Who's Spending Your Marketing Money?

 Posted on December 01, 2008 in Uncategorized

Yesterday I was asked elsewhere, "Why do you assume that those who work with lawyers and help them with their marketing don't work within the ethical requirements of the legal profession? And it is an unfortunate assumption."

Today I had this in my inbox:

A new comment on the post #716 "To Blow or Not To Blow? A Little Texas DWI Law." is waiting for your approval /blog/2008/06/to-blow-or-not-to-blow-a-little-texas-dwi-law.htmlAuthor : vikram (IP:, : sumit_2588@hotmail.comURL : : it is your first offense, you should blow. The money you would have to pay a lawyer to win at trial or get a good plea bargain would probably be equal to the total fines and costs if you blew and just pled guilty, right?Approve it:...Delete it:...Spam it:...

The URL (I converted it to a tinyurl because I have been told that Google doesn't index tinyurls - I don't want to help out these marketers) was that of [name redacted by special dispensation], a Houston criminal-defense lawyer.

This is interesting comment spam because the reader seems to have gone to the trouble to actually read the post (usually comment spam suggests otherwise), and also because the advice that Vikram gives is diametrically opposed not only to the interests of the public (because it is incorrect legal advice in a DUI case) but also to the interests of [Name], who is ultimately funding Vikram's spamming efforts on his behalf.

I know my readers who are enamored of the idea of throwing money at someone (we can't all be good at everything) to do their marketing for them, as well as those enamored of catching all the money that lawyers are willing to throw, will protest that not everyone does this, and that whoever [Name] paid to do his marketing is the aberration.

Do you think [Name] was told by whoever he's throwing money at that Vikram would be comment-spamming? Do you think [Name], if he had been told, would have understood what that meant? Is it possible that whoever you are throwing your marketing money at is - directly or through proxies like Vikram - doing sleazy things that you don't know about or understand?

The ethics of marketing are not the ethics of lawyering. Lawyers who pay other people to make their tactical marketing decisions for them are going to wind up with what they deserve - surrogates like Vikram who neither understand nor care about either legal ethics or the lawyers' best interests.

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