Is print dead... or just under attack?

A few years ago, a marketing task force of high-powered attorneys was considering the value of a new brochure for their law firm.

Most were in favor of the idea, but one – connected by speakerphone and unable to see what we were all looking at – wasn’t buying in at all.

“I attended a big marketing conference recently and an attorney stood up in one of the sessions and asked, Has anyone here every gotten a new client because of a brochure? And not a single hand went up!”

This kind of a direct challenge used to throw me, but I’d gotten accustomed to it – and I knew I had to address it or the project would be lost – for us and for them.


So this is what I said.

“That attorney was right to raise the question.” And I paused a very long time before continuing, “But perhaps he didn’t ask the right question.”

And again I paused. Everyone was listening.

“What might the answer have been if he asked one of these questions?...” I asked.

“Have you ever found it easier to introduce someone to your firm – using a firm brochure?

“Have you ever been able to make a stronger first impression – because you had a well-done brochure?

“Have you ever used your firm brochure to illustrate the depth and breadth of your firm’s capabilities?

“Have you ever used a firm brochure as a way to make a client more comfortable with your approach or your experience?

“Have you ever used a firm brochure to elevate your firm’s stature in the eyes of a prospective client?

“Have you ever used a brochure to present your firm to someone you couldn’t meet with in person – perhaps by sending it over ahead of a meeting?

“Are all of these things achievable with a strong, professionally-prepared brochure?

“Absolutely,” I said.

“And if they are achievable, and they can be accomplished with a reasonable amount of time, energy, and money, which of them would you NOT want to do?”

No one spoke.

For a moment, I felt very smug. But deep down, I knew I had not won more than a moment of the battle. That lawyer and the others in the room would have topersonally experience the power of great print – and its ability to shape the way people think.

Until that happened, they would never truly believe it.

Carl Francis