We are pleased to welcome Eleanor Southers to the blog today. Eleanor is an attorney and the owner of Professional Legal Coaching where she helps young lawyers and law students market themselves in a competitive legal marketplace.
Today she shares with you one of the foundations for marketing yourself — using a mission statement. Welcome, Eleanor!
Having now spent more than thirty years as an attorney and six years as a legal coach, I am finally trying to boil down the real essence of what is needed to succeed in marketing yourself.
As most of you know, you need to market yourself even if it is not directly connected to rain making. Even if you are a public employee or an academic, the need to be clear about who you are and what you can do and especially how you give value is important. This is the way that you gain support for whatever you are doing.
Are You Making the Most of Opportunities?
Let’s take two scenarios. In the first one, you decide to go to an MCLE event. You sign up and pay your money. You show up at the appointed time and since it is a luncheon, you find a seat and plop yourself down.
Other people seem to be milling around but you ignore them by pouring your water and looking at the MCLE materials. When people finally sit down at your table you may smile at them but go back to looking at your materials. The program begins and after taking notes and listening carefully, you spring out of your seat and head back to the office as soon as the audience begins clapping.
Now you know where I’m going with this. In scenario #2, you think about who you would like to meet and talk to before you step out the door. Say for instance that one of your goals is to increase your revenue by 10% in 2014. Or, if in public practice, your goal is to make one valuable contact who can help you get a promotion by the middle of 2014. Or, you really don’t like your present work situation and are looking to change jobs in the next 4 months.
What’s Your Mission Statement?
You decide you want to further your goals and get MCLE credit at the same time. So how do you do this?
First, you need the dreaded mission statement. Believe it or not, it is the foundation of all of your further marketing and selling yourself. The statement changes with time, but it is your guiding light for all that you want to accomplish at that time.
I have tried to boil down this feared task into three simple questions you can ask yourself:
- Who is my target audience? Who do I want to influence?
- What are their needs?
- How can I fulfill those needs? What is my value?
So an attorney who is looking to increase revenue by 10% might have a mission statement that looks something like:
I have an expertise in the area of personal injury and can help any person injured in an accident where the accident was not their fault. I do this by understanding not only the law but giving personal attention to the client’s needs to recover and be properly compensated.
This statement will then govern the website information, the LinkedIn profile and be the foundation for the attorney’s blog. It also will help to create the terrifying elevator speech (which we’ll talk about in my next post).
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Eleanor Southers, attorney and owner of Professional Legal Coaching, coaches attorneys across the United States at all stages of their development. She does this on a one-to-one basis, assisting the lawyer to identify the issues and create pathways to overcome problems, with the end result of greater success and contentment. She also is an experienced speaker and writer.
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And check out these other helpful posts:
- Legal Networking 101: How Do You Know What to Talk About While Networking
- Legal Networking 101: A New Definition of Networking
- Legal Networking 101: Don’t Be an A**hole
- Legal Networking 101: Networking Today Isn’t Like the Networking of Yesterday
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