Competition Breeds Content

The highly anticipated AmLaw 100 published earlier this month, and whatever you think of its merits, one thing about this year’s list stood out to me. Firms on the list grew at their slowest rate in the past five years.

The year-over-year growth rate of 2.7 percent tells me that, while gross revenue is still increasing, the market dynamic that firms have been worrying about for a while seems to be finally manifesting itself – namely, there’s less work and more competition.

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What are firms doing in response? More marketing and content development, it appears.

This brings me back to our most recent State of Digital & Content Marketing Survey, which measures consumption of social media and digital content among general counsel. Recognizing that firms are producing more content than ever before, we wanted to know if it’s working.

Some of it is, the GCs told us. They said they found traditional client alerts and practice group newsletters to be the most valuable types of law firm-generated content, but that they also found law firm blogs to be credible. They also told us that LinkedIn and Wikipedia are the sources they turn to when conducting research on potential outside counsel. What this tells us is that GCs value firm-generated content, and that it’s one way to differentiate your firm in this hyper-competitive environment.

We also surveyed law firm marketing officers to determine what they believe is working. The CMOs who told us they have been successful in driving engagement with their content marketing said they had a content strategy, and were able to measure the results of their campaigns. Those firms are able to focus more resources on successful efforts that help bring in more business.

It will be interesting to see whether the second hundred firms on AmLaw’s list have experienced the same slowdown in growth, or whether that’s where some of the work from this group has gone. Coupled with that, I’ll be searching the list for firms who are getting marketing right to confirm the correlation I’m suggesting.

Kevin has spent the past two decades building a career in B2B and the legal industry, leading efforts in research, marketing, business development and communications.

He has a passion for deep sea fishing, and makes an effort to fish the ocean at least once a month — even during the bitter cold winter.