Congrats! You Are the Best Lawyer. Now What?

by Cheryl on August 22, 2014

Best Lawyers Congrats! You Are the Best Lawyer. Now What?  Congrats! You have been chosen as one of the best lawyers in America. The best place to post this listing is your bio, the firm’s website, the news section under press releases. You can even send it out via social media channels. But, do not send it to a newspaper expecting it will make the cover of that publication or a feature story will be written about you.  Especially if you are in big media markets like Los Angeles, New York or Chicago. I was at lunch today with a legal industry reporter who said she continues to get press releases from law firms announcing rankings by other news outlets.

“I used to respond with a note that we do not cover these lists,” She said.  “Now, there are too many press releases. It would take me all day to reply.”

We can all agree there are too many of these rankings and awards, many that list hundreds of lawyers from around the world.  How can anyone expect each announcement to be picked up?

 “Frankly, she said, “It’s not really news.”

In smaller media markets, publications may use this content, but not in places where reporters are covering more significant announcements like firm mergers, notable lateral moves or even interesting cases or legal issues. Just because lawyers want the world to know about their upward trajectory in the legal industry, especially when it is noted by a news outlet, does not mean you should push send.

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Going Viral: Ice, Ice Baby!

by Cheryl on August 18, 2014

Unknown Going Viral: Ice, Ice Baby!Have you dumped a bucket of ice over your head yet?  If not, you may be the only person to not participate in ALS Association’s Ice Bucket Challenge. Anyone who studies the practice of PR has to give props to the ALS Association for its cool idea.  Here is how it started.

News reports indicate even ALS was surprised its challenge went viral and it dominated social media this past weekend.  Many of my friends and family members posted videos on Facebook responding to “the challenge”.   I was called on too, but I could not manage to get a bucket of ice together within 24 hours, so I made a contribution instead.

It’s a challenge for any organization trying to stand out among the thousands of other non-profits doing annual fundraising.    But, thanks to social media and the power of sports stars and entertainers, fundraising can be even more engaging and successful. As of August 18, ALS has raised over $15.6 million.

While it may not be obvious or easy for any law firm to take a page from the ALS playbook or to ask its contacts or clients to dump ice over their heads for a cause, it is not unreasonable idea to have them participate. One law firm Venable LLP generated great PR as a result. And, many other attorneys and law firms accepted the challenge.   I challenge a law firm to come up with an equally great idea that would cause the media to spin out of control.

It’s the ultimate example of an great idea that will be used in PR classes and seminars around the country.   Kudos to the folks at the ALS Association for dumping the coolness factor on the heat of the summer.

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Expect Your Internal Memo to Get Leaked

July 15, 2014

When you write a memo for an internal audience you have to assume that it will be leaked. Above the Law has proven this over and over again. The website is known for easily acquiring internal memos which often become the source of its stories, especially the juicy ones. It is naïve, but I assume firms [...]

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Above The Law’s BigLaw Firm Survey

July 2, 2014

Above The Law just launched what looks like another insignificant survey. The site is asking people to rank a select group of firms based on 1) reputed strength and quality of the firm’s practice and 2) desirability of the firm as a potential employer.
I am sure this is one list that most law firms won’t [...]

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Media Training 101: Landon Donovan’s Emotionless Coverage of World Cup Soccer

June 24, 2014

Landon Donovan did not prepare for his role as TV commentator for ESPN as he would have had he actually been playing in the match. And he should have known better. If any of you watched the stone-faced Donovan after the last minute draw in the USA v. Portugal match you know what I mean. [...]

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Everything You Need to Know about Not Doing PR Yourself

June 9, 2014

In an article published on Fast Company’s website, Dave Llorens and Ashley Seashore did the business community a huge disservice by telling entrepreneurs that they can handle their own PR. They can’t and they shouldn’t. Fast Company couldn’t get away with an article written by an in-house counsel called “Why your startup shouldn’t hire a [...]

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Guy Kawaski’s Guide to Using of Social Media to Tell Your Story

May 12, 2014

Guy Kawasaki, entrepreneur and author as well as the chief evangelist of Apple in the late 90’s, recently launched an online class ‘Art of the Start: Turning Ideas into High Growth Business” where he discusses how small businesses can tell their stories on social media.

Richard Feloni at Business Insider published a Q&A today with Kawasaki who talked about [...]

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New California Attorneys Asked to Adopt ’No Jerk’ Pledge

May 5, 2014

Can you imagine the Legal Marketing Association, LFMP or the Public Relations Society of America issuing a notice reminding its members to conduct themselves with ‘dignity, courtesy and integrity?”
It’s how the California Chapters of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) is asking new members of the bar to behave.  The CA State Bar supported this too.
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A Move to Youth Generates Great PR Results

May 2, 2014

There is a new guard in California at Duane Morris. That was what the firm announced yesterday generating great press and highlighting a growing trend in the legal industry.  Like many trends, firms have to act now to capitalize on the benefits of media attention.    John Soroko, the chairman of Duane Morris said the firm made a conscious [...]

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People Looking for a Lawyer Turn to the Internet First

April 29, 2014

I spend a lot of time educating attorneys about how to make their website bio a tool for selling their services to a client and communicating to reporters why they are a source to be trusted.  Now, a study by FindLaw and Thomson Reuters gives us another reason why lawyers should keep their online profiles [...]

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