The ACC Docket does well — wins awards every year, tops the list of publications for in-house counsel, and adds great membership benefit. I can’t tell you how many times I was approached by a member at the Annual Meeting last year in LA and told how great the Docket is. While the staff works extremely hard on every issue, it’s fair to say that the publication’s success wouldn’t be possible without the in-house (and firm) counsel who contribute to it. We’d love to take credit, but, really, you make the Docket, the DOCKET.
With that in mind –– and realizing that we can always do better –– we conduct a Readership Survey every few years. In the survey, we ask members like you to let us know what we’re doing right and not-so-right, as well as what can be improved and what types of things they would like to see in the magazine moving forward. The survey always holds a few surprises for me; I’ll share a few of them here.
1. You need coverage on a global scale, and some areas require more focus than others in today’s legal landscape.
Fifty-four percent of respondents want to see cross-borders issues addressed in the Docket, while 50 percent would also like to see articles on doing business in Canada, Asia, Latin America, South America, Australia, India, South America and New Zealand. We’re getting there: June is our Cross Borders issue, and you can find Canada, Asia and Latin American topics of interest explored in our Briefings newsletters included in each Docket issue.
2. You really like our columns.
While all of our columns are read regularly, according to the survey, the most read column is Jim Notz “Business Ethics,” which just inched out Bill Mordan’s “Career Path” – a member favorite.
3. You don’t just throw the Docket away after you read it!
Of those surveyed, 54 percent used an article for future reference, and 45 percent saved one or more issues. We love that!
4. The gap is closing: more of you are open to the Digital Docket.
While 60 percent of you would choose the print version of the Docket (if you had to make a choice between the two), 40 percent would prefer to only receive the Digital Docket. This is up 7 percent from the 2011 survey.
5. Not enough of you know about the exclusive content offered online.
Only 36 percent of those surveyed realized that there is online-only content available on the Docket website. With the launch of the January/February 2014 issue, we started including this content. These articles are created exclusively for the website, offering timely information in a shorter format. Hopefully this is appealing to you, as the survey also indicated that the majority of you prefer accessing content from you computer (64%) or iPad (22%).
In general, the survey let us know that you are pretty happy with the ACC Docket. I’ve been working on the Docket staff for over seven years, and I have seen the magazine grow and change in wonderful ways during that time: We increased our print content, created a digital version and app, redesigned the look of the magazine, increased our global coverage, and launched exclusive content for the web. In my current role as editor in chief, I can promise you that we are by no means done growing and improving. To start, we will expand our global coverage and increase our online content, while continuing to deliver the hands-on articles that help you do your job better.
I want to thank the more than 1,500 people who took the time to complete this year’s Readership Survey. We really appreciate your input and plan to use it to improve your magazine. If you didn’t have a chance to voice your opinion and would like to do so, please send me an email at Alexander@acc.com — I’d love to hear from you. Also, be sure to visit acc.com/docket to download the digital version of May’s Litigation issue, and check out the online exclusive content I just told you about.