Rainmaking Lessons From a Top Corporate and International Trade Attorney -- Lisa A. Landy, Esq.

According to Lisa Landy, leveraging 1-2 premier industry and trade associations has been central to growing her practice. She itemizes six marketing mistakes that lawyers make when the join membership organizations, and how you can avoid them.

According to Lisa Landy, leveraging 1-2 premier industry and trade associations has been central to growing her practice by leaps and bounds. This is a lesson that all motivated attorneys should learn from her and build into in their own personal marketing plan. 

Why? Because by taking the lessons to heart and acting on them, you can avoid the mistakes that cause many attorneys to waste their time, energy, talent and enthusiasm. They join and participate in organizations that produce no tangible business development results at all. Following are six marketing mistakes take lawyers make when the join membership organizations, and how you can avoid them. 

For the rest of the story, please visit Originate! The business development newsletter.


JD Supra Goes Live Soon as Founding Contributors Send in Documents

JD Supra, law firm marketing JD Supra, the free online repository of court filings and legal articles, is about to go live. Lawyers, law firms and legal organizations are continuing to send in documents during the site’s private beta phase. They are completing their free online profiles and getting a sneak peek at one of the most anticipated law related website launches. 

JD Supra, has drawn favorable attention from bloggers including Bob Ambrogi of Lawsites, Steve Matthews of the Vancouver Law Librarian Blog, and Josh Fruchter of LawyerCasting.

The preview site of JD Supra has attracted lawyers throughout the U.S. and beyond, where members get to showcase their court filings, decisions and articles to create a free legal research resource, and connect with potential clients, referral sources and members of the media. The list of founding contributors includes prominent firms and organizations such as:

  • Morrison & Foerster
  • Mintz Levin
  • Barnes & Thornburg
  • Banner & Witcoff
  • Lane Powell
  • Clark Wilson
  • Electronic Frontier Foundation
  • Cato Institute, and
  • Many regional and local law firms

It’s not too late to become a founding contributor and get a sneak preview of the site yourself. As a founding contributor you will receive a special “Founding Contributor” designation, featured promotion on the home page, and free profile enhancements. Simply visit JD Supra and click on the red link to sign up and get access to the private beta site as a founding contributor.


To Boost Response, Elminate Links form Landing Pages

My blogger colleague Josh Fruchter in New York identifies how law firms can get more website responses to:
  • Register for an event
  • Download a free white paper
  • Sign up for an email newsletter

The trick is to eliminate all distractions on the landing page -- especially links -- that take the visitor's eye off the desired response.  "The landing page thus represents the mechanism by which a marketer hopes to achieve a tightly focused objective such as lead generation, event registration, or subscriber growth," Josh writes.

As an example, see the landing page that eLawMarketing designed to generate leads for a free white paper. Prospects arrived at this landing page by clicking on a link in an email newsletter ad: http://image.exct.net/members/7993/technolandingsite.htm.  The words "Download Free Report" jump off the page.

I follow Josh's advice on the subscription page for Originate! The Business Development Newsletter. See http://www.pbdi.org/Originate/users.asp.  Did you notice the big red "Subscribe" buttons?

"This means, for example, landing pages should NOT include links to other pages on your website that will take visitors off your landing page and distract them from taking that critical step you were hoping for," Josh says. "A landing page is about conversion, not branding."

Read his insightful post "How to Optimize Landing Pages for Google Ads, Event Registrations, Lead Generation and Other Marketing Objectives" on the Lawyercasting.com blog.


What Lawyers Earn: typically from $120,000 to $185,700 in Chicago

law firm marketing, lawyer salary salarisEverybody loves to know what other lawyers make.  There are lots of good reports on starting salaries, and the Robert Half Legal 2008 Salary Guide breaks it down for experienced lawyers.

So for example, a lawyer in Chicago with 4 to 9 years' experience in a midsize law firm (35-75 attorneys) can expect an income of $120,00 to $185,700.  Naturally, your earnings rise with more years of experience, if you work for a large law firm (75+ attorneys) or practice in the following high-paying cities:

  • Atlanta
  • Boston
  • Charlotte, NC
  • Chicago
  • Detroit (surprisingly to me)
  • Hartford and New Haven
  • Houston and Dallas
  • Los Angeles, Irvine, Oakland, Ontario, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose, CA
  • Manchester, NH
  • Miami
  • New York City ($160K for new grads at megafirms) and White Plains, NY
  • Philadelphia
  • Phoenix
  • Paramus, NJ
  • Providence, RI
  • Raleigh, NC
  • Seattle
  • Washington, DC (naturally)

The industries that are paying lawyers top dollar include:

  • Healthcare
  • Financial services
  • Information technology
  • Commercial Real Estate (in the Southeastern US only)
  • Manufacturing (in the Midwestern US only)

The hot jobs offering the biggest increases in compensation are first year associates because there is a declining supply of laws graduates. Job candidates who finished in the top 20 percent of their class or have specific practice experience are highly sought. First-year associates at large law firms (75+ attorneys) will see the greatest jump in compensation. Average base compensation for this role is expected to rise 9.1 percent, to the range of $111,750 to $137,000 annually.

Other hot practices include lawyers experienced in commercial litigation, intellectual property, commercial real estate and product liability, particularly for pharmaceutical companies.  The globalization of law is creating demand for lawyers with international litigation and enforcement experience, and ability to speak multiple languages and function in different cultures. Robert Half predicts that attorneys with one to three years of experience at large law firms will earn between $114,000 and $147,500 per year, an 8.2 percent increase over 2007 projections. Senior attorneys with 10 or more years of experience at large firms will see starting salaries rise 7.9 percent, to the range of $167,500 to $234,000 annually.  


Vote for Your Own Firm in the Inside Counsel Rankings

Inside Counsel magazine is giving its readers a chance to rate law firms on 8 factors, such as "quality of service" and "responsiveness." There are dozens of firms to choose from, and if your firm is not on the list -- you can yourself to it.  It's like voting for your favorite restaurant or TV show.

Editor-in-chief Robert Vosper asserts that only registered users who are in-house counsel can rank a firm.  However, It took me only 60 seconds to register and vote.  I am the corporate executive who selects the lawyers for one of several corporations I operate, so I am the VP and General Counsel.  I added one of my favorite client law firms to the list and gave it top rankings in value of service, quality of service, client/customer service, billing accuracy, adherence to budget, willingness to negotiate fees, value-added services and breadth of services.

I suppose some nasty person could pick out their competitors and give them low rankings. But people wouldn't do nasty things on the Web, would they?

The mag used to be called Corporate Legal Times and you can get a free subscription to Inside Counsel by clicking here. As of this moment, the top firms for value of service are:

  1. O'Melveny & Myers
  2. Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue
  3. Seyfarth Shaw 

For quality of service the top three are:

  1. Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue
  2. Perkins Coie
  3. Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal

Ironically, Vosper says in the "From the Editor" column in the January 2008 issue, "I've always found this whole ranking thing to be a bit unsavory.  Many of these lists are either pay-to-play or are based on data supplied by the law firms themselves."   [ I couldn't agree more.]

He goes on: "Few, if any, of these lists are helpful to in-house counsel.  Why is it important , for instance, that a firm is ranked among the top 100 grossing firms in the country (other than the fact these firms should be more willing do reduce their rates)?  And can you really trust that the data submitted by these firms is accurate?"  [You said it buddy!]

Then he totally blows it by saying, "With that in mind, we devised a law firm ranking that can't be gamed and is actually useful.  We are calling it the IC-I list."  [Sorry, you lost me.  Didn't you just say these phony-baloney rankings are "unsavory"?]

So tell your clients, consultants, marketers and buddies to register and vote for you. Call up a friend at another law firm and agree to vote for each other.  The results will be published in October.  Maybe then the publishers will start to give up on these silly rankings.


Tydings & Rosenberg Announcement Hits the Mark

Tydings & Rosenberg sent out an eye-catching new-partner announcement that successfully serves a marketing purpose.  It's a refreshing change from useless the black-and-white data-devoid announcement in Copperplate type that many law firms send out.

It's part of a trifold flyer that includes photos of the lawyers including four associates and a panel devoted to new partner L. Content McLaughlin. Tydings is a 47-lawyer firm with offices in Maryland and Washington, DC.

Why the works:

  • The popping-champagne bottle on the from panel looks like an invitation to a party, and entices the reader to open it.
  • The color photo indicates that an live human has join the ranks of the 28 partners.
  • It actually says what she does -- counsel business on day-to-day legal matters.
  • It mentions non-bar association activities, like being Vice Chair of Women in Associated builders & Contractors (so we immediately know she is a rainmaker), the National Association of Women Business Owners and several charities.
  • It lists her phone number and email address.
  • The card graphics use the concentric golden circles motif show on their website.

Kudos to the firm's veteran marketing director Denise Dewling.



5 Law Firms Included in Fortune's "Best Places to Work"

Today Fortune magazine published its annual list of the best places to work for, and the following 5 law firms made the list: 



Job growth

What Makes it so great

U.S. employees


Arnold & Porter


Staffers get 12 weeks paid maternity leave and profit sharing of 7.5% of salary. The less you make, the less you pay for health-insurance premiums.



Alston & Bird


Both the legal and nonlegal staff get super benefits, including 90 days of paid maternity leave, coverage of fertility treatments, and concierge services.



Bingham McCutchen


They're proud of their elite grads: 72 from nearby Harvard Law, 24 from Yale, and 20 from Stanford. They all start at $160,000 a year.



Perkins Coie


They value fun at this law firm. At 2007's Lawyerpalooza battle of the bands, the Perkins Coie rock & rollers brought down the house (and took home the top prize).



Nixon Peabody


The law firm excels on policies for GLBT employees (a 100% rating from the Human Rights Campaign); it targets 3% of billable hours annually for pro bono work.





The Legal Profession Has Entered a Recession

Once thought to be recession-proof, the legal profession is now in a recession that will include a drop in profits per partner, declining spending for legal services by corporations, attorney layoffs and a major competitive threat from law firms in London.

Here’s what a panel of experts said at the recent Marketing Partner Forum:

  • We are in a recession right now – it’s pretty obvious,” said Sara Kraeski, Esq., Director of Business Development, Davis, Graham & Stubbs in Denver.  She is a former partner in a securities and private equity law firm and a graduate of the Wharton School.
  • “We are in the middle of the perfect storm. We don’t want to be the best of the buggy makers, we want to thrive and survive, said blogger Patrick Lamb, Esq., the founder of the new Valorem Law Group, LLC, a national litigation boutique based in Chicago.
  • “There are warning signs that road ahead is riddled with landmines.  2008 looking like 2001 – when there were declining profits in the industry,” said Dan Dipietro of the Law Firm Group for Citi Private Bank in New York.
  • There’s a new challenge ahead that has the potential to cause the greatest change ever seen in the legal profession,” said Wendy L. Bernero, Chief Marketing Officer for McKee Nelson in New York, referring to UK law firms that will be able to pick off top talent from US law firms.

For the rest of the story, visit the LawMarketing Portal.


Blogger Patrick Lamb Starts Valorem Law Group

Patrick Lamb, a Chicago litigator who writes the In Search of Perfect Client Service Blog, has started the Valorem Law Group, LLC, a national litigation boutique based in Chicago serving businesses.  Valorem is the Latin word for value.

He founded Valorem in January 2008 with Hugh J. Totten and Mark Sayre who also had experienced and found lacking the big firm experience. Patrick spent 18 years at Katten Muchin Rosenman, where he was an equity partner and then 7 years at Butler Rubin Saltarelli & Boyd.

Here's what he says will differentiate the new firm:

  • Our hourly rates are all going down from where they've been, and each invoice will have a value adjustment line for clients to change the amounts due on a bill to make sure they believe they are getting fair value.  But our real goal is to move from hourly work to alternative fee work, whether contingency or fixed fee or some combination.  
  • We are striving to drive individual ego out.  Everyone will have the same size office--small.  Money will be spent on technology and collaborative spaces, not luxurious corner offices.  No one has their name on the door.  And no one person will own a client -- compensation is not based on "my billings from my clients."  It will, instead, be based on how "we" do and, if we reach our objectives, how "we" do will be based on how our clients do.  The goal of all of this is to drive people into collaborative work spaces where we spend time brainstorming about ways to handle cases better, get better settlements, and save our clients money
  • We will be aggressive consumers of contract legal services, using the lower hourly rates charged by those capable lawyers to either charge lower hourly rates or lower the overall cost of our service.  We are doing away with the traditional concept of "associates on a partnership track."  We don't want to worry about paying new, inexperienced associates $160,000, plus benefits, and then trying to earn a profit from their labor while at the same time making clients pay for their training.  

"Our motto is basically 'buy results not billable hours,'" Totten said.

Winners of the Marketing Partner Forum Awards

Details to come, but here are the winners, just announced this very minute:

Chief Marketing Officer of the Year
Anne Malloy Tucker
At Goodwin Procter for 8 years

Marketing Partner of the Year
Mark A. Long
Managing/Marketing Partner
Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt

Marketing Initiative of the Year
Foley & Lardner
Multimedia Integration Initiative


Favorite Examples of Guerrilla Marketing

law firm marketing, guerrilla marketingI love it when marketers carry out a promotion that is out of the ordinary.  Call it guerrilla marketing -- unconventional marketing intended to get maximum results for minimal resources.  Favorites include:

The blog 6 Pins has collected photos of Great examples of Guerrilla Marketing including:

  • Barbecue ads on the grill covers of storm drains.
  • A box of 3M security glass holding stacks of cash.
  • Pictures of thrilled roller-coaster riders displayed on escalator steps for the Hopi Hari amusement park in Brazil.
  • A Mini Cooper car billboard saying "Cops Hide Here," with an arrow aimed at a hedge of bushes.
  • A Sopranos TV show bumper sticker on the back of a cab, next to an arm hanging out of the trunk.

And my favorite: cartons of eggs on a baggage claim conveyor belt with the wrapper, "Handled by Virgin Atlantic."

I'd love to see law firms try more guerrilla marketing.law firm marketing, guerrilla marketing


We Are In A Recession

Call me Cassandra.  Or call me the boy who said the king has no clothes. We are now in a recession, there is no doubt.  See below for "Here's how to cope." 

Consider the evidence:

  • Consumer spending is down, according to the New York Times. (See "Americans Cut Back Sharply on Spending.") This hasn't happened since 1991. Retail sales for December -- the holiday shopping seasion -- were down .4%. “This is the real deal — consumers are slowing down across the spectrum,” said David Schick, a retail analyst at Stifel Nicolaus. Consumer spending accounts for 70% of the economy.
  • The unemployment rate rose to 5.0 percent in December.  (See "Employment Situation Summary" from the Bureau of National Labor Statistics.) The number of unemployed persons increased by 474,000 to 7.7 million.

Nobody likes a party pooper, but I predicted this last August (see Get Ready for the Coming Recession).  (The nay-sayers love to say I'm referring to my own business, which is not the case. Trust me, I'm busier than ever.) Consider the additional evidence:>

  • New home sales posted the biggest drop on record in 2007. Weak December sales left full-year new home sales at 774,000, down 26 percent from the 1.05 million sales in 2006. That was the biggest drop since the government started tracking new home sales in 1963, surpassing the 23 percent decline posted in 1980.

  • Housing starts are down 24% from a year ago to the slowest pace in 16 years.. The median sales price of existing single-family homes has been falling all year, according to the National Association of Realtors. A person's home is the largest single asset and the source of a sense of prosperity for most Americans.

  • The value of the dollar is near an all-time low with the Euro worth $1.46.  The dollar is worth the same as the Canadian Loonie currency.
  • The price of oil spiked at $100 per barrel on January 2 and has settled at an exorbitant $92 per barrel.
  • The US trade deficit widened sharply by 9.3% in November to a larger-than-expected $63.1 billion.  The trade deficit has widened to its highest level in more than a year. >

  • The "credit crunch" means that investment capital is difficult to obtain. Banks and investors become wary of lending funds to corporations, thereby driving up the price of debt products for borrowers. Citigroup, the nation's biggest bank, announced a stunning $10 billion fourth-quarter loss.  The Kuwait Investment Authority -- a foreign country -- is expected to bail out Merrill Lynch with a $4 billion investment.
  • The cost of the war in Iraq over the past five years is now approaching a cumulative $500 billion, or about $100 billion per year on average.  Our children will be paying for this for their entire lifetimes.

Here's how to cope. 

  1. Lawyers must get business development training.  Rainmakers are not born, they are trained. Marketing is not taught in law school, and today's rainmakers got training and attended programs on business development. Getting clients is not an innate talent, but it is a learnable set of skills. 
  2. Smart lawyers will make extra efforts to stay close to their current clients -- setting up regular off-the-clock update meetings and visits to client offices -- so that they don't lose current revenue.
  3. Lawyers will develop personal business development plansThe time to prospect for new clients is when you have enough work -- right now.  If you wait to originate new work until your revenues start to go down, it's almost too late.  At that point your competition will be slashing rates and starting to market against you.  Don't wait until the recession is officially declared.

Ungaretti Markets with "Mergeritis" Ad

law firm marketing, advertisingThe half-page ad looks like a solicitation for plaintiffs in a class-action against a pharmaceutical company. (Click here to see it full-size.) The bright yellow advertisement on page 41 of Chicago Lawyer magazine poses the following:

You may have mergeritis if you suffer from:

  • a rash of new conflicts that jeopardize your client relationships
  • queasiness about an overnight 20% increase to your billing rate
  • numbness from feeling like an employee rather than an entrepreneur
  • a sense of detachment from new partners based in distant offices
  • aching for a firm that’s a better fit for you and your clients

Nowhere did the clever ad reveal that it was an ad to attract laterals to Chicago's 100-lawyer Ungaretti & Harris. "But it's broader than that," said Director of Marketing Mark C. Karkazis, who joined the firm one year ago. "There's been so much in the press lately about law firm mergers and they question the viability of mid-sized firms. We wanted to make statement in prominent way that our practices are busier than ever."

See the rest of the story on the LawMarketing Portal.

Listserv discussion: Forget Print & YP Ads; Get Results Online

Dale Tincher, law firm marketingOn the LawMarketing Listserv, there is currently a lively discussion on promoting a law firm via print advertising vs. Yellow Pages vs. the Web.  [Visit www.lawmarketing.biz to join the discussion.]  Dale Tincher of ConsultWebs offered an intelligent and detailed response to my initial comment:

Sure, you can make the the print ad better by including a person's name and number to contact, and can include a call to action (like requesting a white paper or survey), and this will produce something to measure.  You can also target trade association magazines and publications that clients read to aim at a specific market.  But I submit that websites, e-newsletters and direct mail letters are more effective at generating direct response.

Can you remember any particular law firm ad?  Probably not.  Perhaps you remember the Orrick "O" campaign, which has cost untold millions, but all I remember is the "O," not whether they're a good law firm. I also remember the ad with the picture a grizzly bear cuddling a human infant, but I don't remember which law firm ran it.

To which Dale Tincher responded:

I agree with Larry that (properly designed and SEO’d) websites, newsletters and direct mail letters are more effective than general advertising - - and the ROI can be measured.  We have several clients who closely track their marketing efforts and have achieved impressive results from the web.  Several of our clients receive 8 to 1 returns on the money they invest in the Internet.  Some others receive more.  One client, a serious injury firm that targets a region, receives a 90 to 1 return.  One of our clients, Ken Hardison, a 7-figure annual advertiser, receives an 8 to 1 return on his investment and says that the Internet gives him a higher ROI and higher quality clients than any of his other marketing methods which include TV, Yellow Pages, print and many others.  

Larry often talks about the ineffectiveness of Yellow Pages.  Hardison & Associates and several of our clients invested heavily in Yellow Page directories in past years.  Virtually all of them have ceased or dramatically reduced their Yellow Page advertising since the return dropped to less than a 2 to 1 return.  (It is surprising to me that many firms do not measure their ROI on marketing investments.)  Please see Mr. Hardison’s video discussion on our Website.  He states this information and other statistics in his video: http://www.consultwebs.com/clientcomments.htm Please also see my video where I reference client case results generated from the Internetwww.consultwebs.com.  

I believe that Internet marketing is increasingly effective for many reasons. Some of them include:

  • Prospective clients start looking for a solution when they need help.  They probably tuned out most general advertising prior to their need, especially warm, fuzzy ads.  If you have a website that is search engine optimized well and is compelling, they will find your firm and contact you when they have the need – 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.
  • Advertisers are obtaining results from the Internet.  Internet advertising and effectiveness are increasing while most advertising is decreasing.  Please see our article, “Internet Advertising Rises While Traditional Advertising Shrinks” -  http://www.consultwebs.com/internet_advertising_growth_article.htmHeavily visited websites that relate to your practice areas can be good places to place your advertising.  An additional benefit is that the incoming link can help your rankings;
  • Consumers are growing more comfortable shopping online for goods and services.  Amazon stock rose nicely in late December (20%) while most retailers’ stocks dipped - http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/4337972a28.html.   Comscore stated that online holiday shopping rose 19% over last year http://www.comscore.com/press/release.asp?press=1987 while traditional storefront retailers discounted heavily and still had modest gains http://blogs.wsj.com/holidaysales/.  
  • The Internet investment you make today will pay dividends for years to come if done properly, unlike traditional advertising such as one-time ads or spots,

I recommend that you be cautious about investing in legal directories.   While some work fairly well, most are ineffective for a variety of reasons.

TV has worked well in the past for some of our clients.  However, the way people view TV is changing – a fact that must be considered when planning TV advertising.Deloitte Touche's recently released, "State of the Media Democracy Survey" contains some interesting information - http://www.deloitte.com/dtt/article/0,1002,cid%253D182990,00.html.  The survey includes the following comments: 

  • TV content and TV-like content have the opportunity to dominate the future 
  • 69% of Americans consider their computer more entertaining than their TV, BUT . . .
  • 58% also wish to easily connect their home TV to the Internet so they can download content or view anything at all they have on their PC (up 9 points from our 1st edition of the survey) 
  • Over one-third of all consumers are watching TV shows online (a 15 point increase from our 1st edition)

I hope this is helpful.

Dale H. Tincher,CEO -  dtincher@consultwebs.com
Consultwebs.com - Web Marketing & Design www.consultwebs.com
Consulting - NCBA - http://www.ncbar.org/membership/smolo/technologyassistance.aspx
Phone 800-872-6590; Fax 800-515-3549

LexisNexis Acquires Redwood Analytics

LexisNexis has added New Jersey-based Redwood Analytics to its collection of companies, which also includes InterAction CRM software, the atVantage business intelligence database, and the Martindale-Hubbell directory.

Redwood sells business performance software for large law firms that mines the time-and-billing records to create reports on financial performance, focusing on the most significant drivers of the business of law.  Lawyers, finance managers and marketing professionals use the information to support their decision making.

"The addition of business analytics from Redwood to the diverse LexisNexis Client Development portfolio amplifies the strategic benefit LexisNexis delivers to law firms when it comes to developing clientele, managing resources and winning new business," said Ralph Calistri, senior vice president of Global Client Development Solutions for LexisNexis.

The Redwood Think Tank has produced dramatic research findings, including Client Attrition Analytics: Firms Can Control Whether Clients Stay or Go, published on the LawMarketing Portal.

New Podcast Offers Free Business Development Advice

Cole Silver, law firm marketingClick the link to listen to Cole Silver, Esq., interview me in the Expert Audio Series podcast. Listeners will get 34 minutes of free advice from me as I cover:

  1. Overcoming your natural hostility to marketing and sales.
  2. Avoiding rejection and conducting a new-business call correctly.
  3. Avoiding cold calls and mining your network instead.
  4. Weaving business development into your current activities.
  5. Why business development is a pathway to happiness.
  6. Identifying your ideal clients and avoiding rude and obnoxious clients.
  7. How much to spend on legal marketing.
  8. Teaching business development to associates.
  9. Business development is building relationships.
  10. How much time to spend on marketing.
  11. The three business development priorities.
  12. Planting a garden -- if you do business development behaviors you will get results.
  13. Create a wolf pack and hunt as a group.
  14. Don't make a career of taking assignments from old men, or you'll become a subservient service partner.
  15. Three generations: rainmakers, worker bees and young entrepreneurs.
  16. Turning your network into people who can send you business.

Cole Silver, an attorney based in Moorestown, NJ, heads The Silver Group, a company specializing in career and business development for lawyers. He is the author of the Legal Marketing Secrets Blog. Cole was a trial attorney for a multi-state commercial law firm, and operated his own law firm and served as General Counsel for several high growth companies.


Blogging's a Low-Cost, High Return Marketing Tool

David Harlow, law firm marketingThe headline in the New York Times Busines section says it all: Blogging's a Low-Cost, High Return Marketing Tool. "It is a low-cost, high-return tool that can handle marketing and public relations, raise the company profile and build the brand," the article says.

Professions like consulting -- and law -- are ideal for blogging.  "They are experts in their fields and are in the business of telling people what to do.”  David Harlow, a lawyer in Boston, started HealthBlawg, as a way of marketing himself after he left a large law firm and opened his own practice. He said blogging was easy to get started and the technology was straightforward.

After about two years of blogging, Harlow said he was pleased to get about 200 to 300 visits a day. He has also become a source for publications looking for commentary on regulatory issues in the health care field and has even gained a few clients because of the blog. In addition, he has formed relationships with other legal bloggers (who call themselves blawgers) and consultants around the country.


Visionary Sheldon Bonovitz Steps Down at Duane Morris

Having grown Duane Morris from 200 lawyers to 650, firm chairman Sheldon Bonovitz has stepped down and handed over the reins to vice chairman and litigation department head John J. Soroko.

Bonovitz brought on Ed Schechter as the firm's first chief marketing officer in 2001. Ed succeeded visibly, winning top rankings for its marketing program in MLF 50 surveys.

Bonovitz, 70, took over as chairman in 1998. Firm revenues since then grew from $70 million to $375 million for 2007.  Duane Morris now has 22 offices including London, Singapore and Vietnam. The firm gave the news story to Law.com and reprinted it on its website:

Ed Schechter, law firm marketingOne thing to watch is how the firm will continue to view marketing. Duane Morris has long been praised for its marketing department of more than 40 professionals -- one of the largest of the AmLaw 200 in terms of the ratio of marketing professionals to lawyers. Bonovitz had a personal interest in growing the marketing department and is a true visionary in a time when many firms still don't quite accept the importance of marketing, according to Peggy Dixon of Abelson Legal Search.

The 10-year mark, Soroko told Law.com, was a good breaking point for Bonovitz, who plans to stay active in the firm. "My status will be that of chairman emeritus and, as such, I will serve on various committees and boards of the firm as well as focus on client development and practice."

Bonovitz said in April 2006 that he wanted the firm to hit the 1,000-lawyer mark in two to four years. While that hasn't happened yet, Soroko said there is no target number or time frame for that expansion. Soroko said his goal is just to continue to combine the firm's positive culture with a focus on financial performance and results.