Last month, I had written about GoogSpy in I Spy Competitive Intelligence for Law Firm Marketing Consultants. At the time, I had reviewed GoogSpy’s features without offering some insight on how you can use their data in your strategic planning. Let me share some of my ideas now.
- GoogSpy. GoogSpy offers a tremendously powerful strategic intelligence tool. The Ranks in the Top 10 on these Search Terms section tells you where a web site currently ranks for certain keywords. So, instead of manually entering keywords into Google to see how your web site or a competitor’s web site ranks, a simple search using GoogSpy takes care of this tedious task. Another advantage of using GoogSpy is that you may discover that your web site is ranking highly for certain keywords that you did not intend to target. The disadvantage of using GoogSpy is that its data set is not complete. So, not all web sites or keyword combinations appear in the GoogSpy database. You may also consider optimizing portions of your own site to capture your competitor’s higher ranking keywords. Just be careful that you don’t end up de-optimizing your site for your existing keywords in the process.
The Pays for these Google Adwords section tells you which keywords are valuable to a web site—at least valuable enough that the web site is willing to part with cash in order to buy that traffic stream. Now you know where your competition’s product focus and attention resides and what audience they are targeting. How you choose to respond is up to you.
My Yahoo—Your Legal Desktop
The reason why I’m a huge fan of My Yahoo—besides the fact that it is free—is because My Yahoo truly allows me to customize my legal desktop. At this point, you may be scratching your head and wondering, “When did Yahoo become a legal portal?” And, you are right. Yahoo is not a legal portal or a medical portal or a venture capital portal. However, My Yahoo does offer such a customizable system that I can configure the content to be focused on any topic that I want, whether that is law, medicine or even venture capital. Furthermore, I’m not locked into just using their proprietary content sets. So long as a third-party web site offers an RSS feed, I can incorporate that feed into my legal desktop.
A number of free legal news sites are available. I’ve also provided a button so that you can easily add their RSS feeds, if available, to My Yahoo.
- bizjournals.com – Legal Services Features news about the legal services industry from local business journals.
- JURIST – Legal News and Research. JURIST offers separate RSS feeds for legal news, legal documents, and videos. I’ve provided a link to add the legal news RSS feed to My Yahoo.
- Law.com. Features legal news and information.
- LexisNexis Mealey Publications – Legal News via RSS. LexisNexis offers free (gasp!) RSS feeds for legal news. They also provide individual feeds for different practice areas, including insurance, products liability, litigation, intellectual property and more. While reading the news headlines and summaries is free, you do need a paid subscription to view the full-text of any articles or cases.
- Moreover Technologies – Law News.
- Virtual Chase Features RSS feed of current news. From Ballard Spahr Andrews & Ingersoll LLP.
- Yahoo! News – Full Coverage. Yahoo offers news stories, feature articles, opinions & editorials and related web sites on Personal Bankruptcy Law, Corporate Governance, Intellectual Property and Labor & Workplace. While Yahoo does not offer pre-set RSS feeds for these topics, you can set-up a custom RSS news feed. Yahoo does offer a Supreme Court RSS feed though.
- CNN – Law Center. CNN also has a Supreme Court News page, but no RSS feed for Supreme Court news only.
- NPR – Legal Affairs. NPR provides RSS feeds of law-related radio programs.
- Jaffe Legal News Service – Law Firm News.
Offers RSS feeds for top stories
, law firm news
and breaking news
- C-SPAN – America and the Courts. Features videos from recent programs, court documents, news and more.
- Online NewsHour – Supreme Court. Watch segments from NewsHour with Jim Lehrer online.
Of course, fellow lawyers are also great sources for legal news, especially if they blog. Here are two examples. One covers the U.S. Supreme Court and the other covers New Jersey law.
- SCOTUSblog. Commentary and news on the U.S. Supreme Court. From Goldstein & Howe, P.C.
- New Jersey Law Blog. Provides timely information on recently published court decisions, enacted legislation and news which impact businesses in New Jersey. From Stark & Stark.
Remember, if you can’t find a relevant RSS feed, you can always create it. I’ve just come across an even easier way to create RSS news feeds on Yahoo. Start from the Yahoo! Search page and enter your keywords. I entered “California Supreme Court.” The News Stories column on the left-hand side displays matching news stories. On the right-hand side, there is an Add your news search to My Yahoo link and button. Clicking on either will add the RSS feed to My Yahoo.