It’s almost an old chestnut in “innovation” circles, but some of the most important breakthroughs are not new inventions. Rather, they’re new applications of proven technologies and methods. In a post entitled “Don’t Think Different, Think About Different Things” on the Harvard Business Review Blog Network, Art Markman of the University of Texas at Austin cites the example of vacuum cleaner mogul James Dyson.
“Dyson set out to invent a more effective vacuum cleaner. He noticed that vacuums lose suction as the bag fills, because the pores in the bag get clogged. Most people who tried to fix this issue in the past attempted to solve the “bag problem” by crafting a more effective vacuum cleaner bag.
“Instead, Dyson realized a vacuum takes in a combination of dust and air and needs to separate the dust from the air. Once he thought about the problem in this way, he was able to recall his own knowledge about the industrial cyclones used in sawmills. Industrial cyclones use centrifugal force to separate particles from air rather than a filter. He then designed a small industrial cyclone into a vacuum and created a highly successful business.”
The same can be said of content marketing for lawyers. You can wait two or three years for your reputation and new business leads to gestate on your blog, or you can mobilize the full depth and breadth of your content resources through third-party distribution channels like JD Supra. In a recent e-mail exchange, co-founder Adrian Lurssen provided a very helpful summary of JD Supra content types beyond repurposed blog posts:
- Favorable court filings – Lurssen notes that intellectual property attorney Ron Coleman’s repository of documents is comprised almost entirely of his own filings — decisions, pleadings, motions, memoranda and related work.
- Legal analysis – Multi-specialty law firm Lane Powell uses JD Supra to aggregate newsletters, articles, and alerts covering developments in sectors as wide-ranging as transportation, securities, environment and energy, immigration, labor and employment.
- Legal forms – Instead of ceding the “forms” business to LegalZoom, templates and samples of complex instruments like a family trust can surface your content in search engines, and help build reputation.
- Legal documents of interest (content curation) – In addition to posting his own writing on social networking and Web 2.0 in the legal space, attorney Doug Cornelius uses his JD Supra portfolio to collect legal documents not written by him but either related to his practice field or of interest to readers of his blog.
- Q&A site responses — Versions of responses written for sites like Quora and LegalOnramp also find their way into JD Supra portfolios.
“We are a bridge between two worlds: lawyers, and the people lawyers serve,” Lurssen concluded. “Any content that makes sense, somehow, of the legal implications (business, consumer, other) of our lives — that’s good content on JD Supra.”