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Convert Networking Into Content

This post originally appeared in Susan Kostal's Legal Marketing Bits & Bites Newsletter. Sign up for more content here.

I’m headed to the Silicon Valley Association of General Counsel All Hands Meeting this week, so professional development has been on my mind lately. I look forward to SVAGC each year because I get to meet up with some of the brightest minds in the field.

Because I write a lot about the benefits of creating and distributing the right kind of content, you might assume I think that you can sit at your desk cranking out material and the right people will flock to your door. Quality content is important, but you can’t create it in a hermetic environment. Lawyers and legal marketing professionals need to get out and regularly meet their readers, peers, clients, potential clients and others in their intended audience. Sure, analytics are great. But detailed conversations and exchanges at professional development events tell you exactly who is thinking and talking about what. These discussions serve as vital focus groups. What is troubling clients, potential clients, and peers? What are they interested in? What kind of questions are they asking, both at panels and in the hallways? These events aren’t just about personal professional development, networking, or amassing CLE credits. Done properly, they answer key questions about how to market yourself.

  1. Does your content address current concerns?

  2. What does this event tell you about your positioning?

  3. How can you refine your content strategy?

  4. How can you add to or amplify the ideas presented?

  5. What can be worked into new content?

Go beyond collecting business cards and contacts for LinkedIn. Use these meetings and events as key launching points for the continued evolution of your content strategy. Make sure it aligns with your personal marketing strategy, and fire up that keyboard.

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