I read Charles Mandel’s article “Wooing the Facebook crowd” in the Globe and Mail (Monday, March 9, 2009) and thought that it would be great for him to do a similar article on Dynamic Legal Forms. I’ll explain why, but first – for those who missed it – I’ll talk briefly about the “Wooking the Facebook crowd” article.
In that article, Charles Mandel talks about Lysted.com, a new free classifieds website that is trying to compete with the likes of Criaglist and Kijiji (yikes!). Part of their strategy, however, involves a powerful application for Facebook and content on mobile devices. The founder, Don Markowich (28 years old), got the idea to promote free classifieds while trying to post a couple of Nintendo games on Facebook. While that didn’t go anywhere, he came up with the idea of allowing users to post a single ad that would appear on their Facebook page, on Lysted.com, and on mobile devices (e.g. blackberries and iphones). The business model is based on attracting corporate users who would market to its classified ads customers.
In the article, Charles Mandel asks a number of experts about their take on Lysted.com’s strategy. The experts offer some great advice, such as the need for Lysted.com’s team to:
- Establish a communications strategy to explain what Lysted.com is offering;
- Spread the word by reaching out to bloggers to encourage them to write about the company;
- Develop a following on Twitter.com;
- Tak advantage of the comptition and place paid ads in newspapers and on Craigslist and Kijiji;
- Undertake guerilla marketing techniques;
- Get involved in industry and product-related websites;
- Have a video with a humerous buy-and-sell scenario and put it on Youtube.com; and
- Restrict the content on the website until it grows a bit more.
This is great advice for any internet startup. I know that, as founder and President of Dynamic Legal Forms, I’m always looking into these and other opportunities / avenues to promote the website to its target markets.
I think that Charles Mandel should do a future story about Dynamic Legal Forms. Having a website business has a ton of ups and downs and we’ve learned a lot of lessons (hard ones too) along the way. We’ve wasted lots of time and money doing things wrong or not thinking about how to do things right. Thankfully, we’ve just started and there’s lots of room and time for improvement. Here’s what I think a story about Dynamic Legal Forms would look like:
- An explanation of the new concept behind Dynamic Legal Forms (i.e. Need a lawyer? Make a Post. Get FREE Quotes!).
- A brief historical overview of Dynamic Legal Forms (e.g. Michael Carabash got the idea from the website from Craigslist and Richard Susskind’s The Future of Law).
- What marketing strategies have worked (e.g. having a clear value propositions, relying on social media, being an industry leader, focussing on SEO, etc.) and which haven’t (e.g. paid advertising, mass marketing, handing out candy canes and flyers outside courthouses, etc.).
- Opinions from the experts.
I would invite Charles Mandel to think about my proposition and give me a shout if he’s interested in doing a story about Dynamic Legal Forms.