Looking in more detail at the survey commissioned by LexisNexis® Martindale-Hubbell® as a base study on small firm marketing efforts and tactics, I found a number of interesting things which hopefully will put the survey more into perspective for many of my small firm and solo readers.
Background: The survey was conducted by the obviously reputable company, Harris Interactive®. It was conducted online for law firms of 20 or fewer lawyers over the summer of 2005, throughout the U.S. The respondents (967 firms) were spread pretty much evenly around the country (except for a 15% or so higher response in the South).
Demographics of Respondents:
*Firm Size – Approximately 1/3 were solo’s, and 48% were in firms of 2-5 lawyers. So, more than 80% of respondents were in law firms of less than six attorneys.
*Gender and Age – 75% were male. Seventy-five percent of respondents were between 35 and 59 years of age, with nearly 50% between 46 and 59.
*Practice Areas – Their main practice area reported by 49% of firms was General Practice (22%), Family Law (10%), Personal Injury (10%) and Real Estate (7%). The only other two mentioned included Criminal Law and Trusts & Estates, both at 5%.
Marketing Dollars Spent – Clearly marketing budgets have increased, thereby indicating that firms consider marketing more important than three years ago. Legal marketing expenditures exceed $5,000 according to 50% of the firms reporting; and marketing spending exceeded 5% of revenue for firms overall, specifically:
*Solo’s – (more than doubled from 12% to 26% of firms spending over 5% of revenues),
*2-5 Lawyers – (12% to 22% of firms spent over 5%; and firms spending over $10,000 went from 20% of firms to 1/3),
*6-10 Lawyers – (doubled from 6% to 12%, and spending of over $50,000 went from 9% to 13% of firms), and
*11-20 Lawyer – (quadrupled from 5% to 20%; and those exceeding $50,000 in marketing expenditures went from 5% to 13% of firms).

Time Spent on Marketing
– respondents reported spending 8% of their work week on marketing (63% on practicing law, 14% on managing practice, 8% conducting research, and 6% on professional/personal development).
NEXT: What the survey covered in terms of marketing activities and what activities it didn’t measure.