November 19, 2010 Nº 980 - Vol. 8


"No institution can possibly survive if it needs geniuses or supermen to manage it. It must be organized in such a way as to be able to get along under a leadership composed of average human beings."

Peter F. Drucker


In today's Law Firm Marketing, 9 weak links that torpedo your marketing program.

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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

Migalhas Christmas 2010

It is already this time of the year at Migalhas and the bells are ringing. It's Migalhas Christmas 2010. Publisher Editora Cengage Learning offered 1 book and Editora Disal offered 11 books to gift to our readers. We invite you to be part of this celebration. All you need to do to take your chance is to fill out a registration. Click here and read more about this wonderful serendipity.

Investment in Brazil infrastructure

On December 3, 2010, Justen, Pereira, Oliveira & Talamini - Advogados Associados, together with its Florida correspondent Smith International Law and the Brazilian publisher Editora Fórum, will host in Miami Beach, FL (USA) the conference "Infrastructure Investments in Brazil: Opportunities and Challenges." The seminar will end with the launch of the book "Infrastructure Law of Brazil", coordinated by Marçal Justen Filho and Cesar A. Guimarães Pereira, with articles by Marçal Justen Neto, Maurício Gomm Santos, Quinn Smith and many others. Click here for more.

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 - Detention order sought for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange (Click here)

2 - Eva Longoria files for divorce from Tony Parker, cites irreconcilable differences (Click here)

3 - Hollywood superhero street performers should not face arrest, judge rules (Click here)

4 - William and Kate, the prince, the princess and the prenups (Click here)

5 - Ontario about to become prostitution hub, government warns (Click here)

6 - What's more accurate: the car's speedo or the GPS? (Click here)

7 - Argentina city bans cell phones in banks (Click here)

8 - Citigroup may need to refile thousands of foreclosure documents (Click here)

9 - Guantanamo detainee's bombing verdict may discourage more civilian trials (Click here)

10 - New executive law program models itself on EMBAs (Click here)

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100% Migalhas: www.migalhas.com

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  • MiMIC Journal

China introduces food subsidies

China's government takes steps to tackle food shortages and inflation, as the stock market tumbles on fears of rate rises. The government also said it had not ruled out price controls if current grain and vegetable shortages worsen.

China denies net 'hijack' charge

Allegations that China hijacked a huge chunk of net traffic in April 2009 are rejected by the nation's telecoms company.

  • Law Firm Marketing

9 weak links that torpedo your marketing program

by Trey Ryder

Weak Link #1: Delivering a sales message. Overcome this weak leak by delivering an educational message. Your message must educate your prospect about his problems and the solutions you can provide. If your message sounds like a sales pitch -- or if you sound or act like a salesperson -- your program is doomed to failure. (Do you know anyone who wants to listen to a sales pitch or talk with a salesperson?)

Weak Link #2: Lack of credibility. Overcome this weak link by firmly establishing that you can be trusted None of us (voluntarily) does business with a person we don't trust Go to great lengths to make sure your prospects, clients and referral sources trust you. You can increase trust by (1) offering information about your knowledge, skill and experience, (2) discussing case histories of clients you have helped in the past, (3) speaking in simple terms everyone can understand, and (4) taking time to answer prospects' questions.

Weak Link #3: No apparent differences. Overcome this weak link by clearly pointing out the positive ways you differ from competitors. Prospects won't hire your services unless and until they have clear, identifiable reasons to choose you over all other lawyers. If you convey nothing else to your prospects, make sure prospects know how you differ from every other lawyer on the planet.

Weak Link #4: Lack of interaction. Overcome this weak link by inviting interactions with your prospects and clients. You will never do business with a prospect until the two of you have interacted, whether over the phone, by e-mail or in person. Interaction doesn't happen by chance; it happens by design. Design your marketing program to generate ongoing educational interactions with prospects.

Weak Link #5: Failure to commit. Overcome this weak link by motivating your prospect to make a commitment, which is when he hires your services. Point out to prospects what they stand to lose by allowing their present situation to persist. Point out to prospects how they benefit when they hire you to help them solve a problem or achieve a goal. Describe a case history of someone you know who waited too long to solve his problem -- and the terrible consequences he faced as a result.

Weak Link #6: Unappealing offers. Overcome this weak link by packaging your services in ways that appeal to your prospects. For example, if you offer services only by the hour and your prospects want flat fees, you face an uphill battle. When you offer different levels of services and different billing options, you give prospects the opportunity to pick which they like best. This increases their satisfaction level because they took part in making the decision.

Weak Link #7: Missing your target audience. Overcome this weak link by designing and creating your message so it appeals specifically to the audience you want to reach. If your message does not appeal to your audience, you have a big problem. If your message does not reach the audience you want, you've wasted your time, money and effort.

Weak Link #8: Inconvenient delivery methods. Overcome this weak link by matching your marketing methods with the audiences you want to reach. Make sure you choose marketing methods that your prospects find attractive, comfortable and convenient. If a busy executive wants you to send information by mail -- and if you insist on talking with the executive on the phone -- you are not making it easy for the executive. Your unwillingness to deliver your marketing message in a way that is convenient for the executive may be the only reason he needs not to hire your services.

Weak Link #9: Lack of loyalty. Overcome this weak link by making sure your message and services build loyalty among your clients and referral sources. Your educational message -- delivered over time to clients, former clients and referral sources -- keeps your loyalty level high, which results in an ongoing flow of new prospects through the referral pipeline.

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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

Oferta brasilera

La siderúrgica brasileña EBX presentó una oferta de compra por US$ 1.500 millones a cambio de todas las acciones de la minera canadiense Ventana Gold, con actuación en el norte colombiano. (Presione aquí)

Bisturi

Ministerio Público peruano investiga a 80 médicos, enfermeras y asistentes por haber presuntamente participado en 20 trasplantes ilegales en clínicas particulares, tras la muerte de un empresario mexicano por una operación de estas caracteristicas. (Presione aquí)

Costa Rica x Nicaragua

Costa Rica demandó a Nicaragua ante la Corte Internacional de Justicia de La Haya, por los daños ambientales causados a un humedal fronterizo objeto de un litigio bilateral desde hace cuatro semanas, y donde Managua mantiene presencia militar. (Presione aquí)

  • Brief News

GM has potholes to avoid on road to recovery

The new General Motors still has a rough road ahead as it tries to turn its image around, innovate in its product line and expand its overseas markets. GM, which just last year went through a bankruptcy and a government takeover, was reborn as a public company Thursday in a more than $20 billion initial public offering that attracted considerable investor interest. The stock, initially priced at $33 per share, closed at $34.19, up 3.6 percent on its first day of trading. A painful — but quick — bankruptcy and government takeover left the company free of debts and in a stronger negotiating position with its unions. It also shrank its product line, focusing on vehicles that offered a better chance of market success. But can GM really be headed for long-term health? For GM, consistency has never been a strong suit. First and foremost, they've got to get people wanting their cars again — not just accepting them because they are a good deal.

Nato to debate Afghanistan at crucial Lisbon summit

Nato members are preparing to meet in Portugal for what is being billed as one of the most crucial summits in the alliance's 61-year history. The 28 member states are hoping to reach a "New Strategic Concept" to shape the way Nato defends itself against threats over the next decade. Afghan President Hamid Karzai has said he wants Nato to hand back control of the country by the end of 2014 - a deadline the US has described as realistic but not set in stone. Nato's core function is territorial defense of its populations and its member states. However, Nato had to realise that in today's security environment it may on occasions be necessary to go beyond its borders to protect its people effectively. And of course, Afghanistan is a case in point. What this means is that Nato will go on intervening around the world where it feels the joint security of its member states is at risk. Not so much a new concept therefore as a continuation of the old. One new element will be a plan to reduce the numbers of Nato personnel, command structures and agencies. The Lisbon talks are expected to shape the future of Nato at a time of shrinking budget cuts and expanding challenges.

Economist Taylor wants new law for Fed policy

The Federal Reserve would be required to have a "systematic" rule for adjusting interest rates under a proposal raised today by Stanford University Professor John Taylor, a critic of the Fed's monetary stimulus. The Federal Reserve Act should be amended so the central bank has to tell Congress twice a year about its strategy for the "systematic adjustment of the federal funds rate in response to changes in inflation and in the real economy during the current year and future years."

Cuba's rescue plan opens doors to market reforms

The government of Cuban President Raul Castro has issued a rescue plan to pull the country back from the economic abyss. The proposals offer major policy changes that include an expanded private sector and more foreign investment.

Cholera clashes spread in Haiti

Protests linked to Haiti's cholera epidemic spread to the capital Port-au-Prince, as experts say the country is vulnerable to further outbreaks.

UN condemns Burma's human rights and 'unfair' elections

A UN human rights committee has condemned Burma's recent elections, saying they were neither free nor fair.

Cardinals meet for Vatican talks New

More than 100 cardinals are preparing to meet at the Vatican for rare talks on the challenges facing the Catholic Church: sex abuse scandal, along with concern over the persecution of Christians in some countries. The cardinals are expected to discuss the Church's response to the sex abuse scandal, amid criticism that it has not done enough to compensate victims are address the problems raised.

India's Supreme Court queries PM Singh on 'scam' claims

India's Supreme Court has directed PM Manmohan Singh to explain his "alleged inaction" in failing to sanction the prosecution of a former minister. Telecommunications Minister A Raja has resigned over allegations he undersold mobile phone licenses worth billions of dollars. He denies the claims.

India lost $462bn in illegal capital flows

India has lost more than $460bn since Independence because of companies and the rich illegally funneling their wealth overseas, a new report says. The illegal flight of capital through tax evasion, crime and corruption had widened inequality in India, it said. The total capital flight out of India represents some 16.6% of its GDP. India's underground economy has been estimated to account for 50% of the country's GDP - $640bn at the end of 2008.

BP gas field shut down over Iran

A major North Sea gas field is shut down because production could break European Union sanctions against Iran. BP's Rhum field is a joint venture between the oil giant and Iranian Oil. BP is seeking clarification from the British government on how the sanctions, issued last month, apply.

Obama health-care law is unconstitutional, republican Senators tell Court

Obama's health-care overhaul is an unconstitutional exercise of congressional power, Republican senators said in a brief supporting Florida's lawsuit challenging the law. Requiring people to purchase health care "oversteps the bounds" of the U.S. Constitution, 32 senators said. The U.S.'s arguments in favor of the law are "harming the Constitution's framework by allowing the federal government to overreach its enumerated powers and invade the legitimate province of the states," wrote the senators. U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson in Pensacola will hear further arguments next month after ruling in October that the case could go forward. The government's expansion of powers is "simply without prior precedent," Vinson said in October.

Irish Officials acknowledge need for aid, Portugal waits in wings

As Dublin moves begrudgingly toward accepting a European Union bailout, attention is rapidly shifting to Portugal, the country perceived to be as weak a link in the euro zone as Ireland, though for different reasons. While Portugal's leaders, like Ireland's, insist that they have enough money for now and are making brave and necessary cuts to government spending, in fact the Portuguese government is both divided and stalemated. It has shaken the markets by letting spending rise over the last four months well beyond its stated promises, and it has not done enough structural reform to foster strong economic growth. The difference from Ireland is that we are in the middle of a financial crisis, but also a political crisis.

Florida Supreme Court requiring all foreclosure proceedings to be public

Chief Justice Charles Canady of the Florida Supreme Court issued a memorandum Wednesday to the chief judges of Florida's 20 judicial circuits directing them to ensure that all foreclosure proceedings in the state are open to the public. The directive came in response to transparency concerns raised by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), media outlets and open-government organizations. These groups were particularly concerned by reports from across the state that suggested a number of foreclosure courts were allowing proceedings to occur behind closed doors rather than publicly as mandated by Florida law. In the memo, Canady stated that "[t]he courts of Florida belong to the people of Florida. The people of Florida are entitled to know what takes place in the courts of this state. No crisis justifies the administrative suspension of the strong legal presumption that state court proceedings are open to the public."

ACLU suing Michigan over life sentences for juveniles

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed a lawsuit Wednesday in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan against Michigan government officials, claiming that the state's juvenile sentencing laws are unconstitutional. The nine plaintiffs are adults who were sentenced to life without parole when they were minors. The rights group argues that sentencing children to lifelong prison sentences without the possibility of parole violates due process and constitutes cruel and unusual punishment under the Fourth and Eighth Amendments, respectively.

Worm was perfect for sabotaging centrifuges

The computer worm suspected of being aimed at Iran's nuclear program was calibrated to send nuclear centrifuges wildly out of control, experts found.

France court orders review of same-sex marriage ban

France's Court of Cassation, the country's highest court of appeals, on Tuesday ordered the nation's Constitutional Council to rule on whether the country's ban on same-sex marriage conflicts with the constitution. The order comes after a gay French couple challenged the ban in a Reims court, saying it limited their personal freedoms. Rights groups are optimistic that the ban will be overturned, as the trend in French law is moving towards equal rights among gay and straight couples. Last year, a French court ordered the country's government to extend adoption rights to a gay woman. The court held that French adoption law, which currently allows single people to adopt children but bars same-sex partners from doing so, illegally discriminates against homosexuals.

Small deal brings Huawei scrutiny

Huawei, whose efforts to buy big U.S. companies have been stymied by security concerns, has landed in hot water in Washington for acquiring a small technology firm without first running the deal by the government.

Legal advice…on a budget

Some firms are offering small businesses a flat monthly fee rather than charging them by the hour. Others offer flat rates for certain services, such as handling the paperwork for starting a company.

  • Daily Press Review

PC arrested after 'road-rage' death of woman driver, 64, who had heart attack during row
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Russell Brand won't face charges over US airport fight
The Telegraph, London, England

President Yudhoyono chairs closed meeting on Indonesian workers
Antara News, News agency, Jakarta, Indonesia

Petition challenges sugar price hike in LHC
Dawn, English-language daily, Karachi, Pakistan

Sivanesan accepts offer to be Perak DAP vice-chairman
Malaysian Star, Online news portal, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Mexico opens homicide probe into hotel blast
Canadian Broadcasting Centre, Toronto, Ontario

PERU: Human Rights Body Protects Chinese Citizen at Risk of Execution
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

Stolen - Passport agency grapples with identity theft in Jamaica
Jamaica Gleaner, Independent daily, Kingston, Jamaica

Truth of story about gay wedding on Virgin flight over Canada is up in the air
The Globe and Mail, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Mass break-out at Congolese jail
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Labour camp sentence for retweeting
Independent Online, News portal, Cape Town, South Africa

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