Setting the Stage
In early March, we would not have dreamed that we would have to adapt our business to a pandemic. Like everyone else, we suddenly found ourselves in a work-from-home world, beset by complications and emergencies.
After we got everything up and working (and that took a while), we began to focus on marketing, because that too needed to be reviewed and adapted to a new world.
Ethics in this New World
Here in Virginia, we are fortunate that our marketing ethics rules were greatly simplified several years ago. We streamlined the regulation of lawyer advertising down to a single standard – is the advertising false or misleading? We eliminated the boilerplate disclaimer for advertising specific case results. But note well that specific case results may be misleading if they omit material facts or need to be put in context that is not misleading.
If you are not in Virginia, make sure you have read the ethics rules applicable to your state. Most states are not so simple or so liberal.
COVID-19 and the Economy
It’s been quite a roller coaster ride, hasn’t it? The stock market surged, the stock market plummeted. Economic indicators looked pretty positive, economic indicators looked ominous.
Some law firms are hiring, some are firing. So-called “stealth lay-offs” are reputedly happening in BigLaw. Solo/small firm lawyers wonder if they can hang on. Who is up and who is down has a lot to do with a lawyer’s area of practice. But it also has to do with the ability to assess what is and what is not working in terms of practicing law – and marketing. We changed how we practiced law when the pandemic struck – in ten weeks, we moved ahead ten years (hat tip to Clio CEO Jack Newton for that memorable line).