"I want to encourage you to take this step, trust in the process, and learn the things you don’t know."
Hi, I’m attorney Mike Cardoza. I’m a consumer financial protection attorney, which means I see debt collectors, credit reporting agencies, and any company that is trying to mess with the little guy. I do individual actions, and I do class actions.
I thought this morning that I might put on a dress shirt or a tie or use a green screen. But instead, I wanted you to see exactly how I work, which is right here out of my private offices in the San Francisco Bay area.
I do quite a large volume of electronic filings in state and federal court—so large in fact, that I use co-counsel for complex litigation and large and long class actions.
How did I get to this spot? After my time as a trial lawyer in the Marine Corps, I became a debt collector and a debt buyer for many, many years. There wasn’t much feeling good or future in that sort of business. So when I left and switched sides, an old Marine buddy of mine said to me, “Mike, you know you can be a fine attorney, but it all doesn’t mean squat unless you got the clients.”
I took that and thought I’d better focus on getting clients. Then a buddy of mine from my service in Iraq, Van Smith, gave me a thin little book called Great Legal Marketing by Ben Glass. I read it cover to cover. After I read Great Legal Marketing by Ben Glass, I thought to myself, "Well, if this is what it takes to be competitive in the ultra-competitive world of personal injury, then I ought to apply this to the world of consumer protection law."
Let me back up one second to tell you a little war story and how I came to this frame of mind. I won’t say how many years ago, but it was quite a few. I was a young Marine officer at the Marine officer’s basic school. We were out in Quantico—it was 235 of us hard-charging lieutenants in my company. These big corn-fed guys who have been hunting squirrels and geese their entire life, and we were all marching out for the most exciting event of our training life so far, the rifle range. We are going to shoot the M-16 all the way out to 500 yards. Think about how far that is—it is about ¼ mile. At that distance, a man-sized target is smaller than the front sight post—it is like voodoo. We are out there for weeks and weeks. I will just cut to the chase and tell you. Guess who the absolute highest shooter of our company was? I’ll tell you, it was this 97-pound waif of a female with long hair that she tied up in a bun underneath her cover. When you got to talking to her, you realized she was actually a little bit cross-eyed. You think, "What?" The reason for it is simple, she had no preconceptions of what it was like to shoot a gun, and she didn’t know anything. She just followed the instructions that she was given by the masters of the trade, which were the gunnery sergeants there and instructors at Quantico.
The same thing applied here. I started my firm in December of 2014. I joined Great Legal Marketing and Foster Web Marketing at about the same time. I had my website up by the summer of 2015, and I just did what I was told.
What was interesting, I’ll tell you, I learned that I loved sales and marketing. It’s fun! The biggest challenge was in being myself on the Internet for everyone out there—oh my. Well, guess what, nobody cares. The only people who care are the people you want to have as clients, and they care in a good way.
So, get over it, and you might find that it’s fun. If you’re like me, and you had a long history of battling out with other curmudgeonly attorneys, having unpleasant adversarial conversations, you might find that it is interesting to have a change of life and to discover a different part of your personality. If you don’t, that’s fine: the guys at Foster will do it all for you anyway so don’t worry about it.
Here’s what you are waiting to hear— what happened. Well, nothing for like six months. Of course, I am kind of sweating it because I have a lot of eggs in this basket. This is my only source of leads. Well, nine months later, I hit the hockey stick. You know, the elbow where it goes like this (pointing upwards) and the leads just start jamming in? They came in so fast and furious that I had to get that co-counsel relationship that I am telling you about.
Now, about fifteen months later, I am at the point where I am totally convinced that these leads will never stop—because they don’t. They just keep on coming and keep on coming. My opportunity now is to shape them. And through the content that I publish on my website, I pick exactly who I want to reach out to. I get to choose, by saying the things I say, exactly who matches that resonance and who comes to be my client. It is a real joy.
I want to encourage you to take this step, trust in the process, and learn the things you don’t know. Most of all, I want to thank Tom, Buster, Chad, Gretchen, Karen, Allison, Matt, and Jamie there at Foster Web Marketing for all of the wonderful things you have done for me and my family.
Thank you from the Cardoza Law Corporation, and thanks from Mike Cardoza.