Pushing the Envelope
Many years ago, my now friend Scott Jones placed an ad in the Cityview Top Attorney issue. We photographed him seated, flanked by Mandy Hancock and Joni Stewart. We didn’t know Joni’s name, and the creative director put a placeholder on the caption. It read “Mandy Hancock, T. Scott Jones, and Name Name.” And it went to press that way. Scott never complained. It didn’t come up until I visited him the following year. “Why is the publisher of the magazine coming to sell me advertising?” he quipped. “It’s a rhetorical question, mind you, as I already know the answer, ‘Name Name.’” He quickly went on, “Oh, I’m not upset, but I do want a favor.” Deep inside, I groaned and waited for what I assumed would be an untenable request.
“I want to include my racing motorcycle in my next ad,” he said. I asked if he was a racer, and he showed me the results of his last trial. It seems like it was around 200 mph. I reluctantly agreed, and we set a time and place to shoot in a gritty alley in Old City: myself, photographer Jimmy Chiarella, and managing editor Hannah Slaughter. Scott showed up with a beautiful blue and white Hayabusa bike and matching leathers. I was slowly coming around.
Jimmy submitted the photos, and Hannah was masterful in her creativity. A brand was born, one that would, from that day forward, be known as the firm that “Plays to Win.” But more importantly, Scott had taught me a lesson about publishing: that it was ok to think outside the box. I sent the magazine to press, wondering what the public response would be. I am happy to say that it was overwhelmingly successful and launched a series of campaigns that has lasted more than 14 years.
Scott consistently pushes the envelope. And I have had the opportunity to listen to the stories of his cases that will never make the media; not just Scott’s stories, but the stories of many of the top legal community members. And although many people hold attorneys in a negative light, the reality is when you need someone to put their butt on the line to save yours, a good attorney is worth their weight in gold.
So perhaps you should take the time to get to know a few good attorneys, especially in our tumultuous times. It might be an investment that pays off by saving your behind.