In the past twenty years I have been to more marketing seminars and trainings than I care to count. Hardly any of them were conducted by lawyers for lawyers. Most of what is out there to help us must be adapted from trainings aimed at other professions. Many techniques are not really translatable.

The Elevator Speech

This is most glaringly true with the concept of an “elevator speech”. For the uninitiated, an elevator speech is designed to wow someone who asks what you do so that you stand out and to get it done in about 30 seconds – the time most elevators take to traverse floors in a large office building. It is meant to be longer than a memorable tagline (my favorite was from Herb the Plumber – “Don’t go to bed with that drip, call me!”).

The Problem with Elevator Speeches

Here is my problem with elevator speeches for lawyers. They aren’t really effective and run a significant risk of scaring our prospects away.

An example of what I mean happened just recently as I was leaving a deposition to go back to my office. I got into the elevator with another lawyer whom I don’t know. I had never met her before and didn’t even know she was a lawyer. I casually said – so what do you do?

Bam! Instant 30 second commercial came at me, “Well you know how women over forty are getting back into their careers and trying to juggle family and work and other responsibilities and not getting support at home and maybe the husband has cheated, maybe not, but definitely not supporting her and of course finding no support at home and finding that divorce is the only option. Well, I help them get a soft divorce! And, I am unique in that I lead them through the process in a special concierge style that they are happy to pay extra for! Not only that, I help them get all the money they deserve in their settlement so they can go on with their lives. So if you know anyone who is a woman and over forty and getting divorced, and wants it done softly and with pampering concierge style, I’d appreciate it if you ‘d have them call me.”

And she stuck her card in my hand. And I thought to myself, What?? But I said, “Um, cool, I’ll keep you in mind…definitely keep you in mind.”

A technique designed to help create rapport actually destroyed it. My next article includes some tips that you can use to make a meaningful connection. You can find that and more in my Master Your Marketing Program.

If you want to know more right now, schedule some time to talk with me personally on my calendar here.