The Am Law Daily announced last week that early numbers show only modest growth for a prestigious group of New York’s largest law firms last year. Within the study is the admission from several partners that persistent pressure to lower rates is cutting into profitability, even with a rise in some types of litigation work. The push for firms to lower their rates or pursue alternative billing agreements is growing as law schools continue to graduate more students than the market can absorb. Not only is the market saturated, but too many young attorneys are graduating ill-prepared to meed the demands of both employers and clients. Some are responding by attempting to cut rates even further.
The problem is becoming so pervasive that some law schools are considering opening their own firms to better prepare students for the real world of the legal profession. Arizona State, for one, is setting up a non-profit firm for its students this summer. According to Arizona State University law school dean, Douglas J. Sylvester, the program will be like a “teaching hospital for law school graduates.”
What does this have to do with marketing?
Now more than ever, you have to stand above your competition. There are, quite simply, a lot of attorneys out there who do what you do. You have to make it clear to clients that you offer something more. In terms of marketing, that means getting back to the basics, focusing your message and building online authority. You can get started by reviewing how your firm is performing in some of these areas... CONTINUE READING
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