In my previous book review I gave the most awesome review to the 1974 “Law Office Management” textbook. In that post I mentioned the ABA publishes several other books, including “The Complete Guide to Marketing your Law Practice”.

This is the kind of book that your MBA your salivate over. By that, I mean a byzantine list of organizational “Hey, this is what you should do” fluff. It’s the kind of document produced by someone that Google, an organization that prides itself on hiring people who get things done, would NOT hire.

The 1999 edition I’m looking at, edited by Hollis Hatfield Weishar and James A. Durham, does have a few gems for the impatient solo practitioner who just wants to use some practical information to apply instead of bureaucratic “Get your firm mentality in order!” and “Design your strategy!”
I’m sure this is useful, for the law firm looking to change itself, but not for someone like me.

Chapter 6 talks about marketing yourself through the spoken word, through your interaction with friends and other people at social events. Somewhat helpful and suggestive, although I much rather prefer Foonberg’s “How to get and keep good clients”.

Chapter 8, Internet Marketing, would be more interesting if it actually talked about the interactive nature of the Internet potentially opening new venues for marketing through blogs. Being that it was published in 1999, I’m less inclined to be so hard on the book for such non-inclusion. However, the problem with Chapter 8 is that it views the Internet as a ‘push’ medium for publishing just a listing of your services, much like the yellow pages. While the author recognizes the Internet is international, I don’t think the chapter accounts for the back-and-forth nature of the Internet, potentially providing you with ways to manage client interactions and provide marketing opportunity through leaflets, as discussed in other parts of this book…

Chapter 12 was enjoyable to read, especially for the short tax story Singerman writes in it. Chapter 10, discussing potential win-win pricing strategies, falls short of recommending possible reforms to the ‘contingent’, ‘hourly’, and ‘flat fee’ systems.