An Attorney Contacted Me - HELP Please

by RyanJ
27 replies
I was just contacted by an attorney through the mail, then a day later by email. Here is what they said...

Dear Mr. ____,

I am the managing partner of S___, M___ & E___, a (local city) law firm. During the past several years we have advertised our practice in telephone directories and electronically with a web site and various other related services. We have never developed a coherent marketing plan, and do not believe we can do so with a Yellow Pages salesman or an electronic media consultant.

Our current marketing budget is less than $30,000.00, so we would not be a big account; however, if you would assist us in growing our practice (an ultimately our marketing budget), I would appreciate receiving your marketing materials and any preliminary thoughts you might have.

I am contacting several local marketing concerns and do not anticipate scheduling meetings with any of them during the next 30 days.

Very truly yours,
They mention that they don't want to deal with a company like mine. Should I even bother pursuing them?

Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks.
#attorney #contacted
  • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
    Where did they say they don't want to work with you?
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    • Profile picture of the author RyanJ
      Originally Posted by vndnbrgj View Post

      Where did they say they don't want to work with you?
      I thought that is what this meant...
      "do not believe we can do so with a Yellow Pages salesman or an electronic media consultant."
      I will be contacting them anyway. First I will email then call the next day. Do you think I should include prices in the first email?

      They did give me a budget of under $30,000 so I figured I would stay around $20-25,000. I have never dealt with lawyers before, mostly just home improvement companies.
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  • Profile picture of the author sandalwood
    Originally Posted by RyanJ View Post

    I was just contacted by an attorney through the mail, then a day later by email. Here is what they said...



    They mention that they don't want to deal with a company like mine. Should I even bother pursuing them?

    Any thoughts would be appreciated.

    Thanks.
    A direct quote from the attorney's letter:

    I would appreciate receiving your marketing materials and any preliminary thoughts you might have.

    Sounds to me they want to hear from you and will schedule a meeting after 30 days per their own referenced time frame.

    I could be wrong but I'd definitely be in contact with them.

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  • Profile picture of the author workers24hdotcom
    I understand that they are waiting for "however, if you would assist us in growing our practice (an ultimately our marketing budget), I would appreciate receiving your marketing materials and any preliminary thoughts you might have"
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  • Profile picture of the author Voasi
    You need to educate them.

    Clearly, he has no clue what internet marketing is and how effective it can be. Most don't. I'd setup a time so you can either come into the office or do a 1-on-1 webinar with him, showing him keyword research and what he can and could expect.

    If he is in fact, contacting other local consultants, you need to provide value for his time. I work with a lot of attorneys and they like to be educated, so show him how it's done, how you're different, why you're different and most importantly, how many new prospects he can expect.
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  • Profile picture of the author PeacefulCalamity
    Something tells me approach these guys with caution. They said they were hitting up other businesses like your own. They also said they would like to have your thoughts and marketing materials. But it's pretty clear they're just sizing you up against others.

    Nothing wrong with that.

    Just don't go in there and start yapping away at exactly how you do the things you'll be doing for them. Once they get that information they'll just say they'll "call you later" and you probably shan't hear from them again. This should be common practice for all appointments, but I felt the need to make that clear here. Maybe someone will back me up.

    They definitely have interest in hearing from you. Don't keep em waiting too long.

    By the way, $30,000 is not the sale for most people in IM. Make sure you have a plan to give them damn good value for their money.
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    • Profile picture of the author rushindo
      Originally Posted by PeacefulCalamity View Post

      Just don't go in there and start yapping away at exactly how you do the things you'll be doing for them
      Agreed.

      Originally Posted by PeacefulCalamity View Post

      They definitely have interest in hearing from you. Don't keep em waiting too long.
      Agreed again. Keep them waiting and you kill your credibility. Had a company call me back the other day after over a week had passed! I didn't even remember who they were when they called. Pitiful. Will never do business with them.

      His opening line, "You filled out our form about a week ago." Just pitiful. Don't be like these people. Call them as soon as you can.

      Brandon
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  • Profile picture of the author DNChamp
    If he is going to wait 30 days you need to WOW them so that time is cut short and they want to talk to you sooner. Ask for there URL and make a video about their site. Show their competition and how they are different (better) then them. You got to make it look like they are losing clients because of A,B and C and it is urgent that they call you to help them match or beat their competitors online.

    Take the bull by the horns and be different.
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  • Profile picture of the author ahlexis
    Question: How much do you know about this law firm?

    In other words, what is their specialty? Do they specialize in any one or two areas, or are they a general practice?

    There are some fields of law that respond better to some types of marketing than others. And you might want to know more about the firm before you decide your primary plan of attack. Depending on the type of firm, targeted direct mail (snail mail) might work really well, too. Don't rule it out just because it's not internet-based.
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  • Profile picture of the author RyanJ
    Thank you for your replies. I am going to do a video (just like DNChamp advised) and also send a letter if I don't hear anything within 24 hours of sending the video.

    They are a general practice firm in a city of about 40,000 people. I have a feeling that the contract for their DEX/YP website will be expiring in 30 days.
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  • Profile picture of the author Noah Fleming
    Whoa whoa whao

    First of all - the contact is suspect. This is not how people do biz in the real world.

    Second - you don't send info via email + prices or any of that. Relationship is always first.

    What makes you stand out over the other clients. Relationship.

    I would say something like,

    "Thanks for your email. Unfortunately, that's not the way I work. I'd be happy to sit down with you to get a better idea of your actual needs and go from there. I'm available to come by your office November 23 at 10am or November 25th at 9am. I can be reached at xxx.xxx.xxxx"

    Just pick up the phone is probably the easiest answer.
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    • Profile picture of the author Seantrepreneur
      Originally Posted by Noah Fleming View Post

      Whoa whoa whao

      First of all - the contact is suspect. This is not how people do biz in the real world.

      Second - you don't send info via email + prices or any of that. Relationship is always first.

      What makes you stand out over the other clients. Relationship.

      I would say something like,

      "Thanks for your email. Unfortunately, that's not the way I work. I'd be happy to sit down with you to get a better idea of your actual needs and go from there. I'm available to come by your office November 23 at 10am or November 25th at 9am. I can be reached at xxx.xxx.xxxx"

      Just pick up the phone is probably the easiest answer.
      Thank you for saying that! I thought I was the only one thinking this was a little strange. A dead giveaway is "our marketing budget is $30,000 so we wouldn't be a big account". That's a decent size marketing budget period.

      I would seriously look into this one before you responded at all. Just my opinion.

      Sean
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    • Profile picture of the author caliray
      Originally Posted by Noah Fleming View Post

      Whoa whoa whao

      First of all - the contact is suspect. This is not how people do biz in the real world.

      Second - you don't send info via email + prices or any of that. Relationship is always first.

      What makes you stand out over the other clients. Relationship.

      I would say something like,

      "Thanks for your email. Unfortunately, that's not the way I work. I'd be happy to sit down with you to get a better idea of your actual needs and go from there. I'm available to come by your office November 23 at 10am or November 25th at 9am. I can be reached at xxx.xxx.xxxx"

      Just pick up the phone is probably the easiest answer.
      I think this is exactly the right advice. It shows you are a professional with a plan and you care enough to take the time to understand their business and its' needs in an online presence.
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    • Profile picture of the author shane_k
      Originally Posted by Noah Fleming View Post

      Whoa whoa whao

      First of all - the contact is suspect. This is not how people do biz in the real world.
      I totally agree, this email is a bit suspect.

      But suspect in the sense that what they are doing is they are fishing for information but at the same time I get the feeling that they are scared of sales pressure.

      It could be that they are not serious, and things are not that urgent for them right now, (hence the 30 day thing) or they are just trying to gather information to get a better idea of what an Online Marketing Consultant actually entails (Or whatever it is that you do) and what you and other people providing services like you could actually do for them.

      But I get the sense (and this is from my experience in being a sales person) that the "30 day thing" is about them trying to control the speed of the sales process that you will both go through and when they will be able to say yes or no to your proposal.

      Same with them asking you for your marketing materials. They want to make the decision on their own, at their own speed, with out you there to pressure them.

      Controling the sales process and when they get to say yes or no to your proposal is safe for them, but it is not always the right choice.
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  • Profile picture of the author WeavingThoughts
    Couldn't he well be a scammer? I haven't seen any real business give a fixed budget in the intro email.
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    • Profile picture of the author rushindo
      Originally Posted by WeavingThoughts View Post

      Couldn't he well be a scammer? I haven't seen any real business give a fixed budget in the intro email.
      I have. Just emailed an association a few days ago and told them I had a $200K advertising budget. But I only told them the budget so I would immediately have negotiation power and leverage from the get go. So real businesses do give fixed budgets in intro emails.

      And the best advice so far in this thread is to PICK UP THE PHONE. The advice I will add is to ASK DON'T TELL. Ask questions. Get them talking. I had a meeting with a CEO of a $100M+ company last Monday. I let her do most of the talking and found out they had a $3,000,000 advertising budget... and I never even asked. ;-)

      Brandon
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  • Profile picture of the author Colm Whelan
    This does not read like a scam email. Additionally, it is very easy for the OP to check the bonafides of the prospect, they're local for heaven's sake!

    Where he says "We have never developed a coherent marketing plan, and do not believe we can do so with a Yellow Pages salesman or an electronic media consultant." tells you what they're looking for i.e. they want to grow their business, they know they need an actual plan to do so and they don't want to deal with one-trick ponies - they are looking for a marketing consultant not someone to do online marketing for them. They want the whole package.

    You (assuming you are selling online marketing like most of the rest of us) are NOT what they are looking for.
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  • Profile picture of the author HappyPanda
    Wow man, I would love to land a client like that.. Good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author Dustin Blevins
    If you can handle it I would suggest giving them your best shot, but if you have any doubt just let it go and don't hurt yourself. Going in too deep too fast will only make you drown.

    If you think you can handle it, congrats and blow the competition away!
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  • Profile picture of the author Adwizard
    a few good pieces of advice here already mentioned... do not give any prices without first making them want you BAD!!! Let them know you can and are confident that you can work within their budget but no more about money yet.

    Definitely let them see how poorly they are doing versus their competitors... even though you see weaknesses of theirs that you would exploit to get their site ranking higher if they should choose to work with you. Don't tip your hand to them at all by giving them solutions yet... just let them know you have them. You hold the cards and it would benefit you greatly if they realized you could help them or even one of their competitors whose weaknesses you would be exploiting for them if they became your paying client.

    Wowing them with a quick video response would be terrific but turn the tables and make them want to meet with you way before the 30 day period. If they are legit then that is your chance to let them know looking further than you would be a complete waste of their time. Trust me, they are not in the business of interviewing marketing consultants.


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  • You have to get in front of these guys/gals. The chances of making any money without talking with them belly-to-belly is about zero. Set up an appointment before anything else.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
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    Our current marketing budget is less than $30,000.00,

    That's chump change for lawyer keywords If your doing SEO/PPC.

    Lawyer type PPC keywords could easily be $25 - $50 per click.
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    I think them mentioning a $30,000 advertising budget is bait to get you to respond. I also suspect them telling you they won't be making any decisions for 30 days is their way of laying the foundation for them to stall any attempt at signing on with you. So that leaves me with believing their request to hear ideas is actually them trying to get ideas out of you for free.
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    • Profile picture of the author rushindo
      Originally Posted by misterme View Post

      I think them mentioning a $30,000 advertising budget is bait to get you to respond.
      Yep. I do this all the time.
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  • Profile picture of the author wesawu
    You don't have enough information to provide the law firm with anything. I would responsd back via email and try to get more information about the law firm such as area of expertise, notable cases, and especially the demographic of the potential clients they are trying to gain. Once you narrow this down you can give them something more inline with what they are looking for. Otherwise, you are just wasting your time. You would look more professional using this approach. I am a real estate broker. I can't simply help anyone who just comes to me and says "I need a house". I would need more details such as area, size, price ranges, single story, garage, etc. Getting more information is a must!
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    • Profile picture of the author rushindo
      Originally Posted by wesawu View Post

      You don't have enough information to provide the law firm with anything. I would responsd back via email and try to get more information about the law firm such as area of expertise, notable cases, and especially the demographic of the potential clients they are trying to gain. Once you narrow this down you can give them something more inline with what they are looking for. Otherwise, you are just wasting your time. You would look more professional using this approach. I am a real estate broker. I can't simply help anyone who just comes to me and says "I need a house". I would need more details such as area, size, price ranges, single story, garage, etc. Getting more information is a must!
      Good advice but that is way too much information to request via email. Plus it will take too long. Just call them.
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