Twenty marketing tips from women rainmakers


Section: Articles

January 14th, 2003

Rachelle J. Canter, Ph.D. & Barrie Drum

The ABA Law Practice Management Section's Women Rainmakers group surveyed its membership in September-October 2002. After 10 years of programming and social networking events, the Women Rainmakers' Executive Committee felt it was time to get comprehensive feedback. The Women Rainmakers is a sub-entity of the Marketing Core Group and everyone is welcome to join.
A part of the survey requested marketing tips. The survey went to the 700 members of the women Rainmakers Listserv maintained by the ABA Law Practice Management Section. Following are the top 20 marketing tips from women rainmakers:
  1. Ask for the work.
    (one of the most popular tips)
  2. Always write (hand-written) thank you notes.
    (another of the most popular tips)
  3. Tell people you would like to have them as a client and ask how you could achieve that goal.
  4. Visit your client's offices regularly.
    (You will always come back with something new to do.)
  5. Have lunch with other lawyers who practice outside your area of emphasis for cross-referrals.
  6. Give away useful information at face-to-face meetings without charge.
  7. Go to conferences, lunches, etc.
    (If you're not there, you can't get the business.)
  8. Gain acceptance and support from male colleagues by finding ways to work together that are of mutual benefit, rather than "taking them on."
  9. Use "leveraged networking" - it's more efficient to establish relationships with people who can refer you to clients than it is to find and establish relationships with prospective clients themselves.
  10. Keep following key personnel at companies as they go from company to company.
  11. Only buy clothes that have a pocket for business cards.
  12. Purchase pens with firm name and phone number. Give them to clients to sign contracts, to all participants in closings in your office, and make them available to guests. Invite them to keep the pens. Also, use them to sign the check in fine restaurants and leave them behind so waiter/waitress will use them with other guests.
  13. Throw out lines as early and often as you can. You never know when you are going to catch a big fish.
  14. Be a person first and a lawyer second.
  15. Be open to business development opportunities no matter where you are. Tell everyone you meet that you are a lawyer and would like to help them with their legal needs.
  16. Listen, don't talk.
  17. Be polite and open to everyone you come across and avoid being over-eager and aggressive. Be pro-active in expressing your experience and interests to people - in work, volunteer, and leisure situations. Everything, even inadvertent things, make an impression.
  18. Supply good service everyday, all day. Be accessible - and when you are not, have a team in place who can respond to your client's needs.
  19. Make friends of clients.
  20. Let people know your flexibility in terms of financial arrangements.
Rachelle J. Canter is the President of RJC Associates in San Francisco, providing executive development, career consultation and outplacement services to law firms and corporations. She can be reached at rjcATrjcassociatesDOTnet
Barrie Drum is a Director at Smart LLP. Based in Baltimore, MD., Barrie assists clients with fraud and financial investigations. She can be reached at barriedrumATyahooDOTcom or (410) 262-6530.

This article is reprinted from the LawMarketing Portal web site at
Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved.