The New Literacy: Connecting with the attention deficit economy

This year, the Law Society of Upper Canada is mandating Ontario lawyers to take 9 hours of continuing legal education (CLE) courses to remain current (how ironic, the Law Society itself is hinged to the old “Upper Canada” denomination). The very thought of withstanding 9 hours of CLE where most conference speakers are going to either: 1. Speak tediously of a fluke judgment in some district court and scare the bejesus out of us with the 2% worst case scenario or 2.  Read back to a room full of lawyers, a new provision in a specific law, just in case some of us are illiterate.

Yes, we have all become attention deficient. But I am trying to hold your attention and you likely have a million things you want to read. What do I do? Simple. Tell stories. And then, tell it differently. Great educators are great story tellers. And great story tellers are great marketers.

Think about the best conference speaker you ever heard. For me, it was Frank Abagnale Jr., the protagonist in “Catch me if you can” movie. He had this monotone voice and an unlikely stage presence. But his story telling style compelled me to believed him!  His simple structure was clearly going to surprise me. A Fraudster was going to educate me on the power of the Truth.  Every block of information was casted carefully in his system. It was going to be paradoxal. That, I realized, was the basis of story telling.  A great story is about two truth that should not be together.

We lawyers are the new illiterate. We try too hard to make sense. It’s time to rethink why I argue. I am switching to story telling.

I have a lot of work to do.

ps. Here are some great ressources on this topic:

1. One of my favourite marketer is Sean D’Souza of He is a former ad guy who launched this great little advisory shop on how to use neuropsychology with marketing. Here is a link to his free, straightforward ressources.

2. The “story-as-a-marketing-strategy” was catapulted by Sean Godin, with his book “All Marketers are Liars“.


Word-Of-Mouth Marketing: We All Want To Keep Up With The Joneses | Fast Company





“After watching the hundreds of hours of footage, I could come to only one conclusion: there’s nothing quite so persuasive as observing someone we respect or admire using a brand or product. At the end of the experience, when asked to rate how in?uenced they were by the Morgensons’ recommendations on a scale of one to ten, Eric and Gina’s friends unanimously answered, “Ten out of ten.”


Word-Of-Mouth Marketing: We All Want To Keep Up With The Joneses | Fast Company.

My first day at Google+

It’s official, I am now on Google+. Why ? Chris Brogan. He is a well known new media blogger, author and marketing expert. He shocked many of us when he announced to Mitch Joel on  Six Pixel of Separation’s podcast interview last month that he completely quit Facebook for Google+.  You see, Chris Brogan knows Google powers the new marketing. Say for example, I am looking a lawyer, an expert in wind energy financing. I will google “wind energy lawyer”. I want the lawyer with the blog, the articles, and heck, the e-book, for Pete’s sake. I want to read what the expert knows. Should he be a hors-piste skier, I want to know that as well.

So, when the American Bar Association published an interview last week on “How Can Attorneys Use Google+ to Generate Business“, I was curious. The only lawyers I know on Google+ are younger, edgier and run their own show. There might be a digital divide between old and young lawyers. I am not taking chances. I am joining the “young” side.

In short, my self marketing is a long way from home. But, I am going to carefully study Chris Brogan, Seth Godin and my cool hip lawyer friend, Hugo Martin on Google+.  Welcome to the new Professional Development world of new marketing.