You promote everyone else. Why not you?
The schedules of public relations professionals tends to be full and unpredictable – if we’re not putting out a fire here or signing off on a press release there, we are looking ahead, planning the next campaign, and simply educating ourselves on the changes in the legal industry, business and communications.
That sometimes doesn’t leave enough time for us to promote ourselves and what we can do for our attorney clients. How many times have we had a deadline and spoken with an attorney who didn’t realize we were prepared to help in any number of ways including promoting the client success or placing an article? How many times has a PR professional been asked nearly too late to craft a media strategy?
That’s why promoting our role as a pivotal part of the firm’s success is a critical parts of our jobs. We have to continually remind our attorneys of who we are, how and when to contact and work with us and ultimately why we are so valuable to their successes.
It can be a bit of a challenge, but here are some suggestions to add to your calendar in early 2017:
- Schedule informal brown-bag meetings where we can speak about what we do and can take questions from attorneys on how best to use our services;
- Develop a working relationship with attorneys, when schedules permit, before the big news hits;
- Market yourselves by internally circulating all positive press that the firm has received, with a brief note in the email congratulating the attorney for big wins or excellent and strategic quotes;
- Send reminder notes to attorneys about what the role of each member of the internal communications team and when to reach out to each person;
- Provide a note card each attorney can post at his or her desk with the contact information of each member of the PR team. The IT department does it. Why shouldn’t we?
It is true some lawyers aren’t especially adept at talking with the media and are even less interested in doing it. We can still pick our battles deftly. A lawyers predisposition towards the media should not stop us from continuously reminding attorneys the internal and external communications team can be an important part of the team.
After all, promoting ourselves is one of our key responsibilities, even if it isn’t in our job description.