My Recent Exhibiting Experience – What a Win!*
by Michelle Wilson, RN, SANE, CLNC
I recently exhibited with a CLNC Mentor at a legal conference in Indianapolis. What a win! The entire experience was so organized from beginning to end, including the call from Vickie Milazzo Institute providing the info I needed to exhibit effectively, and the follow-up reminders from the Institute after exhibiting. The organization and support from the Institute has made the whole process of exhibiting easy and fun, which are two things that I didn’t expect on my first big public outing as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant.
I heard from a second attorney who had just sent four cases to my Dropbox! I spoke with him, discussed my fee (he didn’t even hesitate) and sent and received my contract back. I’m off to an amazing start. Mentoring is the icing on this CLNC cake!
The booth sponsored by the National Alliance of Certified Legal Nurse Consultants (NACLNC®) was the most lively booth at the legal conference. I learned the value of having an interactive game to both draw the attorneys to the booth and to start a relaxed, easy conversation with them about my legal nurse consulting services and, most important, about the attorneys’ needs. The coaching that the CLNC Mentor gave me ensured that no opportunity for a conversation with an attorney-prospect was missed. I was nervous and awkward at the beginning, but the CLNC Mentor was so supportive that I soon relaxed and “got my USP on.”
Attorneys were drawn to the NACLNC exhibit booth by our energy and the interest that we projected. They were happy to spin for free CLNC services and other prizes. Everyone loves alcohol, candy and something for free! In return they gladly exchanged business cards and talked to me about the legal nurse consulting services I provide.
I went to a follow-up cocktail party and spoke to a couple of the attorneys I had met earlier in the day. I almost didn’t go because I was tired, but the CLNC® Mentor explained that informal networking was invaluable.
I returned from exhibiting late Thursday night and Friday I sorted through all my leads, putting them into three categories:
- Attorneys who won free CLNC services.
- Attorneys who won other prizes – e.g. alcohol.
- People who were not attorneys but might be able to refer me to an attorney in the future.
Then I researched each law firm on the Internet, printed out the attorney’s bio and significant information about the legal practice. While researching I looked for some kind of connection that I could mention during my follow-up marketing.
I then sent an email to each person in groups 1 and 2 and spoke to someone in their practice by the end of the day on Friday. By Saturday night, I had my first response from an attorney taking advantage of his free CLNC service. By Monday morning I heard from a second attorney I met at the cocktail party, who had just sent four cases to my Dropbox! Even though I had to work several 12-hour shifts that week, I spoke with him, discussed my fee (he didn’t even hesitate) and sent and received my contract back. I’m off to an amazing start and have since heard from another attorney requesting more information.
I live in St. Louis so I’m consulting long distance with these attorneys and it’s working beautifully. I will be following up monthly with all the leads through a blog or newsletter and plan to start working my local attorney base. I’m also planning my 2015 exhibiting schedule in Missouri, Minnesota and Indianapolis. My goal is to exhibit at least three times in 2015 and to pursue other networking opportunities locally. I’m going on my honeymoon to Hawaii in January, and you can be sure I will be sending packets out ahead and setting up attorney interviews while there.
The best thing about exhibiting as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant was the confidence it gave me and the clarity of direction. I am positive that I can make this my new full-time job. But I’ll still joyfully work a shift in the ED once in a while just because I love the patients.
Thanks for this exhibiting opportunity – and special thanks to the Vickie Milazzo Institute staff and the CLNC Mentors. Mentoring is the icing on this CLNC cake!
Click here for success story ideas.