Posted by: johnocunningham | January 25, 2016

Golden Opportunity for Law Firm Outreach

I have often heard the repeated axiom that “nobody ever gets fired for hiring Brand Name Firm X.”

But is this perception real or imagined?

The assumption is that executive officers and directors to whom a chief legal officer must respond (or a business officer in charge of legal issues) all have some concept of the established brands in law, and they will not penalize anyone who hires established brands.

This seems like a “safe” assumption. However, a recent PR experiment might not support the traditional wisdom.

As noted in a December article in PR Week magazine, a PR study was carried out on 50 global business managers to see whether they would be persuaded by made-up advertising and branding assets to favour fictitious American law firms and management consultancies over real ones. Three made-up law firms, Andersson & Cooper Associates, Reagan Rove Coolidge and JMM Global, were pitted against real corporate firms Baker & McKenzie, Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom and DLA Piper.

Surprisingly, the results found that business managers were more likely to say they would use the services of the fake law firms than the real ones. This suggests that business managers are not as attuned to law firm brand names and reputations as lawyers – both in-house and in private practice – might think.

It also suggests that business managers can be persuaded to support the use of new firms with the right kind of messaging and outreach. That means lots of opportunity for business law firms, and fewer excuses not to make the effort to shape opinions of your firm.



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