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Query Letter To Publication #2

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Early in my consulting career I promoted the professional practices of physicians, dentists, and financial planners. The idea was to generate more patients and clients for them, which I did. These letters relate to my work with a financial planner.

I got him a monthly article in "Colorado Business" magazine (which I wrote), a weekly cable TV talk show (which I produced), and several articles in "The Rocky Mountain News," then the 20th largest newspaper in the U.S. (which I also wrote). That's what PR agents do.

This was a query letter to "Private Practice" magazine, a publication for physicians. I suggested contributing an article, and the idea was accepted. We submitted the query on September 6 and received the go-ahead on October 27, a long wait. The editor's note follows my letter.

September 6, 20—

Kristy Fonblanque
Private Practice
P.O. Box 12000
Oklahoma City, OK 73157

Dear Kristy:
Because my father and grandfather are M.D.'s, I read "Private Practice." I enjoy your format tremendously (everything from computers to Mitsubishis). It's so readable, even for a layman.

Thom LLora (Pronounced "Yore-ah") has expressed an interest in writing an investment article for you. He has three topics in mind, but could do others:

  1. Real Estate As An Alternative to Pension and Profit Sharing Plans,
  2. It's Time for Your Yearly Financial Physical, and
  3. Is Financial Planning for you?

He has some good material. For example: A case study of two M.D.'s in very similar situations. One had financial planning, the other one didn't. The results were dramatically different.

We can provide numbers, charts, and quotes. The College for Financial Planning is located right here in Denver. So is the Institute for Certified Financial Planners.

Mr. Llora is well-qualified to write this kind of article. He runs one of Denver's oldest and largest financial planning firms (73% of his clients are M.D.'s).

His 20-member office comprises expertise in: (1) estate planning, (2) accounting, (3) finance, (4) law, (5) investments and securities, (6) real estate and property management, and (7) insurance.

Mr. Llora is on the Board of Directors of The International Association for Financial Planning (Rocky Mountain Chapter). He writes a monthly column in "Colorado Business magazine" and hosts a weekly cable TV talk show. In the past he has been a consultant to "Money" magazine and "Medical Economics."

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William S. Frank, M.A.,
25 Reasons I love consulting.
by William S. Frank
  1. Brand. You are your own brand, and you can define it any way you want. For many years, I provided outplacement to the ex-employees of Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield service corporation. When departing employees left the company, they didn't request outplacement in their severance package. They said, "I want Bill Frank."
  2. Demand. The world will always be full of terrible problems that need solving.
  3. White Hat. I can be a helper and get paid for it.
  4. Pay. I can be paid to do things I'd gladly do for nothing.
  5. Variety. Every day is different.
  6. Happiness. At this stage of my career, I only work for people I respect and care about. If a client micromanages me or is otherwise no fun, I complete the assignment and replace them.
  7. Talent. I'm using 110% of my talents and stretching myself to the max.
  8. Change. I can change my focus any day I want. If you're a McDonald's franchisee, you don't say, "Hey, I've got this great idea for a meatball sandwich—let's try it out today." In consulting you can adjust your focus hour-by-hour, as long as your clients still understand and appreciate what you do.
  9. Income. No one else would pay me as much as I pay myself.
  10. FUN. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing.
  11. Retirement. I can write and consult as long as I am physically and mentally capable. Peter Drucker worked into his 90s, and when asked which book was his best, he said: "My next one."
  12. Job Security. Although clients come and go, no one can come into my office and say, "Pack up your stuff . . . You don't work here anymore." In 29 years, I've only had one employer: ME.
  13. Travel. I don't have to travel unless I decide to. I travel if it's both FUN and profitable—or at least FUN.
  14. Commute. I live five minutes from my office, a corner office in an upscale six-story tower. In winter, I leave a heated garage at home and drive to an underground heated garage at work. There's seldom time to hear even one song on the radio.
  15. Vacation. Consulting is more fun than vacation (except on Wailea Beach in Maui).
  16. Friends. I have developed hundreds of close acquaintances and several lifetime friends.
  17. Time. I can work as much or as little as I like: four-hour days or 18-hour days. (Of course, my income will reflect that.)
  18. Employees. I can work with employees, subcontractors, partners, or alone—I've done it all.
  19. Passive Income. I've developed several products that provide "mailbox money." I earn while I'm sleeping.
  20. Ethics. I've never had to violate my values or personal code of ethics. I've never had to lie, purposely deceive or harm others, or promise things I can't deliver. I go to bed with a clear conscience. That doesn't mean there's never any conflict. But the conflict is conducted according to generally accepted business practices.
  21. Virtual. My career is fairly portable. With the Internet, e-mail, cell phone, and FedEx, I can work nationally, even internationally from my office—or anywhere in the world.
  22. Purpose. I make a difference in peoples' lives every day. I see it in their faces, hear it in their voices, and read it in their thank-yous.
  23. Experience. Every painful or joyful life experience makes me a better consultant. So does every person I meet or book I read. Grey hair can be good in consulting.
  24. Structure. I have to work very hard, and the clients expect superb results—but I get to structure my days, weeks, months, and years.
  25. Boss. Most of the time, I love my boss.
As I was posting these letters online, I realized I want to communicate my love for consulting. It's just a great business. The single letters, taken together, may create a picture of enjoyment, but in a burst of creativity I listed some of the reasons consulting is such a good fit for me—and perhaps for you, too. They are not prioritized; this is just how they came out.