Leveraging Your Reputation: Two ways to say thanks

Tom Ciesielka is President of TC Public Relations (www.tcpr.net). Tom has over 25 years of marketing and public relations experience, working with individual lawyers and midsize law firms. He is also a former board member of the Legal Marketing Association in Chicago and has spoken at Chicago Bar Association CLE programs. Reach him at tc@tcpr.net.

November is Thanksgiving month, so it’s a good time to think of ways to thank your clients and other people you work with. Of course, you can send them gift cards, cookies, and flowers, but there are a couple of free things that you can do to show them that you’re thankful.

Share a free ebook. An ebook doesn’t have to be hundreds of pages, and it’s not complicated to do. You can simply create a PDF of some useful information that you think clients will need, or offer a legal analysis of societal trends or prominent current events. Create content for a variety of audiences. For instance, if you have an area of expertise that other attorneys could benefit from to do their own work, then create a PDF for them with that helpful information. You can then create another PDF with tips and simple legal guidance for clients, such as explaining changes in laws that will affect them. Remember to create an ebook that is brief but contains substantial information so that people think they’re getting something of value. Once your PDF is complete, just post it on your website and share the link for download, or send the PDF directly to the people in your network.

Send a handwritten note. Andrea Nierenberg, who I’ve worked and is the Queen of Networking, has promoted this idea for years, and says that she writes three handwritten notes a day. Think about the people who have helped you recently, whether in a big or small way, and thank them with a small card and short note that is just a few lines. Today, since many people are on email, social networking sites, or on their phones, a handwritten note really stands out. When someone sees that his or her mail contains a card in the midst of catalogs, junk mail, and bills, it’s a nice surprise. It’s best to get into a daily or weekly habit of sending out thank you cards, and it doesn’t take much time: write a few when you’re having coffee or before you start working at your desk. You’ll see that people will react positively and will possibly help you even more in the future.

And don’t limit yourself to November; try these two tips throughout the year, and your reputation and network will grow.

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