My post on the branding of law firm blogs was spurred by Ron Friedmann’s post on the potential tension between firms as institutions and individual lawyers when it comes to blogs.
Firms should want their lawyers blogging on a firm-branded blog. Individual lawyers, however, realizing the possibility of future lateral moves, may prefer their own names as the brand. Since lateral moves became common only 15 years ago, this tension is relatively new. I suppose it applies to any publishing channel but my gut is that it’s worse for blogs. Anyone aware of any good material to help understand the dynamic of building firm brand equity verus individual lawyer name-recognition equity?
Steve Matthews, who but for doing a train (no-wifi) versus my ferry (wifi) commute would have beaten me in elaborating on Ron’s post. From Steve’s great analysis on associate blogs and law firm interests:
From a law firm’s perspective, the use of group blogs or concept blogs is always going to be the safer tactic, especially where Associates are involved. Firms are still going to see Associates, their blogs, and their brands walk out the door. That’s a fact of life. They also have the potential to recruit laterals on that same potential benefit. For me, the question then becomes one of resource allocation. The use of individuals as the blog brand can create an exceptionally strong connection with readers, but their creation doesn’t come without substantial time investment. At the end of the day, allocation of the firm’s web development, profile building and SEO resources need to support the individuals that own the company.
Steve’s post is well worth the read. He reviews some of the some of the same scenario’s as I offering additional insight.