Thursday, August 06, 2009

Wall Street Journal Launches Legal Ads

Google, Martindale and many other legal directories face new online advertising competition from the Wall Street Journal.

"Local Legal Leverage" is the catchy name for an ad program being launched as part of the paper's Digital Network. Organized by metro area, the Journal is now accepting up to 3 simultaneous law firm advertisers for any given region.

Advertising rates reportedly start as low as $1,000 per month. Details online at

Given the Journal's upscale readership, this service seems particularly well suited to corporate and defense firms that want to reach the GC audience. The plaintiff's bar is already a master of online advertising, so this also gives PI attorneys a way to reach affluent business readers in their community.

The bottom line, of course, is to determine the ROI on any advertising program like this. While branding is important, in today's economy it helps to also get vaible leads that turn into real engagements. Offering a free white paper or webinar is frequently a good way to measure response for online campaigns.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Twitter Client Impact for Law Firms

Attorneys now need to be aware of how Twitter and other social media sites can affect their clients. Today's Wall Street Journal article ("For Companies, a Tweet in Time can Avert PR Mess") is a case in point.

Lawyers have been spending time wondering, should I Twitter? If so, how often? What should I Twitter about? Another equally important question is, what does Twitter mean for my clients?

Today's WSJ article points out several ways that progressive companies keep a close pulse on Twitter streams. Fortune 500 firms like Ford Motor, PepsiCo, and Southwest Airlines rely on good word of mouth advertising, so they have started to use software and dedicated employees to monitor consumer feedback about their brand experiences. As soon as they see signs of potential trouble, they begin to respond immediately.

Here are a few basic tools that can help you monitor social media traffic that mentions your firm or a client firm:

1. Twitter Search ( allows you to find tweets that mention certain words or phrases.

2. LinkedIn offers a "Company Buzz" feature that also allows you to search tweets for certain search terms.

3. Google Alerts are always a good source also to monitor the blogosphere, news, and other Internet posts.

Depending on the type of clients served by your law firm, now might be a good time to speak with clients about how social media affects their business and reputation. You may even find some new services that you can offer!