In every state, there are a variety of rules governing what lawyers can and cannot do in their legal marketing and advertising activities. While every state is different, the core unifying principle in every state is that legal marketing cannot mislead the consumer.
That’s why this case could end up being problematic for the lawyers that hired this marketing company. http://bit.ly/howtoloseyourlicense
If you didn’t click on the link, the basic idea is that Exclusive Legal Marketing purchased keywords on Google which were the names of prominent personal injury attorneys. They also incorporated the names of prominent attorneys into their SEO. They then ran ads that lured people in (based on the prominent attorneys’ names) and ultimately directed them to different (less prominent) attorneys. That is the definition of misleading the consumer.
The sad thing is that the attorneys who hired Exclusive Legal Marketing probably had no idea that they were doing this, but it’ll still be their license on the line because of it. For example, under the Texas rules of professional responsibility an attorney has to approve every ad in writing and has to submit a copy of the same to the ethics board so they have a copy. My guess is that this company (Exclusive Legal Marketing – based in Texas) was not restricting their advertising based on the ethical rules of each state where they marketed.
So maybe ask your next marketing consultant how many lawyers they’ve served who ended up with ethics complaints.
CMO – Deviant Marketing