The Brief No. 33: Growth Management

 
 
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April 3, 2019

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When resources are slim, quality marketing can seem like a distant luxury. Still, for small companies to achieve growth, it’s essential to implement effective marketing strategies and reach your audience with your best foot forward. That’s why this week, we’re sharing 3 Marketing Tips for Small Law Firms, and helping you compete with BigLaw without sacrificing what matters.

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Fill-In the ___: In impressive yet potentially unsettling tech news, AI continues to close the gap between itself and human mental processes. Developing neural networks are expediting the progress of AI and machine-learning. In a recent cognitive test employing the principles of Gestalt psychology, the artificial neural network behaved similarly to human subjects in inferring incomplete data sets. Machine-learning is also advancing facial recognition technology, with neural networks becoming more discerning of distinct features over time. With these advances, AI pioneers are gaining recognition. Three early developers earned the ACM Turing Award, widely regarded as the highest honor in computer sciences.

Regulators—Mount Up: In an effort to further increase their reach into the wallets and minds of the public, Apple announced a new titanium credit card, available this summer. The “Apple Card” boasts a sleek design, zero fees, and tight security. While critics label Apple Card’s benefits as average at best, some suggest that the card will find success as an “everyman credit card” with its low barrier to entry. With many watching to see whether the credit card market will fall under Apple’s spell, others are closely monitoring how Apple will adjust to operating within a federally regulated industry.

Lawsuits Springing Up Like… Last Wednesday, a San Francisco jury ordered Bayer to pay $80 million in damages for carcinogenic effects of their Roundup weed killer after a 70-year old man, who had used the product for decades, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The jury’s decision is the second against Roundup manufacturer Monsanto, now facing a string of upcoming lawsuits in connection with cancer diagnoses. Despite defeats in the court of law and public opinion, Bayer maintains its defense of the safety of its product, citing “four decades of extensive science.”

I’m the Captain Now: Amidst a slew of scandals surrounding company practices, CEO Tim Sloan announced last week that he would be retiring in June. While Wells Fargo works to replace Sloan, general counsel C. Allen Parker will immediately serve as interim CEO. Speculations abound about who will take the reins, but most believe the financial services company will be seriously considering candidates outside the ranks of Wells Fargo.

If You Build It, Who Will Come? 50 women filed a lawsuit against Salesforce claiming the software company “facilitated ‘sex traffiThe Back to Work podcast is led by hosts Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin. Each week, the two discuss the latest in “productivity, communication, work, barriers, constraints, tools, and more.” Check out the latest episode, The Elephant in the Sword, where Mann and Benjamin tackle Theranos, Apples Services event, and whatever else happens to come up.cking, negligence, and conspiracy’” in its relationship with Backpage.com, further raising a current and hotly debated issue: Are technology companies responsible for the content that is created with their tools or displayed on their platforms? U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson seems to think so. In a letter, he urged tech executives to remove violent content in response to the recent mass shooting in New Zealand. Microsoft President Brad Smith agrees, and also encouraged technology companies to increase efforts to monitor the dissemination of violent materials.

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The Back to Work podcast is led by hosts Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin. Each week, the two discuss the latest in “productivity, communication, work, barriers, constraints, tools, and more.” Check out the latest episode, The Elephant in the Sword, where Mann and Benjamin tackle Theranos, Apples Services event, and whatever else happens to come up.

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