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2017 Winners - Communications: Interactive and Digital Marketing, Email Marketing

First Place

K&L Gates LLP

Leveraging the Digital Domain to Help Clients

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Summary: K&L Gates was among the first law firms to create a Brexit client support initiative when the referendum for a vote was announced in late 2015. They used the digital domain to extend resources to clients on that emerging topic on a 24/7, one touch basis. Armed with resources including cross-office multidisciplinary lawyers, alerts, events and a 24-hour Brexit resource hotline, K&L Gates began sharing their support tool. The day after the Brexit vote, following their press release, social media and internal and external e-comms push, the Brexit page on K&L Gates HUB spiked with 850 individual page views. The resourcefulness of the Brexit page’s focus of sector knowledge in content and CLE forms proved so beneficial to one of their clients that they approached the firm to create a customized version of K&L Gates HUB specific to their efforts. K&L Gates has taken advantage of the digital space to demonstrate their client service values. This required putting on the shoes of the clients and diagnosing their pain points and providing solutions. This domain has opened avenues for further client service and value-add from law firms. They believe these mediums can be a vehicle to meet both emerging and ongoing client needs. K&L Gates diagnosed these problems, came up with creative, digital executions to take the solutions to the next level from other firms.

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K&L Gates is consistently recognized for exceptional client service. In the BTI Consulting Group’s 2016 Client Service 30, they were one of only six firms to be recognized with a top 10 ranking in each of the last two years. K&L Gates works to provide solutions for clients on existing challenges and emerging topics, and the digital domain provides a new frontier for delivery. K&L Gates wanted to provide an answer to a pain point for busy in-house counsel: continuing legal education credits (CLE). If technology allows individuals to watch movies whenever and wherever, why shouldn’t the same model be applied to help in-house counsel meet the need to earn CLE credits? On an emerging topic, once the decision to vote on a Brexit was announced, K&L Gates was among the first law firms to immediately put in place with a digital resource and focal point for all things Brexit.

Using microsite K&L Gates HUB as the foundation, the marketing team created the On-Demand CLE Center. Designed for in-house lawyers seeking to complete CLE requirements, the On-Demand CLE Center features over 100 distinct courses (and growing). Placing this resource in a digital space, the team provided an intangible benefit to in-house counsel: access to CLE/CPD courses on their own schedules. Following dozens of client-focused Brexit programs that began in 2016, they used HUB as the platform for all Brexit updates and webinars. A hotline was established prior to the vote, and during the lead-up to the surprise result, they placed media stories globally highlighting their Brexit client resources with direction to the HUB Brexit Center. The moment the result was announced, K&L Gates knew clients would experience uncertainty. The firm instituted a global PR push to ensure clients were reminded of K&L Gates Brexit resources available digitally. K&L Gates were one of the first law firms to create a Brexit global client support initiative.

Since the On-Demand CLE Center launched, more than 2,400 on-demand programs have been completed, with more than 750 individuals completing the courses. The user experience evaluations for overall program effectiveness are more than 75 percent rating excellent or very good. Lawyers from organizations such as General Electric, TD Ameritrade, and Samsung have frequently utilized the On-Demand Center. All programs are available to users for free and cover multiple jurisdictions’ requirements globally. Clients turned to the HUB Brexit page in high numbers following the Jun. 23 vote. The day after the Brexit vote, following the K&L Gates press release, social media and internal and external e-comms push, their Brexit page spiked to 850 page views. The resourcefulness of the Brexit page’s focus and other sector content proved so beneficial that one of their leading clients asked the firm to create a customized version of K&L Gates HUB specific to the industry sectors most applicable to their business.


Second Place

Epstein Becker Green, P.C.

Employment Law This Week - Weekly Video News Shows

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Summary: 

Epstein Becker Green launched Employment Law This Week (ELTW), an innovative online video program, on Oct. 19, 2015. The program was an outgrowth of the firm’s desire to promote its Employment, Labor & Workforce Management brand in a new and exciting way, while providing a valuable resource for employers, HR professionals and in-house counsel. Having monitored the rising use of video as a content marketing tool in professional services, the firm’s plan was to create a weekly online program that would deliver the latest labor and employment law news, cases and legislation (content that the firm’s attorneys have produced and distributed to clients in other forms for years). Other objectives for the program included limiting each episode to five minutes to accommodate busy viewers, showcasing EBG internal talent and up-and-comers, making each episode easily accessible, featuring firm clients and contacts and strengthening the firm’s relationships and promoting the firm’s other thought-leadership publications. When Epstein Becker Green launched ELTW, no other law firm offered a weekly video program on groundbreaking news stories in less than five minutes. Larger law firms, with greater resources, have created shows in ELTW’s image, but none matches ELTW’s quality, usefulness and ease of accessibility.

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The marketing goal was to promote the firm’s Employment, Labor & Workforce Management brand in a new and exciting way, while providing a valuable resource for employers, HR professionals and in-house counsel. Having monitored the rising use of video as a content marketing tool in professional services, their plan was to create a weekly online program that would deliver the latest labor and employment law news, cases and legislation (content they have produced and distributed to clients in other forms for years).

The program objectives were:
  • limit each episode to five minutes
  • showcase internal talent and up-and-comers
  • feature clients and contacts and strengthen those relationships
  • promote thought-leadership publications
  • apply lessons to other video projects

On Oct. 19, 2015 they launched Employment Law This Week® (ELTW), a program that has both increased exposures to the brand and been embraced by the firm’s target audience.

The firm achieved their goal by taking the steps below:

      1) Researching the legal market for other examples of weekly video When Epstein Becker Green launched ELTW, no other law firm offered a weekly video program on groundbreaking news stories, in less than five minutes. Larger law firms, with greater resources, have created shows in ELTW’s image, but none matches ELTW’s quality, usefulness and ease of accessibility. While competing shows highlight only internal talent, Epstein Becker Green give visibility to clients, contacts and consultants as well as attorneys. As of Nov. 21, 2016, they have completed their 50th episode.news programs, and believe that ELTW is the first of its kind.
      2) Creating an attorney editorial group and a production team made up of firm staff to pick timely content, choose interviewees and ensure a script’s accuracy.
      3) Choosing a host, an EBG attorney with broadcast experience, and a digital production company to film and edit each episode and assist in preparing scripts.

The firm promoted the show with weekly e-blasts, media outreach, social media, firm blogs like Lexology, JD Supra, National Law Review and on the firm’s website’s news, practice and bio pages. They also promoted the show at client, recruitment and internal events. The show’s guests and the attorneys and staff promoted the show to their contacts.

ELTW is distributed weekly to company executives, general counsel, HR professionals and reporters, as well as exposure via social media and the firm website. Every week, they track more than 50 key performance indicators, including native video plays on YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, JD Supra and the firm’s website (approximately 2,800 per episode and 136,000 in the first year.) An average of approximately 2,300 subscribers open the weekly e-blast and each episode’s announcement is viewed on the firm’s social media profiles, Lexology, National Law Review and website more than 4,500 times during each episode’s first week. The attorneys’ shares via LinkedIn (from a core group of 16) add on thousands of impressions per week. In terms of ROI, they don’t expect the show to be the sole reason a client hires us. Even partial credit of the onscreen attorneys’ billings would easily pay for the show. The show has influenced recruitment and it demonstrates the focus on employment law, in contrast to competing firms.

When Epstein Becker Green launched ELTW, no other law firm offered a weekly video program on groundbreaking news stories, in less than five minutes. Larger law firms, with greater resources, have created shows in ELTW’s image, but none matches ELTW’s quality, usefulness and ease of accessibility. While competing shows highlight only internal talent, Epstein Becker Green give visibility to clients, contacts and consultants as well as attorneys. As of Nov. 21, 2016, they have completed their 50th episode.


Third Place

Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

Norton Rose Fulbright - 2015 ACC Annual Meeting

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Summary: 

Norton Rose Fulbright, in collaboration with newsrooms and McCann, developed an integrated marketing campaign consisting of a content amplification campaign and hyper mobile advertising. Content amplification is a publishing initiative that paired Norton Rose Fulbright’s thought leadership on key legal topics with relevant third-party material to connect with the audience of the 2015 Association of Corporate Counsel Annual Meeting. The topics chosen included a mix of those on the #ACCAM15 agenda and some that Norton Rose Fulbright wanted to surface as part of its efforts to attract the attention of CLOs and other decision-makers in the legal departments of multinationals with business interests in Canada. By leveraging high-quality content on strategic themes, Norton Rose Fulbright emerged as one of the top voices in the social media conversation around the event. Hyper local mobile advertising was used to create brand awareness at the ACC Annual Meeting and reach qualified, localized clients and potential clients by directing ultra-relevant messaging to highly targeted mobile users and lead them to our Website. The campaign was a tremendous success and outperformed KPI’s and benchmarks.

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The primary marketing goal was developing an integrated marketing campaign pairing Norton Rose Fulbright’s thought leadership with key legal topics to connect with the audience of the 2015 Association of Corporate Counsel Annual Meeting (ACCAM15), CLOs and other decision-makers in the legal departments of multinationals, while creating brand awareness and encouraging engagement.

The content amplification strategy objectives included: positioning Norton Rose Fulbright (NRF) as a thought leader at the ACCAM15; profile the presenters and promote NRF sessions; dominate the conversation on social media; dominate competitive share of voice (SOV) and share of impressions (SOI) surrounding the event against competitors; identify the audience that engaged with NRF social media content; and drive high-quality visitors to the website. The advertising objectives included using hyper local mobile advertising to create awareness at the ACC Annual Meeting in Boston and reaching qualified, localized clients and potential clients.

The firm had three different content publishing plans: pre-event, live and post-event. There are some variations, but the main bases are:

  • Twitter - Up to four posts per day for NRF and five visual assets published as part of editorial project
  • Facebook - Post an album of visual assets with key editorial takeaways
  • LinkedIn - Two Posts per day leading up to the event.

Live social coverage was timed specifically for panels, and there was post-event coverage to point out key takeaways of the event.

The hyper local mobile advertising goals included:

  • Use hyper local mobile advertising to create awareness at the ACC Annual Meeting in Boston
  • Reach qualified, localized clients and potential clients
  • Direct ultra-relevant messaging to highly targeted mobile users and lead them to the Website Timing Week of Oct.18.

The content amplification campaign had a 1. 18 percent SOI of 5 million and 9 percent SOV of 2,000 against the hashtag #ACCAM15. 76 percent of SOV captured was external audience talking about NRF. Visits to the NRF site had a lower bounce rate than site average for the month of October. They drove 86 site visits; 20% to the litigation survey, 31 percent to partner profiles and 49 percent browsed through to other pages on the NRF Website. Several notable accounts engaged with Norton Rose’s social media content including @daviddoughty (Corp. Governance Expert) & Regulatory groups. Accounts that engaged with the content aligned with the target audience. Hyper local mobile advertising results included over 550,000 impressions and 1,795 clicks, with a 0.32 percent CTR (2x stronger than Google's most recent benchmark of 0.16 percent for mobile ads in the U.S.) More than 33 percent of clicks resulted in the visitor spending 2 minutes of more on site - compared to 11.92 percent of the overall NRF website traffic during the same time period.


Honorable Mention

Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt PC

Schwabe E-Blast

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Summary: Launching a brand is one thing, but maintaining a brand equity across subsequent weeks and months is even more important. That’s why the external communications needed be clear, direct, and professional and position Schwabe as a thought leader in the industry of law, as well as experts in their six industries.

They did this in a number of ways, such as identifying the industry and type of communication on the header bar, prominently displaying the industry and related services on the right rail and inviting readers to learn more about each industry in the footer. The e-blast template was an effort to maintain the re-branded presence in the marketplace as well as tie their email platform to their customer relationship management program. Doing this allowed them to easily parse out communications and track contact activity while streamlining touch points between attorneys and contacts.

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The marketing goals for the different e-blasts sent were:

    • Stay in touch with existing customers and visually remind them of the firm’s deep industry expertise, both in writing and via the mechanism of the industry-focused design elements.
    • Reach beyond current customers and into prospects by providing thought leadership in the industries the firm is concentrated in, with the intention of existing customers regularly forwarding the e-blasts to others in their network, sharing what they had learned and encouraging new content sign-ups.
    • Strengthen communications by creating easy-to-scan messages with the most valuable information up-front and easy to read as well as implementing interactive forms that garner survey results, event RSVPs and the auto population of new contacts into their CRM system.

    By the time the firm reached the e-blast phase, the vast majority of their images and key messaging was settled. They worked with a design firm to create a dynamic layout that would be easily customized and implemented within their delivery system. They ran extensive internal and external QA on every platform imaginable to ensure that the design would provide the best user experience for their prospects and clients. Once completed, they created their first e-blast and pushed send.

    The results were immediate and positive. Several of their clients emailed raving about the new look and feel of the e-blast, its easy scan-ability and the quality of content. More than one customer mentioned they had already shared it with a colleague.

    Since the new email platform and template have been launched (Aug. – Nov. 15 2016), they have sent out 18,573 emails, with a 37.90 percent open rate. This is a huge improvement to old system, which in contrast garnered an average approximate open rate of 20.25 percent, calculated from 18,637 emails sent from Apr. through Aug. 2016. The new design has greatly streamlined their processes, allowing the firm to create a higher quality email communication in less than an hour using an online application.