Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Attorney Advertising Reaching New Lows (In Fact, Going "Underground")

Just when I thought attorney advertising was scraping the bottom of the barrel, we have a new entry to be ashamed of (more on that in a minute). But let's review the sad litany of embarrasing advertising the general public has been exposed to over the years: shameless "solicitation" letters sent to accident victims (along with self laudatory DVD's, refrigerator magnets and other goodies thrown in the packet for good measure),and cheesy and/or repulsive TV, radio, and phone book ads (many with the tag that "we'll get money for you" and other nonsense).

More recent entries into this swamp have included cookie cutter, canned websites and blogs horribly ghostwritten for the sole purpose of increasing Google rankings through repeated use of familiar phrases or "keywords."

But, alas, some genius has thought of a new way of sinking our reputation even further: attorney advertising on funeral home websites.

As attorney Eric Turkewitz aptly pointed out:

[it] made me think of the washed up lawyer played by Paul Newman in The Verdict, going to funeral homes to pass around his card, pretending to have known the deceased as he chased cases. But instead of standing in their parlors handing out cards, this company wants lawyers to hang advertising on their site where the bereaved might go in time of need.

Eric hit the nail on the head in concluding that "The bar for attorney advertising has been lowered to new depths. It now appears to rest six feet under."

It's a safe assumption that the overwhelming majority of us personal injury attorneys are appalled by this latest "marketing" scheme. Unfortunately, most of us are a "silent majority" on the seemingly endless and shameful ways some firms go about attracting new clients. But don't expect the "faux blogger" law firms to expose this idea for what it is. They're probably too busy signing up to put their "Questions about how your loved one died/call us today" patch on funeral home websites...

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