A General Counsel’s View of Law Firm Marketing Pitches: ‘Blah, Blah, Blah’
Wolverine World Wide general counsel Ken Grady confesses that he can identify with the dog in the old Bacon Bits commercial, who hears his owner this way: “Blah, blah, blah, Bacon Bits. Blah, blah, blah, Bacon Bits.”
Speaking at Georgetown Law School’s annual conference on the state of law firms and their clients, Grady said he hears a similar message from law firm marketers, the Am Law Daily reports. “With law firms, it’s become ‘blah, blah, blah, Law Firm name. Blah, blah, blah, Law Firm name.’ Try asking general counsel about what stood out after listening to a law firm [pitch], and we can’t tell you anything,” he said.
Grady is seeking law firms with expertise that is relevant to his company’s needs, the story says. But the information is difficult to glean from marketing ptiches, he says, using another popular culture reference to illustrate. In the movie Pretty Woman, Richard Gere asks the prostitute played by Julia Roberts for her name. She replies, “What would you like it to be?”
Grady often feels like Gere when he meets with law firms. “ ‘What do you do,’ I ask the firm, and they say, ‘What would you like us to do?’ ” Grady said. “This may be a bitter pill for some firms, but you don’t do everything.”
The session also featured research from Lisa Hart, the head of legal research firm Acritas, according to the Am Law Daily coverage. She said that, more often than not, decisions to hire firms are based on practice and geographic expertise rather than price. Law firms that want to retain clients, she said, need to demonstrate expertise and provide good service.