October 30, 2009  Nº 836 - Vol. 7
 

"When you cannot make up your mind which of two evenly balanced courses of action you should take - choose the bolder."

Ezra Pound

In today’s Law Firm Marketing, you win or lose based on what you offer.

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Read Migalhas LatinoAmérica in Spanish every Tuesday and Thursday. Visit the website at www.migalhas.com/latinoamerica

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  • Top News

Pelosi unveils House health bill

The Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, has unveiled a healthcare bill that would extend coverage to 36m more Americans. The top House Democrat said the legislation would provide affordable healthcare to 96% of all Americans. It would also let the government sell insurance in competition with private companies and make insurers offer cover to those with pre-existing conditions. The bill is the latest step in a long-running battle over healthcare reform. Once both the House and Senate have approved their own versions, a conference committee, made up of lawmakers from both houses, will convene to reconcile the two.

Honduras rivals resolve deadlock

The interim leader of Honduras says he is ready to sign a pact to end its crisis, which could include the return of ousted President Manuel Zelaya. Roberto Micheletti said the agreement would create a power-sharing government and require both sides to recognize the result of November's presidential poll. Zelaya said the deal, which requires the approval of the Supreme Court and Congress, would be signed on Friday. His critics said he was seeking to amend the constitution to remove the current one-term limit on serving as president, and pave the way for his re-election. Micheletti said the ousted president would only be able return to office after a vote in his favor in Congress that would first have to be authorized by the country's Supreme Court. The Supreme Court ruled that Zelaya had violated the constitution in June, while Congress voted to remove him from office. Micheletti - who as the speaker of Congress was constitutionally second in line to the presidency - was sworn in by Congress as interim leader following the coup.

Honduras: interim government files case against Brazil

The de facto government of Honduras has filed a case with the International Court of Justice in The Hague accusing Brazil of meddling in Honduran affairs by allowing President Manuel Zelaya, who was ousted June 28, to stay at its embassy in Tegucigalpa, the court announced Thursday.

Internet addresses set for change

The Internet began with a whimper, not a bang. And not everyone agrees on when that whimper occurred. But 40 years ago Thursday, the first communication over a computer network called ARPANET was sent — a message that said simply "lo." The internet regulator has approved plans to allow non-Latin-script web addresses, in a move that is set to transform the online world. The board of Icann voted at its annual meeting in Seoul to allow domain names in Arabic, Chinese and other scripts. More than half of the 1.6 billion people who use the internet speak languages with non-Latin scripts. It is being described as the biggest change to the way the internet works since it was created 40 years ago. The first Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) could be in use next year. In the early days of the internet, language posed no problem, as most web-surfers spoke English and those that did not usually wrote in languages based on the Latin alphabet. But this is no longer true. It is likely the majority of early non-Latin net addresses to be approved will be in Chinese and Arabic script, followed by Russian.

After 10-year dispute, expansion of hate crimes law to gays signed

The legislation extends provisions first passed in 1968 that make it a federal crime to target individuals because of their race, religion or national origin. Tacked onto the end of the massive bill was a short act extending protections under the current hate crime laws. Under the law, judges can impose harsher penalties on crimes that are motivated by such animus, and the Justice Department can help local police departments investigate alleged hate crimes.

Before you open the door to the boardroom, peek through the keyhole!

Michael Page specializes in the placement of candidates in permanent, contract, temporary and interim positions within client companies around the world. Have a look at the new section of the Migalhas website and discover the professional development opportunities with large corporations, in legal and business fields, presented by Michael Page International. Click here to peep through the hole!

  • Crumbs!

1- New House health care bill unveiled (click here)

2- France's Chirac ordered to face embezzlement trial (click here)

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100% Migalhas: www.migalhas.com

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  • MiMIC Journal

China and US discuss trade rows

US and Chinese officials have been holding talks in China on trade, clean energy and climate change. The meeting comes less than three weeks before Obama's first visit to China. The talks are being held amid simmering trade disputes in several areas, claims of protectionism and a wide US trade deficit with China. Economic interdependence deepens day-by-day, and one cannot do without the other.

Strong start for China's 'Nasdaq'

The price of shares for all 28 firms on China's new Nasdaq-style stock market more than doubled when it opened for trading for the first time on Friday. The ChiNext stock market is designed to attract financing for small to medium sized enterprises. The 28 listed companies are almost all privately owned outfits, in contrast with the state-owned firms that dominate China's main stock market. China is home to 10 million small and mid-sized companies.

  • Law Firm Marketing

You win or lose based on what you offer

Here are a few suggestions about what you can offer and the type of response you will likely receive.

SERVICES: If all you put in your ad are your name, contact information and area of practice, that's all prospects will know about you. Is that enough information to persuade them to call you?

ADD -- a call to action that invites their call for a fr*ee phone consultation. Now will prospects call you?

ADD -- facts about how long you've practiced law. Will this information attract calls?

ADD --  your professional memberships. Is this enough to get prospects to call?

ADD --  that you're a certified specialist in your area. Does that attract phone calls?

ADD --  the types of clients you serve. Does this generate calls?

ADD --  your photo with good eye contact and a friendly smile. Now do you get calls?

ADD --  the specific services you provide within your area of law. Does your list of services prompt calls?

ADD -- a testimonial from a former client. Is this enough to get calls?

ADD -- a recommendation from a former judge. How about now?

ADD -- a list of current or representative clients. Does this result in calls?

How much information do you need to include before your prospect will call you?

You think: If your prospect has a problem, he will certainly call you. Right? Not necessarily.

Many prospects, while afraid of their problems, are even more afraid of lawyers! I call this phone-call fear. Phone-call fear is the fear of what your prospect thinks might happen when he calls your office. Here are a few of your prospect's fears:

1. He's afraid you may charge him for the phone call.

2. He's afraid you may refuse to talk with him over the telephone.

3. He's afraid you may not handle his type of problem.

4. He's afraid you may not have time to help him.

5. He's afraid you may charge more than he can afford.

And so on.

You think: "Why would any prospect be afraid of me?"

In truth, he isn't afraid of YOU. He's afraid of lawyers as a group. And, generally, the less sophisticated your prospect, the greater his fears.

Your prospect thinks you're like all other lawyers until you explain how you're different -- until you explain that you will not charge him for the initial phone call -- until you explain that you'll gladly speak with him over the phone -- until you show that you'll eagerly take time from your schedule to speak with him -- until you deliver your entire marketing message.

So what should you do?

The education-based marketing model suggests that you offer fr*ee educational materials that explain your prospect's problem and the solutions you can provide. Prospects like requesting fr*ee information, especially since they don't have to speak with you. They can request your materials from your secretary or receptionist, and then read your writings in the comfort of their office or living room.

In those materials, you have the opportunity to explain that you're not like most lawyers. In fact, here are 17 ways you differ from other lawyers -- and your explanation continues. In addition to your competitive advantages, you include 5 Costly Misconceptions About Wills. Or -- 9 Mistakes People Make Before Filing for Bankruptcy. Or -- 7 Ways to Improve Your Chances of Getting Custody of Your Children. Or -- whatever lists will attract the specific prospects you want to reach.

The more information you provide to prospects BEFORE they speak with you, the more willing they are to call you. The more credibility you build BEFORE prospects speak with you, the more willing they are to call you. The more you overcome prospects' fears BEFORE they speak with you, the more willing they are to call you. The more prospects understand how you can help them BEFORE they speak with you, the more willing they are to call you.

For the highest response from prospective clients, offer fr*ee educational materials so prospects can get them without pressure, without commitment, without hassle and without effort -- at least, no more effort than it takes to place a phone call or send an e-mail.

This is the foundation on which education-based marketing is built. And it's the most powerful, most productive, most efficient way to generate responses from ads. (It's also the most powerful way to generate inquiries from articles and interviews.)

This is the same method I used to help a lawyer generate 80 calls per radio commercial.

This is the same method I used to help a lawyer land a small newspaper article, which filled his seminar with 233 prospects

This is the same method I used to help a lawyer secure an interview on the TV mid-day news, which resulted in calls from 200 prospects within three hours, over 500 in all.

This is the same method I used to help my wife get into Ann Landers's advice column, which generated 19,000 written inquiries the first week.

Remember: You should not compare someone else's results with results you hope to achieve. Even so, I know of no marketing method more powerful -- more persuasive -- more effective -- or more efficient than my method of education-based marketing.

It's the only method I use for myself. It's the only method I use for my clients. And it's the only method I recommend. Why? Because it's the only method that I know works!

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© Trey Ryder

FREE LAWYER MARKETING ALERT: If you'd like to receive Trey Ryder's weekly Lawyer Marketing Alert, send an e-mail to Trey@TreyRyder.com. Write "Subscribe LMA" in the subject line and write your name and e-mail address in the body of the message.

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  • Historia Verdadera

Mercosur

La Comisión de Relaciones Exteriores del Senado de Brasil aprobó el jueves el pedido de ingreso de Venezuela al bloque sudamericano Mercosur.

Petrolera - Ecuador

Una demanda contra Chevron Corp, por contaminación en la selva ecuatoriana durante la década de 1990, dio un nuevo giro cuando los demandantes publicaron un reporte diciendo que un hombre que ayudó al retiro de un juez –acusado de cohecho por la petrolera- es un traficante condenado por drogas. El caso podría alcanzar los US$ 27.000 mlls.

México - negocios

El mexicano Grupo Herdez informó a través de su asociada Herdez del Fuerte completó la transacción con la estadounidense Hormel Foods Corporation para iniciar las operaciones de la nueva compañía Megamex Foods, la cual distribuirá y comercializará alimentos en Estados Unidos.

  • Brief News

Obama has mixed message on recovery

Tugged in different political directions, the White House is seeking credit for good economic news and trying to escape blame for the bad stuff. Obama greeted as "obviously welcome news" a government report showing the economy grew 3.5 percent from July through September after four quarters of declines. That's unofficial confirmation that the long, harsh recession has ended. But he had to serve it up with a dose of political reality. Even though the downturn that began in December 2007 may be technically over, a high level of joblessness will persist for months, perhaps years, to come.

Venezuela step closer to Mercosul

Brazil's Senate Foreign Relations Committee has approved Venezuela's request to join the South American trade bloc Mercosul. The committee voted by 12 to five in favor of Venezuela's application, and the proposal will now go before the Senate to gain full approval. Paraguay's parliament must also approve Venezuela's membership before it will be allowed to join Mercosul. Venezuela has been trying to join the bloc for three years. Mercosul was established in March 1991.

France migrant policy criticized

France's system of detaining and deporting unaccompanied migrant children flown into Paris has been criticized in a damning new report. The French government says children arriving at the capital's leading airport have not yet entered France. This denies the children the right to appeal against their deportation, says the US-based group Human Rights Watch.

Wal-Mart starts selling coffins

The world's largest retailer, Wal-Mart, now plans to hold on to customers even after they die - by selling coffins. Prices range from a "Mom" or "Dad Remembered" steel coffin for $895 , to a bronze model at $2,899. The retailer is allowing customers to plan ahead by paying for the caskets over 12 months for no interest. They can be dispatched within 48 hours. Catering for cradle-to-grave needs, Wal-Mart already sells everything from baby wear to engagement rings.

Canada jails Rwandan war criminal

A Rwandan man convicted of war crimes has been jailed for life by a Canadian court, without the prospect of parole for 25 years. Desire Munyaneza, 42, was found guilty in May in the first court case brought under Canada's 2000 War Crimes Act. He was convicted of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes committed in 1994. The sentencing judge said the law considered the crimes committed by the accused to be the "worst in existence."

Digital data make for a really permanent record

The end of privacy? Information doesn't fade the way it used to. Records once forgotten in long-lost files are now searchable online — perhaps forever. Some computer researchers are looking for ways to give data a life span. But others think we should adapt to a new reality of data that will never die.

US drone strikes may break international law

US drone strikes against suspected terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan could be breaking international laws against summary executions, the UN's top investigator of such crimes said. "The problem with the United States is that it is making an increased use of drones/Predators (which are) particularly prominently used now in relation to Pakistan and Afghanistan. My concern is that drones/Predators are being operated in a framework which may well violate international humanitarian law and international human rights law," he said. US strikes with remote-controlled aircraft against Al-Qaeda and Taliban targets in Afghanistan and northwestern Pakistan have often resulted in civilian deaths and drawn bitter criticism from local populations. “The onus is really on the United States government to reveal more about the ways in which it makes sure that arbitrary extrajudicial executions aren't in fact being carried out through the use of these weapons," he added.

Magistrate calls for Chirac trial

Former French President Jacques Chirac has been ordered to stand trial on corruption charges, officials say. A magistrate ordered the trial over alleged false contracts dating from Chirac's time as Paris mayor. It is alleged millions of euros were used to provide bogus jobs to political associates and their relatives.

Swiss to tackle 'suicide tourism'

The Swiss government has laid out the details of proposals to ban or severely restrict assisted suicide as part of plans to tackle "suicide tourism". Many with terminal or incurable illnesses have used the Swiss centre Dignitas to kill themselves. Justice Minister Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf has called for organizations like it to face stricter controls. The proposals will now be subject to consultation, with a draft law due to be sent to parliament in March. Widmer-Schlumpf said groups like Dignitas would face prosecution if the proposals are passed into law and they do not comply.

Spain to end takeover tax breaks

The Spanish government has been told to end a tax break that gives its companies an advantage in buying companies in other European countries. The taxation law change was seen as vital to the 2006 takeover of 02 by Telefonica, making it one of the biggest players in UK telecoms. It also aided the purchase of Scottish Power by Iberdrola in 2007. The European Commission has said it will require the Spanish government to remove the tax break. Indications from Madrid are that it is willing to make those changes.

Ethics investigators probe dozens in Congress

House ethics investigators have been scrutinizing the activities of more than 30 lawmakers and several aides in inquiries about issues including defense lobbying and corporate influence peddling, according to a confidential House ethics committee report prepared in July. The report appears to have been inadvertently placed on a publicly accessible computer network, and it was provided to The Washington Post by a source not connected to the congressional investigations. The committee said Thursday night that the document was released by a low-level staffer.

BP faces record fine for '05 refinery explosion

OSHA officials said the fine, more than four times the size of any previous sanction, was due to BP's failure to fix safety hazards.

Revelation undermines Chevron case in ecuador

An American whose secret recordings have placed him at the center of a $27 billion lawsuit against Chevron in Ecuador was disclosed to be a convicted drug trafficker.

Two international law firms may merge

Two international law firms are in high-level merger talks in a move that would create a behemoth with 2,500 lawyers, an individual with knowledge of the discussions said on Wednesday. Together, the two firms — Hogan & Hartson, based in Washington, and Lovells, in London — hope to capitalize on international litigation as investors turn to emerging markets. The leaders of each firm were expected to meet with their management committees this week. The combined company would probably be one of the top 10 law firms in the world, with joint revenue of nearly $2 billion.

On Gmail and the constitution

Is it kosher for a law enforcement agency to, pursuant to a lawfully granted search warrant, search your Gmail account without telling you? According to an opinion handed down earlier this year and currently making the rounds on legal blogs, the answer is no.

  • Daily Press Review

More Efforts Needed to Help Lebanon form Unity Government- Syrian FM
Asharq Al-Awsat, Pan-Arab daily, London, England

Palestinian anger over Jerusalem is affecting Abbas
Haaretz, Liberal daily, Tel Aviv, Israel

MIDEAST: Harvesting in Death Zone, With a Song
IPS Middle East, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

Arab world still far from becoming a 'knowledge society'
JPost, Conservative, Jerusalem, Israel

H1N1 Guidelines to Firms Issued
Khaleej Times, English-language daily, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Iraq- Pure water tank constructed for ID64b
Middle East North African Network, Online financial portal, Amman, Jordan

Chirac Faces Trial over 'Ghost Jobs' in Paris City Hall
Nahamet, Online news portal, Beirut, Lebanon

Panel formed on Lebanon poll law
Saudi Gazette, English-language daily, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Iran atom-deal changes set to stall enrichment plan
The Daily Star, Independent daily, Beirut, Lebanon

Israel wants Italy to remain head of UNIFIL
Times of Oman, English-language daily, Muscat, Oman

Blow to Blair's hopes of EU job
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Sorensen comeback on cards
BreakingNews.ie, Online news portal, Cork, Ireland

Pact reached over troubled Honduras
Daily Express, Conservative tabloid, London, England

Brown in angry clashes as socialist allies won't back Blair for EU president
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Samsung handset shipments up 16% in Q3
DMeurope, Online news portal, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Liverpool Central Library refurbishment plans unveiled
icLiverpool, Online news portal, Liverpool, England

Nursery nurse dragged child off chair by the ankles
Manchester Online, Independent daily, Manchester, England

Prague memorial to Milada Horáková sparks controversy
Radio Prague, Online news portal, Prague, Czech Republic

Tony Blair's Bid For EU Presidency Fades
Sky News, Independent newscaster, Middlesex, England

The Hate Preacher Who Lost His Venom: Infamous Islamist Imam Forswears Terror
Spiegel International, Liberal newsmagazine, Hamburg, Germany

Blair hopes for EU presidency sinking fast
The Guardian, Liberal daily, London, England

Gerrard remains a concern for Benitez
The Irish Times, Centrist daily, Dublin, Ireland

Tony Blair's bid to become European Union president appears doomed
The Telegraph, Conservative daily, London, England

'I'll rip kidnapper's face off,' Jaycee Lee Dugard's absent father says
Times Online, Conservative daily, London, England

President asks police chief to explain Bibit-Chandara's arrest publicly
Antara News, News agency, Jakarta, Indonesia

10th Seoul International Financial Forum Kicks Off
Chosun Ilbo, Conservative daily, Seoul, South Korea

Voting continues on NRO's clauses
Dawn, English-language daily, Karachi, Pakistan

World big enough for both India, China: Manmohan
India Express, News portal, Mumbai, India

2 planes come close at Mumbai airport
India Times, Conservative daily, New Delhi, India

Masadayomasa 'Kimagure Kapuri'
Japan Times, Independent centrist, Tokyo, Japan

Special task-force to follow up on A-G's report
Malaysian Star, Online news portal, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Puerto Rican student killed in class
New Zealand Herald, Conservative daily, Auckland, New Zealand

Strong earthquake hits off Japan's southern coast
People's Daily Online, English-language, Beijing, China

Parole for Lim, all bar the shouting
Sydney Morning Herald, Centrist daily, Sydney, Australia

Big fire in IOC depot near Jaipur
The Hindu, Left-leaning daily, Chennai, India

Evergrande seen raising $5.6b
The Standard, Business daily, Hong Kong

Government seeks private sector partnerships
Antigua Sun Online, Independent daily, St. John's, Antigua

Trinidad and Tobago revolution coming
Caribbean News Portal, Online news aggregator

'Shyne' back in Belize; hoping to be allowed back in US
Caribbean360, Online news portal, St. Michael, Barbados

Minister to visit schools
Cayman Net News, Online news portal, George Town, Cayman Islands

With US$16.2M in limbo, Prosecutor wants stiffer money-laundering rules
Dominican Today, Independent daily, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

MEXICO: Int'l Tribunal 'Scandalised' by Denials of Workers' Rights
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

No 'Dudus' mistake - Lightbourne fires back at critics, declares previous Gov't's extradition breaches will not be repeated
Jamaica Gleaner, Independent daily, Kingston, Jamaica

Wong group reported turnover of US $37.5 millions in 2009
Living in Peru, News portal, Lima, Peru

Lessons from the Investing School of Hard Knocks
The Globe and Mail, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Temporary H1N1 vaccine shortage looms
Toronto Star, Liberal daily, Toronto, Canada

COP: PNM, UNC in cahoots over executive presidency
Trinidad Guardian, Independent daily, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad

Firestone in Liberia 'pollution'
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Heartland, Mazembe clash rescheduled for Nov. 1
CongoPlanet.com, Independent online news aggregator

Bomb scare causes panic in Kampala
Daily Monitor, Independent daily, Kampala, Uganda

Kenya envoy to Brazil collapses and dies
Daily Nation, Independent daily, Nairobi, Kenya

Ghana nationals on ship seized by pirates
GhanaWeb, Online news portal, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Iran accepts nuclear plan
iafrica, Online news portal, Cape Town, South Africa

TAC praises Zuma for Aids speech
Independent Online, News portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Ethiopia's ruling party agrees with ruling party affiliates for 2010 election - Berhanu
Jimma Times, Online news portal, Jimma, Ethiopia

The thick blue line
Mail & Guardian Online, Liberal, Johannesburg, South Africa

'No leftist takeover of ANC'
News24.com, Online news portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Press crucial to 7-Point Agenda, MDGs .... ITF
Vanguard, Independent daily, Lagos, Nigeria

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