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LawBiz® TIPS – Week of April 14, 2015

LawBiz(r) newsletter

As you read this note, I will be in Chicago preparing for the ABA TechShow. Lawyers today must learn more than they did in previous years ... not only must lawyers know about the intricacies and changes in the technical aspects of the laws impacting their clients, they must also understand how to use technology to effectively and efficiently communicate with clients. Failure to do so can be a violation of the ABA Model Rule of Professional Conduct 1.3 concerning competence. Luddites are being droned out of the profession, if they were ever allowed in.

ABA TechShow in Chicago this week and ALM Legal Tech Show in New York earlier in the year are the best and most effective learning opportunities. I hope to see you in Chicago this week.

Ed signature

The Bill: Marketing in Disguise

If you think marketing is restricted to advertisements, brochures, and the like, then you are missing an amazing opportunity—the hidden opportunity that bills represent. In addition to the status reports and letters that you send to your clients every month, your bill is the single most obvious way that clients see what you are doing for them. Don't waste this valuable opportunity to look good to your client.

Explain carefully what you did for the client on each day. Write in complete sentences. Make sure that you haven't fallen into some sort of legalese, which will seem like so much annoying jargon to your clients.

You have worked diligently for the client all month, so show him that. Remind him of all the telephone calls you have made to the other side's lawyers. Jog his memory about all those impressive-looking legal documents you have been sending week in and week out. And describe what you have achieved for the client in each event.

Clients don't always understand the legal letters or documents you send them, but a bill is something that everybody can understand. Your bill is a good way to explain what you have been doing for the client do deserve all that money. Think of the bill as a defense of your fee. A client who reads your bill will not mind the large amount due at the bottom if he sees that you have been working hard and achieving positive results, which are moving the client closer to his goal.

The bill is a wonderful marketing opportunity in that you can communicate to the client—in the client's language—what you have been doing for the client every day. If you do a good job in preparing the bill, the bill will remind the client that you were thinking about him and his matter or case all thirty-odd days of the month. Clients really appreciate that sort of effort.


The Bill: Marketing in Disguise

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"I felt 'stuck,' but I didn't know how to market myself to clients or to other firms. Ed provided a solid rounding of me to evaluate my current situation and a platform from which I could start growing my own practice."

San Francisco, CA

"I look at Ed as my business partner now—my once a week essential business meeting to take the pulse of my practice. During our one-hour phone conversations, we hash out the larger and smaller business challenges of my law firm. I always come away from those conversations enlarged, challenged, and sometimes even quite shaken, but with the tools necessary to move forward down the path he and I are constantly redefining for me and my firm."

Northern California


Ed Poll, LawBiz® Management   |   |   |   |


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