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Martindale-Hubbell to educate lawyers about effective online marketing?

March 23, 2005

Martindale-Hubbell has entered an agreement with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) to “…[W]ork with the NACDL to educate its members about effective online marketing options they can use to better market their practices on the Internet.”

From the press release, let me see if I have this ‘education’ deal straight:

  • NACDL lawyers get a standard template Web site, presumably for a fee.
  • NACDL lawyers get a listing in the directory, presumably for a fee.
  • Martindale places it’s ‘Find A Lawyer’ search box on the NACDL Web site so people coming to the NACDL site can see an add for and find criminal defense lawyers who are not NACDL members ( does not allow a standard search for terms such as association membership).

Paul Gazzolo, chief operating officer of LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell is quoted in the press saying “…[W]e look forward to working with the [NACDL] to develop strategies that will help [NACDL members] attract new clients.” If new strategies are developed, I would hope Martindale would share them with their other law firm customers.

Martindale is part of the legal marketing dualoply (Thomson/West/FindLaw, the other) who pull in hundreds of millions of dollars in law firm marketing dollars each year. You guys owe it to lawyers to really give something back in the area of legal marketing education.

Your companies have salespeople all over the country. Have them put on hundreds of seminars & brown bag lunches to help lawyers develop Internet strategies that will help attract new clients. You have millions of dollars for your own Web site development. Put up detailed and regularly updated information on your Web sites and blogs, which information lawyers and legal marketing professionals can put to use today.

This dualopoly has received a pass on accountability from the legal community, especially when it comes to Internet marketing. Perhaps it is because publishers, program directors and consultants receive sponsorship monies from West and LexisNexis. Perhaps it’s because lawyers are concerned about their Martindale rating. Perhaps it’s because law firms do not know enough about Internet marketing to hold them accountable.

With all the blogs being published by lawyers and legal consultants (marketing and technology), we can now have open and free discussion about services and products from the dualopoly and other companies. It will also be in the interest of the dualopoly and to enter this discussion. To its credit Martindale-Hubbell has entered this blogsphere discussion from time to time with comments on this blog.

Look forward to reading others thoughts.

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