the interview.  At worst it saves time by potentially obviating the interview, and at best it will make the interview more productive.

It is just as important before a meeting with a prospective client — or for a job interview.  In either case, you want to know as much as possible before the meeting.  Before every meeting I attend, I make sure that I know all of the attendees’ names, their background information, and details about their company.  It can be as detailed as “CEO John Smith likes cigars” or as vague as “John Smith’s company is based in New York.”

If I am contemplating hiring you, I am always impressed if you quote back to me one of my speeches or if you mention that it is cool that I did an Ironman race.  Sorry to be boastful, but I can’t help bragging about my Ironman every chance I get.  I hope I am not one of those dumb guys who “falls for flattery,” but either way, I am impressed that you took the time to be prepared.  Trust me, it is the same for me when I am meeting with a prospective client; the prospect can’t help but feel the respect I am showing by having taken the time to prepare for the meeting in advance.

Okay, maybe the foregoing is nothing you don’t already know, but let’s dig a little deeper as to how this kind of preparation can be useful at a pitch.

I have already written extensively that the worst thing you can do is just walk into a room and start telling the guy/gal why you are so wonderful; instead, you want your prospect to go first and explain her needs for a lawyer.  After all, law is a “personal” service business and each “person” has different needs for a lawyer.  The more you can learn about the “person(s)” you are meeting with, the more likely you will be able to explain precisely how you can address their specific needs, strike a common cord, and build a relationship.

You might discover that you have a hobby or other interest in common.  You might learn of conversational topics to engage in — or to avoid.  You might also discover reasons why certain of your teammates should accompany you to the pitch.

As a matter of course, we do extensive research on the people and companies we are meeting.  This includes Google searches, database searches, or asking around internally if anyone has further information.  From there, my team is now armed with valuable information that can give us insight into the company and potentially help the pitch go more successfully.

Here are a few ways that you can quickly gather research on the person you are meeting:

  • LinkedIn or Relationship Science
  • Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media platforms
  • Asking colleagues (this is just a quick email to everyone — a no-brainer)
  • Google Searches

All of these are great resources for unearthing a plethora of information on whoever you are researching.  And the best part is that most of these platforms are free to use!

The bottom line is that one of the best ways to prepare for a pitch is to learn as much as you can about the people you are meeting with, both on a business level and a personal level.

Just to drive the point home, as I finish typing this, I am preparing for a pitch right now.  And as soon as I submit this article, I am going to take my own advice and Google the people I will be meeting with — because I want to do everything possible to make sure that my pitch goes well.

Marketing Yourself: How To Create A Powerful Résumé (Part III)

A résumé is one of the top ways that you market yourself in any industry and most likely the first impression you give to a potential employer — and, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.

Aside from the usual items that you need to look out for (grammatical errors, typos, formatting issues, etc.) you have to be acutely aware of what message you want to deliver.

So, here is how I would put together a great résumé:

  1. Get Creative. Your résumé is your chance to STAND OUT. As long as it remains professional, try to make your résumé “look” different than those of other candidates.  For example, use pops of color and different designs to differentiate yourself.
  1. This is the most important part of the résumé. If you are an expert in a field or if you have a developing/developed Power Niche, that should be highlighted right at the top. If you have a lot of work experience or if you’re just starting off in your field and have many extracurricular activities, its fine to list those, but don’t bury your best assets.  It is crucial that you grab the reader’s attention and spark interest right at the top of your résumé.
  1. Choose Your message. As I have written in previous articles, it is important that you leave the employer with one message. People are more likely to remember you have expertise in one field rather than all of them.  And it bears repeating, this message should be highlighted at the top of your résumé.  Read #2 again! 
  1. Give Facts. If you have proof about your Power Niche (e.g., deals you have worked on, articles you have written, cool clients, etc.), then you should include that in your résumé.
  1. Make It Easy. Make sure your contact information and your name is clear and right at the top, so that employers can easily reach you.  Fancy font that is basically illegible is unhelpful and annoying to the reader.
  1. Keep It short. No employer has the time to read a 10-page résumé. Make sure you are concise and that you haven’t gone over two pages.  In fact, it can work to your advantage if the résumé merely hints at intriguing aspects of your career or life, which make the reader want to meet you to find out more.

Using these tools, you should be able to land any job in your industry!  Also, if you need help developing a Power Niche, look out for my new book being published early next year.

**********

My book is about the Power Niche — and also contains my other marketing secrets and ideas.  It is called:

If You Want to Get Rich, Build a Power Niche

It is being published by Morgan James Publishing with a target publishing date of April 2019, with advance copies available in the next few months.

If your job is selling or marketing a product or service and it seems like every day you do the same thing and just aren’t succeeding, If You Want to Get Rich, Build a Power Niche is for you. In my book, I show readers exactly how to transform themselves from a disastrous salesperson or marketer into a superstar, whether they are just starting their career, just sick and tired of failing, an entrepreneur starting a business, or are super-successful and simply recognize they can always learn more.

My ideas and insights come from actual day-to-day experiences as one of the most successful real estate lawyers in the toughest market for legal services in the world: New York City. As a veteran of hundreds of ideas and thousands of pitches, I share what I have learned about what shouldn’t work but somehow does, what should work but somehow doesn’t, and everything in between.

If you want to grow your sales and increase revenues while becoming a valued resource in your industry and professional circles, stop losing valuable chances to get rich and build your Power Niche!

My proposition is that I can help “anyone” who has the desire to become a great salesman and/or a great marketer if she/he just follows the steps outlined in my book.

Click Here to see a preview of the book’s content.

  • To stay apprised of information about the Power Niche book and its release date, go to www.brucestachenfeld.com and sign up for the newsletter there.
  • Follow Me on Twitter @BStachenfeld
  • Connect with Me on LinkedIn

Marketing Yourself: How To Create A Powerful Résumé (Part II)

In my last article, I spoke about how to write a strong cover letter to tee up your résumé.  In the next article, I will talk about the résumé itself, but before that, let me explain how to use the cover letter.

Let’s start out with a hypothetical.  You want to get a job as a real estate lawyer, ideally in-house.  You love real estate and have learned a ton about it in your current job.  In addition, you have a particular expertise in joint ventures and particularly international joint ventures.  You have a friend — named Toby, of course — who has a ton of contacts in the real estate world.  He could really help you out.

What do most people do?

They meet with Toby or talk to him.  Toby agrees to help and asks them to send him their résumé and he says he will help.

What does this do?

It makes it a real pain in the (neck) for Toby to help you.  He now has to effectively write the cover letter for you and tell the other person all about you.  And Toby — who maybe loves you like a sister — maybe he is your sister — is super busy.  He has a day job still and finding you a job has to take second place.

Wouldn’t it be “nice” if you did all the work for Toby so that all he has to do is basically forward it with the following note:

“Hey Jenny — I wonder if you want someone in international real estate joint ventures?  If so, my friend Tobina seems perfect.  She says it all in the email I am forwarding.  Happy to connect you or reach out yourself.  Best, Toby”

Toby can do this in about 90 seconds — actually I typed it in about 45 seconds just now.  Better yet, Toby can easily forward this same email to 100 of his best friends.

Bottom line is you are making it really easy for Toby to help you.  You are being respectful of his time.

Also — and this is “really” important — if you just got bumped from your current job or perhaps you are getting desperate to find “a job” — resist the urge to go to your buddy/sister Toby and say, “Hey Toby, I really ‘need’ a job — can you help me — I am getting desperate!”

Think what this implies?  You are a sad sack seeking help.  What in the heck is Toby supposed to do now?  Call his most critical business contact and stick his neck out and say, “You would be nuts not to hire Tobina.  She is the best person on the planet!”

Even if Toby is your sister, she will be a bit scared to stick her neck out.

So instead of the sad sack meeting — figure out ahead of time exactly the job you want.  Dress up sharp.  And when you meet with Toby, project confidence, excitement, determination and a specific game plan.

Now think what this implies.  You are not a sad sack any more — instead, you really are someone that Toby’s friend would be crazy not to hire, and Toby will be eager to say so.

Once again, you are making it easy for Toby to help you out.  Now when he gets your cover letter and résumé — see above — he is eagerly selling you and forwarding your email.

Finally, when Toby gets a nibble, where his friend Toboggan says that he doesn’t have a job but would talk to you, by all means absolutely take the meeting.  Treat it like an interview.  Worst case, it is a waste of time.  Medium case, it results in networking and Toboggan sends you to someone else who might be more useful.  And best case, Toboggan falls in love with you and offers you a job.

A funny story — one of my star associates came here just this way.  I reluctantly agreed to meet with someone I would never consider hiring, but here she is and kicking serious butt.  These things do happen.

Okay — enough for here — I hope this is helpful.  In the final article in this series, I will talk about the résumé itself.

Marketing Yourself: How To Create A Powerful Résumé (Part I)

This is a three-article series about how to market yourself using your résumé.

To cut to the chase, the résumé is the most important (second) impression you can make…….

Did I say “second” impression?

Yes, that is right, because the most important part of your “résumé” is the cover letter, to which your résumé is attached.  This is because most recipients don’t want to waste their time reading your résumé. They are busy and don’t know who you are and couldn’t care less about you.

But if it is an email – maybe forwarded from a friend – or a cold call/email – you may have about ten to fifteen seconds before they delete it.  And there is your opening!

Okay – start with this thought: IT IS NOT ABOUT YOU OR WHAT YOU WANT.  Yes I am shouting here.

It is about the reader and what she wants.

You want a job – she wants to deal with all of the issues, concerns and problems on her plate that are probably emergencies.

So don’t say:

“Dear Tobina – I really want to find a place where I can do……”

Tobina doesn’t care.

Instead, say:

“Dear Tobina – I read that you are expanding your group into widget law and I wonder if my ten years representing clients in the widget world might be really useful to you in this endeavor….”

This is the way to use that ten to fifteen seconds to maximum advantage.  If you haven’t hooked Tobina in that time period it is “game over”.

However, once Tobina is hooked with your super-powerful first sentence, then she will read the rest of your email and if she is still interested – then finally – look at your résumé.

So what should be in the rest of your email?

The answer is that you want to brag about yourself.  Ugh – I bet you hate bragging – especially if you are a younger lawyer who was trained that self-aggrandizement is just an awful thing to do.  And I do agree that you don’t want to sound like a pompous ass either.

Here you have to choose your words carefully – sort of “respectful bragging.”  How about this….

“Dear Tobina – I read that you are expanding your group into widget law and I wonder if my ten years representing client in the widget world might be really useful to you in this endeavor.

I hate to sound to forward here, but being honest, the following illustrates how I could be of use to you:

In my current job I am responsible for all of the widget business

I started it from scratch and now….

Also, I won several awards

For marketing purposes, I have a good résumé in that….

And finally, I am a driven person.  If you were to hire me you would find that….

If this all sounds of interest I would be most pleased to meet with you.  I have attached my résumé that gives a more detailed background.

Please let me know if we could set up a time.

Best and sincere regards.

Toby”

So there you have it.  By far the most important document in marketing yourself; namely, your cover email.

The next article – in this three article series – will give you guidance on how to use your cover email to maximum effect.  Then, finally, the third article will give you tips on how to create an effective résumé.

I hope this is helpful!

The Importance Of Repeating Yourself

One of the most important marketing things I have learned over my career is that you get to give someone one message (not two or more messages), but even for that message it needs to be repeated again and again and again — and again — or it will just get forgotten.

Of course you want your message to be about your Power Niche, as then all the pieces fall into place.  There is ONE message — it is your POWER NICHE — and then you just repeat it AGAIN and AGAIN.

This is so ridiculously simple; however, for whatever reason I cannot fathom, people have a lot of trouble with this.  Maybe they think the repetition makes them look foolish — I don’t know — but it is really the key to a successful marketing campaign.

Consider all the commercials you have seen in your life.  You can probably remember the ones you have seen a whole bunch of times and you probably can even recite some of the jingles.  For old timers, you can’t forget “I Can’t Believe I Ate the Whole Thing” for Alka Seltzer or the Oscar Meyer Wiener jingle.  This is because the message has been drilled into your memory.  Like it or not, you have to consistently remind your clients about what your expertise is or — alas — you will be forgotten.

And here is an apocryphal quote from a hypothetical coach of a sports team who laments: “Before the game, I worry that I have repeated myself too many times, but then when the game happens, I realize I haven’t repeated my message nearly enough times.”

Why is it the case that people need constant reminders?

It is not because people are stupid.  Not at all.  It is because we are constantly barraged with information and even though you may think or hope that every word you utter is remembered by those to whom you utter it, the answer is that this is not the case.  We all forget things we are not consistently reminded of.

I will deliberately keep this article short and hit the message I started with…

One of the most important marketing things I have learned over my career is that you get to give someone one message (not two or more messages), but even for that message it needs to be repeated again and again and again — and again — or it will just get forgotten.

Being Likeable

One of the awful — or wonderful — things about marketing is that clients often send their legal business to people they just “like” and justify why they did it after the fact.  It is awful if you are not naturally likeable and wonderful if you are.

To be clear, this often doesn’t happen if it is a “bet-the-company” or “bet-your-life” situation. In these types of situations, clients are often caring a lot more about your skills and competence than your likability. However, these bet-the-company situations are a lot less frequent and, accordingly, being likeable or not can be the difference between a successful career and a dud.

Clients and customers are people — just like you and me — and they want to connect with the people they do business with. Of course, they are hiring a lawyer, but they might have to spend a lot of time with you and who doesn’t want to spend time with someone she likes rather than someone she kind of tolerates or doesn’t like at all?

Being a person someone “likes” is easy for some and an almost impossible task for others.  Different personalities can conflict with each other, people can read body language wrong or even take something you meant lighthearted seriously, and it’s almost impossible to take back a first impression.

So how do you do this?

The real answer is I don’t know, but since it is so important I will stick my neck out here and give you my best thoughts.

At the outset, I believe the most important thing a person can do to be liked is to be empathetic and show caring and sensitivity to the other person.

In this regard, it is critical to make clear how much you care about your client’s business and how much you care for the client as an individual.

For me, at least, faking this is impossible.  I am not a great liar, although I am proud to say that I once completely lied to my wife’s face and fooled her 100 percent when I was throwing her a surprise party and one of her friends blew the surprise.

I actually do care — and I care a lot — about my clients and their businesses and their happiness and their success. I like to think I am cool, wonderful, and interesting, but even if the clients were to think that I am odd, strange, or off in some manner, I think they would feel the message that I care.  In other words, I get across the message of empathy and that I really will look out for them.

Here are some additional practical thoughts about how to increase your likeability or make yourself likeable if you think this might be a problem for yourself:

  • Consider trying to get some super-honest feedback about how you are perceived. You may be an extremely caring person, but maybe it is not coming across in meetings and other interactions.  Perhaps if you really ask your closest friends and colleagues and make clear that you (really) won’t shoot the messenger, you might get an honest analysis from third parties about what people are taking away from your personal interactions.  You could use this to make a change if needed.
  • Be a genuine person and think deeply about what that really means. Think about how you let your family or friends know that you care about them and do the same things with your clients and customers. Consider why does your wife/husband/significant other/family member/best friend care about you? What do you do to engender those feelings? Perhaps it might be the same with clients.
  • Read the book How to Win Friends and Influence People a bunch of times and try to put the concepts into action. I have mentioned in other articles that Warren Buffett has read it many times and he hasn’t done half bad.
  • Talk about the interests of your clients rather than your interests. Show sincere interest in them as people as well as their businesses.
  • Ask about the personal hobbies and interests of those you meet. Maybe you will have an overlap. If not, you can always show a sincere interest and forward articles and other information about their hobbies.
  • See/watch what others do who are just plain old “popular.” How do they interact with people? What do they do?  You can’t necessarily copy other people but you can learn from them.
  • Read everything you can about the subject of being likeable and make it a major focus.

*****

My Book on Power Niches Will be Published in Just a Few Months

Many of you have enjoyed my Power Niche Marketing series. As you know now, my day job is marketing — marketing — and more marketing.  That is what I do.  In this vein I have developed the concept and coined the phrase, Power Niche, to delineate the incredible (bargaining and pricing) power that one has in becoming a powerhouse in a small market niche, as opposed to having little or no bargaining or pricing power in a larger market.

This Power Niche concept works perfectly well in the legal world or in any servicing industry.

I have written a book about this — and all my other marketing secrets and ideas.  It is called:

          If You Want to Get Rich, Build a Power Niche

It is being published by Morgan James Publishing with a target publishing date of October of this year.

If you are trying to grow a legal career, my book will be helpful to you.

In my book, I synthesize all that I have learned in the past 10 years of studying marketing.

The book is for people who feel like they are just losing and want to start winning.  And it is also for people who are winning and smart enough to know that no matter how successful you are, you can always learn from others to be even more successful.

Indeed, my proposition is that I can help “anyone” who has the desire to become a great salesman and/or a great marketer if she/he just follows the outline in my book.  Truly!

Click here to see a preview of the book’s content.

You can follow me on Twitter @BStachenfeld or connect with me on LinkedIn.

Does Your Firm Have The Right Culture For Your Marketing Success?

I recently read a book called Legacy by James Kerr.  The book follows the All Blacks, the New Zealand national rugby team. They have an extraordinary track record.  The book takes you through how their success is essentially based on the powerful culture of the organization.  It is both exciting to read and at the same time makes me a little edgy as I read it.

The reason it is exciting is easy — it inspires me to strive for such an organization ourselves, right here at Duval & Stachenfeld, and I see a lot of parallels, and that makes me excited and proud too.

It also makes me edgy because as I read it, I can’t help comparing our organization to the All Blacks.  And as amazing as my law firm is, being honest with myself, we aren’t (yet) like the All Blacks.

The writer starts with an analysis of the special culture, which makes so clear that the team is “everything” — truly everything!  One thing I love is the statement that everyone “sweeps the floors” and that is exactly what they do together after a game — they clean and sweep the locker room — everyone does it.  No one is above that.

When one first dons the incredible All Blacks jersey, it is a commitment, not only to do one’s best for the team daily, but also to strive for an even loftier goal that when you surrender your jersey at the end of your career, you leave the jersey and the team in a better state than when you joined it.

There is accountability — and boy is there accountability.  If you screw up, you are accountable to the teammates you let down.  Nowhere to hide and no two ways about it.

There is sacrifice.  Indeed, sacrifice of everything for the team.

There is an incredible commitment to winning.  Both a celebration of wins and a thorough analysis of why losses occurred.

There is analysis of how to handle pressure, as well as clearly stated expectations, and, something I found particularly interesting, “rituals.”

I didn’t like the book.  I loved it!  And more importantly, I learned a lot from reading it.  It is an easy read, by the way, if you aren’t a big reader….

What does it have to do with marketing?  It is simple.  As my super consultant — Court Chilton — taught me and my firm years ago: “Lone wolves don’t eat — hunt in packs.”

We at Duval & Stachenfeld are pack animals.  This means we work together – 100 percent.  No, we aren’t as cool as the All Blacks — although I am going to inflict the book on my team and I think this will inspire us to get even better at what we are already good at.

My point and question to you is this: when you get the book and read it — as I am sure you will — you should be asking yourself, are you a member of a pack or a lone wolf, and is your pack like the All Blacks or not?

As someone who spends well over 40 hours a week on marketing — no exaggeration — I couldn’t do diddly without my pack.  And neither can you!

If you aren’t part of a great pack, maybe you should seek out one and join a team that is like the All Blacks or striving to be such.

What’s In A Name? Everything!

What’s in a name?

Everything!  Let me show you what I mean here….

What is the worst thing that can happen to you when you are marketing something?

Being forgotten!

There is nothing worse. I have written about this before and how important it is to STAND OUT.

So let’s say you do a great pitch about your power niche practice regarding representing off-beat fashion companies in corporate, real estate, litigation, and other matters. You do everything right.

It is niched — i.e., you only represent fashion companies that are not mainstream.

You are exciting and interesting at the meeting.

You run the pitch perfectly.

And then you leave. Six months later — I mean six days later — I mean six hours later — I mean six minutes later — the party you pitched is trying to remember it. Can she? Will she?

If she can’t remember it, then your pitch — perfect as it was — goes down the drain.

Well, what if you called it your “Freaky Funky Foolish Fashion Practice”?

This kind of jars you. It may even provoke a chuckle. At the pitch, you will probably joke about it with the prospect and make fun whether she can remember it. Maybe even engage in some self-deprecation and make fun of the name. But once you place it in the prospect’s mind, it is hard to forget. The prospect probably won’t remember all of the “F” words, but will remember the alliteration weaving into the key concept of “Fashion.”  When you send a follow-up email, you will refer to it.

And it will “stick” in your prospect’s mind.

Like it or not, that is how our minds work. We remember things that are unusual and forget other things.

As you muse about this, consider that alliteration (remember that from third-grade English class?) is one of the best ways to have names stand out. The teacher referred to the Raven from Poe as the example: “and the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain…”

Other ideas are as follows:

One of my litigators, Kirk Brett, is a tough fellow — as litigators often are — and he calls himself The Wolf, from Pulp Fiction.

Another one of my partners, Todd Eisner, who does a lot with joint ventures — we call Super JV Man.

Since I do a lot to help clients build their business, we often say “Put Bruce to Use.”

My tax partner, Jessica Millett, is all over Opportunity Zones (from the recent Tax Reform Act), so we are calling them Jessica Zones.

This only scratches the surface, but the bottom line is, that which gets named in an interesting manner gets remembered.