Recent Posts

Helping bankruptcy lawyers break out of their shells

tradeshowPeople in marketing, advertising and communications are typically pretty extroverted. We have no problem walking into a room full of people we’ve never met and coming out with a new group of friends. It just comes naturally, and for that, we’re usually a well-connected bunch.

Perhaps it was for that reason I was asked to do a short presentation on networking at a reception for young lawyers at the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges in Tampa this week.

It’s easy to coach the extroverts – approach individuals, ask about their ideal client, invite them for a follow-up coffee – there is rarely a situation that makes them uncomfortable.

But our poor, poor introverts. We have to start with the basics. Here is a bit of the homework I created for them:

  • Smile! Watch your body language. Don’t cross your arms or put your hands in your pockets. Put your phone away.
  • Ask questions and LISTEN – get your ice-breakers ready. One of the best networking questions is, “what kind of client is a good fit for you?”
  • Prepare ahead of time if you don’t think quickly on your feet – anticipate questions you’ll be asked and have answers ready
  • Introduce people who may not know one another, then ask for introductions

If you’re naturally introverted, find ways to get comfortable with networking
outside your practice area so you can give and get referrals. Become a well-rounded professional with participation in other business associations and civic organizations.

Throughout life, you have likely heard, “you only get out of it what you put into it.” This is particularly true of membership in organizations. You will always find the most value when you serve as a leader or part of a committee. The time and commitment is always worth it.

  • Bar Associations / Sections
  • Professional Associations (NACBA, ABI)
  • Local Business Groups and Programs
  • Chambers of Commerce
  • Leadership Programs
  • Young Professional Associations
  • Alumni Associations

Non-Profit and Social Organizations

  • Arts
  • Animal Welfare
  • Community Service
  • Environmental
  • Sports Clubs

Particularly with non-profit service, it is important to select organizations and causes you are passionate about. Authenticity is essential and will allow you to stay motivated to serve.

Many people believe networking is simply attending events and collecting business cards. The best way to build a network is to become a connector. By looking for opportunities to connect others, people will begin to see you as a well-connected and trusted advisor.

  • Write a few notes on the back of their business card
  • Hand write ‘pleasure to meet you’ notes
  • Connect on LinkedIn
  • Invite to coffee (“I’d like to learn more about what you do so I can keep my ears open for opportunities”)
  • Send articles, reports, links and invitations to other events

Diane Darling’s How To Work a Room is a particularly nice graphic to illustrate how to network effectively. And one of my favorite books is, Never Eat Alone.

Then again, I’m an extrovert.

Tampa Bay public relations

Federal judge rules Florida Bar rules on lawyer advertising violate First Amendment

I’ve been working on legal marketing and advertising for more than 13 years, and one of my biggest frustrations has been the Florida Bar rules regulating lawyer advertising. I understand that advertising is relatively new to the profession, and some hucksters have gone overboard in their unseemly ads, but the majority of law firms simply want to communicate what they do, what makes them different, and how they can help their clients.

A Florida federal judged ruled that the Bar’s rules violate lawyers’ First Amendment rights. The Bar’s lawyer recommended that they do not appeal the ruling, stating, “This is very conscientious, smart judge, and it is a well-reasoned opinion.”

We’re anxious to read the Florida Bar’s communications on the subject and are cautiously optimistic about the wave of creative and compelling advertising to come!

You can read the entire 41-page ruling.

Tampa Bay public relations

Legal Marketing Association’s Southeastern Chapter Announces 2011 Tampa Bay City Group Leadership

The Legal Marketing Association’s (LMA) Southeastern Chapter is pleased to announce its Tampa Bay City Group leadership for 2011. The Southeastern Chapter is the largest in the international organization of LMA, covering 10 states with 18 sub-chapters called City Groups throughout the region, serving nearly 500 members. The Tampa Bay City Group leadership is:

Chair:  Louise Henkel, marketing and business development specialist at Fowler White Boggs P.A.

Co-chair:  Debbie Tillmann, proposal manager at Carlton Fields

Membership chair:  Ginger Reichl, president at legal marketing firm, Pinstripe Marketing.

Immediate-past chair:  Anne Zambrano, marketing director at Trenam Kemker, was also elected board member-at-large for the Southeastern Chapter.

The Legal Marketing Association: is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to serving the needs and maintaining the professional standards of the men and women involved in marketing within the legal profession. The Southeastern Chapter serves members in 10 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas.

Tampa Bay public relations

Online Reputation Management for Lawyers


Admit it. You’ve Googled yourself. Did you like what you found?

The latest buzz in communications is around online reputation management and how you can influence the information people can find about you and your firm on the web.

In the first Legal Marketing Association – Tampa Bay chapter meeting of the year, Ginger Reichl, president of Pinstripe Marketing, a Tampa Bay-based legal marketing firm, will provide a review of reputation management, resources to draft a social media policy, tools to monitor your online persona, and practical tips for creating and managing your social media profiles.

We’ll also have a discussion about how lawyers and law firm staff are using social media profiles and what the marketing and practice development department can do to help protect the reputation of the firm.

Tuesday, January 18, 2010
11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Holland & Knight
Regions Bank Building
201 N. Franklin Street
Tampa, FL 33602
Guests should check-in at the 41st Floor

Legal Marketing Tampa Bay

Members $20
Guests $40

RSVP to LMA Tampa Bay Chair, Louise Henkel.

Join LMA Tampa Bay on Facebook.

Tampa Bay public relations

Law firms face delays in online marketing rules

Ginger Reichl comments on the Bar’s changes to rules for legal web sites and when they will go into effect in today’s Tampa Bay Business Journal.

Tampa Bay public relations