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Bucket RedOn Monday I was doing some tweeting from the Action Against Hunger Love Food Give Food event, in London, and it got me thinking about how the legal sector often thinks it has a problem with communication. How many times have we all heard it said that law firms need marketing experts that understand how to talk about legal services? WRONG. Law firms need marketing experts that understand the legal sector, for sure, but really they need marketing experts that understand how to talk to people. All sorts of people. About all sorts of things. And in all sorts of ways.

My connection to Action Against Hunger came about as a result of working with Domaine du Grand Mayne, an award-winning french vineyard currently going through a funding round on Seedrs. If you haven’t heard of them then take a look at this. Or, even, come along to one of their investor wine tastings happening over March.

It really got me thinking, though. The most important thing, whether I’m writing website content for top twenty law firms or working with individual fee earners on practice development plans, is helping them to understand that they have many different target audiences. And each needs to be spoken to with a different tone of voice and about different things.

This evening I’m off to the Managing Partners’ Forum Awards (another event involving wine), where I’ve been honoured to be a judge. In reviewing so many of the winners, the thing that has struck us all is that success has come from relevance. In all cases they’ve had a clear idea of what they want to achieve and have set out narrow, tailored plans for doing it. There’s none of this “chuck enough muck at the wall” approach for them.

It’s been an interesting journey, working on a crowdfunding campaign with a consumer-targeted organisation. I didn’t think my expertise stretched that far. But then I realised… whether they’re someone sitting at home thinking they might just invest £500 in a vineyard… or the HR Director of a global organisation… they’re still a person. A single individual. And that means effective communication needs to talk in an entirely relevant way to them.