Dear Court Reporting Service My Firm Uses,
Thank you for the competent and reliable services you have provided to us during various depositions over the last few years. Thank you also for the cookies, goodies, free lunches, and other marketing perks you have sent over the years, which help reduce our competition by contributing to Type II diabetes amongst attorneys.
Now . . . as to your spam email of today.
Your email was designed to convey the notion that you are versatile and responsive and flexible and ready to serve. You chose to convey that message by emailing me a . . . a skit. Or maybe you'd call it a short story. It's too long to be a vignette.
The skit began, without preamble, like this:
“You have to stop whining. You’re beautiful and I love you,” he said, “but I have to go.”
The speaker, we quickly learn, is one of your court reporters, talking to his dog. No. Really. And that's the part of the email that shows up in the preview window.
In the course of the rather lengthy skit, your reporter demonstrates responsiveness to clients when a deposition is moved from Los Angeles to the nearby island of Catalina. That's swell. If I ever abruptly move a deposition the day it is scheduled to a nearby island in violation of every rule of court and professional conduct, I'm glad to know your outfit can roll with the punches.
But I'm here to tell you: emailing me this skit, in an email titled only "Avalon," with a sales pitch at the end, did not come off as charming or imaginative or bold. Here's a sample of reactions from me, my associates, and my paralegals: "Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!" "Seriously?" "Eeeeew." "Ridiculous."
Marketeers need to have some grasp of their audience. Your audience is made up of professionals wanting reliable no-drama service. You advertised with dramatic spam. Everyone here found it creepifying. I know people say "any publicity is good publicity" and "all you need is for people to think of you." But next time I need a court reporter and someone suggests you, I am going to think "wait — are those the people that sent the weird court reporter skit with the needy dog and the helicopter? Who else can we use?"
Seriously. Think this stuff over.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
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