Let’s be honest. Even in the best of times, press releases announcing new associates were a “feel good” exercise. If they made it into print at all, they were chopped up into blurbs and consigned to “People on the Move” listings in newspapers and trade publications. The full version of the release, which included high-sounding manufactured quotes by the managing partner, only appeared in the “Press” section of the firm’s website.
New hire announcements were not news then, and they’re not news now. But they could have new life and relevance in content marketing if you fundamentally reconceive their purpose and structure.
- Make the headline and opening paragraphs a statement about how the hires enhance the firm’s capabilities — why clients/potential clients should care. When Todd Smith announced the addition of a new associate on his Texas Appellate Law Blog, the key takeaway was that “The firm will continue to focus on appellate matters and providing litigation support to trial lawyers. Having Brandy [Wingate] on board and adding a presence in the Valley will enable us to better serve clients statewide.”
- Tie the content and message of each new attorney’s mini-bio back to the top-line benefit statement in the headline/first paragraph.
- Judiciously optimize SEO when drafting and structuring the release.
- Include deep links into your website (bio pages, practice profiles, etc.), not just the home page.
Will these changes result in more mentions in news outlets and blogs? Probably not — As I said at the top, new hire announcements are not news. However, this approach adds value to your overall communications mix by converting a formerly inert non sequitur into a meaningful, integrated part of your master narrative.