Why Attorneys Can’t Act Busier Than Journalists

Many lawyers know the feeling. You’re reading a news story or journal article and come across a quote from a fellow attorney, wondering why the reporter didn’t contact you instead. Chances are it’s because that reporter doesn’t know you. While researching media outlets, deciding on a story to pitch and how to pitch it will get you on the right track, it’s the relationship with a journalist that will lead to an interview and likely the inclusion of a linkback to your firm’s website. Here are some tips to help you develop your relationship with media members.

Do Your Research

Like a marriage, friendship or business partnership, a relationship with a journalist is a two-way street and requires effort from both parties. Before you ever reach out or deliver a pitch, explore the previous works of a reporter to get a feel of their coverage area. You can even reference a previous story of theirs to showcase your understanding of them and their beat. A good first impression can go a long way toward securing a fruitful partnership with a reporter. 

Even when you don’t have a story to pitch, it’s important to keep in touch with journalists to maintain that relationship. Follow them on social media and show your support by sharing a story on your personal social media channels. Developing your relationship with reporters will also help determine their various preferences. It’s safe to assume an email is a good form of communication, but as you get to know them better, you may come to find they prefer a phone call or text message. 

Be Easy to Find

While it’s still important to do your part in fostering and maintaining a relationship with a media member, there will also likely be times that a journalist or reporter wants to reach out to you first. And nothing will jeopardize your earned media opportunity like not having contact and background information readily available and easy to access. Keeping your bio, a photo and any other assets in a centralized location on your firm’s website will make it easier for a journalist to contact you when the time comes. 

Sticking to a consistent schedule with your content marketing efforts can also help in this practice. The more often you publish relevant content, particularly with the right keywords, the more likely you are to be found through a Google search. Plus, the more content you produce on your own will give a reporter a better understanding of your work to determine whether or not you would be a reliable resource for future stories. 

Be Available

One of the most effective ways to cultivate and protect your relationship with a reporter is to always make time for them. Journalists often don’t set their own deadlines and there are times that they’ll be racing against the clock to finish a story on time. This is where you can improve your standing with a media member by always being available to provide a quote or relevant information for the story. 

That’s not to say that if a reporter calls or emails that you should drop everything you’re doing and devote all your time to their needs. Keep in mind that you’re the expert and thought leader in the legal industry and providing some assistance to a journalist in need likely won’t take too much of your time. However, there are few things as beneficial for your relationship with a media member. Help them out and you’ll become a trusted source that they rely on again in the future. Ignore it and the opportunity may never present itself again. 

Be a Resource

It’s no secret that having a good relationship with a journalist can be greatly beneficial for you as a lawyer and for your firm as a whole. The credibility and expanded reach can open the doors to an entirely new audience and recognition as a thought leader in your field. To ensure that you remain top-of-mind to a reporter, it’s important to provide benefits of your own by being a trusted resource that they can reach out to whether the story involves your firm or not. 

Create a profile of your background and professional experience to send to reporters that can be kept in their database. This gives them a clear understanding of who you are and what you do, putting you at the top of their list when they have a question related to your field. You should also consider sharing information that isn’t always self-serving. Even if it doesn’t immediately lead to recognition in a story, being a resource for a journalist ensures that you will always be considered when the time comes that they do need a direct quote or mention of your firm. 

The most important thing to remember is that a relationship with a journalist is like one with any other acquaintance. You didn’t become best friends with somebody on the first day you met them. It took time for the relationship to grow and the partnership with a reporter is no different. Stay committed to becoming a resource and a media member will have no choice but to work with you. 

If you find yourself struggling to develop a working relationship with journalists and missing out on earned media opportunities, give us a call. Our agency has particular expertise in helping law firms and legal marketers create thought leadership platforms fueled by an integrated strategy of earned media and content marketing that increases leads and cases, improves brand recognition and reputation, while also equipping attorneys to sell.

SAME process. Unique results.

If improving lead generation is a priority to your law firm, we would love to be your partner. Schedule a free 1-hour consultation.

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Mitchell Williams Law

Legal Content Marketing

We helped this growing mid-size law firm better position its attorneys as experts in key practice areas by delivering curated content.

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Are You the Next Rock Star on the Ghidotti Team?

The Ghidotti Team is overflowing with full-fledged rock stars. Sure – we’re looking for the best, brightest, most creative, most organized. You get the picture. But what we REALLY want is someone who we can laugh with, depend on, learn from and do great work together. Learn more about who we’re looking for and what you can expect.

In the Account Supervisor position, a staff member will be responsible for assisting and managing the public relations, content marketing, digital media, account services and/or creative/strategy for clients. This position requires fully developed specialty skills, a strong understanding of the industry landscape and an understanding of client priorities and objectives.
  • Serve as the account strategist/lead and oversee/play a clear leadership role on at least three clients.
  • Manage the implementation of work plans and ensure client deliverables are successfully met on deadline.
  • Play a leadership role in the sales process by identifying additional services to sell to existing clients and assisting with RFP responses, new business proposals, presentations, etc. with senior leadership or independently.
  • Display a strong understanding of and effectively communicate Ghidotti’s service offerings to existing clients.
  • Successfully supervise at least one junior staff member, including providing guidance on their professional growth.
  • Begin to play a role in the agency’s marketing efforts, guiding aspects of certain campaigns and/or helping to execute in their areas of expertise.

Account Services: 

  • Play a clear leadership role in the planning and execution of integrated marketing campaigns for clients.
  • Develop and write comprehensive strategic marketing plans for clients.
  • Handle vendor contracts and ensure proper billing.
  • Demonstrate a clear track record of successfully meeting deadlines and timelines.
  • Handle day-of logistics on behalf of clients, responding quickly and effectively.
  • Assist in providing leadership and professional development on client relations, helping team members improve their skills in managing conflict, presentations, sales, etc.

Client Strategy: 

  • Develop or oversee the visual content creation for client materials, including e-newsletters, website content, digital campaigns, marketing collateral, etc.
  • Oversee the development of marketing materials and branding campaigns.
  • Manage creative marketing campaigns on behalf of clients.
  • Demonstrate a clear track record of leading brainstorms, and providing and implementing creative ideas for proposals, presentations, etc.
  • Continually provide new and ‘fresh’ ideas for proposals, new business proposals and current clients’ marketing campaigns.

Apply for this open position by emailing Bethany Siems at bethany@ghidotti.com.

Experience in public relations, content marketing, digital media and influencer marketing is a must, but here is what we really want in a fellow Rock Star. Don’t let it scare ya – we just have high standards!

  • You anticipate every move of our clients and us.
  • You dream of ways to crack the Instagram gold mine in your sleep.
  • You are resourceful.
  • You are humble.
  • You know what needs to be done because it just comes naturally.
  • You are accurate. Every. Single. Time.
  • You take our vague guidance and get it done.
  • You are fast, yet error-free and awesome.
  • You care about every single, tiny, little detail.
  • You follow instructions.
  • You know you are extraawesome, and totally own that.
  • You meet deadlines even when you only have minutes to do it.
  • You can handle your own drama. Better yet, you don’t have any.
  • You have a life outside of work that you love and nurture.
  • You loathe micromanagers and don’t need one.
  • You love learning new things.
  • You sing karaoke and have “that song” when you really need to bring it.
  • You ask questions when appropriate. (Basically, you don’t ask us how to spell someone’s name because you know how to Google as if your life depends on it).
  • You treat our clients and your team members with respect.
  • You are funny.
  • You are caring.
  • You are a good friend and co-worker.
  • You are creative and think of winning marketing ideas in your sleep.
  • You love writing award entries. Like it’s your job!
  • You are resourceful. It’s so important that we’re mentioning it again.

Rock Star Environment

We strive to create a fun, engaging atmosphere where high fives, chicken minis, and celebrations are commonplace. We lift one another up, honor achievements and reward hard work.

  1. Professional Enrichment

    Whether instructor-led, web-based or sharing during Fireside Friday, we are always learning more!

  2. Community Engagement

    We love the state of Arkansas. Our team enjoys outings to locally-owned businesses and pride ourselves on community involvement. In addition, employees are often offered free tickets to community events to get out and enjoy life with friends and family.

  3. Team Building

    Quarterly adventures for the team!

  4. Winter Recess

    We shut this place down at the holidays so we can all rest, relax and reinvigorate for the new year.

  5. Summer Fridays

    We get an early jump on the weekend every Friday during the summer.

  6. Volunteer Time Off (VTO)

    Along with your PTO, you also get VTO to use to support your favorite charity or organization.

Does this describe you?

Apply for one of our open positions or just send us an email letting us know why you should be part of this Rock Star team. Email bethany@ghidotti.com.