Category Archives: Law Firm Marketing

Heads Back in Sand

#Lawfirm #Marketing

The theme in the legal market this week is surely a familiar one to those of us who have spent much time working and living with lawyers. No doubt, you know the classic children’s book “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie….” Well, the legal market equivalent very well might be: “If You Give a Lawyer a Chance to Avoid Making a Hard Decision ….”

Just consider the latest headlines from Thomson Reuters: “Large law firm demand surges in the third quarter!” Now wait a beat and take a guess about what the latest Law Firm Business Leaders survey concludes: Law Firms Bullish on Growth, Reluctant to Embrace Radical Change to Business Models.”. In large part, this inclination to avoid making decisions is deeply embedded in our business culture. The same way a Wall Street trader learns to preserve optionality in order to keep a trade alive, a Wall Street lawyer will argue from one hand to the other, until the end of time, if you give him or her the chance. But even so, dear law firm leaders, now is really not the best of times to be so deeply wedded to the status quo.

The Living Proof

#Lawfirm #Marketing

Great story here about how a mid-sized firm (Keesal, Young and Logan) leveraged technology and process engineering know-how in order to secure its place as “go to” outside counsel to a Fortune 500 client. We hear all the time about how technology has the potential to level the playing field but increasingly we can also see the living proof.

A Champion of Market Change

#Lawfirm #Marketing

Finally, every intellectual, business and social movement needs its own champions. For the Abolitionists there was Frederick Douglas while the Trumpists must make do with Sean Hannity. When it comes to chronicling and urging on the transformation in the legal market, surely one of our best champions is Mark Cohen. You can read Mark’s latest blogpost here, in which he warns against the over-reliance on technology as the driving force of change.

Regulatory Race to the Top or Bottom?

#Lawfirm #Marketing

Reed Smith becomes the first US based international firm to lay claim to an ABS license from UK regulators. This strikes me as a big deal and we should expect to see a bunch of other BigLaw firms soon follow suit. Just as lawyers have been so adept in counseling corporate clients how to seek advantage under a more favorable regulatory regime, now it’s time for multinational law firms themselves to pursue the same strategy!

Law Firm Marketing Brief  Vol. 1, No. 131

Algorithms Over Relationships

#Lawfirm #Marketing

Yeah sure, law is a relationship business – how many times have we heard that cliche before? But as this article from Bob Ambrogi suggests, now even that bit of timeless market wisdom is about to be put to the test. The new predictive analytic tool from Wolters Kluwer allows general counsel to rank prospective outside counsel based on a number of key data points in order to assess which is likely to best handle a new litigation matter. Guess what? Your golf handicap and where you went to law school are not included among the relevant factors!

Law Firm Marketing Brief  Vol. 1, No. 131

A Spur to Further Change

#Lawfirm #Marketing

Minter Ellison is an Australian firm that has positioned itself right on the cutting edge of market transformation. As Annette Kimmitt, the firm’s CEO and managing partner, explains in this short article, the firm is proud to be “leading the way in redefining what a law firm is, and what it can be.” For Kimmitt, unlike so many of her American counterparts, the fact that firm revenues were up more than 11% last year, serves only as a spur to further change.

Law Firm Marketing Brief Vol. 1, No. 131

Attention Must Be Paid

Law Firm Marketing Brief

Vol. 1, No. 125

Attention must be paid, or so Willy Loman’s wife famously said. Her admonishment seems even more apt today if we hope to maintain our grip in the digital economy. I really like this article from Hinge Marketing on how to keep your market edge in our current Age of Uncertainty. If you are walking into a client meeting and asking your client what keeps you up at night? — well then forget about it. Because you need to be telling your client what they should be worried about, not asking the question. So get with the program ladies and gents! It’s an attention economy, as it is often said these days. As such, as this excellent blog post from Emotive Brands reminds us, the focus of marketing has decidedly shifted from yesterday’s concern of attracting attention to the far more compelling requirement today of paying more and better attention.

Platform Law Firms: what comes next?

Law Firm Marketing Brief

Vol. 1, No. 125

Platform law firms have already established a strong presence in the UK legal market, as highlighted by a few stories this week, including this update on ABS Carbon, which is now formally opening their platform to lawyers who want to maintain their own distinctive brand while avoiding all the headache of building and maintaining their own back office and infrastructure. Another story here describes the growth of platform firm Keystone. Why haven’t we seen a similar development emerge here in the US? In part, it is a function of the dead hand of the law or outmoded market regulation – the prohibition against alternative business structures (or non-lawyer ownership) which has been lifted in UK but still remains in place here. However, while we don’t yet have platform firms (or should we say platfirms?) here in the US, we have seen the rise of practice management platforms, led by Clio (a company that has attained more than 100,000 users worldwide) and other new players in this category, such as Zola Suite (one of our sponsors!), who are pushing the envelope even further, in developing more fully integrated platforms with ever more powerful features and functions. At some point, as regulation in the US legal market begins to loosen, these two trends seem destined to merge and we will see practice management platforms that provide practitioners with the ability to set up truly turn-key operations, with front and back office functions fully integrated, under their own brand name but powered by Clio or Zola Suite.

plus c’est la même chose

Law Firm Marketing Brief

Vol. 1, No. 125

“What happens to litigators when clients find ways not to litigate?” That’s one of the questions that Jordan Furlong poses in his latest blog post about where the legal market is heading — speculating that what lawyers do is about to change, not just who does it or how it gets done. As with most of Furlong’s articles, it’s worth reading, but litigators everywhere are surely breathing a sigh of relief that they are not obsolete quite yet, at least according to the latest Peer Monitor Report, which shows stability has returned to the BigLaw market thanks in large part to a resurgence of litigation revenue. What this underscores for me is that it is going to take a lot more than breakthrough technology to make the US a less litigious society. And those of us who continue to anticipate great impending changes in the legal market need to take a deep breath (from time to time) and remember just how firmly embedded the adversarial system is in our legal and business culture.

Talent, talent, talent

Law Firm Marketing Brief

Vol. 1, No. 122

Remember the mantra about the real estate business: location, location, location. In the law business today it seems that finding, training and retaining talent is coming to play a similarly critical role. And increasingly, promoting diversity is turning out to be key to an effective talent strategy. See, for example, this story about the overall impact that Mansfield 2.0 certification is having on promoting diversity in law firms today. And also note this story about how PwC has put diversity at the center of its legal recruitment efforts in the UK. And in case you’re wondering how this impacts the marketing department, here’s an article that summarizes recent research about how diversity and inclusion make for better marketing too.

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