In marketing professional services, or anything else for that matter, it helps to have a widget.
What’s a widget? A widget is a thing that you use as a give-away, a gift, a door-opener, and (when you have a very good widget) as a symbol of your firm.
(You might enjoy an article I have included below concerning the little yellow rubber ducky used by a famous hotel chain.)
Smart Marketing client Meg Rudansky of Sag Harbor, NY, has a great widget in the form of her Senior Resource Guide booklet, which you will hear much more about in the weeks ahead. And fellow client Rick Law has a wonderful widget in the form of his Law Elder Law teddy bears.
The bears are soft and fuzzy and wear a tee shirt. On the front it says Law Elder Law. On the back is has www.lawelderlaw.com and 800-810-3100.
The bears cost abour $12.50 each from Vermont Teddy Bear Company.
Sound expensive for a give-away item? Listen to the first reactions Rick and his staff got to the bears:
"Today, Wednesday, February 23, 2005, was the birthday of the Vermont Teddy Bear butter-cream style dressed in a natty T emblazoned with Law Elder Law on the front and www.lawelderlaw.com and 800-810-3100 on the back," said Rick. "At my first meeting in a potential clients home, we are going through the beginning-awkwards and after about 10 minutes, I say, ( while looking directly into the wife’s eyes),’Do you have any grandchildren?’ She answers, ‘Why yes! We have 12.’ Now, Mark Merenda did not tell me what to do when they say…12, so I have to punt. ‘Oh, well you probably wondered why I came in today with a notepad and a gym bag.’ Then I lean over to the floor and unzip the bag and pull out a bear while saying, ‘You’ll just have to decide which grandchild deserves to get this bear.’ She accepts the offered bear and hugs it and says, ‘This little guy isn’t going anywhere, he will stay right here with me!’
"Now friends, I don’t know if I will ever have these folks as clients. The warm-up and get acquainted stuff went as well as a sales guy can hope at that point, and it was way too early to try to close. My only real agenda today was to make friends. Trust me, that bear went further than any of my eloquence could have gotten me."
"Amanda Law and I visited a supportive living facility in Aurora, Illinois and spoke with the Marketing director and received a full tour of their facility. We were treated with a major amount of respect after a sit down lunch we had with them. We explained what we did and gave them testimonials of clients we have helped transition and they were impressed at the extent of our services and care for our clients. We went on to tell them that we were more than a law firm but an elder resource company as well. After spending two hours with the marketing director and meeting most of the other staff such as the admission director and social workers and even the accountant, we met the son of the owner of this facility. He was a younger gentleman that was glad to see us and commented that he had never experienced an elder law firm with a young marketing staff much less one with a nurse practitioner aligned with it. He immediately suggested holding seminars and exchanging referrals and referral sources. As the end of the meeting drew near we presented the group with the Law Elder Law teddy bear. Their reaction was stunning. They stated that it was "such a nice touch for the field that we were in" and gushed about how cool it was and what a "brilliant marketing tool" it was. They sheepishly offered us their coffee mugs and actually apologized that it was not as good as our offering. I want to reiterate that this was our marketing call! I am trying to get referrals from them! And they are treating me as if I am a multimillion dollar client. It was truly amazing to me that if you offer a little bear, a family name, and some help where it is needed, suddenly you are the most wonderful and compassionate guy in the market.
To read about the rubber ducky, please click "Continue reading" below….