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Four Reasons Why Legal Marketing Has No Future: Part I

By Burkey Belser
November 28, 2011
Four Reasons Why Legal Marketing Has No Future: Part I

Reason #1 The Rhetoric of Disrespect

The vestigial arrogance of the legal profession remains embedded in the very language that is used in offices every day. “He’s a lawyer; she’s a non-lawyer.” No other business in the world I’m aware of treats its colleagues rhetorically in such a dismissive way. Language is important. It reflects our beliefs. Essentially, this form of locution says, “I, lawyer, exist. You, non-lawyer, do not.” As long as lawyers fail to acknowledge and respect other professional disciplines, marketing will be a sidebar to the success of a firm.

It’s true, in some firms, this language has become muted. And perhaps respect has grown for the marketing professional as well as the accounting and operations professionals. But wherever I see marketers in law firms struggle - and I see this a lot! - the reason is because they do not get respect. Yes, they must learn to command respect but it is unfair to imagine this can be achieved in a culture where the marketing discipline is only grudgingly tolerated and the professional must begin their climb to respect starting in a hole.

This is an excerpt from "The Future of Law Firm Marketing" as published in InsideLegal Thought Leaders Digest - COLPM Issue.