What is Brand Journalism? Basically, it’s the communication with target audiences that the advertising industry refers to as content marketing. It’s a large part of what we, as law firm marketers do every day—use the tools of digital publishing and social media to speak directly to our customers/clients. We publish articles and use blogging, social media, web site content, SEO and traditional media to let our target audience know who we are and what we do.
There is a lot of information available on the web about Brand Journalism. Below are links to a few of the sites and articles that I found most helpful:
1. While not directed specifically at legal marketers, this web site provides clear and helpful articles about brand journalism along with stories about various companies that have used that technique to successfully grow their business. One article, appropriately titled What is Brand Journalism, is an excellent primer on this marketing tactic that was recognized by the Public Relations Society of American (PRSA) as one of the top 12 trends in public relations. http://brandjournalists.com/
2. The Content Marketing Institute’s web site is dedicated to educating people about content marketing, aka brand journalism, providing practical, how-to guidance, insight and advice from experts, and a community discussion of the latest news, information, and advances in the field of content marketing. The site provides a wealth of information for marketers interested in content marketing including a white paper library and free webinars. The Content Marketing Institute also publishes a blog where you can read articles like “How to Battle 7 “Sins” That Derail Content Marketing Success” and “Prove Content Marketing ROI to your CEO: 4 Values to Communicate.” http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/
3. Keith Ecker, a Vice President at Jaffe PR, wrote an article, “Legal Brand Journalism: The Future of Legal Marketing”, that has been published on the Bloomberg Law web site. In addition to defining Legal Brand Journalism™--a communications model that relies on a combination of traditional and innovative marketing tactics, technological savvy and, most importantly, a journalist’s high standard for quality content. It is the next evolution in integrated marketing; a buzz term that, simply put, means conveying a singular brand identity across multiple marketing channels.—the article discusses the origins of Legal Brand Journalism, how it works and how it can be implemented at your firm. This article is well worth reading and can be found at http://about.bloomberglaw.com/practitioner-contributions/legal-brand-journalism/.
4. On their web site, Jaffe PR offers a white paper in which Jay Jaffe answers some FAQs about Legal Brand Journalism. It is an interesting and comprehensive discussion about how law firms and lawyers can successfully use brand journalism and the value it provides to both lawyers and clients. You can download the white paper here http://goo.gl/Z9aS1p.
5. “Will Journalism Departments Be Part of the Law Firm of the Future?” That is the title of an article on Kevin O’Keefe’s blog, Real Lawyers Have Blogs. In addition to discussing the value of brand journalism, the article addresses the use of “citizen” journalists, rather than the lawyers themselves, to create content for blogs, e-mail newsletters and other digital publications. Great read. You can find the article at http://goo.gl/0Z6ol1.
By Ellen Katkin, Director of Marketing, Gilbert LLP for the September/October 2013 Issue of the Capital Ideas Newsletter.