Creative Holiday Thinking

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“Behold, I make all things new.”
Revelation 21:5

If you’ve been reading my writing for any length of time, you’ve likely figured out that my particular faith tradition is Christian. That is, I make it my goal in life to follow Christ, wherever he might lead. And, of course, I fail regularly in this pursuit.
That’s one of the many reasons Christmas is so special to me–it’s a story of redemption … and the birth of something astonishingly different and powerful.
We all need THAT, in my opinion.
And I, also,  love my friends from different (or none) faith backgrounds. That’s why I wholeheartedly exclaim, “Happy Hanukkah, Happy Al-Hijira and Joyful Festivus, etc” to you, if you come from those traditions. Despite appearances, I don’t mean that as a token gesture–we here at HerdBuilder Marketing wish you a deeply joyful season.
I do love Christmas, though. And I’m actually a kind of “Santa grinch”…at the risk of being offensive (I suppose I risk that regularly), I just sort of get annoyed by this massive scam perpetrated on our kids. Yes, it IS sweet…but come on–a funny old man driving an 18th-century vehicle propelled by flying artic beasts and alighting on *every* roof on the planet to deliver the EXACT presents desired by its youthful inhabitants?
It’s almost as if we’re training our kids to be skeptical of *everything* we say! But shoot…I don’t judge those who play along. I gobbled up the story as a child, and I don’t believe I’m disproportionately scarred. 🙂
But here’s what I DO want to emphasize to my children–and to you, Test: Now is the perfect time to make things new.
For your personal life, your marriage, your family…and your business.
So, in that vein, one of my primary business partners, Alexis Martin Neely, wrote a great article about thinking creatively in the new year. She writes primarily for lawyers, but boy oh boy, tax & accounting professionals could sure put these words to great use!
Chew on this, as you begin to make plans for the new year.
And, as always–I’m happy to have your feedback!
A Little Creativity = More Clients 
by Alexis Martin Neely
[Note from Nate: Again, this is written for lawyers, by a multi-million dollar lawyer and coach, but there’s tons in here for the smart service professional of every category.]
Corporations spend billions each year developing creative advertising and marketing campaigns to attract more clients.   They realize creativity is the key to standing out in a saturated marketplace.  So, how do they stand out?  The key is in creativity.  Making their product, marketing materials and physical space “unique” and different on multiple sensory levels.
The good news is you don’t have to spend billions to do this in your own law business.
And yet most lawyers are stuck looking the same as everyone else. Why?
Because most of us:
1. Are analytical/left-brain thinkers who have a hard time jumping into our right-brain/creative side (creativity really is hard for some people); and
2.  Assume everything must be “professional” to earn the respect of a prospect, leaving very little room for creativity and innovation.
“Lawyer type” of professional image is a thing of the past. Today, people associate that old kind of “professional” image with a non-responsive, scary lawyer who takes their money and won’t return phone calls or the attorney who will bill for every email, phone call or correspondence that crosses her desk.
Being creatively professional, on the other hand, helps remove the defenses and stereotypes people have when hiring a lawyer and overcomes the presumption that you’re just like all the other lawyers in town.
With that said, here are the top three ways where a bit of creativity and right-brain thinking can go a long way in attracting clients to your law firm:
1.  Web copy:  If your web copy reads like a CV or a text book, time to hit the delete button and juice up your creative writing skills.  Use your website to tell the story of who you are, why you are different and why your area of law matters so much.  You can even get creative with your writing style! Throw in some bullet points, contractions and folksy language if that’s how you speak.  Use those creative juices to prove you aren’t the stuffy lawyer prospects expect you to be.
2.  Firm Story [or “About Us”]:  Your firm story (the story you relay to clients about why you practice law, how your business came to be and what makes you different from other lawyers) should be about true life events and epiphanies that are relevant to the person you are speaking with, not a biography of your most notable accomplishments and awards.  Here you’ll creatively use your experiences outside the law to connect to prospects on a much deeper and more meaningful level.  Did you grow up in foster care and now practice family law or estate planning as a result? Integrate that into your firm story!  Did you live through a bankruptcy and now practice business law to help other entrepreneurs avoid the same plight?  Include that too!  The more outside-the-box your story is, the more likely it will stick with your prospects and make an impact.
3.  Your office space:  If you haven’t watched my video on setting up your office space in a way that’s creative, outside the box and prime to attract more clients, do so now by clicking here. Your office says so much about you and plays a huge role in attracting the right type of clients to your firm.  Therefore, you’ll want to get the décor and ambiance just right so your first impression with a prospect won’t be the last.  You can do this even if you use a virtual office space.  Create a basket that you bring in before each client meeting that personalizes the space.

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