New Product Launches at Legal Tech 2011 in New York

3-Lawyer St. Louis Firm Wins $50,000 LexisNexis Ultimate Law Firm Marketing Makeover Contest

Rajnoha, Case and BoudreauLexisNexis, a leading global provider of content-enabled workflow solutions, today announced the grand prize winner of the LexisNexis Ultimate Law Firm Marketing Makeover contest — law firm Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLP from St. Louis.

The contest judges, comprising online legal marketing experts from inside and outside of LexisNexis, selected the winning firm to receive a comprehensive suite of online marketing services from LexisNexis, helping establish and effectively grow its online visibility and marketing efforts. This $50,000 grand prize package of services includes web design, video production, search engine optimization, robust profiles on leading legal sites Lawyers.comSM and®, and more.

For the photos of last night’s awards dinner in New York City, please see  
“Our team is thrilled to collaborate with Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLP in developing and enhancing its online marketing program,” said Philip Livingston, CEO, Marketing and Business Solutions, LexisNexis. “We believe a comprehensive marketing makeover from LexisNexis will demonstrate how a strong online presence can help generate impressive, measurable business results, particularly for smaller law firms.”

Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLP ( is a general practice firm with three attorneys who typically handle cases involving dissolution of marriage, paternity/child support, estate planning, probate, and minor criminal infractions.

“We are very excited to have won the LexisNexis Ultimate Law Firm Marketing Makeover contest, and we can’t wait to elevate our firm’s online marketing presence,” said Margaret A. Boudreau, a partner with Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLP. “A comprehensive and aggressive online marketing campaign, particularly one backed by the experience and talents of an industry-leader like LexisNexis, will enable us to grow our practice faster than ever before.”

As the grand prize winner, Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLP will now begin working with experts from the LexisNexis Online Marketing Makeover Team to build an enhanced online presence for the firm. This package includes the four major components described below:

  • Website & Personal Video Production Services: The Makeover Team will work to put a website in place that reflects the firm’s personality, is engaging and informative, and employs web design best practices to make it easy for potential clients to find and contact the firm. The team will also shoot, produce and host a custom video designed to drive more prospective clients to the winning firm’s website, while also providing prospective clients with greater insight into the essence of the firm.
  • Online Optimization: The winner will benefit from an appropriate mix of online optimization services designed to enhance search engine relevancy rankings and drive more visitors to their site. The Makeover Team will also leverage placements on relevant legal, business, networking, social media and consumer-facing sites to further enhance the winning firm’s online visibility.
  • Profile Services on Leading Legal Sites and The winning firm will receive assistance from the Makeover Team to utilize all the features available to represent the firm and its credentials effectively — from practice descriptions to articles and more.
  • Martindale-Hubbell® Lawyer Ratings: The makeover team will help lawyers engage in the Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review RatingsTM and Client Review ratings programs. The team will also provide opportunities to highlight credible, independent assessments of the winning lawyers’ experience, ethical standing and legal abilities from peers as well as clients, to supplement their profile information and display their hard-earned ratings in creative ways.

About the Contest

The LexisNexis Ultimate Law Firm Marketing Makeover contest was launched on October 29, 2010, to provide small law firms across the United States an opportunity to expand and enhance their online presence for greater visibility and to drive more prospects to their firm. After reviewing written essays submitted by all contest entrants, the judging panel selected five finalists on December 17, 2010. The judges then selected Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLP as the grand prize winner after reviewing videotaped “oral arguments” in which the five finalist firms articulated their desire and need for online marketing services. The other finalists will receive complimentary LexisNexis® products and services, including help from the LexisNexis Online Marketing Makeover Team to enhance their online presence.

The judging panel comprises David Lat, founder and managing editor of Above the Law (; Larry Bodine, business development advisor and editor of LawMarketing Blog (; Carolyn Elefant, attorney and editor of; and David Palmieri and Carol Eversen, both vice presidents at LexisNexis.

To learn more about the contest, visit

LexisNexis® ( is a leading global provider of content-enabled workflow solutionsdesigned specifically for professionals in the legal, risk management, corporate, government, law enforcement, accounting, and academic markets. LexisNexis originally pioneered online information with its Lexis® and Nexis® services. A member of Reed Elsevier  (, LexisNexis serves customers in more than 100 countries with 15,000 employees worldwide.

For more info, contact John Michaels, LexisNexis, (202) 857-9121, 

Get Business Intelligence from Social Media with Manzama

The name Manzama is from Swahili, meaning "from many there is one" (E Pluribus Unum was already taken). It's online "listening platform" that searches through social media -- Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn -- plus RSS feeds, blogs, press releases, events and online news.

It just launched at the Marketing Partner Forum, and it empowers law firm marketers to track clients, industries, legal issues and competing law firms. What's amazing about Manzama is that it displays a line chart that shows emerging trends, and spikes of online activity about companies (see below) or your chosen search terms, based on your profile and personal interests.

Manzama, based in Bend, Oregon, lets you see at a glance which of your topics suddenly became hot online. You can click on the top of the spike to see exactly what discussions, tweets or news items were the source of the activity.

13 law firms have been beta-testing the platform, which runs in the cloud, and a handful have already licensed it including Perkins Coie. "The abundance of information that I need to monitor can be overwhelming," said Elizabeth Bevins, a Business Development Manager who is charged with overseeing client and competitive intelligence for the 700-lawyer firm. "We have so many clients and industry groups to watch over. There's no shortage of information from external resources."

She already uses Google alerts, OneSource, WestLaw, PACER, CourtLink and numerous periodicals. She recently used Manzama to track a new general counsel at a prospective client to find out his previous employers, litigation filed against one of his past employees and any news on the GC's new company.

"Where marketing and business development professionals once needed to go out and painstakingly track down important and relevant information, the information now finds them," said Peter Ozolin, CEO of Manzama.Manzama listening platform, business development, law firm marketing


Are you ready for a 4000-lawyer firm? DLA Piper has done it.

Nigel Knowles, law firm marketing, dla piperDLA Piper announced Thursday that it would form the world’s largest business law firm by fully integrating the Australian firm DLA Phillips Fox, giving it more than 4,000 attorneys and making it a legal giant in the Asia-Pacific region.

DLA leapfrogged over Baker & McKenzie, which has 3,775 lawyers, and displaced it as the world's largest law firm.

The firms agreed on the terms for the full merger, which is expected to win approval from partners in both firms by the end of February and to be completed effective May 1.

Sir Nigel Knowles, Co-Chief Executive Officer of DLA Piper and Frank Burch, Global Chairman of DLA Piper commented:

"The cementing of the relationship between DLA Piper and DLA Phillips Fox is part of our global strategy and is an integral part in helping us become the world's leading business law firm. As part of our strategy we are committed to expansion within the G20 nations, and with Australia as the 14th largest industrialized nation it provides excellent opportunities with its strong ties to some of the most rapidly growing economies in Asia. With the integration of DLA Phillips Fox, DLA Piper will be the world’s largest business law firm, uniquely positioning our firm to serve the world’s leading enterprises wherever they may conduct business."

The Asia Pacific business will have revenues expected to exceed £195 million ($310 million) and will comprise over 700 lawyers in Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Thailand plus more than 300 lawyers from the West Coast of the United States. The firm will still be called DLA Piper.

The move comes as the Asia- Pacific region takes on an increasingly larger role in the world economy. The tie-up will help the firm capitalize on the convergence of the Australian and Asian markets, with strong trade between China and Australia and multinational investment in both jurisdictions fueling legal work in 2011.

The integration will push DLA Piper’s footprint to more than 70 offices across 30 countries.

DLA Piper's Asia-Pacific business is expected to have more than 700 attorneys in Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Thailand and revenues exceeding £195 million ($310.3 million), the firms said. After the integration is complete, Alastair Da Costa, DLA Piper's Asia managing director, will become managing director for the Asia-Pacific business.

Burch has pointed to the so-called BRIC countries — Brazil, Russia, India and China — as an area of growth for law firms.

“It’s pretty simple,” Burch told Law360 late last year. “If you look at where the large multinationals and the most attractive emerging technology companies are generating their revenue and their net income and where they expect to see the most growth, it’s in the BRIC countries.”



The Red-Hot Areas of Law Practice

See below for a chart showing the typical compensation paid to a lateral partner based on the size of the lawyer's originations.

lateral hireI just got off the phone with a major Manhattan recruiter of lateral partners, and here are the three hot areas of law.  Based on his talks with 85 managing partners, he told me that big law firms are looking for partners with a book of business in:

  • M&A (yes -- mergers and acquisitions are hot again!)
  • Patent litigation (nothing says "bet the farm litigation" like a patent dispute.)
  • Private equity (the banks sure aren't lending and money from private sources is filling the gap.)

Firms are looking for laterals because it's the easiest way to grow a firm. For example, if the firm's real estate clients suddenly have employment problems, the fastest way to keep the work is to hire a lateral to do it.  And laterals are expected to bring a book of business, of course.

Naturally, law firms are all looking for that partner with a $5 million book of business and 30 years of experience. But these lawyers are not looking for a new firm.  The laterals that are on the prowl are:

  • Partners who were passed over for a management position that they deserved.
  • Lawyers who can't grow their practice at their current firm, because a lack of talent means they can't cross-sell their practices.
  • Lawyers who once had $10 million books of business that have shrunk to $500,000 in the bad economy -- and they are being pushed out of their firm.

Right now, lawyers who are age 35 to 45 with growing books are seen as the best investments. (What else is new?) Law firms also want lawyers in project finance and financial institutions like hedge funds and banks. The firms are putting potential laterals through 4 to 5 grueling rounds of interviews, and want to hear a compelling case to present to the firm's executive committee, before they make the hire..

One thing that has changed is that law firms no longer guarantee the compensation of the candidates. This used to be a common practice, but not any more. If candidates ask for a guarantee, the door will slam shut.


Market Range of Compensation

Individual Originations

$375,000 to $425,000

$1 million

$600,000 to $700,000

$1.5 million

$780,000 to $800,000

$2 million

$800,000 to $875,000

$2.5 million

$875,000 to $1.1 million

$3 million

$1.35 million

$4 million

$1.45 to $1.6 million

$5 million

$2.4 million

$8 million

$3.75 to $4.1 million

$10 million




Quora: An Argument Against Regulation of Lawyers' Use of Social Media.

John HellermanExcerpted from John Hellerman's Hellerman Baretz blog:

"If you're familiar with social media, you've heard about Quora by now.  Like Yahoo! Answers, it's a collection of questions asked and answered by its users. Blogger Kevin O'Keefe of LexBlog says that Quora "will be very attractive to lawyers looking to enhance their reputations and connect with their target audience."

The idea is that by providing quality answers to Quora's legal questions, a lawyer can raise her profile and, in turn, generate business.  "At HBC, we want to highlight the way in which Quora underscores a larger topic: ABA regulation of social media activity.  And, if we do say so, the case of Quora proves us right."

The ABA is considering developing special ethics rules around lawyers' use of blogs and social networks. 

As John told the ABA, this would be a mistake. His reasoning is simple: the Model Rules of Professional Conduct regulate the substance of communications made by attorneys, not the method by which those communications are made.  The rules, therefore, already cover what lawyers say on blogs and other online venues. 

His second point was that designing special rules for social media also would be impractical.  He noted that "it is a virtual certainty that the features of today's robust networking platforms will change and proliferate over time.  Attempting to address the universe of Internet platforms with specific Model Rules (or addendums to existing rules) will sentence the ABA to a futile, time consuming, and never-ending mission to amend the rules' language to keep pace with the networks' ever-changing natures."

Quora proves both points. Existing rules already covers the ethical concerns raised by Quora.  "There are indeed some obvious ethical questions around Quora that will leap out at any lawyer: 

  • By answering a question on Quora, am I providing legal advice? 
  • Have I formed a lawyer-client relationship, even inadvertently, with the questioner? 

"These are hugely important questions that bear on malpractice exposure and duties of confidentiality, among other issues.  And yet, creating a special rule for Quora would not make sense.

"If the ABA did create such a rule, it would have to be amended on an almost weekly basis. Rather than updating the Quora rule constantly, it would be much better to rely on the ABA and state bar associations' already-established general principles, and apply them to new situations as they arise.

"The case of Quora: another argument against heavy-handed regulation of lawyer activity on social media."

To see the full text of John's post "What Quora Proves About ABA Ethics Rules," please see   


Get A Survey of Marketing Tactics Used By Process Servers

Process serverAttention process servers: I would like to offer you some new marketing research – at no cost -- on the best marketing tactics that you can use to grow your business. I have worked as a market researcher in the legal field for 20 years and researching the best marketing initiatives for members of the industry. 

What’s the catch? All I ask is that you take a short, 11-question online survey. It will take you 3 minutes. If you’d like a copy of the results I’ll send them to you at no charge. To complete the Marketing Tactics Survey for Process Servers please visit:

or just click the link. Your input is very important and will help the profession as a whole in this tough economy. Your individual comments will be kept confidential, and only the aggregate results will be shared.   Please phone me at 630.942.0977 or email me if you have any question.

(Note: this survey is for process servers only.  A process server delivers subpoenas, legal complaints or court papers for law firms to parties in a court case).


Winners of the Excellence in Legal Marketing Awards

Jeff BerardiHot off the press: the winners of the Hubbard One “Excellence in Legal Marketing Awards” announced at the Marketing Partner Forum in Phoenix are:

Marketing Professional of the Year: Jeff Berardi, Chief Marketing Officer, K&L Gates. Marketing the Law Firm, an ALM publication, publicly recognized the efforts of the firm's marketing department, with the firm earning a first-place ranking in the 2010 "MLF 50," an annual listing of the top law firms for marketing and business development. 

K&L Gates has been listed among the top 20 law firms for marketing since the survey's inception six years ago, and the 2010 ranking marks the fourth time that the firm has landed in the top 10. Named as one of only five law firm "innovators" featured in Law Firm Inc. magazine's cover story "Innovators of 2008," Jeff speaks regularly at legal industry conferences.

Additionally, Jeff has written for or been quoted in various publications, including "Demystifying Blogs" in the October 2010 Managing Partner Magazine, and he has contributed chapters in the "Inside The Minds" series Driving Business Results with Your Marketing Strategy and Client Development Strategies for Law Firms published by Aspatore Books. 

 Fasken Olympic Central Activity

Marketing Initiative of the Year: Fasken Martineau, for preparing for organizing 18 client events during a two-week period during the Winter Olympics. The firm took advantage of newly-opened offices just outside the security fence. “We became Olympic Center in Vancouver,” said Gillian Ward, Chief Marketing Officer. The firm had 300 clients, including 80 of their top 100 clients, attend the events.



Best Use of Technology: Netherlands law firm Houthoff Buruma, accepted by Marketing Director Jeff Boseman. The firm created a multimedia game to attract recruits. A “Mission Impossible” assignment, the game tests lawyers' ability to handle stress and work with people. The game plot line posits that players represent a fictional client -- a Chinese mining company -- and have to form teams to handle the assignment.


What General Counsel Expect from Law Firms

Len PovichAt the Marketing Partner Forum in Phoenix, two corporate general counsel described what they want from law firms in terms of innovation and a good "customer experience. " Here are the highlights:

"I hire lawyers, I don't hire law firms," said Seth Rodner, Executive VP and General Counsel of Medicis Corporation in Scottsdale, AZ. "I want to know I've got a lawyer who's personally engaged in helping me through the issue I've got."

"I want the lawyers to look at things from my perspective. Lawyers who can look at things from my point of view are going to be successful, regardless of how wicked smart they are," said Lon Povich, General Counsel of BJs Wholesale Club.

An example of a good experience Rodner had involved a law firm associate.

"One of our regulatory lawyers in DC suggested that he could bring value and synergies to my law department and company if he were to volunteer a mid-level associate to be embedded with us for six months, which turned into a year. This is called is 'secondment.' We worked out a very reasonable fee arrangement for that. It was a chance for his firm to acquire institutional knowledge about us and plow it back into the relationship.

"She went above and beyond and built professional relationships in the law department and on the business side and became a productive part of the team. We ended up hiring her as our new compliance officer.  It's a success story on a number of levels. They have expanded their business with us to the tune of millions of dollars," Rodner said.

"Volunteering education to me and my team is very valuable," Povich said. One of the firms he uses sent three lawyers to the company to update them on legal issues that affected them. "I like to receive content from a law firm in-person, a little personal CLE."

Neither in-house lawyer like law firm alerts.  "I want a one-paragraph email, not a glossy newsletter," Rodner said. "There have only been a couple of times that the first firm that sent me an alert told me something I hadn't already heard."

A good experience Povich had with a lawyer came in a cold call. "I got an got an unsolicited email from a lawyer who clearly addressed the emotional impact of a patent dispute on us, clearly addressed the legal issues, and came up with a plan to make the most efficient way to handle our patent, which was being challenged. It was the only time I jumped on a cold call because he specifically addressed my needs," Povich said. 

"If you're going to set up a meeting with me, don't bring six partners and tell me everything you do. I only want to see one person to pitch me about how you're going to handle the matter that's before me," Rodner said. 

"There is no substitute for competence at the highest level, because I'm judged by the outcome of our legal issues. That being said, if I'm going to spend a lot of time with an outside lawyer, it's very difficult if they're not a likable person.  They have to be somebody I want to work with. Personality does matter.  As for being schmoozed, I'm happy to go to a sporting event with somebody I know. But at some level I consider it work and I'm not going to accept all of the invitations," Povich said.

"Beyond competence, interpersonal skills are enormously important," Rodner said. "When we hire a law firm, I don't have time to hold their hand during the entire process, and I have to turn the lawyer loose on the organization. I can't have them torching all my relationships along the way and creating an impression of the legal department as a bull in a china shop," Rodner said. 

Asked what bad experiences he has had with law firms, Povich said, "Manifest inefficiencies that lead to a higher cost are bad.  If I see a bill that shows 15 hours of associate time, memo writing and LexisNexis research -- and I never got a memo or got any value from that -- this will be bad for the relationship."

"If I meet the rainmaker and then get handed off to a junior person, I don't want to be the guy who is sacrificed. I want the lawyer that I hired. If there is lack of ownership of the relationship by the lawyer, I don't like it," Rodner said. 


Who Will Win the "Marketing Professional of The Year Award" Tonight?

Hubbard One Excellence in Legal Marketing AwardsTonight at the Marketing Partner Forum in Phoenix, AZ, the Hubbard One Marketing Professional of the Year Award will be bestowed at a "red carpet" reception at 6 PM Mountain Time.  As I have for many years, I'll report on who gets this honor.

Past winners are an all-star cast of business development cognoscenti:

  • 2010: Andrea K. Stimmel, Curtis, Mallet-Prevost
  • 2009: Deborah Roth Grabein, Andrews Kurth
  • 2008: Anne Malloy Tucker, Goodwin Procter
  • 2007: Ed Schechter, formerly with Duane Morris
  • 2006: Elizabeth Chambers, Bingham McCutchen
  • 2005: Tara Magee Weintritt, Miles & Stockbridge
  • 2004: Laura Meherg, formerly with Burr & Forman
  • 2003: Mark Beese, formerly with Holland & Hart

The judges will consider nominees based on their : 

  1. Results.
  2. Excellence.
  3. Leadership
  4. Innovation
  5. Sophistication
  6. Communication.
  7. Effectiveness.

Awards will also be given for the Best Marketing Initiative and the Best Use of Technology. Watch this space to find out who takes home the awards.


New Video Shows Four Ways to Get More Referrals

David AckertA recent survey by asked buyers of legal and other professional services which approaches they preferred. The #1 top answer was: Referrals from colleagues or other service providers.

Referrals are wonderful because they essentially turn your clients, friends and contacts into your sales force. There's nothing better than a person who's enthusiastic about you and will tell their friends about you without any prompting.

The problem is that many lawyers don't know how to ask for referrals. To solve this problem, David Ackert, the founder of Practice Boomers in Encino, CA, has developed a wonderful 6-minute video, "Four Ways to Get More Referrals" at (After you register and confirm you'll see the video.)

It's not important to get the exact words right when requesting a referral.  A lawyer should simply use his or her own words in using the four approaches and then:

  1. Pick the right person.
  2. The right forum.
  3. The right approach.
  4. Ask for the referral.

What I like is that the approaches are not manipulative and do not involve closing techniques. Anybody can do them. Check 'em out, you'll be glad you did.


Top Five Law Firm Marketing Tips for Legal Professionals

LawMarketing Blog, law firm marketing, legal marketingWould you like to open more files, attract new business and generate more revenue this year? Start out by taking these five steps:

• Pick two days every week when you are going to get out of the office and have a face-to-face meeting with a client, referral source or potential client. You won’t get any new assignments by working through lunch or joining your law firm colleagues for drinks. Instead, meet a client for coffee, meet a referral source for lunch or dinner, and meet prospective clients at a trade association meeting. 

• All new business comes through relationships with other people. Meet with people, find out how their company makes money, and devise ways to help them with legal services. Now is a great time to start a client visitation program. If you’ve never met your client, it’s time to get in your car or climb on an airplane and visit them at their offices. If all you do is send emails, faxes and Fed-Ex boxes to each other – you don’t have a relationship. Most of the human brain is devoted to vision, so get out and let other people see you.  

• The best way to sell is by asking intelligent questions. Spend most of your time listening to the other person talk about their business issues and challenges. You can listen your way to a lot of new business. Don’t “pitch” yourself or recite your credentials. Your clients and prospects have no interest in your firm history, its top-notch practices and the cum laude degree you earned years ago.

• Build good word-of-mouth advertising by expressly asking your clients if they are (a) satisfied with your work and if so, will they (b) recommend you to their colleagues. You have to ask because clients have no idea how a lawyer builds a clientèle, and don’t know that they’re supposed to recommend you. Ask clients if you can use them as a reference, or summarize the good work you’ve done in a case history on your firm’s website.

• Keep meticulous records about the people you meet. When you get a business card, write three things on the back: the date, where you were and what you talked about. Immediately when you return to the office, transfer this information plus the person’s contact information into an Outlook Contact or into your firm’s CRM system. This way you can search it, and quickly call up the record when you need it. Keep adding to the record. When you’ve got names and ages of the person’s children and pets, you’ve gone deep enough. Remember, you can’t search a wad of business cards with a rubber band around it that was tossed into a drawer.

For more information, please visit


News Stories Get it Wrong: Facebook is Indeed #1

If you see the headline “Social Media King: Facebook lost its Social Media crown” or “Data: StumbleUpon Beats Facebook As Top Social Referrer” – they are WRONG!  The news writers referred to data from StatCounter - -- but set they the date parameters incorrectly.

The top social media sites are:

  1. Facebook 63%
  2. Stumbleupon 18%
  3. YouTube 8%
  4. Twitter 5.6%

lawmarketing blog, statcounter, facebook, stumbleupon, twitter, law firm marketing
According to StatCounter, its data is based on the analysis of four billion page loads per month among StatCounter's two million members.

Law Firms Starting to Hire CMOs Again

LawMarketing Blog, Stephen Nelson, McCormick GroupI sense a change in the legal profession that big law firms are starting to hire CMOs again. This fulfills a premonition by recruiter Stephen Nelson, Managing Principal of the The McCormick Group in Arlington, VA. In my blog post "CMO Positions Going Unfilled" he predicted last August that CMO hiring would revive.

"Firms have gone such a long time with a lean business development staff.  If a partner's pet project is not getting done, or the firm can't get an RFP out in time, then everything changes," he said.

Here are five recent examples:

  • Susan Saltonstall Duncan was just hired as Global Chief Strategy and Development Officer at 1,275-lawyer Squire, Sanders & Dempsey. She will be based in New York, one of the firm's 37 offices.
  • Jolene Overbeck, who was hired in May 2007 as CMO of DLA Piper, is now the the Chief Marketing Officer at 2,500-lawyer Hogan Lovells.
  • Wendy Taylor this month started as  the Chief Marketing Officer at 800-lawyer Dechert.
  • Peter Columbus departed Kaye Scholer this month to become Global Director of Business Development & Marketing at 1,660-lawyer Mayer Brown in New York.  
  • Mark T. Greene this month became the Chief Business Development Officer at Waller Lansden Dortch and Davis in Nashville, departing from 700-lawyer Nixon Peabody, where he was the CMO for three years.

According to Nelson's count, there are still 26 unfilled CMO jobs at major law firms. There are two causes for this large number of openings.  The first is "regime change": when a new managing partner arrives on the scene, a CMO can go from being treated like a movie star to deadwood overnight. The second is cost-cutting, which law firms did aggressively in 2009 and 2010. Naturally, firms begin by looking at the largest salaries and look for ways to eliminate highly-paid CMOs. Alternatively, firms will slash the staff and budget of a CMO, making it impossible for them to get results and telegraphing that it's time for them to leave.

It's a brutal world for CMOs. From management's viewpoint, they're only as good as the last million dollars they brought in. They need to have a fireproof nature to survive the office politics which can turn their jobs into a living hell (I know because they tell me about it). If a marketer or business developer can land one of these top-dollar jobs, they should take the ride for all it's worth.

Introducing Tom's Social Media Secrets: MentionMap

My colleague Tom Ciesielka, LawMarketing Blog, law firm marketingTom Ciesielka, president of TC Public Relations in Chicago, will be contributing a number of guest blog posts this year with the title “Social Media Secrets.” His posts will reveal valuable social media applications you can use to unlock you firm’s marketing and public relations potential. Questions?Comments? Social media suggestions? Email Tom at

Consider this scenario: You would like to make more connections with reporters in the legal profession and want to find out what those reporters are talking about so you can approach them intelligently.

Believe it or not, there is an application that can help you: MentionMap (, which is a web-based application that visually shows what and whom a specific Twitter user is tweeting about most often. (See the graphic below for a MentionMap for Larry Bodine).

This application can be used to see which hashtags and topics are the most popular, and also which people are the most followed. No login to Twitter is required since it is a browser-based application. And you yourself don’t even have to be a Twitter user to view others’ Twitter accounts.

When a username is searched, a Constellation Framework appears, which displays the data in an easily identifiable format (similar to a web graph). Thicker connection lines indicate a particular topic/person is tweeted about more often.

So how can you use it to benefit your firm? Think about that scenario again. MentionMap is a great tool to find out what topics reporters are talking about. One of the biggest complaints the media have is that they hear from attorneys who don’t actually know what the reporters typically cover or what the specific editor or outlet is interested in. Well, if that reporter or editor is on Twitter, you’re in luck.

All you need to do is find out their Twitter username (easily accomplished via Twitter’s search function, or a reporter’s bio) and enter that username into MentionMap’s search box. Hit “Enter” and you will see a diagram come to life of the topics and other tweeters that are the most mentioned. You will be able to get an idea of what they are interested in, which will help you when you come to them with your own story idea and legal expertise.

Tell the media what they want to hear in your own way and soon you may see your firm’s name on their MentionMap! 

mentionmap, larry bodine, law firm marketingt




Get the Marketing Partner Forum Mobile App

Marketing Partner ForumWest LegalEdcenter, part of Thomson Reuters, today announced that attendees of its annual Marketing Partner Forum can download a free smartphone mobile app that will enhance their event experience. The Marketing Partner Forum app, available from the event's website, offers many features including:

  • Interactive show schedule
  • Exhibitor listings and product searches
  • Interactive floor map
  • Show alerts
  • Social media interaction
  • Exhibitor e-brochures and product information available for download

The Marketing Partner Forum app stores as a native application for iPhone/iPod touch, BlackBerry and Android users, and is available as a Web-based application for all other smartphone users.

“We’re excited to bring this new technology to the attendees and exhibitors at this year’s Forum,” said Lee Ann Enquist, vice president, West Professional Development. “Mobile devices are reshaping the way the legal industry does business, and the Marketing Partner Forum app illustrates how we are embracing and expanding on-trend, business-grade smartphone applications.”

The Marketing Partner Forum, presented by West LegalEdcenter and Hildebrandt Baker Robbins, will be held Jan. 19-21, 2011, at the Intercontinental Hotel in Scottsdale, Ariz. The Forum is the premier annual event for law firm marketing and managing partners, in-house counsel and senior-level law firm marketing and business development professionals who want to sharpen their knowledge about emerging trends shaping the legal industry.


Applying Accounting Firm Methods to Market a Law Firm Successfully

Katie Tolin, LawMarketing Blog, law firm marketingDetermination, data and deliberation have led accounting firm marketer Katie Tolin to lead her firm to new business, practical training programs, and an innovative rapid-response event that generated hundreds of leads. Law firm marketing can learn a lot from her, judging by her results: 

  • Firmwide revenue has doubled from $15 million to $30 million since she joined the Rea & Associates, Inc. accounting firm in 2003.
  • The firm has a 74% “win rate” for proposals drafted in a process she revamped.
  • Since she implemented a sales pipeline, the firm has won more than 400 opportunities and nearly $8 million in new business.
  • More than 800 leads were generated by the firm’s partners in a “Speed Leads” session (similar to “speed dating”) she organized. Two dozen opportunities have already been closed.
  • She was named the 2010 Marketer of the Year by the Association for Accounting Marketing in a competition where she was nominated by her peers.” It is her 8th award for marketing excellence.

As a marketer, I am first a student and then a teacher,” she said. “I have to learn about what we’re selling, who’s buying, why they buy and what triggers them to do so. Then how do we help them? What is it we do? What’s the end result? Once I fully understand the prospective clients’ needs, I then digest that information and teach others what I’ve learned."

To read more about Katie and her amazing success, visit the LawMarketing Portal.


5 Law Firms Compete for $50,000 LexisNexis Ultimate Law Firm Marketing Makeover

Phil Livingston, LawMarketing Blog, Law Firm Marketing MakeoverLexisNexis today announced the names of the five finalists in the “LexisNexis Ultimate Law Firm Marketing Makeover” contest, selected by a panel of legal marketing experts (one of whom was me). Each finalist firm will next “plead its case” with a videotaped “oral argument” to the contest judges explaining why they should be the grand prize winner.

Launched last October, the contest offers small law firms across the US an opportunity to enhance their online presence, provide for greater visibility and attract prospective clients to their firm. The five finalist firms will now compete for the grand prize – a comprehensive suite of online marketing services from LexisNexis worth $50,000 that includes web design, video production, search engine optimization, robust profiles on leading legal sites and, and more.

Philip Livingston, senior vice president, LexisNexis Marketing and Business Solutions and CEO for Martindale-Hubbell, said “Our finalists demonstrated in their contest submissions that they believe online marketing services from LexisNexis can help them reach their business goals in 2011 and beyond, and our team looks forward to collaborating with them to help make that happen.”

The Finalists:

Judges picked the five finalists based on a review of short essays submitted by all entrants in which they articulated their desire and need for online marketing services in a “written argument.” The five law firms selected to compete for the grand prize are listed below in alphabetical order:

1) Case, Rajnoha & Boudreau, LLPThis three-attorney firm was established in 1973 and is located in the St. Louis suburbs. They are a general practice firm that frequently handles cases involving dissolution of marriage, paternity/ child support, estate planning, probate, and minor criminal infractions.

2) The Chetson Firm, PLLCRaleigh criminal lawyer Damon Chetson represents people charged with serious felonies and misdemeanors in the state and federal courts of North Carolina.

3) DeutschJacobs, A Law PracticeThis two-lawyer firm focuses on family law as well as legal issues confronting small businesses and consumers. Based in Austin, Texas, the firm opened its doors in 2009.

4) Fahnert LLCMarie Fahnert is a solo practitioner who employs two paralegals in her Chicago-based family law firm. Ms. Fahnert started her practice four years ago shortly after graduating from law school.

5) Simplicity LawSimplicity Law employs four lawyers with offices in the Denver, Phoenix, San Francisco and Los Angeles areas. The firm launched in 2009 with an exclusive focus on small business legal issues.

The five finalists will next submit a short video to “plead their cases” for the panel of judges. The videos will be available on the contest website in January. These short interviews will show the finalists making “oral arguments” supporting their case for why their law firm should win the contest grand prize. After reviewing the video submissions, contest judges will choose the grand prize winner based on their performance in both the “oral” and “written arguments.” The grand prize winner will be unveiled at an exclusive dinner event in New York City on January 30, 2011.

The judges panel comprises legal marketing experts David Lat, founder and managing editor of Above the Law (; Larry Bodine, business development advisor and editor of LawMarketing Blog (; Carolyn Elefant, attorney and editor of; and David Palmieri and Carol Eversen, both vice presidents at LexisNexis.


Law Firm Marketing Means Thinking Like General Counsel

Jeffrey Carr, in-house counsel, law firm marketing, LawMarketing BlogExcerpted from Law360: In-house lawyers and corporate counsel reveal that the best law firm marketing technique is to think like them, anticipate what they want, and show that your law firm cares.

Alternative Fees

A recent shift to a value-added climate demands flexibility in handling the different types of fee structures corporate counsel are now seeking, corporate counsel said. It's all about getting the best services for the best price. In other words: value, value, value. That and fee predictability and cost containment.”

Jeffrey W. Carr, senior vice president, general counsel and secretary at FMC Technologies Inc., suggested providing an actual proposal that makes it clear your fees are value- and performance-based.

“Offer to have the client hold back payment on a portion of fees and base any payment of the holdback contingent upon a result, a report card, or some other indicia of satisfaction and value in the eyes of the customer,” he said.

Carr also advised against throwing out the oft-used phrase “alternative fees,” saying it implies that something other than hourly rates are distasteful or an affront to the natural order of legal fees.

“And don’t offer to 'consider' alternative fees unless you are willing to embrace the concepts of budgets that matter as well as shared risk and reward,” he warned.

However, said Todd Young, a corporate and finance partner with Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP, sometimes a simple show of genuine empathy ends up being enough.

For example, he said, even with the noise about alternative fee structures, he has found that not very many of his clients are actually demanding or implementing them. And it’s not because he hasn't mentioned the issue.

“You have to show a willingness to enter into discussions and engage with them,” he said. “There's a certain emotional component: they want to feel like you're not just going to throw a bill at them. If you have a rational conversation with them and show you're flexible and attendant, ultimately lots of times they will be okay with a more standard arrangement.”

Partnering With Other Firms

Robert Henderson, a legal consultant at RJH Consulting, said that because the trend today is for corporate counsel to limit the number of outside counsel they deal with, smaller firms are at a competitive disadvantage in winning the beauty contest with corporate counsel.

“My advice to firms that have a limited practice focus — for example, securities litigation or white collar criminal defense — would be to seek to collaborate with larger firms that don’t have expertise in their particular practice area,” he said. “In addition to their specialized expertise, boutique firms usually can offer more efficiency and lower cost due to their lower overhead.”

Process Management

Susan Hackett, senior vice president and general counsel of the Association of Corporate Counsel, said some law firms are focusing on how to deploy project and lean process management techniques are making a splash with clients.

“This means looking at breaking down common processes and decisions made during the relationship and rethinking each step: a form of disaggregating work and then examining the component parts for possible improvements based on efficiencies and cost savings,” she said.

Firms having this discussion, Hackett said, are seen as trying to think creatively about the best ways to improve the relationship and its value to the client — even if only a few are fully equipped to act on what they discover they could do better.

Lend a Lawyer

A sure way to get the attention of in-house counsel, according to Olson, is to go out of your way to offer resources.

“Some firms have offered to 'second,' i.e., lend, an attorney to a client for a period of time, which helps the client get work done and helps the firm and the attorney learn about the client,” he said. “It doesn't have to be free, but free is nice. And don't send a brand new person whom we have to train.”

Or, Olson advised, simply offer to fix a problem that may be plaguing in-house attorneys. Corporate law departments, he said, may have chronic problems, but no resources or people to fix them — and that's where you come in.

“It could simply be a file room in which no one can find anything anymore, or a batch of agreements that have never been logged into a database, or materials that should be organized as a training manual,” he said. “Send the client one of your higher performers to solve the problem in a few days, and they may assume that you can solve several of their legal problems too.”

Give In-House Counsel Some TLC

The brutal financial climate has bumped up everybody's stress level, making it all the more important to show in-house counsel that you really care. That doesn't mean faking sympathy, however.

“The path to 'relationship nirvana' is paved with something a bit softer than the hardball tactics of prior years,” she said. “Folks are finding a better relationship by sitting down and saying ‘this may be a great time for us to talk about what it is that matters – what it is that you value. Then let’s think creatively about how we can work together better to assure those results,’” Hackett said.

Carr noted that a good way to show corporate counsel you care is to stop thinking like a lawyer.

“Not every 'interesting legal question' needs to be answered,” he said. “The customer wants actionable, practical advice, not erudition. Start thinking like a business person. If you were the client, would you want this type of advice or service and would you pay this amount, on these terms?”

According to Miriam Frank, partner and vice president of the in-house practice group at Major Lindsey & Africa, the law firm partner who makes every client feel that he or she is their most important client will continue to get business.

“Show some sensitivity to the pressures faced by in-house counsel,” Frank said. “The outside counsel who understands the dynamics of operating inside of a business — from cost-containment to accountability –and does all that he or she can to be supportive and make the client look good will be remembered and valued.”

Young, too, emphasized the importance of empathizing with general counsel, saying lawyers need to show they understand the difficulties faced by corporate legal departments in this economic climate.

“You have to feel their pain, and give them practical solutions that show you're empathizing with them,” he said. “In-house counsel are no longer as comfortable with law firms raising their rates or staffing matters with a cast of thousands. It's not just about lowering or freezing rates, but thinking about how to become more cost-effective by changing your operating structure.”

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