Ben Glass is an internet marketing entrepreneur who runs his own personal injury practice in Fairfax, VA. I came across his work because he is a prominent online voice for legal marketing, specifically for the small firm environment.
There are many ways to approach marketing, and many lawyers and marketing companies will have their own philosophy. Ben’s might be right for you, or it might not. As we talk to more legal marketing entrepreneurs with their own philosophies, we’ll be able to compare and contrast different styles and methods. But for now, let’s start with Ben Glass.
Ben’s written many books on legal marketing, and this one, Renegade Lawyer Marketing, is subtitled “How Today’s Solo and Small-Firm Lawyers Survive and Thrive in a World of Marketing Vultures, 800-Pound Gorillas, and LegalZoom.” It’s an overview of how any small firm lawyer can create an effective marketing structure that works for him or her. Ben doesn’t only cover the logistic “how-tos” of a small firm marketing plan, he also describes the mental state you need to achieve your goals, and the common pitfalls to avoid. It’s both a business guide and a self-help book. Let’s take a closer look at the book’s contents:
What NOT to Do
The first seven chapters of the book give you a rundown of your competition: (1) Big Law firms that spend millions on advertising, (2) legal information websites that help people handle their own cases, and (3) law firms who retain “Marketing Experts” to handle their firms marketing.
Ben’s book argues that not only are these competitors not a threat, the fact that your competitors are distracted by these inefficient marketing strategies are an advantage for your firm. While other firms are implementing the overpriced and inefficient marketing plans, you can stand out by doing what they’re not.
If you’re a small firm attorney, you won’t have the budget to compete with the big dogs who have every billboard in town and television commercials running in prime time. You also can’t stop people from handling their cases on their own from internet resources. There’s no use in worrying about the things you can’t control, especially because your marketing plan will give prospective clients what others cannot. The specific details of the plan are explained in the third part of the book.
STOP and THINK
Chapters 8 through 21 are more meditative exercises. A lot of attorneys will want to skip this part to get to the blueprint of exactly how to run their firm, but I recommend against it. These mental exercises are the foundation for accurate marketing and system planning, not to mention mental and emotional peace. Their usefulness is unaffected by technological innovation. The best marketing strategies might change every few years, but these principles worked 50 or 100 years ago, and they’ll likely work 50 or 100 years from now.
A lot of this section deals with how a lawyer should approach his practice mentally. What should his attitude in approaching a new marketing plan? How about his attitude in running his business generally? These chapters offer a lot of motivating food for thought to improve your practice, mainly by visualizing your goals and slowly taking steps toward them. Obviously you can’t have a stellar marketing system in one week, but by sticking to these principals, you will always be improving your business instead of lamenting about how there’s too much work to do.
The Proven Methods
If you just want to get to the nitty-gritty, chapters 22 to 35 cover how you can improve your firm today. Ben lays out the marketing pillars of success for the small law firm: Telephone Scripts, Newsletters, Website, etc. He tells you what you should set up and how to go about doing it.
For those that just want the concrete tips, this is your section. Knowing what not to do and having a good mindset are both important to the process, but you also need to know what specifically you need to do to improve your marketing plan. Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive, but it’s a great start. Once you get the wheels turning, you’ll know what to focus on next.
Speaking of “what to do next”, Ben references other marketing books (not just his own) throughout the book for a deeper dive into the subjects mentioned. If you’re unfamiliar with the legal marketing world, Renegade Lawyer Marketing may be your gateway.
Ben Glass’s Renegade Lawyer Marketing is an inspiring take on how to be competitive in today’s legal market. His marketing plan has a number of specific suggestions, so you can pick what you like and leave the rest. Written in 2015, this book contains many tips that still apply in 2018, and many of them are timeless. If you’re looking to make a change this year to your firm’s marketing program, reading this 200-page book would be a great start. It’s entertaining and practical, but not exhaustive. Click here if you’re interested in buying the book.
If you finish this book and agree with the message, Ben also offers his comprehensive package, filled with written materials you can use right now for your firm’s marketing program. The official name is “Practice Power Tools,” although Ben throws in a lot of extra bonuses to make it a marketing package for $279. I haven’t purchased the package, but it’s worth checking out to see if it’s right for you.
Do you have any experience with Ben Glass or his books? Do you have a recommendation for me to review a different attorney marketing book? Please drop your thoughts and suggestions in the comment section below.