Person dresses as wizard to signify the power of the cumulative effect of content

Behold the power of the Cumulative Effect of Content

Be so prolific with your content marketing and thought-leadership marketing that you unlock the Cumulative Effect of Content.


We often tend to think about content marketing and thought-leadership marketing as a series of one-off transactions.

We publish a blog post.

Or a bylined article in a trade publication.

Or a podcast episode.

Or a video.

And then, we hope someone sees that piece of content and, magically, hires us, refers us business, invites us to speak at a conference, or asks us to write an article for their publication.

While one of these things might happen from time to time as a result of a piece of content you’ve published, it will not happen frequently enough that you should be motivated to consistently create content solely because one of those things might happen.

Instead, you should commit to consistently creating content because doing so can build sustained momentum for your marketing and business development efforts and unlock the Cumulative Effect of Content.

The Cumulative Effect of Content in action

When I say, “Cumulative Effect of Content,” I’m referring to the favorable impression your body of marketing and business development content creates about you in the minds of your target audiences—normally, past, current, and prospective clients and referral sources, but really, anybody who you are trying to impress—regardless of whether they know you or not.

When you’re pitching a client or a referral source, or you’re pitching a conference organizer or an editor of a publication, or when you’re doing anything for which you expect someone to be vetting you, your library of blog posts, articles, podcasts, videos, and other content will create a favorable impression in the minds of the people on the other ends of those pitches if you come across as knowledgeable and wise about the areas of law you practice.

Why? Because obviously, they’ll think to themselves that if you created a library of marketing and business development content regarding the areas of law you practice—regardless of the forms that content takes—you have to know what you are talking about when it comes to the topics you are covering.

How could you not? You couldn’t have published that much content, and you wouldn’t have been incentivized to publish as much as you have, if you weren’t knowledgeable and wise.

When you are interacting with members of your target audience, they will look for clues that shed light on what kind of lawyer you are.

They’ll search Google for those clues, as well as your online bio on your firm’s website. Same thing with your LinkedIn profile and the news articles you are mentioned in.

And at some point, either through your online bio, your LinkedIn profile, or the search results for your name, they will come across your content.

They each will draw conclusions from that content.

Prospective clients and current clients with whom you want to build bigger relationships.

Prospective referral sources and current referral sources with whom you want to build bigger relationships.

Conference organizers.

Reporters and editors.

They will equate a library of marketing and business development content with knowledge and wisdom. And they will look at you favorably if you have such a library.

(If you have any doubt about this, be self-aware the next time you are researching a professional service provider for your personal or business use. How does the presence of content, or lack thereof, on the part of a provider strike you?)

Content marketing and thought-leadership marketing is a long-term play

You must view content marketing and thought-leadership marketing as a long-term play in order to unlock the Cumulative Effect of Content. 

If you treat those marketing efforts as a transactional, short-term play, you’ll never unlock it because you won’t be committed to those efforts long enough to build the body of work needed to unlock it.

When you do unlock it, you reap the benefits of your target audiences believing that when it comes to the areas of law you practice, you are an authority, you are an “expert,” and you are knowledgeable and wise.

In fact, a critical mass of them might think you are such an authority, such an “expert,” and so knowledgeable and wise that they consider doing all the things you hoped someone would do after consuming just one piece of your content: hire you, refer you business, invite you to speak at a conference, or ask you to write an article for their publication.

If you are consistently creating marketing and business development content, including thought-leadership content, such as blog posts, articles, podcasts, and videos, remember that the primary benefit of publishing those pieces of content isn’t that hopefully *someone* in your target audience takes action after seeing one piece of content.

Rather, the primary benefit is that with the body of marketing and business development content you’ve created over time, *many people* will come to see you as the right attorney to hire, refer business to, speak at their conference, or contribute to their publication.

That’s why you should be consistently creating marketing and business development content.

Not for the one-off transactions that probably *won’t* happen.

But for the favorable cumulative effect your content *will* have on your personal brand.

Wayne Pollock, a former Am Law 50 senior litigation associate, is the founder of Copo Strategies, a legal services and communications firm, and the Law Firm Editorial Service, a content strategy and ghostwriting service for lawyers and their law firms. The Law Firm Editorial Service helps Big Law and boutique law firm partners, and their firms, grow their practices by collaborating with them to strategize and ethically ghostwrite book-of-business-building marketing and business development content.

Interested in getting outside help strategizing and writing the kinds of content that can help you unlock the Cumulative Effect of Content? Click here to schedule a 30-minute Content Strategy Audit to learn if collaborating with an outside strategist and/or writer is the right move for you and your firm.

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