One of the things I love about being a law firm marketing consultant is I get to watch firms innovate on ways to retain clients and get new ones. In the last few months, several “new” marketing activities have come to my attention that I thought were absolutely terrific. Full disclaimer—I do not work with any of these firms but truly salute their ingenuity.
• Winston & Strawn: (OK, I was a summer associate there in 1982, but never helped them with marketing.) They have come up with one of the best “client alerts” I have seen. Called “Advertising Law Snapshots,” the literally colorful alert gives readers an incredibly short (less than 100 words), 30,000-foot view of a legal decision or regulatory change. It takes seconds to read or skim, and you get right to the bottom line of what you need to know about the decision. Take the July 28, post entitled: “FTC Recommends Changes Re ‘Made in America.’” There are headings to explain what was the factual allegation in the case, what the FTC determined and what was the remedial plan. Good stuff.
• Levenfeld Pearlstein: This Chicago-based midsize firm has created a humanizing and exciting marketing tool. It is called “One Question—One Degree” and it is a monthly video panel of lawyers, administration, clients and potential clients in the firm’s network being asked a question. This month’s question was, “What is the one thing someone would be surprised to know about you?” We learn in these fun and very short videos that one lawyer has run marathons in Antarctica, another was a collegiate competitive water skier and still another was a log roller early in his life. As the firm says “we are unique with diverse skill sets and experiences that are often buried behind our standard headshots and bio profiles. We wanted to give you more information about who we are and what we are made of.” The idea is “through personal stories and anecdotes captured on video” the firm will be more connected to its clients. Well done. Kudos also go to this firm for having a headshot and full bio of every paralegal on its website.
• Howard Law Group: Assisted by my friend, the incredibly talented Ross Fishman, this Michigan firm decided to emphasize its incredible trial stats on its new website—namely that name partner Bill Howard’s lifetime trial record on behalf of major corporations was tremendous (300-4). Here is what the firm says about itself on the home page: “At the Howard Law Group, we handle the ugliest, hairiest and most complex disputes and cases. We’re the go-to trial lawyers for some of the nation’s largest corporations, in industries like agriculture, automotive, construction, energy, maritime, trucking, and more. Why? For starters, we’ve handled hundreds of significant trials over the past decade. That’s hundreds. And we’ve won 98 percent of them. Yeah, those few losses grate on us. If you already have a litigation firm, ask them how their numbers compare.” You have to love this text aimed at a corporate audience. I love the boldness of this commercial litigation—not personal injury—website, how it successfully capitalizes on facts about its success and its use of no-nonsense imagery.
• Mayer Brown: Mayer Brown lawyers have announced the publication of “A Global Guide To Background Checks.” At a time when background checks have become a “critical part of the recruitment process,” this guide covers both legal and practical issues involving checks in 50 countries—offering a huge assist to global companies wishing to “harmonize recruitment policies across different jurisdictions.” There may be other similar guides of which I am not aware, but I thought the timeliness of this guide, available on iTunes, in a world of heightened anxiety, was incredibly well planned.
• Moss & Barnett: This Minneapolis firm has one of the most interesting client newsletters I have come across lately. It is not just replete with news flashes and legal alerts (and it is), but there is ample focus on the achievements of the lawyers and staff. I found it to be an all-around solid, and again humanizing read for clients and potential clients.
• Andrews Kurth: The Women’s initiative team at Texas-based Andrews Kurth has just produced its 28th edition of its oversized magazine entitled Straightline. This is one of the most beautifully produced and incredibly interesting publications that I have seen come out of a law firm, and the fact that it is aimed at women clients and referral sources demonstrates the firm’s strong commitment to that sector. Rather than focus heavily on legal news, (there was only one article on insurance law in the last issue), the magazine explores issues of interest to women in general—including eating and exercise tips, work solutions (like how to keep your cool when you are angry), which books to read to become a better leader, shopping suggestions on trendy picnic accessories, and exploring whether you have “vocal fry.” A tasteful column recognizes AK’s female lawyers’ achievements. The photography is outstanding and this is a terrific example of “girl marketing power”—appealing to the women at the highest levels of corporate America.
I am proud of these firms and their marketing teams for moving the marketing bar for us to greater levels. Feel free to send me examples of your latest and greatest marketing endeavors. I am here to cheer you and your firm on.
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Stacy West Clark has been helping lawyers and law firms expand their practices for more than 25 years. She is a former attorney with Morgan Lewis & Bockius and was the firm’s first marketing director. She is president of Stacy Clark Marketing, www.stacyclarkmarketing.com, a firm that helps law firms grow their businesses.