In this episode, Steve Fretzin, Erik Olson, Jocelyn Brumbaugh, Jared Correia, and Gyi Tsakalakis discuss:
- The first step lawyers and law firms need to do before marketing themselves.
- Positioning yourself as uniquely qualified to help your client.
- Perspective client avatars and referral partners.
- Pros and cons of specializing and finding your niche.
- Look at what you are already doing well now and capitalize on that first.
- Bring in personal differentiation points in your marketing strategy to stand out from the crowd.
- Positioning is what you want to be known for, it does not necessarily cover all that you do.
- AI can be a tool, but there still needs to be a human component both before and after using the technology.
“AI is a remarkable tool as a supportive assistive tool. I think about it just like we use Grammarly or a bunch of other stuff to help us write and publish and do research, and it is absolutely remarkable in those contexts. So short answer, yes, use it – just learn about it and learn how you can actually use it both effectively and ethically.” — Gyi Tsakalakis
Get a free copy of Steve’s book “Sales-Free Selling” here: http://www.fretzin.com/sales-free-selling
Thank you to our Sponsors!
Get Staffed Up: https://getstaffedup.com/bethatlawyer/
Get Visible: https://www.getvisible.com/
ChatGPT for Legal Marketing Search: https://www.google.com/search?q=chatgpt+for+legal+marketing
ChatGPT for Legal Marketing Article: https://www.attorneysync.com/blog/chatgpt-for-legal-marketing/
Law Firm AI Article: https://thisisarray.com/law-firm-ai/
Connect with Erik Olson:
Connect with Jocelyn Brumbaugh:
Connect with Jared Correia:
Website: RedCaveLegal.com & Gideon.Legal
LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/jaredcorreia & linkedin.com/company/gideon-legal-software/
Twitter: twitter.com/RedCaveLegal & twitter.com/Gideon_Legal
Connect with Gyi Tsakalakis:
Website: GyiTsakalakis.com & AttorneySync.com
Connect with Steve Fretzin:
LinkedIn: Steve Fretzin
Facebook: Fretzin, Inc.
Book: Legal Business Development Isn’t Rocket Science and more!
YouTube: Steve Fretzin
Call Steve directly at 847-602-6911
Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie
Audio production by Turnkey Podcast Productions. You’re the expert. Your podcast will prove it.
[00:00:00] Steve Fretzin: Hey everyone, listen up real quick. Before we begin the show, I’d like to present my Be That Lawyer challenge. If you’ve ever wondered how much more you could be making as an attorney, I challenge you to meet with me for 30 minutes to discuss your law firm. If I’m unable to identify ways to bring in more business for you, I’ll pay your hourly rate for our time together.
[00:00:19] Steve Fretzin: I’m just that confident. Go to Fretzin. com to accept this challenge and hope to meet you soon.
[00:00:29] Narrator: You’re listening to Be That Lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Each episode, your host, author, and lawyer coach, Steve Fretzin, will take a deeper dive helping you grow your law practice in less time with greater results. Now, here’s your host, Steve Fretzin.
[00:00:52] Steve Fretzin: Well, hey everybody, welcome to Be That Lawyer Live. We are here today with a live studio audience that is not in a studio. They’re in their homes probably, or at their law firms. And we have a fantastic Marketing Mavericks. We’ve done this a few times before. We’re back. We’ve got some amazing panelists.
[00:01:09] Steve Fretzin: We’ve got some amazing conversations. We’re going to have some laughs. We’re going to have some fun. All of that’s going on today. We’re going to let the inmates run the asylum. So again, we’re going to be taking these live questions from our audience. And we’re going to just be knocking them out one after another.
[00:01:23] Steve Fretzin: And before we get into the business of marketing, legal marketing, we are going to take a moment to thank our sponsors. And I’ll just introduce them one by one and have them do a quick little infomercial for you. Starting off with Colleen Young, the VP of marketing at Get Staffed Up. Uh, how you doing Colleen?
[00:01:40] Get Staffed Up: I’m doing great. And thank you for inviting us to sponsor. This is an amazing opportunity.
[00:01:45] Steve Fretzin: Happy to be here. Awesome. And that’s your 30 seconds. Let’s move on. We’ve got, uh, no, I’m just kidding you. Okay. Colleen, tell us a little bit about Get Staffed Up. So chances are those
[00:01:54] Get Staffed Up: who are attending this webinar did not go to law school to learn marketing.
[00:01:59] Get Staffed Up: So stop wasting your time marketing your law firm. Get staffed up, uh, we are your staffing agency
[00:02:07] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: for offshore talent.
[00:02:09] Get Staffed Up: We can provide you with content creators. We can provide you with social media and video coordinators. Graphic designers. Technically, a lot more to save money on your recruitment, save the most valuable resource you have, which is your time.
[00:02:24] Get Staffed Up: Let us do that for you. And everybody who’s on this webinar, they know that Steve does some great marketing and guess what? So a little exclusive here, if
[00:02:35] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: you go to
[00:02:36] Get Staffed Up: getstaffedup. com slash
[00:02:39] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: feed that lawyer, a little bit of an exclusive deal for those who are attending this webinar. Thanks for the minute.
[00:02:46] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. Thank you. That was awesome. And yeah, I love my Sergio. Sergio in Bogotá helping us set this up, doing all my great marketing. Thank you, Sergio. We’ve got Jason Cement here. He’s the co founder of Get Visible. What’s up, Jason? Hey,
[00:02:59] Gyi Tsakalakis: how are you? Good to meet all of you. So I
[00:03:01] Jared Correia: worked on a new positioning statement yesterday.
[00:03:04] Gyi Tsakalakis: Here we go. Here it goes.
[00:03:05] Jared Correia: So, uh, GetVisible is an 18 person digital marketing agency that
[00:03:10] Gyi Tsakalakis: works with business owners, professionals, and healthcare
[00:03:13] Jared Correia: providers. We grow revenues with a website marketing program called Invincible Income. You get to be more visible
[00:03:19] Gyi Tsakalakis: online
[00:03:20] Jared Correia: and acquire a bulletproof pipeline of ongoing leads and clients.
[00:03:24] Gyi Tsakalakis: That’s my
[00:03:24] Steve Fretzin: 30 second pick. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. And if you go to fretson. com, you will see some of Jason’s beautiful work on my website. And of course, we have Aria Berusman, who’s the co founder and CEO of Overture. law, who I’ve been talking to. I’ve been introducing you all around, Aria, yes? Yeah,
[00:03:39] Overture: I know.
[00:03:40] Overture: Thank you so much, and thank you again for having me. I’m an attorney out here in Los Angeles. I built a platform called Overture. law with my co founders Kirk Brown, a good friend of mine from law school, and Brian Liu, who started LegalZoom. Uh, frankly, we built it out of our own need. We needed referrals more so than ever before.
[00:03:58] Overture: And so we said, how can we put a group of quality independent attorneys in a room and give them the tools to refer matters to 1 another and ethically share the so. Uh, we spent the first half of this year really growing based on word of mouth, and we started, uh, being a sponsor of your podcast here. And so, I think we just rounded 500 folks and adding about 150 new attorneys a month.
[00:04:21] Overture: There’s no cost to be a member. We’re just looking for great independent attorneys that we would want to share our client referrals for when we can’t service them. Uh, if it’s of interest to you, we’d love to have that conversation. Uh, go to Overture. law, go ahead and apply, and we’ll chat with
[00:04:36] Steve Fretzin: you guys then.
[00:04:37] Steve Fretzin: Fantastic. Thank you so much, Aria, and I’m so happy to have my sponsors with me. They’re supporting the show. They’re supporting me. They’ve been great referral partners. And now you guys can all leave the, uh, the panel. You’re gone. You’ve been demoted. And, uh, if you don’t leave, I’m going to have Sergio, my Get Staffed Up guy, rip your screen right out and take you away.
[00:04:57] Steve Fretzin: All right, let’s get our panel cooking here. We have, I mean, talk about, talk about a star, star, you know, panel here. We’ve got some of the top. Marketing, legal marketing folks in the country. We have the CEO of Array Digital, Eric Olson, also known to have the shiniest head in the business. All right, there you go.
[00:05:15] Steve Fretzin: We’ve got, um, the founder of Buildin Partners, Jocelyn Brumbau, who is terrified of elevators. Now she’s not terrified. I think I’ve been in an elevator with you. You weren’t even shaking a little bit. And we have the founder of, um, and, uh, CEO of Red Cave law firm consulting, Jared Correa. Who’s LinkedIn photo looks like Dracula.
[00:05:34] Steve Fretzin: I’m just saying, if anybody wants to look him up on LinkedIn, you will say, that looks like Dracula. Okay. And finally, the president of Attorney Sink, Guy Sakalakis, the most fun name in the marketing game. How about that? You weren’t expecting that, Guy. Okay. But you do. It’s fun to say. I’m just telling you.
[00:05:52] Steve Fretzin: Okay. So. You did a great job. Thank you. Yeah. I’ve been saying it a lot. Like I just say to myself, you’re not even around. I just have fun with it. You know, that’s. You know, Faroozman, that’s another good one. I love that one. Right?
[00:06:03] Jared Correia: If you say Geestakalakas three times in your mirror, he appears behind everybody.
[00:06:06] Jared Correia: You
[00:06:06] Steve Fretzin: turn into a legal marketing assassin if you say it three times in the mirror. Everybody go do that real quick. I have a client, Alex Stamatoglou, also top, top level, fun name to say. So this show, believe it or not, is not about saying fun names. That’s a side, that’s a side bonus. We’re actually going to get the ship sailing here.
[00:06:25] Steve Fretzin: We’re going to be answering again, the toughest legal challenges that lawyers have, law firms have, and I already have one already queued up, ready to go. And that is, what’s the first step lawyers and law firms need to do before marketing themselves? They just, you know, we know about random acts of marketing, right?
[00:06:41] Steve Fretzin: I’ve heard Jocelyn say that before. What’s the first thing they need to kind of get settled in before they just start going out and building, building brand, building business? Do you want to start us out? Sure.
[00:06:51] Gyi Tsakalakis: And, you know, like a lot of these answers are going to be annoying because the answer is it depends.
[00:06:57] Gyi Tsakalakis: You know, you’re going to, there’s going to be a different, um, starting point if you’re a new lawyer than if you’re at a 50 person law firm. But for me, it all comes back to the same thing, which is figuring out who your audience is. Who, who’s going to hire you? Who’s going to refer to you? And the more time that you spend researching and understanding, you know, how those people search, how those people ask questions, what’s keeping them up at night, uh, the better your eventual marketing stuff is going to work because it’s going to, um, either satisfy some kind of, um, you know, information demand that they have or solve some life legal problem that they’ve got.
[00:07:36] Gyi Tsakalakis: So know your people
[00:07:38] Steve Fretzin: first. Know your people. All right, Jocelyn, let’s hear from you. So
[00:07:44] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: he’s totally right. And once you do that, you need that foundational element of a website, right? Because everything else that you do is going to drive people back to that. So that’s an important next step. And then it’s about staying top of mind and folks have, sometimes they get too much up in their head about what it means to stay top of mind, but all the things that you’re already doing, the speaking engagements, the, if you’re a best or a super or a leading, all those kinds of things.
[00:08:10] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: Those are client touch points. So, instead of deciding that you’re going to go do something that is very uncomfortable and you probably aren’t going to do it, look at what you already are doing well and capitalize on that
[00:08:22] Steve Fretzin: first. Yeah, that’s great. That’s great. Jared? I’m going to
[00:08:26] Jared Correia: say something weird and different.
[00:08:28] Jared Correia: I’m not shocked. Um, maybe. Maybe it’ll be different. I don’t know. Like, I think there’s like a million estate planning attorneys, right? Like, I could throw a rock from my house and hit 10 estate planning attorneys. So, is there something that makes you different on a personal level? So, the way I look at this is like, there should be other things that you can talk about and rely on that’s not just related to law practice.
[00:08:48] Jared Correia: So, I talk about music, I talk about caramel based candies. People know me for that stuff as well as the other stuff I do. I’ve got clients that do some really interesting things. I have somebody who’s an extra in movies, and she talks about that. So, I think that you want to look for differentiation points, and one of those is like, what’s the stuff that you don’t do that’s not lawyering, and are you comfortable talking
[00:09:07] Steve Fretzin: about it?
[00:09:08] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. So like bringing the personal side in, so it isn’t just like, I’m different because I do this kind of law. It’s like actual, like, I like Carmel.
[00:09:14] Jared Correia: He is right. I live in an estate planning law firm. I just got out from my coffin in that estate planning law firm. I’m a vampire.
[00:09:21] Steve Fretzin: You know, the interesting thing is that you’re a Carmel vampire is what I’m hearing.
[00:09:24] Steve Fretzin: So you’re actually putting your teeth into Carmel’s. That’s your sustenance. Yeah, exactly. All right. All right. Eric, you want to chime in on this one?
[00:09:31] Erik Olson: Sure do, Steve. And, uh, before I do, I want to thank you for that wonderful glowing introduction. I mean There’s something glowing. There’s something about that, though.
[00:09:40] Erik Olson: I’m going to have to write that in my, like, LinkedIn bio, though.
[00:09:44] Steve Fretzin: Well, that could be, but that could be your differentiator that Gerard was just talking about. That is,
[00:09:48] Erik Olson: well, I mean, it’s not really that different. Oh, all right. Yeah, it’s my age, but you know, but yeah, there’s something to it. I’m going to, I’m going to play with the words.
[00:09:55] Steve Fretzin: And by the way, real quick, Kevin put me up to that 100%. Thanks a
[00:09:58] Erik Olson: lot, Kevin. All right. He’s going to try to do that.
[00:10:02] Steve Fretzin: Under the bus. There
[00:10:03] Erik Olson: he goes. For those that don’t know, Kevin is my business partner and co founder here at Array Digital. So, all right, so brand new lawyer, uh, what should they do? So Guy was talking about, uh, figuring out basically who your audience is, who’s your, who your avatar is.
[00:10:15] Erik Olson: And I think that’s a very, very good suggestion. And you know, it could take a while though to figure that out. So is it, do I want to go after people that need estate planning? Like, is that my avatar? Do I want to go after people that are hurting in car accident and personal injury? Like. There’s some big decisions that need to be made.
[00:10:33] Erik Olson: And a lot of times it actually takes some time to like flesh all that out. And you need to kind of see like what’s coming your way. But I would think as a brand new lawyer and as a brand new law firm, and by the way, I, I’m not a lawyer. I’ve never gone through that as a lawyer, but I’ve gone through that as a business owner, several times, first and foremost, I have to collect the money and pay some bills.
[00:10:55] Erik Olson: And, uh, so that means I need to get work and I need to get work very, very quickly. But, but like extending what Guy was saying, like. The people that you want to target, like we all have a group of those people on common and that’s our network. So I would say first and foremost, you have to go tap your network.
[00:11:14] Erik Olson: So like when I went into business, the very first thing I did is I told everybody that I knew what I was doing. And I mean, everybody, my parents, my sister, my aunt, my uncle, my friends from high school. Everybody. So I tapped into that power base and then I created a list of all of the people that I knew that I had mailing addresses for, and I sent them something in the mail because I didn’t want to just leave it up to like Facebook or Twitter or whatever I was using at the time to get the message out, I needed them to know what I was doing and I wasn’t soliciting.
[00:11:47] Erik Olson: I just said, this is what I’ve done. This is what I’m doing. And if you know anybody that could be a fit, would you mind giving me an intro? And from that, the word got out. I shut down all other profiles and I started to get some leads and I got a couple of jobs out of
[00:12:03] Steve Fretzin: that. I want to stay here for just another moment.
[00:12:06] Steve Fretzin: What is, I liked all the answers. The one that really, that really struck me was, cause I do this as well, is it’s hard to know how to market yourself if you don’t really know who your targets are. And I think lawyers generally have some confusion about that. There’s, I see two targets. I see prospective clients and I see prospective referral partners, strategic partners, whatever we want to call them.
[00:12:27] Steve Fretzin: And I think it’s hard for them to figure out who those two targets are. Do you guys have a process for helping them do that? To, whether it’s that or maybe trying to figure out like what their buyer persona might be? Uh, does somebody want to jump in on that, on that like follow up question to what we’re just talking about, Docelyn?
[00:12:45] Steve Fretzin: So
[00:12:46] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: the thing that I find that attorneys do poorly is they’re so afraid that there’s some piece of work that if they don’t say it in their elevator pit, that they do that kind of work, that that was this life changing work that is never going to come their way again. And, you know, I’m in a lot of meetings, a lot of networking meetings where everybody goes around and says what they do, and there are so many people where you fall asleep, because you can’t possibly do all those things.
[00:13:13] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: And that’s really hard. It’s really hard for a lot of attorneys to prioritize, but to figure out what your sweet spot is, what is the work that you do of all the work that you do. That pays the highest rate that is the right amount of complexity that you love doing lead with that and be really passionate about it because if you have a sentence that goes on and on and on and on and then you put the extra comment in and then you go on and on some more, no one’s listening.
[00:13:39] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: But if you’re passionate about this 1 thing, then people want to talk to you about that and on a related note, you can also do
[00:13:47] Steve Fretzin: that really good add on to that anybody. Sure,
[00:13:53] Gyi Tsakalakis: and I’m going to borrow from Jared because I think that’s part of the issue. And I think it’s implied with, um, we’re talking about when we talk about positioning is, you know, we were a lot of plaintiff’s lawyers.
[00:14:04] Gyi Tsakalakis: And so it’s like, plaintiff’s lawyers will say, I was like, well, someone who’s hurt and like, well, you got to dig a little deeper than that. And then you start talking about like, you know, geographic location and how that impacts positioning. And then you start talking about, well, maybe there’s a specific subset of.
[00:14:19] Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah. You know, maybe you’re doing, maybe you want to focus on truck accidents, or maybe there’s, um, even, you know, there’s some other, like, uh, demographic segment that is really appealing to you. And then you couple that with what Jared’s talking about is, like, who you are, right? Like, because the issue is, is that you’ve got to be able to position yourself, to Jocelyn’s point, you’ve got to be able to say what you do, who you help, how you help, why you’re uniquely qualified to help, and the uniquely
[00:14:46] Get Staffed Up: qualified to help, right?
[00:14:48] Get Staffed Up: It’s about, that’s about you.
[00:14:50] Gyi Tsakalakis: What is it that makes you unique? You know, maybe it’s because you like Carmel. I mean, but ideally it ties back to how you’re uniquely qualified to help your potential client, not just Carmel. But at the end of the day, that’s the piece that that’s always seems to be missing for me.
[00:15:05] Gyi Tsakalakis: And then the natural question after that is, is like, I’m not that unique. Well, it’s like, that’s the,
[00:15:11] Get Staffed Up: that’s the work you got to figure out what you do.
[00:15:14] Gyi Tsakalakis: Right. So if you’re in, if you’re a new lawyer. Maybe it’s you’re unique because you can dedicate 100 percent of your time to your clients because you don’t have any other clients, you know, if you’re an experienced lawyer, maybe you’re saying, you know, I’ve seen it all, right?
[00:15:27] Gyi Tsakalakis: I’m unique because I’m the only person who’s seen all of the issues because I’ve been doing this for 10, 000 years, like it says on my website, but that figuring out what it is, yeah. That’s good that you’re, you know, both the horizontal and vertical positioning and then why you’re uniquely qualified to help.
[00:15:43] Gyi Tsakalakis: That’s what you’ve got to be able to say in 30 seconds in the elevator that’s going to get someone to be like, oh, that I’m going to
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[00:17:34] Steve Fretzin: Make it rain. Visit GetVisible. com and stand out. And I think going back to the targets, you know, you, once you figure out the geography, you figure out, you know, what size shape form that the target, the persona of the prospective client looks like, you know, then who also is dealing with them. So like I’m dealing with.
[00:17:53] Steve Fretzin: Lawyers, so legal recruiters and legal marketers like you guys and others that aren’t doing business development coaching, you know, seem to be ideal in you’re running into people that you’re helping them with one thing, but they might have another problem that’s not the same, but, but better for me and vice versa.
[00:18:07] Steve Fretzin: So that, that kind of stuff should, should be coming up, Jared.
[00:18:11] Jared Correia: Yeah, I muted myself because I got two things on this. All right. The first is like kind of, one of the things we’re dancing around without saying it really is like niche practice, which is like the deal. Hey, that’s uh,
[00:18:19] Steve Fretzin: that’s the next
[00:18:20] Jared Correia: question.
[00:18:21] Jared Correia: Oh, it is? Okay. Can I, can I jump on
[00:18:22] Steve Fretzin: that a little bit? Jump into it and we’re gonna come, we’re gonna spin, spin around. That’s
[00:18:26] Jared Correia: great. So with niche practice, like, the issue is, it’s really hard for a new attorney to do that, especially if you’re starting to practice for the first time. Because it takes longer to build that it’s much easier to do a joshua joshua, which is like, hey, I’ve got like 48 million things that I do, but it’s also hard to sell that because people are going to be like, oh, you’re a lawyer.
[00:18:45] Jared Correia: What do you do a bunch of stuff? Like, that’s not necessarily compelling for referral. But if you can say like, hey, I only do divorce or I only do like special needs trust for children. Like, that’s more of a niche and it’s easier to sell that because A, not as many people do that, so you’re reducing your competition and B, it’s a really easy sales proposition for somebody to make for you if they’re sending somebody in.
[00:19:07] Jared Correia: But it takes a lot of courage to do a niche practice because it takes longer to build up, you need more of a runway. That’s part of it too. And then the other thing that I think lawyers are really bad about generally, It’s like, they like talking to other lawyers. They like going to bar association events and talking about Latin.
[00:19:22] Jared Correia: I don’t know what they do. They’re not thinking of like other referral sources, like non attorney business owners or non attorney individuals in their community that they could market to. And if you could do that, like that expands your marketplace massively. And so you should be looking at those other, if we’re talking about referral avatars, there’s attorneys and then there’s non attorneys, but a lot of lawyers don’t look past the attorneys.
[00:19:46] Steve Fretzin: Right on. And so, so now backtracking to my question, which was the pros and cons of specialization or niching down. So well played there, sir. But let’s talk about that because I was talking to a lawyer who wants to represent her firm and leave things somewhat vague because I think, because her, her kind of play is to bring in all kinds of different work that she could then hand out to others.
[00:20:08] Steve Fretzin: And then there’s others that say, no, no, you got to do one thing and one thing better than anybody. And that’s how you’re going to, you’re going to make it. Um, Eric, do you have a two cents on
[00:20:15] Erik Olson: this? I do. Yeah. So, uh, we went through the whole niching exercise several years ago and we started off as a generalist when it comes to digital marketing and I knew we should have niche, but it took a while to figure that out.
[00:20:27] Erik Olson: And that’s why I say like with lawyers, it’s going to take a while to find your practice area. One of the things that I would definitely do is if, okay, think about this, if you’re going to be a generalist or if you don’t want to even commit to being a generalist, you just want to have all of these different practice areas.
[00:20:42] Erik Olson: What you’re really doing is you’re committing to those random people that come your way, which is very unpredictable in nature. You don’t know when they’re going to come, why they’re going to come, if they have a budget to pay for your services or not, versus putting a message out to the world that is highly targeted to your ideal kinds of clients so that when they come to your website or they talk to you or they call into the office to how, however, they’re making some sort of contact.
[00:21:08] Erik Olson: With you and or your firm or anyone that’s associated with your firm or referral partners, it’s crystal clear that you are a perfect fit for them because you’ve niched so much. So you’re saying hell yes to those kinds of clients and implicitly saying no to everybody else, but it also doesn’t preclude you if you want, if it makes sense when those random people just happen to come to you anyways, and they completely ignore your marketing message.
[00:21:38] Erik Olson: And it’s not your practice area. It’s not your focus. If you, you can say yes, if you want, or you can say, let me help you. I know someone that does that. You can feel that inquiry still without that being your outbound message.
[00:21:52] Steve Fretzin: Right on, right on. Anything to add on that, Geek? I’ll
[00:21:56] Gyi Tsakalakis: say this, one mistake that I think, I make it too.
[00:22:02] Gyi Tsakalakis: We make the mistake of thinking that positioning is the same thing as like, this is all I do. So positioning is the, that’s what you want to be known for. That’s the thing that people are going to like, think of you. That’s the thing that’s going to help, you know, you’re going to be like, oh yeah, you do this.
[00:22:17] Gyi Tsakalakis: That doesn’t mean that’s the only thing that you do. And so if you’re, even if you’re a generalist and you want to actually take on all sorts of different work, you want people to be coming
[00:22:27] Get Staffed Up: to you. Cause you know what happens?
[00:22:28] Gyi Tsakalakis: They’re like, Hey, I know you don’t do this, but do you know somebody you do? And then you can say, Oh, actually I could help you with that.
[00:22:35] Gyi Tsakalakis: Right. And so don’t just think that because you position, you know, the positioning part, the niche part means that that’s the only type of work that you can do. It’s just the part that’s, that’s what you’re leading with. So that you can distinguish yourself and stand out.
[00:22:51] Steve Fretzin: Dastland, any thoughts on this?
[00:22:52] Steve Fretzin: When
[00:22:53] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: you’re positioning yourself for niche, please don’t use the word not. Please don’t say, well, I do everything except go to court. Or I hear that a lot. I do everything except probate. That doesn’t mean anything to anyone. So don’t think that that is you being niche by saying the one thing you
[00:23:09] Steve Fretzin: don’t do.
[00:23:10] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, and I think, you know, I always tell the story about when I was in, uh, and everybody knows at this point, I was in a plane crash, and I broke both my arms, and I couldn’t, whatever, and my dad, Larry the lawyer, pushed the phone to my ear and said, hey, talk to your lawyer, Bob, and everyone here in Chicago knows who Bob is, right, right off the bat.
[00:23:27] Steve Fretzin: You know, so, you know, it didn’t take him more than a second to know exactly the lawyer that should be representing his son in that type of an accident here in Chicago, Bob Clifford. So a shout out to Bob. So we really want to consider, you know, working on a strategy that’s going to allow us to be thought of first and thought of thought of consistently.
[00:23:48] Steve Fretzin: And if you’re going to niche, then you really got to lean into it. So let’s, let’s, so what, what is it? 20, 20 something minutes in and we got an AI question. So, uh, right. Jared picked up on that right away. So the question of AI is a really, that’s a little late. I’m disappointed. You were thinking 10 minutes and not 20 minutes.
[00:24:07] Steve Fretzin: Okay. I get that. I get that. Um, but it’s look, we, we see, we see the potential here. Some, some people have already leaned into it to produce content for SEO for blog for social media. How is it, is it worthwhile, is, how is it best used, where can it be beneficial, where can it actually be a negative? Who wants to jump in on that first?
[00:24:28] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. Eric, I saw you move your hand. That’s how I know.
[00:24:31] Erik Olson: Oh yeah. I’ll, I’ll, I’ll jump on that grenade. So, uh, so AI is, uh, yeah, absolutely an emerging technology it’s, uh, for, for marketers like me, it’s, it’s an opportunity and it’s a threat. So, uh, we’re following it very, very closely. Uh, we’re not fully converting to it, but we’re using it as a, uh, as a tool that helps us do things like, uh, brainstorm and whatnot.
[00:24:58] Erik Olson: Uh, but we’ve, we’ve done a lot of soul searching and, and, and we’ve watched what Google does is doing when it comes to AI very closely and, uh, just recently, like within the last week, Google has, um, they’ve removed the human component of helpful content guidelines. Meeting, it could be AI content probably.
[00:25:17] Erik Olson: So Google is trying to figure this out. This is a big issue when it comes to SEO and content in particular. So I’m going to say that, uh, a content is typically an SEO kind of a topic. Granted, people could just stumble across your website and decide to click on the link that says blog for some reason.
[00:25:36] Erik Olson: And I start reading articles, but generally they’re searching in Google and that piece of content matches their query and they come to your site. So, all right, what does that mean to have AI write your content? Now, if I sit down in front of AI right now and I use chat GPT, I’ve got a hyperlink right here.
[00:25:55] Erik Olson: I’m looking at it. I still need to know what to write. If chat GPT will write for the prompt of the instructions that I give it. But if, if I don’t know anything about marketing, I don’t really know what to write. I’m just going to start writing about whatever just kind of comes to mind, I guess, right? Or what I think maybe people are interested in.
[00:26:15] Erik Olson: And so there needs to be a component before and after AI, to use AI to do things like research, come up with the strategy, not only for each individual piece of content, but for your overall marketing. And this is maybe something like Jocelyn would probably like weigh in on, like you need a strategy.
[00:26:37] Erik Olson: Don’t just start doing stuff. Don’t just start posting on social media. Don’t just start posting on your website. What’s your strategy? Who’s your avatar? What are the primary key? What’s the primary keyword? Secondary keyword? How long of a piece do you need written based on what your competitors in your market are doing?
[00:26:55] Erik Olson: You need to have all of that information before you send it off to a writer. Now the writer could be me as a lawyer. It could be someone that I hire as a writer, it could be an agency, or it could be AI. So the writing part actually, in our opinion, is a commodity place. I can get literally hundreds of thousands of different options for that when it comes to writers.
[00:27:17] Steve Fretzin: But, but here real quick, real quick is, but is, is Google still dinging people that use AI to fill up content on their site? Is that because I thought that was a thing where it’s like, Hey, great for content, but be careful putting it on your site because Google is going to flag you.
[00:27:31] Erik Olson: They’re so they’re, they’re, it appears like they are walking away from warning, I guess they are now what they are warning, I guess, is the content that you put on your website needs to be hopeful to humans.
[00:27:46] Erik Olson: So if you use AI to say, spin off a thousand web pages that, that all target some random keyword and you don’t edit it, you don’t really understand what it is, you’re just like spitting off pages and posting, posting, posting, posting, posting, and not even like reading it. Probably not very helpful. Google’s job in this world is it’s to go through literally mountains of crap content and figure out what the good, helpful content is.
[00:28:16] Erik Olson: So you can spin off all sorts of junk and people do it all the time. They’re going to not, they’re going to not reward you for that. And they may actually penalize you. Like we’ve, we’ve absolutely seen where prospective clients have been penalized because they’ve taken it to the extreme. Okay.
[00:28:33] Steve Fretzin: Let’s, let’s go to Guy and then Jocelyn on this one, because I think he’s been posting a blog articles in the chat for us to read.
[00:28:40] Steve Fretzin: We’re not going to be able to read right now, but tell us the gist. The
[00:28:44] Gyi Tsakalakis: gist is, is that the first one is not a post, it’s actually a link to a search result, and the search query is chat GPT for legal marketing. And on most, I don’t know, you can all tell me if it’s there or not, but the link that Jared posted is a link to the blog post that usually ranks somewhere in the first couple results.
[00:29:00] Gyi Tsakalakis: Yes. And it’s a, and it’s a post that I wrote. Well, I didn’t write it. ChatGPT wrote it. And so everybody that’s talking about how ChatGPT, how Google Is trying to figure out how chat GPT is not and not ranking chat GPT posts. Let me just tell you right there. They don’t know what they’re doing. Google would love to be able to say that we’re only going to show content from experts, right?
[00:29:22] Gyi Tsakalakis: So like when we want legal marketing content, we’re only going to show stuff from Jocelyn and Jared and Eric. Um, but they’re, Google’s dumb. It’s the machine is so dumb there. And they got these PR people out there trying to tell everybody all this stuff. And everybody’s a Google sycophant and it’s like, Oh my gosh,
[00:29:41] Get Staffed Up: Google says this and Google, Google makes money doing one thing,
[00:29:44] Gyi Tsakalakis: people clicking on ads, they don’t care about whether or not your stuff ranks.
[00:29:49] Gyi Tsakalakis: And so to answer this, that was my rant, but to answer the question, should you use AI for content? And I’m going to answer it two ways. If you’re, if the question implies, hey, write me a law firm website and blog posts that I can go post and you copy and paste that into your WordPress or you hook up your API.
[00:30:11] Gyi Tsakalakis: Soon as it’s even do anything, it’s just happening automatically. Don’t do it because I can tell you the SEOs who are really high end, super nerdy about
[00:30:20] Get Staffed Up: this stuff. They’ve already done it. And let me tell you what happens. You skyrocket through traffic, and then you
[00:30:27] Gyi Tsakalakis: hit, you finally, as Eric was mentioning, you hit a trigger, a filter with Google, and they de index your entire site.
[00:30:35] Gyi Tsakalakis: On the other hand, if you use it for a lot of the things that Eric’s talking about, research, and you use it for an outline, and
[00:30:43] Get Staffed Up: you even use it for, uh, writing, you can have it write posts for you. You have to edit it. And a human being has said it, and I can’t tell you how many issues. There are legal ethics issues at play here, there are copyright issues at play,
[00:30:56] Gyi Tsakalakis: because again, sometimes,
[00:30:58] Get Staffed Up: ChatGPT just pulls something from somebody else’s site.
[00:31:01] Gyi Tsakalakis: We
[00:31:01] Get Staffed Up: all know that ChatGPT and all these generative
[00:31:05] Gyi Tsakalakis: AIs, they hallucinate, and so they make up their own cases. And so, if you’re just
[00:31:09] Get Staffed Up: carte blanche
[00:31:10] Gyi Tsakalakis: copying and pasting, don’t do it. But I’ll tell you
[00:31:12] Get Staffed Up: this. It is a remarkable tool
[00:31:15] Gyi Tsakalakis: as a supportive assistive tool. And I, you know, I think about it just like we use like Grammarly or we use, you know, a bunch of other stuff to help us write and publish and do research.
[00:31:25] Gyi Tsakalakis: And it is absolutely remarkable in those contexts. So short answer.
[00:31:30] Get Staffed Up: Yes. Use it. Just learn
[00:31:31] Gyi Tsakalakis: about it and learn how you can actually use it both effectively and ethically. And you will be amazed. And don’t, don’t forget too, because we all think about this. Everybody wants to commoditize content like, Oh, just like.
[00:31:44] Gyi Tsakalakis: We’re just going to crank out pages like lumber, even if you
[00:31:48] Get Staffed Up: rank, and even if you show up in search results, people have to land on those pages and actually call and hire you. Who
[00:31:55] Steve Fretzin: cares if you read it, they have to be interested, like readable.
[00:31:59] Get Staffed Up: Not even just readable, but it’s gotta be so, it’s gotta be persuasive that you’re like the expert that it’s like, Oh, I’m reading this.
[00:32:05] Get Staffed Up: And I’m like, this person knows what the heck they’re talking about.
[00:32:08] Gyi Tsakalakis: I’m going to subscribe to get more information from them, or I’m going to call and hire them. And that, you know, the marketing people call that conversion.
[00:32:14] Get Staffed Up: That’s the part that everybody forgets. They’re just like cranking out all these pages because they want to rank.
[00:32:19] Get Staffed Up: I’ll show you
[00:32:20] Gyi Tsakalakis: search Analytics and Google search
[00:32:23] Get Staffed Up: console data where people are, you know, these law firms are getting so much traffic. I’m like, that’s awesome Are you running ads? Are you a publisher? Because you’re not converting any of this traffic you rank for all this
[00:32:33] Gyi Tsakalakis: stuff that nobody’s actually gonna call and hire you on
[00:32:36] Steve Fretzin: Congrats.
[00:32:36] Steve Fretzin: We’ve got about two minutes left on this segment Jocelyn. You want to chime in on it? Yeah, I mean
[00:32:43] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: If you like staring at a blank page, then AI is not for you, right? If you need something to react to, then it’s great. Like Guy was saying, use it. Don’t put any of your personal information in there, right? We all know that now.
[00:32:55] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: But it’s beautifully written and highly articulate, but it says nothing. It says absolutely nothing. So, you want to put, if you want to act like you know what you’re talking about, you can’t just use ChatGPT. You have to put in some of your own lawyer smarts. But it’s great and for not just for marketing communication for like the letter that you send to your clients at the end of the year or the invitation that you’re doing for your holiday party or the welcome letter that you send to the new associate who joined.
[00:33:26] Jocelyn Brumbaugh: There’s a million things that if you’re like, wait, can I just see what somebody else wrote first? This is it. It is so helpful for running a law and not just in the market.
[00:33:37] Steve Fretzin: And, uh, Jared, final words?
[00:33:39] Jared Correia: Oh my God, I’ve probably done like 50 AI presentations for parts of Shakespeare in the last three months.
[00:33:45] Jared Correia: So, I got a lot to say on this, but I’ll keep it short. Uh, I asked Google Bar whether I should use AI written content to advertise my law firm. And it said, it depends. So, there’s a lawyer answer if I’ve ever heard one. Um, I think, like, the key is what Jocelyn and Guy just mentioned, which is that, like, this is an assistive technology.
[00:34:05] Jared Correia: Right now. So use it to assist yourself. It’s not the final product. Like if you’ve got a staff person, if you’ve got a paralegal, they’re producing documents for you. Like you’re going to review them. Look, like this hallucination thing is so overblown. If you’re not checking your sources before you’re putting out a position paper to a court, you’re a dumbass.
[00:34:23] Jared Correia: Like that’s all there is to it. Like just look at your, at your stuff like you would with anybody else. And like, what I think is going to happen is a lot of that’s going to be solved because you’re seeing AI technology. Now, get it embedded in legal research tools, e discovery products and Microsoft and Google.
[00:34:39] Jared Correia: So the data sets they’re going to access are a little bit different. There’s going to be some check downs that aren’t available right now, but yeah, I think you should use it now to get familiar with it. And then I would probably start looking to use legal specific AI products as they come out in the future.
[00:34:54] Jared Correia: Yeah,
[00:34:54] Steve Fretzin: really, really good. Everybody. And with that, we’re going to wrap up part one of Be That Lawyer Live Marketing Mavericks. I hope you got some great takeaways and enjoyed our panel. We will be continuing this in our next episode in part two. So please make sure you keep Uh, track of that and listen to the next show, uh, we’ll also can help you be that lawyer.
[00:35:13] Steve Fretzin: Someone who’s confident, organized and a skilled rainmaker. Take everybody. We’ll talk again soon.
[00:35:22] Narrator: Thanks for listening to be that lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website, Fretzin. com for additional information and to stay up to date on the latest legal business development and marketing trends. For more information and important links about today’s episode, Check out today’s show notes.