Devonshires is a top 100 City law firm. It has a long-standing history of servicing the social housing market, but in recent years has grown across other specialisms including dispute resolution and litigation, employment, clinical negligence, property and corporate and commercial.
Our brief was two-fold, namely: to ensure that Devonshires was achieving national profile amongst the social housing community commensurate with its client-base and heritage, while at the same time ensuring that the firm’s other specialisms were highlighted.
What we did
Firstly, we needed to increase understanding and engagement of the PR process amongst fee-earners across various departments. To do this we ran a series of interactive workshops combining our PR knowledge and journalistic experience to demystify the PR process. From this, we came away with an array of stories to take out to the media.
For those that couldn’t attend, we held a series of one-to-one meetings to learn about their practice areas and gather stories.
Secondly, we set up quarterly breakfast briefings with the housings sector’s two leading publications, Inside Housing and Social Housing. Hosted at the firm, and latterly online, each publication’s editorial team met with three to four partners to hear about the sector’s latest developments, trends and legislation. In doing so, the publication’s journalists now come to the firm on a regular basis for comment. Coverage in both of these publications is greater than the firm’s closest competitor is achieving.
Thirdly, we have secured regular columns in six publications, ensuring that the full range of Devonshires’ specialisms are profiled as thought leaders on a regular basis.
Elsewhere, we recently developed a new firm-wide process to ensure that we’re able to showcase the firm’s work with clients on deals in a timely and more efficient way. Already, this is yielding results, with enquiries and instructions resulting directly from PR activity.
In year one, Devonshires saw a ten-fold increase in media coverage compared with the previous year. Coverage has been achieved across international, national, regional and trade media.
Alongside this, the firm enjoyed far greater engagement levels as a result of the content created by BLC across social media channels, in particular on LinkedIn.
Sara Marshall, head of business development at Devonshires says: “It’s been a revelation working with Black Letter Communications. They’ve demonstrated to us what PR can achieve for a law firm. In particular, we’ve been impressed by their proactivity and the hard work they have put in to understand our business.
“At the end of our first year working with Kerry, Justin and colleagues, the board took the decision to increase our retainer with Black Letter and we’re now looking forward to achieving even more.”