This being a holiday week and all, I’ve been thinking about playing a little golf. In fact, living on a course makes me think about it all the time (and I play not frequently enough). But I do think that it is a great business development tool, and encourage lawyers to entertain (No. 2 on my list of Top Marketing Tips) clients and referral sources in this fashion.

So, you can imagine my chagrin when I ran across a older post by Sara Holtz at Women Rainmakers bLawg that she titles “Instead of Golf: Ten Ways to Build Relationships” which referred to her article by the same name that appeared in the Tennessee Bar Association’s "The Complete Lawyer."

Well, it turns out that Sara doesn’t have anything against golf (thank goodness) but was only pointing out that a lot of women don’t golf, and so she wanted to emphasize other great ways to build relationships. Her ten include:

  • Create A Networking Group (with other professionals),
  • Be A Resource (to clients or potential clients – and referral sources – for business and personal problems),
  • Get Personal (and recognize milestones/news/etc. with a handwritten note or personal gift),
  • Provide A Clipping Service (as in sending a news clipping about the person or business with a note),
  • Enlist Their Help (on a panel, “reverse” seminar, feedback on an article you’re drafting, etc., since people “like to feel needed”),
  • Coordinate Plans (if you and prospect will be attending same event),
  • Do Some Personal PR (send info about what you have accomplished or an article pointing out how, and how it might help their business – to avoid it sounding too self-serving),
  • Be An Information Broker (similar one to above, but emphasizing info they may not have seen),
  • Volunteer (with an emphasis on demonstrating your skills as a lawyer), and
  • Keep In Touch (so as to avoid being out of sight, out of mind).

Oh yeah, don’t forget my number 11: Entertain them at golf — or some other venue.