Law360 just announced that they will be breaking out the
champagne to celebrate their “Golden Tour” at the AALL Annual Meeting and
Conference in Chicago July 15-19, 2016. The festivities will mark the release
of Law 360’s 50th specialty newsletter as well as the release of
their In Depth news publication.
Law 360’s Newsletters 2004-2016
When  I interviewed Law
360’s founder Marius Meland  for an
earlier post “The Improbable Rise of Law 360…”  Meland described Law 360 as ”selling
awareness.”  The simple design featuring
headlines and brief summaries on a field of white – was intended to allow
lawyers make a qick scan of the daily update and  feel confident that they were aware of all the  major
developments and players of the day in their practice area.
Expanding Breadth
When I wrote my original post in 2013,  Law
360 had just been purchased by Lexis-Nexis. Meland expected  Law360 to remain on a growth  trajectory… adding additional newsletters and
enriching stories with material from other LexisNexis resources. Since August
2013 Law360 has released 16 new newsletters covering both practice areas and
industry sectors. With the release of the “Trials” newsletter, Law360 reached  50 newsletters focused on 27 practice areas, 17
sectors and 6 jurisdictions. They have
also developed 11 specialty rankings including topics such as rising stars, diversity and practice groups of the year. Such surveys have become “must-read” staples of the large law firm
competitive landscape.
Articles Published. According to the chart below, Law360 increases the number of stories published by 20 % each year. Since their birth in 2004, Law360 has published over 56,000 stories.
Readership has also grown. Law 360 now has over 300,000 individual subscribers in
about 5,000 organizations including all of the AmLaw 100 firms. Their web
traffic has reached 2 million visitors and 5 million page views a month. Their
staff has grown from 152 to 217 reporters and editors working in news bureaus
across US. This fall they will be launching a global news bureau which will
initially be based out of London.
Articles published
Expanding Depth While
law 360 remains committed to their original format of presenting brief summaries
of important news in their newsletters, they are now pivoting toward adding
depth of coverage.  On June 11 they
quietly launched In Depth, a weekly  news magazine that will provide deep analysis
of hot topics and legal developments.  The
press release stated that the new publication would offer hard hitting
journalism, long form investigative pieces and op eds from legal influencers. The
first issue covered  the “hot topic” of legal billing and focused on the “widening rate chasm in the
legal industry where stagnant hourly billing rates stand in stark contrast to
the staggering new rate high of $2,000 an hour.”
 Last week I had the chance to
talk to the Editor in Chief – Cat Fredenburgh about  Law 360’s pivot to “In Depth.”  Fredenburgh  explained that the idea for In-Depth arose from
conversations with their editorial advisory board members who are practicing
attorneys. Interviews suggested that lawyers were clamoring for deeper coverage
of important legal issues. Fredenburgh sees the publication as being analogous
to the New York Times Sunday Supplement. It doesn’t replace the daily news, it
provides something different. Right now the In Depth publication is free to existing
Law360 subscribers but at some point, In Depth will become a “fee based” subscription. Before setting the price, they might want to consider that  BloombergBNA offers similar content in Big Law Business  and Thomson Reuters offers Legal Current which are not only “free” publications but available to anyone–even non-subscribers.
 The In Depth Team. The managing editor
Christine Hall field and Assistant managing editor Jocelyn Allison are managing
a growing team of feature writers which includes Natalie Rodriguez, Max
Stendhal, Erin Coe, Ed Beeson and Sindhu Sundar and the senior feature editor
Jeremy Barker. There are two photo graphics editors Chris Yates and Jonathan
Hayter. The managing editor for third-party content is Christian Lewis,who also works on the magazines op ed features. The Law 360 In Depth reporters include some of
the most experienced Law 360 writers and each has a unique specialty covering
specific legal issues.Law360 has a track record of writing their own rules and bucking the trends. It will be interesting to see if they can move their “high stress” audience of headline scanners to consume longer and and deeper articles… and pay more for the privilege.