The Solicitors Journal has published an interesting report from media agency Signal looking at the legal press.
The research broadly finds that large law firms dominate the legal press.
Similar research I am sure would find that large property companies dominate property press, that the Big 4 accountancy firms lead their trade media.
But what this research does highlight is the importance of the relationships businesses have with the press that report on their day to day activity.
Law firms for as long as I can remember have had a love hate relationship with The Lawyer, Legal Week and Legal Business.
Their ability to unearth and highlight bad business behaviour, gossip, insight and analysis is a credit to the quality of the journalists they employ.
Whilst many partners may claim to leave their copy unopened on the floor of their office or deleting the daily email newsletters unread, legal PRs can be sure that when bad news breaks they will be told to jump.
The legal press - despite their claims that they are read every day, week or month by GCs - are unlikely to influence client buying behaviour.
They do however play a very important role on recruitment, morale, competitor insights and peer group profile. That is why they we should care.
Law firms need to be aware of how much of their media coverage comes from the legal trade press. After analysing the media coverage of the 25 highest-earning UK firms across a three-month period, we have calculated that, on average, 41 per cent of law firms’ mentions come from trade news outlets, including blogs, journals, and magazines. Law firms rely on media coverage for a variety of reasons. Just a few of these include reaching prospective clients, managing the firm’s reputation, and conducting vital research. Legal trades are certainly important for these activities, but for firms looking to develop business and attract new clients, relying on the trade press may not present the same opportunities as, for instance, a piece of national newspaper coverage.