Marketing everyone in a law firm may be the democratic approach to promotion, but it may not be the smartest. Some members want to speak for the entire firm. Others are not comfortable in this capacity. Some attorneys object to any kind of marketing and PR. In other cases, marketing everyone may prove too expensive. Key member marketing is a focused alternative to the shotgun approach. Texas Law Marketing often works with law firms to invest in a few representative spokespeople.
ABOUT KEY MEMBER MARKETING
Concentrating most of the marketing on one or a select few individuals has worked well at KoonsFuller, JohnstonTobey and Geary, Porter & Donovan. We created marketing plans for these firms in different ways and for different reasons.
The three firms listed above share a marketing challenge common to attorneys who work in the more personal areas of practice. They must constantly replenish their roster of clients.
Each firm is unique. KoonsFuller is one of the nation’s largest firms that handles exclusively family law matters. JohnstonTobey is a small litigation boutique that is well known for professional malpractice and fiduciary litigation. Geary, Porter & Donovan is a medium-sized full service firm with a family law group. They are three very different firms with one goal, to get the most bang for the buck in marketing and PR. Our solution for each was key member marketing.
HOW TEXAS LAW MARKETING HELPED
When Ike Vanden Eykel joined KoonsFuller back in 1990, he was already a known quantity in the Dallas legal community. We had worked with him for five years before, mostly inspiring reporters and editors to run stories about his practice in the traditional media – television, radio and in print. During the remaining 22 years that we represented KoonsFuller, we expanded Vanden Eykel’s personal promotion to include ghostwriting books for him, setting up speaking engagements and book signings, creating national as well as regional media opportunities and posting online content including video. When KoonsFuller expanded into other cities, we extended these services to the managing partner in these offices. By concentrating on one top attorney in each office, we were able to customize a program for each of these markets in an organized manner that didn’t break the bank.
Randy Johnston is the head of a three-person firm focusing on business litigation. For many years, Randy and his partner Robert Tobey have been the guys who sue lawyers and other professionals who steal from their clients. Randy is a colorful guy with a unique way of presenting himself and is, therefore, memorable to media and the public. He is a guy who speaks in quality sound bites, and so he is a natural to promote his firm and their practice area.
We have our own publishing imprint, and we published his book, Robbed at Pen Point. This led to hundreds of personal appearances in front of groups, on television and radio. The book came out about the time the Madoff investment scandal was coming to light, so Randy was quoted in newspaper and magazine stories all across the country.
Not all of the attorneys at Geary, Porter & Donovan participate in marketing. An old line law firm, GPD has well established relationships with local and national companies that provide recurring business in many practice areas. Marketing is most important for the firm’s five-person family law group. We started with the LawTalk™ Texas marketing platform and its basic services – speaking engagements, media opportunities and online content. The great amount of individual promotion has been concentrated on GPD shareholders Mike Geary and Larry Martin. We created a new website for the entire firm and posted regularly on the Facebook page focused only on the family law group. We also used video to promote those activities and the lawyers themselves.
Ike Vanden Eykel and Randy Johnston are two of the best-known attorneys in North Texas. Both have been selected among the Top 100 Attorneys in Texas and D Magazine’s Best Lawyers in Dallas. Vanden Eykel has been included in the top 10 divorce lawyers in the nation by Town & Country magazine and one of the top divorce lawyers for women by Vogue. Johnston has a legendary position among Texas trial lawyers and was contributed a chapter on ethics to the book, Texas Business Litigation. For the Geary, Porter & Donovan Family Law Group, personal promotion readied them for the use of advertising and other firm-wide marketing.