How Should a Firm Value a Blogger?
Business-world bloggers were abuzz last week about career moves by two big-name tech bloggers -- Robert Scoble leaving his job at Microsoft for start-up PodTech.net and Om Malik leaving Business 2.0 to launch a multimedia technology news site. The moves led Stephen Baker at BusinessWeek to ponder how a company should value an in-house blogger:
"How much was Robert Scoble worth to Microsoft? On a bang-per-buck basis, how did he match up to the millions that Microsoft pays for advertising and marketing, both in-house and out? I'd say extremely high. But I don't think there was any way to measure it."
Picking up on Baker's column, Kevin O'Keefe at LexBlog suggests that measuring the value of an in-house blogger is an equation that law firms had better figure out:
"These recent moves should be wake up calls to law firms with high-profile lawyer bloggers. Many of your high-paid marketing and PR people have not a clue about the power of blogging and the marketing value of these blogging lawyers.
"Not only are such lawyers a source for new work, but they can also bring the firm into this century when it comes to effective Internet marketing by being a mentor to other lawyers learning to blog. Don't appreciate what these bloggers are bringing to the firm and you are going to loose them, their rainmaking and much more."
Consider just two examples: In February 2004, after his How Appealing blog helped him achieve national prominence, Howard Bashman left Philadelphia's Buchanan Ingersoll, where he chaired the Appellate Group, to start his own firm. Then, earlier this year, Ernest Svenson, a/k/a nationally known blogger Ernie the Attorney, left the midsized firm he had been with for 18 years to start his own firm. Should or could either of these lawyers' former firms have done more to keep them? Did they value appropriately these lawyers' blogs? For these two firms, the questions are academic. But for other firms, as O'Keefe suggests, the time to answer them is sooner, not later.
Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on June 14, 2006 at 01:47 PM | Permalink
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