Discussed in this episode:
· How a “terrible” rock band led to a career in marketing
· From law school to entrepreneur and startup growth expert
· Mastering the nontraditional attorney career path
· How a law degree enhances marketing skills
· How to put together an actionable marketing plan
Have you defined your practice’s brand? Are you wondering how your law degree can help in marketing? Kevin Tully, Zinda Law Group’s CMO, has the answer.
In this episode, Kevin will detail his dynamic professional journey, discuss how law school made him a better marketing professional, and offer tips for personal injury lawyers who are trying to build their practices and reach more clients.
“You all have your hearts in the best places when it comes to helping your clients,” Kevin said. “That was an easy mental shift for me to make to see at the end of the day we are serving people in need. That felt really good. That was a reason to get out of bed and come to work every morning.”
From rock band to marketing master
It’s safe to say that Kevin Tully’s journey as a marketer has been anything but dull. When he started playing in an amateur rock band in college, he never would have dreamed of becoming a lawyer turned expert marketing executive.
“Playing in bands is where I first started to be a marketer. We were promoting our shows and making band fliers and stickers and all that sort of stuff,” Kevin said.
After college graduation, Kevin worked at Atlantic Records in New York City in the age of Napster.
“I was there, I was working in the marketing department, working in the A & R department. I realized my coworkers were packing up their desks and leaving for other opportunities outside of the music business because it just wasn’t headed in the right direction at the time.”
The law school journey
“There was a guy who’d show up and he would talk to my boss, and he wore a suit, and he looked like he was doing well for himself. So, I picked his brain. I said, ‘Hey, what do you do? Will you take me to lunch and tell me all about it?”
From there, Kevin pursued a law degree. Exposure to intellectual property law inspired Kevin to start his own company in the music industry.
“Through that I learned digital marketing, ecommerce, and a lot of skills that are still in play for me today.”
Mastering the nontraditional attorney path
Kevin’s legal experience has served him well as a marketer on a nontraditional post-law school path.
“I stepped off the path, and I haven’t ever tried to go back to becoming a practicing attorney,” Kevin said. “I think that would be a little intimidating at this point, and I’m happy where I’ve ended up.”
“A law degree is a means to an end and not an end itself,” Jack added. “I see a lot of attorneys who are unhappy in the practice of law they’re working in…and they feel stuck.”
How a law degree enhances marketing skills
“It taught me how to think critically, it taught me how to problem solve. I think issue spotting is something that I use every day in all of the different companies that I’ve worked for,” Kevin said. “I think that’s the big difference between lawyers and nonlawyers is the ability to boil something that is complex down to the crux of the issue.”
Kevin eventually shifted gears from working with Indeed and Siete Foods to leading the marketing team at Zinda Law Group.
“I just felt like this was going to be a great group of people who were really driven, really smart, highly motivated, and I wanted to be in that kind of space again. I felt like it was going to make me better as a person,” Kevin said.
“It’s funny, once people come work for us and other personal injury law firms, they see what a great calling this area of the law can be,” Jack added. “But it has such a tough stigma from people on the outside that it can be tough to convince people to give us a shot.”
Kevin admitted that marketers in personal injury law fight the same battle. Still, he admits that overcoming that starts with the personal injury firm itself and its focus on helping people in need.
How to put together an actionable marketing plan
“I’m a big believer that frameworks are helpful starting points,” Kevin noted. “Anytime I’ve ever had to learn anything, the ‘ah-ha’ moments have been seeing the frameworks others have used.”
He also emphasized the importance of marketing funnels. At the wide end, you have your awareness-level marketing. This lets people know that you are “out there.” As consumers make their way through the funnel, they slowly provide information, engage you, have a great experience, and build loyalty.
“Using that framework, we think about how that maps to who the client is, getting that persona down, and understand how you can be helpful to them as you go through that process. If you’re not providing value to them in that marketing, you’re doing it wrong,” Kevin said.
The whole point of legal marketing is getting clients to a good place and solving their problems. Kevin discussed lessons learned from StoryBrand, a book about brand building for today’s marketer. For lawyers, building a strong brand requires positioning oneself as the client’s guide.