393 Communications https://393communications.com Legal directories and marketing consultant for firms worldwide Mon, 20 Nov 2017 13:11:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9 New Legal 500 Bar & Asia Pacific Editor https://393communications.com/new-legal-500-bar-asia-pacific-editor/ https://393communications.com/new-legal-500-bar-asia-pacific-editor/#comments Mon, 20 Nov 2017 13:10:53 +0000 https://393communications.com/?p=7538

Legal 500 has hired the journalist John van der Luit-Drummond as its new UK Bar and Asia Pacific editor, replacing Hayley Eustace, who leaves the company after seven years to join Wilberforce Chambers.

Mr. van der Luit-Drummond (pictured), who studied law at university, comes to Legal 500 from another legal publication, Solicitors Journal, where he spent three years, most recently as deputy editor.

Previously he was a reporter at World Trademark Review and Intellectual Asset Management, two London-based legal titles focused on intellectual property law.

You can read some of his written work on his personal website.

Regarding the Asia Pacific business, Legal 500 has reorganized its team so that there are now three key points of contact for law firms in the region: John van der Luit-Drummond (editor), Bei Zhao (China editor and contact for firms in North Asia) and Andrea de Palatis (deputy Asia Pacific editor – based in Perth and the contact person for law firms in Australasia).

The new (2018) edition of the Legal 500 Asia Pacific guide launches on November 29 2017, and is set to be double the size of the 2017 guide.

In other Legal 500 staff news, Arjun Sajip has been promoted to Caribbean editor.

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Chambers Adds RFP & Ask The Expert Features to Connect Network https://393communications.com/chambers-adds-rfp-ask-the-expert-features-to-connect-network/ https://393communications.com/chambers-adds-rfp-ask-the-expert-features-to-connect-network/#respond Wed, 01 Nov 2017 12:31:47 +0000 https://393communications.com/?p=7531 Chambers & Partners has added two new features – “Request for Proposals” and “Ask the Experts” – to its online “Connect” network, a year since the network first launched.

“Request for Proposals” lets users send an RFP form to selected lawyers, and compare responses, while “Ask the Experts” allows users to send queries to selected lawyers.

The new department profiles offered by Chambers play a significant part in the RFP process as you build up the RFP form based on department profile search results.

Department profiles refers to the way in which firms can now advertise with Chambers – by highlighting practice-specific content on their profiles (the part of the public commentary that firms write themselves to accompany Chambers’ own editorial commentary) rather than the traditional firm-wide profile.

The new RFP and Ask the Experts tools are available to lawyers recognized in the Chambers directories, and to major clients.

Clients can send their queries to law firms anonymously, if they wish.

According to Chambers:

“The remarkable new search function provided by Connect is more advanced, more targeted, than the search available on our homepage. It has wider coverage (searching all the guides at once) and the filters offer more advanced selections.

The RFP and Ask the Experts functions utilise this new search, giving clients precise access to the law firms they need – the combined locations they need and the combined areas of practice.”

A couple of screenshots:

Chambers Connect RFP Form

Chambers Connect Ask The Experts Form

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Q+A With Best Lawyers Regarding New Directory https://393communications.com/qa-with-best-lawyers-regarding-new-directory/ https://393communications.com/qa-with-best-lawyers-regarding-new-directory/#respond Mon, 23 Oct 2017 19:35:10 +0000 https://393communications.com/?p=7523 Following the launch of the new Best Lawyers/US News directory, I spoke on the phone with Best Lawyers chief executive, Phillip Greer (pictured above).

How did the idea come about?
For some time, Best Lawyers has wanted to provide clients and potential clients with information about all lawyers in the profession, and not just the relatively small group of lawyers in our Best Lawyers rankings. In 2010, we began partnering with U.S. News to produce law firm rankings. That was such an extraordinary undertaking, and we were determined to produce the most accurate and useful rankings possible, thus we weren’t able to turn our attention to an encyclopedic directory of lawyers in private practice until about two years ago. Fortunately, we were able to arrange with U.S. News – which has 37 million visitors to its website each month – a partnership with us on this new project.

The new site will be separate from Best Lawyers?
Yes, the Lawyer Directory will include virtually all lawyers in private practice. Also, importantly, the lawyers displayed on this site will not be ranked. Those are the key distinctions. Last year, we relaunched a completely redesigned Best Lawyers website, and we are very proud of it. We are also proud that the “Best Law Firms” rankings continue to have such a strong reputation in the legal profession. Of course, our four decades of experience in working with lawyers and law firms has been very helpful in creating the Lawyer Directory. But it is a very different enterprise.

What will the site look like?
You will be able to search for lawyers using a series of filters, including location and practice area. The site will have basic profiles for all lawyers in private practice, with an option for enhanced profiles similar to the ones on Best Lawyers. Lawyers recognized in Best Lawyers will be allowed to write recommendations for lawyers in other firms as well (unless there are any restrictions by their particular state bar associations). The site will also feature articles of interest to both individual and corporate clients as they navigate the legal profession, and we have assembled an excellent team in our New York office to curate this new content.

How does the business model work?
The site will feature free basic profiles for all U.S. lawyers in private practice. Any lawyer who chooses to can purchase an enhanced profile to display a wide range of additional information. Every firm that already subscribes to the Best Lawyers Profile Suite program will automatically receive, at no additional cost, enhanced lawyer profiles on the new site for all of the lawyers at their firms.

How will you order the lawyers in the search results?
Lawyers in firms that have purchased enhanced profiles will appear at the top of the results screen. All other lawyers will appear alphabetically. A series of filters and sub-filters will enable users to narrow their selections in order to find appropriate lawyers to fit their needs.

What will be the split between Best Lawyers and U.S. News?
The new Lawyer Directory will appear on usnews.com, similar to the “Best Law Firms” rankings. Best Lawyers will manage the research project. Because the project requires so much technology, we opened an additional office in Jacksonville, Florida, in 2016 to house an expanded IT operation. Our office in South Carolina will continue to house most of our research team, which we have expanded significantly to help with the directory, and our New York office will continue to focus on editorial content, publishing, and sales.

How can law firms engage with this initiative?
We are generating as much of the content ourselves as we can, but we are also making it easy for law firms and lawyers to provide data and to update their entries. We have created an online toolset that will allow firms to upload data directly from their spreadsheets to ours, which we can then upload to the site.

How can law firm marketers get involved?
We know that many marketing staffs are already overburdened, so we are making the process as easy as possible for them. We have designed a template that they can use to easily upload data directly from their spreadsheets to the new site. If they prefer to send us the data and have us upload it, we can do that as well. We don’t want this to be a burden for marketing staffs.

What’s the timescale?
Starting this November, we will be asking law firms to confirm attorney information, including names, locations, and practice areas, and also to send us data. We plan to launch the site in Spring 2018. How quickly we can complete the directory will depend on how much data the firms send us and how much we need to research ourselves.

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Best Lawyers and US News Launch Major New Listing Directory https://393communications.com/best-lawyers-and-us-news-launch-major-new-listing-directory/ https://393communications.com/best-lawyers-and-us-news-launch-major-new-listing-directory/#comments Fri, 20 Oct 2017 10:35:23 +0000 https://393communications.com/?p=7516 Best Lawyers has announced that it plans to launch a major new directory in partnership with U.S. News & World Report that aims to list every lawyer in the United States – 1.3 million lawyers.

In a bold move, the new U.S. News Lawyer Directory, which will be powered by Best Lawyers, will enable every US lawyer to list themselves free of charge.

This new directory will operate separately from the traditional Best Lawyers rankings, which are based on peer review, and have been around for more than 30 years, and from the Best Lawyers/U.S. News & World Report Best Law Firms survey, which has been running since 2010.

From a commercial standpoint, although every lawyer can list themselves free of charge, lawyers will be able to purchase an expanded profile, while firms that have already purchased profiles packages with Best Lawyers will automatically receive, at no additional cost, expanded lawyer profiles on the new site for all of the lawyers in their firms.

The site is set to go live in Spring 2018.

This is an ambitious play by Best Lawyers, which I see as a return to the longstanding US tradition of the universal listing directory, originally pioneered by Martindale Hubbell.

The comprehensive listing style of directory has faded in recent years in favor of directories with more limited scope, or those that seek to assess and rank lawyers, but this latest venture is set to revitalize the concept of a single listing platform for every lawyer.

For more on this venture, and how law firms can prepare, a Q+A with Best Lawyers chief executive Phil Greer will follow soon.

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Acritas Ranks Alternative Legal Services Providers For The First Time https://393communications.com/acritas-ranks-alternative-legal-services-providers-for-the-first-time/ https://393communications.com/acritas-ranks-alternative-legal-services-providers-for-the-first-time/#respond Thu, 12 Oct 2017 13:32:22 +0000 https://393communications.com/?p=7502 As we all know it’s not just traditional law firms that provide legal services these days.

Some of the legal directories have responded to this trend, most notably Chambers & Partners when it started ranking legal networks a few years ago.

But legal networks are mostly made up of traditional law firms, not “alternative” legal services providers.

Now the legal research firm Acritas has produced its first ever ranking of the brand strength of the new wave of legal services providers.

Legal research giant Thomson Reuters comes out top, followed by the legal arms of accountancy firms, PwC, EY, and Deloitte, then Axiom in number five.

Acritas chief executive Lisa Hart Shepherd explains more about this new survey in the video below.

Acritas has developed this latest list – the Global Alternative Legal Brand Index – alongside its regular survey of law firm brands (known as the Global Elite Law Firm Brand Index), which has been published annually for the last eight years.

Both utilize a similar methodology: interviews with in-house counsel to find out which law firms first come to mind, along with those they most favored.

In the most recent law firm brand survey Baker McKenzie took the number one spot, some way ahead of the chasing pack, consisting of DLA Piper, Clifford Chance, Jones Day, and Norton Rose Fulbright.

For more on Acritas, read this interview.

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