Legal PR blog

Law firm of the week – Stewarts Law takes on Tesco

Second major institutional target for London and Leeds-based firm secures PR coup as Stewarts pins hopes on supermarket investor action.

Stewarts Law’s website features a slogan in which it claims to be the largest litigation only law firm in the UK. Knowing that actions shouldn’t be divorced from words when positioning a business, the firm has truly nailed its flag to the mast in announcing its latest target this week.

Stewarts revealed it is preparing an action against Britain’s biggest retailer Tesco, to claim compensation for financial losses suffered after the supermarket giant admitted overstating first-half profits by £263m. This is the second time it has ventured into a case against a major institution, with its ongoing action against the Royal Bank of Scotland a notable mention in much of the week’s media coverage.

Stewarts Law announced it was taking on supermarket giant Tesco on behalf of disgruntled investors this week. Unsurprisingly, news of the case quickly spread across national and trade publications as well as international markets.
Stewarts Law announced it was taking on supermarket giant Tesco on behalf of disgruntled investors this week. Unsurprisingly, news of the case quickly spread across national and trade publications as well as international markets.

As much as people and businesses in Britain are naturally interested in what’s happening with one of nation’s biggest retailers, the announcement is actually a great reflection of how Stewarts Law is using PR to create awareness and showcase the firm’s expertise and speciality practice area.

The firm secured at least 45 mentions across online publications alone in the week following its announcement, with coverage achieved in national papers that have strong online circulations. Some evidence points to Stewarts’ PR team arranging an exclusive with The Independent, with deputy business editor Jim Armitage writing considerably more information than the press release on firm’s website. The Indy coverage had more details about the case and a longer quote from the leading partner for the case, Sean Upson.

Arguably the best piece of coverage for the story appeared on The Guardian website. With an online circulation of nearly 85 million the site is a key target publication for claimant law firms and Stewarts Law is mentioned in the sub-heading as well as the body copy enhancing its brand on search and taking advantage of the typical six second attention span of the average scan-reader with this single piece of PR.

Although mainstream media attention is always the priority for brands like Stewarts, the trade media should not be ignored and the firm’s announcement was featured across sites including The Lawyer, Legal Business and Law Society Gazette.

Their combined circulation may be negligible compared to national press, but profile within the industry is essential for firms looking to cement their reputations and differentiate from competitors.

Social media also appears to have formed a strong component of Stewarts’ PR strategy in announcing the Tesco plan. In this case, the firm released the story via twitter and kept tracking coverage by retweeting mentions by others. The story generated a relatively modest number of shares (36 tweets from the Guardian story at time of writing) which may indicate more clearly the true appetite from readers about this story (online circulation figures look nice for equivalent advertising value, but cannot be taken on face value); nevertheless the firm should be buoyed by its week in the headlines.

Christina Savage Post by: Christina Savage / Website: http://rtsmedia.co.uk
With a strong network of media contacts and in-depth knowledge of professional services, Christina advises a range of businesses and law firms on media and business development initiatives.