This week on the show we have Larry Weinstein, CPA, based out of Houston, TX. Larry works with business owners to structure their affairs to legally reduce the taxes that they pay and keep more of their hard-earned dollars in their pocket where it rightfully belongs.
Larry is the author of a number of books, including The Official Business Owner’s Guide to Selecting a Business Entity-How Every New and Existing Business Can Choose the Best Entity to Operate Their Business-Attorney Edition AND Nine Mistakes Attorneys Make That Cause Them to Overpay Their Taxes …AND Eight Major Changes of the New Tax Law-How the New Tax Law Will Affect Your Practice and Your Family-Attorney Edition
In today’s episode we’ll talk about tax planning, marketing and the Zapathon.
Write down five things you’re grateful for at the end of each day. It really changes your outlook, helps you make decisions and find things to be grateful for.
Tyson recommends adding events to Google My Business to increase the space you take up and push other businesses out. For example, if you’re speaking at CLE or going to an event you can put that in there to expand your section on that page.
Larry recommends the book “Never Lose a Customer” by Joey Coleman. It discusses all of the phases of working with a client, including advocating so the client is out there singing your song.
For more content from us please subscribe to our YouTube Channel.
Don’t forget to sign up for MaxLawCon20!
Thanks so much for listening to the show! If you want to know more about this and keep on maximizing your firm, please join our Facebook Group – Maximum Lawyer or like us on Facebook – Maximum Lawyer Conference and comment!
You can also go to MaximumLawyer.com or, if you’d prefer, email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Interested in being on the show? Shoot us an email at email@example.com or message us on Facebook!
Run your law firm the right way. This is The Maximum Lawyer Podcast.
Your hosts, Jim Hacking and Tyson Mutrux. Let’s partner up and maximize your firm.
Welcome to the show.
Jim: Welcome back to The Maximum Lawyer Podcast. I’m Jim Hacking.
Tyson: I’m Tyson Mutrux. What’s up, Jimmy?
Jim: Good morning, Tyson. How are you?
Tyson: Good man. I’m a little worried. I hit my elbow a few weeks ago and my elbow’s swelling up. I think it’s infected. I may have to go to the doctor. I’m a little worried today. Otherwise, I’m doing well. Everything’s going great. How about you?
Jim: Oh, yeah. I’m doing well. I’m just sort of settling back in. Being out in Arizona for almost a week was sort of nice but then, when you come back to reality, it sort of hits you like a ton of bricks.
Tyson: I’m sort of on this high right now, too, because the Chiefs won the Super Bowl. Yesterday, I’ll be honest with you, I didn’t feel like doing a damn thing. I just wanted to watch replay videos of the Super Bowl. I got work done yesterday but I wasn’t very motivated.
Jim: What a great game it was. My son told me. He said, “Dad, you know what?” I said, “What?” He said, “Missouri is the only State with two world champions in it at the moment because the baseball champions are DC, that’s not a state, and then basketball was Toronto, that’s in Canada. We have all the national championships right here in the good old State of Missouri.
Tyson: Nice. St. Louis Blues, baby, and the Kansas City Chiefs. It’s a magical, magical thing. I’m so happy. If you’re not a Chiefs fan, I’m not sure you understand really the torture we’ve gone through. We went through the Marty Schottenheimer years where, I loved Marty Schottenheimer, we got so close so many times. And then we went through a lot of bad years. And then we were good again.
The comeback against the Colts. The Colts beat us. We were up big. Last year, like I started to think we were cursed because Dee Ford– I mean, we were there. We were going to the Super Bowl and Dee Ford lined up. He lined up offside. It wasn’t like he jumped. He lined up offside. And so, for it to finally happen, man. We had a bunch of people over at our house and people were just so just excited and happy. For those of you that have waited for a championship and it finally came, you know what I’m talking about. It feels so good.
Jim: Yeah. Andy Reid held the record for most games coached without a Super Bowl win. That was his 366th professional game head coaching so that’s pretty [inaudible 00:02:37]. I’m certainly happy for him and for all the long-suffering fans of Kansas City.
All right, let’s get to our show.
Tyson: Let’s jump in. Let’s do it.
Jim: All right. Today, we have a long-time member of the group. He was the very first person to ever suggest that our friends in The Maximum Lawyer group vote for us for the AVA podcast award. He’s been a great supporter of ours. His name is Larry Weinstein. He’s a CPA from Houston. He’s not a lawyer so he, like our last guest, brings sort of an interesting perspective to the group and to marketing and to law firms.
Larry, welcome to the show.
Larry: Hey. Jim and Tyson, thanks so much for having me. I’ve been looking forward to talking with you guys.
Tyson: So Larry, tell people about what you do. I want you to be a little more detailed because I’m pretty sure you’ve been to the Ben Glass stuff. You do a lot of the Dan Kennedy stuff. And so, talk about not only what you do but some of the marketing you do as well.
Larry: Well, I do a lot of– now, it’s a lot of strategic tax planning, doing some advanced planning for people to help them proactively lower their taxes and the tax preparation side of things. That’s a lot of what I do. A little bit of marketing but not as much anymore.
On the marketing side, as you mentioned, I first got introduced to all of this through Dan Kennedy. Dan Kennedy kept talking about this guy named Ben Glass. I met Ben in 2006. I give all the credit to Ben. He really turned it around for me. I learned all about direct response marketing. I had thought about writing a book. Right after I went to my first Ben Glass event, I wrote my book, my first book, although it did take me a full year back and forth, back and forth to do that. And then, along the way, I’ve done some interesting direct response mail pieces.
Now, I’m transitioning more into social media but it’s slow going for me. I’m not the most technically savvy on Facebook and using LinkedIn as well. I record a lot of videos, not as many as Jim Hacking but he’s one of my heroes, as is Gerry Oginski. I don’t even know how many he has now. He’s a buddy of mine. He’s got 2000 or 3000 videos. It’s kind of crazy. That’s kind of what I’ve been doing. I’m a big fan of writing books to build up authority, credibility and expertise. I know that, at the recent Zapathon, Tyson, you and Kelsey were having some fun with that, banging out books.
Jim: Larry, that is a great explanation of how you came to be in the marketing world. You’re a CPA who markets. One thing I’ve always admired about you is your willingness to go to any conference or any event that might help you increase your caseload or improve your firm. Talk to us about your mindset when it comes to continuing to learn about how to market and grow.
Larry: Well, thanks for the compliment, Jim.
At the end of the day, I have to tell you, in our profession, there’s nobody out there, in my opinion, that’s really teaching really good, smart, effective, ethical marketing. That being the case, I started looking around. Of course, I mentioned I was a big fan of Dan Kennedy and I found Ben Glass through that.
I’m to the point now where good marketing is good marketing. I’ve been following, in the legal world, for a while, Ben. You guys have been to Maximum Lawyer Conference. I’m going again. I’ve been to PILMMA a couple of times with Ken Hardison. He’s also very good. He used to hang out with a guy that I know very well, Rem Jackson. He has a group. He teaches podiatrists how to do good, smart, effective ethical marketing.
Most of that stuff can be transported from one to another. When they start talking about fungal nail treatment, it’s kind of hard for me to use that but, as my wife would say, that I’ve become really good at generalizing. In other words, I can take from one profession to another because selling legal services and selling professional tax services is very similar. I could probably go to a dental conference and learn similar things about building credibility and authority, direct response marketing.
To a lesser extent, what people aren’t talking too much about is customer experience. That’s something that has really become interesting to me in the last several years because, at the end of the day, plus or minus 10% all of the businesses all of the professions what we do maybe a little different than our competitors or colleagues but it doesn’t look that way to our clients. The only way we can really distinguish ourselves is with the customer experience. I like learning a lot. Honestly, there wasn’t anything and I still don’t think there’s much in our profession. That’s why I’m going to hang out with a bunch of lawyers, and podiatrists, and whoever else – whoever’s got the good information.
Tyson: Larry, you’ve gone to a lot of different industries, to their conferences. I want to get into a little bit of the Zapathon later because I want to ask you some things that you built. Actually, you did something you did some really good things. Before I get to that, I want to ask you, what are what are some things that you think that lawyers are doing right? Or, maybe, whatever industry it is. What are some things that, whatever industry it is, what are they doing right that you think that we should be adopting? What are some good marketing trends that you’re seeing, is my question? Where do you think people should start investing their marketing dollars?
Larry: One of the things that I see that the lawyers are doing – and I have to tell you, Tyson, I’m watching it from the outside. I think that there’s a whole lot of lawyers out there that they’re like the accountants and CPAs as well, that they kind of don’t know what’s going on and they kind of put their head in the sand. They’re doing nothing at all. The first thing I want to do is I want to give a big shoutout to the people that pay attention to The Maximum Lawyer Podcast. I guess it’s, what, a couple of thousand of the people that show up to your live event, The Maximum Lawyer Conference, taking the opportunity to learn because most people aren’t doing that. Most of the lawyers aren’t doing that.
At the end of the day, what I would say is what I’m seeing is, the way people are setting up the lead generation and the call handling so that, when the calls come in, that they’re properly handled. They’re vetted. They’re logged in. They’re followed up on because, at the end of the day, it takes a lot of time, effort, energy and especially money to get that phone to ring however that happens. If it’s from a referral, from advertising, if it’s from a referral from a former client or a friend, if it’s from a direct marketing piece, it’s really hard to get the phone to ring. Big kudos to the lawyers out there that are now doing good call intake, take care of those leads. That’s the one thing that I’m seeing a lot of. I think that that’s one of the things I’m seeing a lot of, spoken about, in the Maximum Lawyer Group.
Jim: Larry, what works best for you? Where do most of your new cases come from?
Larry: It’s a combination now of direct marketing, referral network. I’ve got to work a little bit harder on that. I was doing that before I met our friend John Fischer. I first met John at a Ben Glass event. He was competing for marketer of the year. I believe he won that year. He’s talked all about it because he’s all referral marketing.
And then, the other thing I’ve been working on, I made mention of earlier, is really developing an above-average client experience to do things, and show up, and react with my clients different than most people so that you just stay top of mind.
Jim, we’ve talked privately about this but, at the end of the day, most of the marketing gurus they talk all about bringing in new clients, spending money, and chasing bright, shiny objects. But it seems like not too many people are speaking about how can we get more business from the people that already know, like, and trust us? It just doesn’t make any sense. I think the statistics are it costs like seven times more to get a new client than it does to get somebody that’s already done business with you, to get them to buy again, or maybe not just necessarily buy the same services, but maybe there’s additional services that you can offer them.
At the end of the day, I guess, I don’t know what the technical term is, but you get more of the client’s wallet. In other words, if you do immigration, Jim, what else could you offer them that they already know, like, and trust you. If you can’t provide the service yourself, perhaps you can refer it out and get a referral fee.
And the same thing with you, Tyson. Kind of to become the center of their legal universe. They come to you with any legal question that you have, even if you can’t handle it, you can refer it out, possibly get paid. So yeah, referrals are really, really strong. I mean, that’s something that we should all aspire to.
Tyson: All right, Larry. Let’s shift gears a little bit. I want to talk about the Zapathon. You came up with an amazing series of zaps when it comes to video that I think will help everyone, if you’re comfortable sharing–
Tyson: Great. If you don’t mind just telling everyone just in– well, I guess, give your thoughts on the Zapathon but then, also, tell us a little bit about those zapps that you’ve created.
Larry: Okay. For those of you that didn’t make it, you missed out a really good event, the Zapathon in Happy Mesa, Arizona. There were about 30 to 35 of us in the room. Jim and Tyson were very much involved. You also brought in a Zapier expert. I forget what– he’s one of only 75 in the world. He’s Kelsey Bratcher was the one that was getting into the nitty and the gritty.
My story is, I knew what Zapier was. I think I’d had an account for probably five years and had never done a zap. I came in, as I would say, zappless. And I left, I had six zapps that are already completed. I’ve got a laundry list of stuff that I want to complete.
To go into the zapps that I did prepare while I was there, these apps are all about getting videos produced. I like to produce videos. I’ve got 80 in one topic area. I’ve got 40 in another one related to tax planning and that are published on YouTube. I’ve got another 40 that need to be published. At the end of the day, what my zapp does is, if I can go through it real quickly, what I do now is I record the video. Of course, only I can do that. I change the name of the video to whatever the topic is. Only I can do that because, other than that, it gives you a funky little title with like the date and the whatnot. I’ve got a video editor that edits them. He takes the filename and he makes the intro screen. Long story short. Now, I upload the video after I recorded and change the name. I upload it to raw videos in Dropbox, in a folder in Dropbox. When that hits the Dropbox, it automatically shoots those over to rev.com and it places an order for each of the videos so that I may receive an SRT file which is the caption file. If you’ve ever seen the videos in the words pop up on the bottom, that’s the caption file. And it also prepares the text file. It’s a dollar a minute. There’s like 10 different formats that you can get for the same price. I just pulled down the two that I want. When the order is complete, it downloads them to respective folders in Dropbox. One is an SRT folder, one is a text file folder. And then, the text file, I can use for articles or blog posts and whatnot.
When it shoots it back over to my Dropbox, it sends an email to my video editor who happens to be in Pakistan and it tells him, “Hey, the videos were just uploaded. Go grab the videos. Go grab the SRT file and do your thing. You edit it.” He puts on an intro screen which is the title. He puts in a lower-thirds which is my name and phone number, I believe. I don’t know if it’s my email address. He puts in the SRT file. And then, there’s an outro slide which is same on every single one like “For further information, contact Larry.”
Then, when he loads it back into the edited video folder of Dropbox, then I get an email that it was loaded back and it automatically– right now, it posts it up to my YouTube channel known as Tax Terminator. And then, the reason I need to get that email message is I use a little app called TubeBuddy, T-U-B-E-B-U-D-D-Y, TubeBuddy. That helps me select the thumbnail of the video which is the first few seconds of the video which has the title. It also lets me put in tags. Those are the zapps that I produced at The Maximum Lawyer Conference. Those are pretty good.
Once I started seeing what’s happening, you start thinking of, what are some of the things that I do repetitively that I can automate? I’ve got a laundry list of things that I want to do zapps for – posting to Facebook. Maybe, if I post to Facebook, it’s posted to LinkedIn.
One of the zaps I really want to do is– you guys hang around with John Fisher for Mastermind Experience. One of his favorite things to do is to call people on their birthdays. I use Active Campaign. I’m going to set up an automation that, when your birthday comes up, that it sends me a text message to my phone with your name and with a hot link to your phone number. I can just push the hotlink and I’m talking to you, “Hey, Tyson. Hey, Jim, I understand it’s your birthday. Happy birthday…” whatever you want to say. To me, that’s a real good use of the technology because monitoring when is it your birthday and then you’re looking up the number, that takes a little bit of time. If there’s friction there, you’re probably not going to do It. That’s another zapp. There’s lots of them out there.
Thank you so much for putting that on. If you do that again, I think, sign me up. For the people, I don’t know, are you going to make the videos available? Did you decide what you’re going to do on that?
Jim: No. We weren’t able to record it. Being a workshop and all, it was not something that was set up for doing that. What we are going to do, I think though is, if we do it again, I think we’re going to spend that morning, maybe even without Kelsey, just going over the basics of Zapier in human language. I think one of the things that occurred to us, during the Zapathon and that we shifted gears on, was just to really get down to everybody’s basic level and start at the very beginning.
Larry: For me, I have to give a shoutout. In the first day, I was sitting next to Melanie Leonard. She had some experience with Zapier. Once I did my very first zap, with her help, I was like I saw what was going on and how you connected the different accounts like connect Dropbox with rev.com or whatnot. Once I saw how to do that, the rest of them became a little bit easier. I pretty much could do those myself.
I was going to suggest that that, as we talked about privately, I got more out of the experiential stuff. I don’t know that it’s kind of hard. I think it’s impossible to put on video. You know what I’m saying? Good for you. I still say, if you hold it again, I’d start using language like, “when we hold it again,” but that’s just my opinion.
Jim: All right. Well, let’s pause for a word from our sponsors.
Thanks to our sponsor, Smith AI. Smith AI is a superior receptionist service for law firms trusted by many Maximum Lawyers including me. At my immigration practice, the Hacking Law practice, Smith’s friendly US-based receptionist respond to potential clients in English or Spanish, screen and schedule new leads, and even take payment for our consults. The best part is that they don’t just handle these conversations by phone. They also have live agents and chatbots capturing leads on our website through their chat widget. They serve as our friendly gatekeepers while my team and I work uninterrupted. We get new clients and we get work done, how awesome is that?
If you’re in a solo or small firm, I know you’ll appreciate this. Plans start at just $70 a month for calls and $100 a month for chats. They even offer a totally free chatbot so there’s no excuse. Try Smith AI today and see for yourself why attorneys like me say Smith AI receptionists are the secret to business growth. Smith AI offers a free trial and Maximum Lawyer listeners get an extra a hundred-dollar discount with promo code MAXLAW100. That’s M-A-X-L-A-W-1-0-0. Sign up to learn more at www.smith.ai. Trust me when I say don’t let another day go by, try Smith AI.
Jim: We’re back with Larry Weinstein. He’s encouraging us to have Zapathon 2: This time it’s personal. We probably will do that at some point in the future. Right now, of course, we’re focused on MaxLawCon in June.
Larry, talk to us a little bit about the approach that people had. Do you think that a regular lawyer, or a regular CPA, or one of our members Maximum Lawyers who, of course, are anything but ordinary, having gone to this Zapathon, do you think Zapier is accessible to most people?
Larry: Oh, absolutely. Like I said, once you do your first zapp and you see how it works, then you start looking to see, ”What different things can I automate?” You have to be using some web-based applications and they all have to have API’s. They have to be– I guess, what would we call it, recognized by Zapier? When you go to Zapier, there’s like over 1500 different applications that are on there. So, very likely, if you’re using one of the commonly known or used apps, your app’s probably going to be on there. If not, if the API’s available, I think you can still do your own zap.
I think that any business, any lawyer, any CPA, if they take the time, I think the biggest impediment is just understand– just even knowing the Zapier is possible, that Zapier even exists and what it can do for you. I think, I came away a big fan. I think it’s really cool. It’s going to save me a lot of time.
Tyson: Larry. All right, I think our listeners would kill us if Jim and I didn’t ask at least one tax question from an accountant. You’re a strategic tax planner and you’re pretty damn good at it, what are a few tips that you could give our listeners when it comes to tax advice?
Larry: Well, there was a big tax law change at the end of 2017. It was really like the last two weeks or a week and a half of 2017. It became effective for 2018. When we did our filings in 2019, for 2018, it was the first year that we saw it. It was called the 20% qualified business income deduction. That is the good news. The reason that they did that, I believe, without getting political here is they lowered the tax rates on corporations from– I don’t remember exactly, 35% to 37%, graduated up that high from a low of 15. They put it to a flat 21%. Long story short is, I think that they wanted to give the smaller businesses a break. There’s this 20% qualified business income exclusion. That’s the good news.
The bad news is my lawyer friends, my CPA brothers and sisters, we are targets, based upon this new law, because the full benefit of the 20% qualified business income, it phases out between about 325,000, say, and 425,000 of what we would call taxable income, that’s your income after your deductions, after your itemized deductions, if you’re allowed to do that.
Now, there are some things, as it relates to tax planning, there are some instances when somebody would come without any tax planning at all– and remember the tax planning, for the most part, should be done before the end of the year, as early in the year as possible. But it might be, without any tax planning at all, that a lawyer could come to me and their taxable income is, call it 425, that’s married filing jointly. The 425,000, they would not get any of that deduction. But if we did some of the tax planning, as it related to– well, entity selection, the qualified business income is for all of the entities other than a traditional C Corporation which files and pays its own taxes. There’s strategies related to asset, family members, fringe benefits, retirement. All of those will serve to reduce taxable income. I’ve already seen some instances where, without tax planning, they wouldn’t qualify for the qualified business income deduction. Now, that’s not the only strategy. If you use some of the other strategies that I just mentioned, of course, you can still save money as well.
I would say that all of the professions, doctors, lawyers, accountants, we’re all targets. I mean, they gave that to all the small businesses but they singled us out that if we make too much money, we cannot partake in that particular deduction. The QBI deduction is the big thing. I don’t know if that’s going to stand. I mean, not getting political, but if a new party comes in, maybe they’ll take it away and they’ll take away the 20% qualified business income deduction and they’ll raise the corporate income tax rates. Don’t know, but we just have to take advantage of what’s put on our plate right now.
The other thing that I wanted to make the point is when we talk about tax planning, this is all perfectly legal. This is all time-tested and IRS-approved. This is not things like underreporting your gross income or overstating expenses. This is all perfectly legal. It’s in the tax code.
One of the big challenges, I guess, you could say, in my profession is to let people know that tax planning is even possible because a lot of people don’t even know that.
Jim: All right. Larry, that’s enough tax talk for now. I want to get to something I’ve been meaning to ask you. Have you ever thought about dipping your toes in– you say that there aren’t accountants who think like you or who get this marketing stuff, have you ever thought about trying to be the Rem Jackson or the Jim and Tyson of CPAs and tax advisors?
Larry: That’s a good question. Thanks for asking that one.
Probably, about six years ago, I started in a small way. I had a coaching group. I think I had about eight people that were in it. It’s real hard to sell the CPAs. I’d rather take my head and beat it against the wall right now. In between times, everybody and their dog that couldn’t even spell marketing last week, all of a sudden, everybody’s a marketing consultant. I think there’s a lot of people that are using Click Funnels. They’re following. They’re copying some funnels. Thanks for asking. That’s probably the last thing I would want to do. I’d rather take the time and just market my own practice. There’s a need for it out there but I’m not going to be that pioneer and take the arrows in the back. I’m just very thankful that I’ve taken the time to learn all of this stuff.
I guess, on another note, if I can interject this, my daughter just graduated from college, from Texas State University. She’s living up in Tulsa. I don’t know where she got the idea. All of a sudden, she starts asking me these, do I know what Click Funnels is? Do I know what Facebook advertising is so? Somehow she’s gotten the marketing bug. I said, “You’ve been paying attention to what I’ve been talking about.” She goes, “Yeah, I have.” Maybe she’s going to come online and help me with my Facebook advertising.
But to answer your question, No, that’s not anything I’m really interested in. It would make sense but I’ve got too many things I can do that I know are already working.
Tyson: Larry, you just actually made me think of something really important. You’re not new to the block. Let’s be honest, okay, you’ve been around. How have you shifted over the last two decades when it comes to technology? You came to the Zapathon, I imagine, two decades ago, you weren’t doing things like that because it didn’t exist. How have things change over the last 20 years? How have you been able to adapt?
Larry: Well, in terms of technology with software, I’ve always, from the very beginning, used software for taxes, for tax preparation. Now, that’s just a calculator is what it is. You have to know what you’re doing or can kind of garbage in, garbage out. Accounting, I’ve always used software but you have to know the basics of accounting. If you put something in wrong or if your client put something in wrong, you can correct it.
Of course, back in the day, when I got started, they didn’t have this thing called Google. They had this thing called the Yellow Pages. I don’t know if you guys remember that. When I was doing more in the area of IRS problem resolution, there’s a couple years, back in the day, I advertised in the yellow pages. That was marginally successful. It’s very expensive. Getting websites, using a CRM, that type of thing is what I’ve adapted to.
I’m still learning, guys. I learned a lot from you guys on the Zapathon and learning some stuff on doing some Facebook advertising, driving people to a webinar about learning about tax strategies, doing some little bit of email marketing. It’s a work in progress, man. You’ve got to stay on top of it because it changes so much but, part of it you, just kind of have to know what are the basics because there’s so many new apps coming out. I don’t know, what is Tick Tock? I don’t know what that is even. Oh, man, there’s another social media platform I’ve got to get on. I think you have to have the bases covered.
I know that my mentor, Dan Kennedy, he’s very anti internet. At the end of the day, if you use it, and you’re using it kind of in a direct response method, not just putting your name out there, for example, your website should be out there to present some information to demonstrate your credibility and authority, but also as a lead generation, “Hey, can we get you some more information?”
Another thing, have y’all seen the chatbots that are out there now? They’re not specific to Facebook Messenger but they’re on your website. You’ve probably seen them. I’m implementing that right now. I got that through AppSumo. They had a special deal on. It’s called Quriobot. You’ve seen things where you come up, “Hey, is there anything I can help you with?” And then it gives you, “Are you interested in…” whatever, finding out more about how to save taxes or whatever you’re going to say? Based upon the button that they choose, it gives them another choice. “Would you like to see a video? Would you like to see a cheat sheet? Would you like to see a special report?” It’s all automated. Just getting into that.
Are you guys aware of those chatbots? Those are pretty cool.
Jim: Yeah, they are, for sure.
Tyson: Jim, before you ask your last question, I think you might want to talk to an SEO person because I had heard and I don’t know if this is accurate so just make sure you check with your SEO people. I think that Google kind of slapped some people down because of the chat boxes. I’m not sure so just check with people, just in case.
Tyson: Yes. Just in case, you might want to check.
Larry: Thanks for the heads up.
Jim: All right. For my last question, Larry, if you had someone opening up their practice as a CPA or even as a young lawyer, what would be the first three things you’d have them focus on?
Larry: I’ve got to go with number one, writing a book or somehow giving a book. I’ve written a number of books as Tyson was calling bangout books Larry. I’ve written a number of books and, at the end of the day, there’s nothing magical about writing the book. It takes a little bit of time. The money’s not made in writing the book. The money’s made in having the book and using the book. I have different books. Some are lead generation. Some are a little bit more substantial to build up credibility and authority when somebody makes an appointment to see me, to let them know I am that person. So, having a book.
If you can license the book from somebody, go for it. If you can spend a couple of thousand dollars and put your name on it. God bless you. That’s the thing to do because, as I said, the money is not made in writing the book. It’s using the book.
The second thing, of course, I’d have a good mobile responsive website. I’m a big fan and got a couple of websites. Both of them are based upon the teachings of a guy named Donald Miller. He wrote a book known as Story Brand. I don’t know if you’ve heard of him but his whole thing is that your message has to be crystal clear. You can’t talk in vague generalities. Some of the advertising that you see in the media is like you have to stop and think about that. If you have to stop and think about it, people aren’t going to invest the psychic energy to do that. I think a good website that’s mobile responsive and it captures information.
And then I say, on the back end, that you have a CRM, that you have a place for people to go to so that you can keep in touch with them. You can send them email. You can send them paper newsletters, whatever it is. You can use it. You could send out birthday cards. I send out birthday cards. Whatever it is that you can do, you have to have the list. That’s the key thing. You have to have the list.
The best way to get the list is to have some kind of lead generation magnet, we call widget. You guys know what I’m talking about. For the people out there, it’s like something that somebody would be interested in receiving, that has value to it. And they know that they have to give up value for value, so they have to give up their name and their email address to get it. That starts the conversation. Of course, not everybody that gives up their information is to become your client but you put them in to your CRM and then you nurture the lead because people are going to always buy when they’re ready to buy. Of course, we’re always ready to sell all day, every day but that’s not the way it works so we have to nurture that lead.
That’s the three things. I think a book. I think a good website so you can capture information, and a CRM for where that information would go to.
Tyson: Very good stuff, Larry.
All right, let’s wrap things up. Before we do, I want to remind everyone to go to the Facebook group, get involved there. But more importantly, we’ve got another deadline at the end of February – actually it’s the very beginning of March where the prices go up and it’ll basically go to full price. And so, get your tickets now to MaxLawCon 2020. We’ve got a list of amazing speakers. Larry is going to be one of the speakers. If you want to make more money, if you want to learn how to have more time, go to MaxLawCon 2020. It’s a great place to meet people, to get better, to improve your practices.
Jimbo, what you’re hack of the week?
Jim: For my hack of the week, my sponsor said to me, “Hey, Jim, why don’t you write down five wins at the end of every day?” I started doing that about six weeks ago and it really helps change your outlook when you’re looking for wins during the course of the day. It helps you make decisions a little bit better and it also helps you find things to be grateful for. I’ve been doing it now pretty much every day since then and it’s helped change my outlook.
Tyson: Very good stuff. That’s something that Jason Selk always focused on was, “the next day, whenever you started the morning, you write down your wins for the previous 24 hours,” and it is a very, very effective tool. That’s a good one.
Larry, what is your tip or hack of the week?
Larry: Thanks for asking.
Before I give that though, I want to give a plug to you guys. You don’t know I was going to do this but I’ve been to a lot of conferences and when I went to MaxLawCon 2019, I guess it was, last year, in June. It’s an amazing conference. There’s a whole bunch of your colleagues out there that have been there and done that and they’re sharing what works. For the most part, people aren’t there to sell anything. There’s a whole lot of camaraderie. What’s really cool is when you show up, if you’ve been hanging out in the Maximum Lawyer Facebook group, I’m not going to say you know everybody there but you’re going to know a lot of people there and they know you. You guys are almost giving it away for free. I don’t think that it’s the moneymaker for you guys. For those of you that are on the fence, you need to jump in with both feet because it’s the best money that you’ll ever spend on your practice. I wanted to say that.
At the end of the day, I’ve been really big into customer experience, I mentioned that. There’s a whole bunch of books I can make reference. There’s a book by a guy named Joey Coleman called Never Lose a Customer. It talks about everything from– Jim, you would talk about the pre, the during, and the post. He talks about that whole thing, all the way to the point where the eighth step is advocate, so they’re out there singing your song. That’s a really good book, Joey Coleman.
Another one is Create Distinction by Scott McKain. You’ve heard me talk about you’ve got to be different. You’ve got to show up different than everybody else.
Apps. I’ve been using dub.com. I was using bombom but I found dub is a little cheaper. And then, of course, my new favorite tool is a tool known as Zapier, Zapier.com. I got my eyes open when I went to the Zapathon a couple of weeks ago in Mesa, Arizona with you guys. Thank you so much for opening up my eyes about that.
Tyson: Really good stuff.
All right, for my tip of the week, it has to do with Google My Business. For us, one of the biggest things we want to do is we want to take up as much real estate on that page as possible so we can kind of push other people out. One way of doing that is you can schedule events through Google My Business. You can download the app. You can do it on your desktop or whatever you prefer. Let’s say you’re speaking at CLE, put it in there. If you are going to an event, put it in there. It’s just another way of adding more space to the real estate, expanding your section on that page. And so, that that is my tip of the week.
Larry, thanks so much for coming on. It’s been way too long. We should have had you on a long time ago but it’s been a lot of fun. Thank you.
Larry: Thank you so much for having me. I always enjoy talking about good, smart, effective ethical marketing. I appreciate the good job that you’re doing.
Can I put a quick plugin?
Tyson: Sure. Sure.
Larry: Okay. I’m about 10 or 12 episodes into the Successful Lawyer Podcast. I’m interviewing a bunch of successful lawyers, talking about what’s making them successful. If anybody wants to be a guest, hit me up, and we’ll get you on.
Tyson: Very cool. I’ve been a guest on it. Jim, have you been a guest on it?
Jim: No. Larry and I are just scheduling that right now.
Tyson: I was first. Just so we’re clear, I was first. I was on before, Jim.
Tyson: All right, Larry.
Larry: Thanks. Guys, thank you so much for having me on. You’re doing a great job with your podcast, and with the Facebook group, and especially with MaxLawCon. Of course, now, you brought your excellence to the Zapathon so that was pretty cool, too.
Jim: Thanks, Larry.
Tyson: Thanks, Larry.
Larry: Thank you, guys.
Tyson: Thank you, guys. We’ll see ya.
Thanks for listening to The Maximum Lawyer Podcast. To stay in contact with your hosts and to access more content, go to maximumlawyer.com.
Have a great week and catch you next time.