With an unhealthy mixture of surprise, embarrassment and pride (emphasis on surprise, I think) we can announce that the Renaissance Chambers Immigration Team has been shortlisted for the Award for Innovation – The Bar at the Halsbury Legal Awards 2013. Congratulations for the slightly more respectable UK Human Rights Blog for being shortlisted in the Legal Journalism category. The winners are announced on 8 May 2013. There’s a ceremony and everything.
Friends of Renaissance will know that we are a cutting edge, shiny, modern… OK, I don’t think I can keep that up. But we have been trying new means of reaching out to existing and potential future clients and we have, we hope, met with a certain amount of success.
A slightly edited version of our rather cringeworthy entry submission is reproduced below. We are particularly pleased with our use of the word ‘interface’, which we think may be the real reason for being shortlisted.
The Renaissance Chambers Immigration team is one of the UK’s leading teams of immigration law barristers. It is ranked by Chambers and Partners 2013 as a leading set in the field, and the team’s use of social media has helped it raise its game. The depth and breadth of Chambers’ work has been communicated to potential clients and fellow immigration law specialists through the use of the Free Movement immigration law blog, two twitter accounts and a recently launched website dedicated to public access clients.
The interface through which businesses operate and people communicate is constantly evolving, and innovation is key. Renaissance Chambers is proud to be a set at the forefront of that change and has welcomed the opportunity to engage with clients in new and innovative ways.
The team’s Free Movement blog had over 722,000 visitors in 2012. With 1,700 subscribers to the daily email updates generated by its articles, the blog is a unique portal for those interested in immigration law, enabling both solicitors and potential lay clients to obtain the most current and topical information about this vast and rapidly changing area of law. Through the blog, the achievements and successes of members of the Renaissance team are circulated and the reputation the blog has for quick, sharp commentary has given Renaissance Chambers a name for being on the ball and rapid at responding to the increasingly impenetrable changes in immigration legislation and case law. The blog has recently been adapted to a downloadable format which is readable on kindle, enabling subscribers to absorb their daily dose of legal updates whilst on the go.
The team’s reputation for being on the pulse regarding developments in immigration law is furthered by the blog’s @freemvntblog Twitter account which attract 2,000 followers and the Renaissance Immigration Barristers @RIGBarristers Twitter account which regularly updates followers on the legal achievements of the team.
In recent months, the team has also substantially expanded the number of practitioners who are able to undertake Public Access work. Eleven of the eighteen members of the team are now able to take instructions direct from members of the public. Aware of the need to establish a visible presence to attract potential lay clients, the team has recently established a website specifically aimed at that newer clientele. Renaissance Chambers Direct is a clean and simple, fully responsible website (iPad, iPhone, Android) that gives potential clients the tools they need to carry out the basic steps in making immigration applications. For further advice or help, we are simply a click away.
The use of new communication tools and the sector-wide recognition that the team’s output receives has enabled Renaissance Chambers to broaden its client base, demonstrating the team’s expertise.