What are Am Law Top 100 law firms saying about Brexit, and how are they doing it? 05 July 2016

Having a keen interest in the legal sector, I wanted to see how firms are responding to Brexit, and what type of advice they are giving - and, most importantly to me, how are they engaging with audience to share this opinion and knowledge.



It has now been just over ten days since the shock of the Brexit vote, and the hangover of realisation of what it means is just beginning to sink in, so many businesses are now turning to their legal advisers to ask 'What does this mean for me?'. It is quite apparent from reading reports of how unready law firms were to respond, that many are only just getting their heads around the implications themselves - and this is reflected in the quality of content being shared.

In need of a listing to refer to, I took as my starting point the AmLaw Top 100, this also fitted in nicely with our recent Living Ratings which examined how firms engage with audiences through digital and social media.  What I found was a real mix of efforts - some firms are obviously investing time and resource into creating really useful, and engaging content, tools and channels to discuss Brexit, whilst others have resorted to generating rather dull PDF documents.

I realise that it is early days, and we have at least two to three years ahead of us to develop and share - so I am hopeful that law firms will step up to the mark and start truly focusing on the needs of audiences, creating content that not only informs but engages as well.

In the spirit of sharing, here are some of the firms that I think are doing really well - together with a list of the full AmLaw Top 100 listing, with links to each firms Brexit resources (where I have found them).  Do let me know if you agree. And, if I have missed you out, sorry - let me know and I will add you to the list.

Please note this is a very subjective analysis, you might have your own opinions and best case examples - if you do, do let me know.

Who's doing it well (I think, at the moment)?

CMS Legal Services
What I really liked about CMS's content was its use of tools such as Prezi to help engage and make the consumption of all the data and information around Brexit a little easier to swallow.  Some great use of video commentary, YouTube and BBC clips to explain Brexit. Detailed legal checklists at industry level, articles and events.  I also like the '50 questions' section which contains many useful links to external sources of information as well as CMS's own expert views.

Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy
Visually, Fragomen's Brexit section of their website is impressive - impactful use of imagery, good navigation and content.  Lots of key information and FAQ's, webcasts and clear navigation to the experts to talk to.  Would love to see some AV content to add engagement, and perhaps a little more use of social media channels to open conversation with audiences.

Herbert Smith Freehills
Nice use of imagery to add visual appeal to the Brexit landing page.  Lots of content, industry and business topics covered, and a good mix of text based content and video.  It is good to see prominence given to the firms social media channels and there is a option to sign up for HSF Brexit updates. Beyond the landing page, the site is a little text heavy and could possibly benefit from move visual content, infographics etc.

Hogan Lovells
Whilst Hogan Lovells doesn't appear to have a dedicated portal for Brexit, content being mixed with its normal output of thought leadership, I liked the firms use of an interactive infographic to explain the implications of Brexit on various aspect of business life.  I was impressed that the firm launched this so quickly.  However, it looks great on a desktop - not sure how practical it is on mobile.

Norton Rose Fulbright
Lots of content from Norton Rose Fulbright.  Great insight for a variety of industry sectors and business topics.  I particularly liked the scenario planning, and the timeline infographic which added visual interest.  The firm is maintaining an ongoing blog which you can subscribe to, content can also be shared via LinkedIn or Twitter.  My only negative is that there is a lot of text to get through - it would be nice to see some audio-visual content and improved article taxonomy or signposting.  The Brexit landing page is visually appealing, although this does get lost once you move into the detail.

Norton Rose Fulbright also tackles the subject of Scotland and devolution, which is an interesting topic.

Squire Patton Boggs
SPB have actually been running their Brexit blog for some weeks now, starting before the referendum took place.  Some really interesting content, but what I really liked is SPB's attempts to get audiences involved in conversation.  Content can be easily shared via social media channels and there are plenty of opportunities to upload comment and opinion as well as engaging with SPB's Brexit experts.  Visually it is a nicely laid out and appealing site.  Really impressed that they had to foresight to secure the brexitlegal.com domain as well.

White & Case
The hero of White & Case's Brexit commentary is most definitely their video of a panel briefing presented by a selection of internal and external experts.  Good use of video to get the message across, although at just over an hour in length, it would have benefited from being split into more bitesize chunks.  Not sure if everyone will have the attention span to watch the whole thing in one go.

Here's the full list of firms I looked at.

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David King
Group Marketing Director