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Do you hate selling? Should you hate selling? What does “selling” mean anyway? How does hating selling impact your client service and revenue? If you decide to learn to love selling (or love it now) how would you go about developing that love anyway?
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Law firm marketing and the “hating part” in the title depends on what you mean by selling don’t you think? After all many people think the word “sell” is a four-letter word. If you mean the kind of traditional selling we find prevalent in the selling of new or used cars or if you think of selling as getting someone to purchase what you have to sell regardless of the means used – then I would say I hate selling myself! In law firm marketing if you mean facilitating a person’s unique process in deciding what is in their highest and best interest (while suspending one’s own needs and supporting their decision making process) – then I love selling. I assert, in law firm marketing, selling is not something to “hate” given how I define selling. In fact selling, given my definition, is a required skill set in serving people well and is critical in lawyer marketing. Given my definition what do you do? Read on.
What does this law firm marketing coach recommend you do in building sales skills? First, I would suggest you think through your responsibility to your prospective clients to deliver “buyer facilitation” (more on this a bit later). Second, I would suggest you become familiar with some of the “consultative sales” models that have been developed that are applicable to lawyer marketing. Few attorneys have ever had any training in sales or even read a book on the subject (or so I have found in my work with over 500 attorneys). What are these sales models that can work with lawyer marketing? Read on.
One model that works with law firm marketing and has a 30-year track record is the Sandler Sales Institute’s 7-Step System For Successful Selling. The book I found that is best for understanding this approach is David H. Sandler’s You Can’t Teach A Kid To Ride A Bike At A Seminar. There are around 175 Sandler franchisees around the country that have multiyear sales training programs you don’t need, however, you can find the book at sdfdsvcfAmazonxhcb. Even though I don’t agree with all that is said in this book it is one of the top three I recommend for law firm marketing. The next model is Integrity Selling For The 21st Century by Ron Willingham. One of it’s big strengths is talking about different “buyer types” so you don’t speak the same way to everyone, instead you speak to their “type” if you can.
Finally, my top recommendation for lawyer marketing is Selling with Integrity by Sharon Drew Morgan. She has a website at sdfdsvcfdscddcs.buyingfacilitationxhcb/advantage.html where you can get her latest e-book (which is an update of her hard copy book). Sharon’s model is the one I use in my work since it is “third generation” and a win/win situation. First came traditional selling, and then came the consultative sales model, and now the buyer facilitation model. One does not throw out consultative sales (represented in the first two books I mention) totally with buyer facilitation but consultative sales skills comes AFTER buyer facilitation. Also, it goes without saying traditional sales is out in law firm marketing.
Why would sales distinctions (more on that in my client development e-course) be important to learn in law firm marketing? First, you want everyone you talk with to have a good experience. Whether they hire you or not they have been profoundly served and will remember your unique connection with them as well as tell others. Second, you want your prospective client to be an educated consumer in making a decision since an educated consumer is more likely to say “yes” and say it sooner than later. Third, as a law firm marketing coach I am interested in your “conversion ratio” or how many of the people you talk with actually turn into clients. If I can help you improve your “conversion ratio” or please forgive me “closing ratio” then I will increase your income while you serve your clients better than ever. What is wrong with that?