The number of AmLaw 200 law firm blogs crossed the century mark to 106 during 2007. That’s an increase of nearly 50% in the last year.

LexBlog will have more complete data out in the near future. However, I felt compelled to respond to the cold water LexisNexis threw on blogs with its informal blog survey among attorneys and other legal professionals at LegalTech NY.

Finding only 10% of LegalTech attendees with their own individual blog and only 17% of the respondents’ firms with a blog, Sami Hero, LexisNexis VP Open Web, said the results along with an earlier ABA study demonstrate a hesitation to “jump in.”

17% of law firms with blogs is a pretty significant number. 2 years ago that number was probably 3 or 4%. We’ve seen a 300% growth in large law firm blogs since 2005. Hero would have to concede that’s big time growth in the number of law firms blogging.

Could LexisNexis down playing blogs have something to do with the fact that the company is way behind the curve as to blogs? That LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell’s blog product at their lawyers.com is a failure? Could it have to something to do with LexisNexis’ impending launch of some sort of social networking solution at Martindale-Hubbell? After down playing blogs, Hero says the good news is that ‘six out of ten respondents belong to a professional or social network and nearly 70% are considering adding online video to their firm’s marketing mix.’

What do you bet LexisNexis will be or already is peddling online video at prices greatly exceeding blogs? And that a social networking feature at LexisNexis Martindale.com will be hawked as a reason for large law firms to keep paying Martindale-Hubbell hundreds of thousands of dollars a year?

Everyone’s entitled to make a buck, but let’s be straight with folks guys.

  • The other problem is that Lexis/Nexis has no real add on value to the published cases, unless having law bloggers explain them.
    They should worry about the portfolio of Lexblog; but when they buy you out make sure they retain your services!

  • There’s a great article on Knowledge@Wharton that describes significant lag in the online marketing space. The fact law firms are lagging shouldn’t be a surprise. The talk about video is noise. Instead of adding video to create a better online presence, devise a conversation strategy. A blog is most cost effective and video can be added to provide additional value.
    A little impartiality would go a long way. There’s another vendor in the legal space that has a similar problem.

  • Sami Hero

    Hi Kevin,
    Actually I was hoping to get a completely inverse result as I am working on the web 2.0 area of LexisNexis Group. In the spirit of transparency, I have copied the results below including the sample size. This was a “quick poll” and we didn’t ask traditional demographic questions just randomly pulled “blue badged” law firm employees roaming the halls.
    The question about the video is interesting as there’s evidence that search engine optimized videos improve website page ranks. As we’re looking to provide marketing tools for law firms and lawyers, it’s quite natural that we talk about videos and other tools that should help our clients market their services.
    Results of the poll at LTNY:
    Summary:
    While three-fourths of LegalTech attendees read blogs, only 10 percent have their own blog, and only 17 percent of their law firms have a blog. This shows that while legal professionals are aware of and are interested in blogs, they are hesitating to join the blogosphere. But they aren’t completely absent on the internet. Six out of ten attorneys belong to a professional or social network. And nearly 70 percent plan to add online video to their firm’s marketing mix (currently only 39% use video on their Web sites).
    Results by question:
    Do you read blogs online?
    YES 74%

  • Thanks Sam, I still can’t but feel that LexisNexis Martindale is going the other way on blogs – downplaying them that is.
    Could because technology is beyond company (noting tech issues on your own MH blog), failure in your entry to the blog market with lawyers.com blogs, lack of understanding as to how blogs are used, and/or inability to figure out how to make money from law firms with such a product.