I was a practising lawyer, and now I tell stories for a living.
Not much has changed.
As a lawyer, your job is to tell the best version of your client's story possible. Obviously not every client has a perfect story. Sometimes the evidence is stacked against you, or sometimes the case law isn't quite on your side.
That's where the heavy lifting comes in. You're looking to find the version of that story that, while still truthful, shows your client in the best possible light, or at the very least helps to mitigate their damages.
Whether it's through written or oral advocacy, storytelling is at the heart of your practice.
You also have a story of your own. The legal market is highly saturated. It's rare today to be the only lawyer in your region who practices in the same area that you do. Unless there are no other lawyers within a convenient drive, the odds are that you have some competition to earn that client's business.
How are you going to set yourself apart? Puffing out your proverbial chest and boasting about how you're 'the best' not only isn't a great look, but it's actually prohibited by marketing rules in many jurisdictions, not to mention that it's rarely effective.
Your story is what sets you apart. It may not be the whole story of your life, but your story is what makes you who you are. It's why you got into law in the first place, and what motivates you to keep working on your hardest days.
It's unique, and it sets you apart. More importantly, it's how your clients will connect with you. They want someone who they feel is in their corner, so building those relationships can be just as crucial as the quality of your work.
You're also connecting with your clients through the stories that you tell them.
In practice you realize that your clients likely don't have a legal background, and may not have the same understanding of legal concepts and case law that you take for granted day to day.
Instead you explain things through stories. You'll automatically turn the relevant case law into a story in order to show how those parties' story overlaps with theirs.
You'll likely tell stories of clients that you've helped in similar situations to theirs, omitting confidential details, but demonstrating that you can be an effective negotiator in their case as well.
You're telling stories constantly through your work, but are you doing so in your marketing?
I've designed Storytelling For Lawyers to help my former colleagues get better at their storytelling, since it's so important to their professional success.
The webcast (available on demand) spends a fun, engaging hour guiding lawyers and legal professionals through the ins and outs of using storytelling in their marketing, and how to make sure that storytelling is fully compliant with professional rules around marketing and confidentiality.
Best of all, it's accredited for 1 hour of professionalism by the Law Society of Ontario (and may be acceptable for other law society requirements across Canada).
Sign up today to see where your marketing can take you next.