Regular readers of this blog and the newsletter (free sign-up on the main site) know my philosophy about law firm marketing; That selling legal services is really just about helping people to identify and find solutuions to their problems and maximize their opportunities. And you know what I think about our ethical obligations to do as much marketing as we can to ensure that when someone needs a lawyer, they already know, like & trust one instead of having to resort to the yellow pages.
Here’s a little story that may just make the point about why it is that lawyers who are habitual about helping people find solutions, even when the solution doesn’t call for the serivces of our own firms, are also usually the Top Rainmakers who survive and prosper in the long-run:
A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package.
"What food might this contain?" The mouse wondered – he was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap.
Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning.
"There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"
The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, "Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it."
The mouse turned to the pig and told him, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"
The pig sympathized, but said, "I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers."
The mouse turned to the cow and said, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"
The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I’m sorry for you, but it’s no skin off my nose."
So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer’s mousetrap– alone.
That very night a sound was heard throughout the house — like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey. The farmer’s wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught. The snake bit the farmer’s wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital and she returned home with a fever.
Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup’s main ingredient.
But his wife’s sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock.
To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig.
The farmer’s wife did not get well and died. So many people came for her funeral, the farmer
had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.
The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.
So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn’t concern you,
remember — when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk.
I hope you’ll keep this little story in mind the next time someone comes to you with a legitimate problem that does not happen to call for your services. There’s always something a good lawyer can do to help!