Is it Time for Video?

Clear & Convincing Feature Article

Lawyers Are Great Sources of Referrals

Do consumers hire the lawyer or the law firm?

Clients will tell you they hire the lawyer, not the law firm. If this is true, the primary goal of marketing should be presenting the firm’s lawyers in the best possible way. Using video on your website captures attorneys in action, showing prospective clients the service they will receive from that lawyer.

Are videos popular?

A 2014 Pew Research Center study of online adults found that 77  percent of Internet users are on Facebook and 63  percent use YouTube. Although YouTube has a smaller reach than Facebook, it is more widely used than LinkedIn (25  percent), Google Plus (24  percent) and Twitter (21 percent).

YouTube says 100 hours of video are uploaded to its site every minute. Video engages viewers, boosts your Google rankings, helps create trust in your firm, showcases individual attorneys, and attracts clients. Video can deliver complex information simply and authoritatively.

There are four types of video you might include:

About Our Firm. These videos showcase the employees. Feature each lawyer talking about their areas of practice and introduce the staff, who are the first people clients meet. Explain where to park, and talk about how lawyers work with clients—how they communicate with them with regard to their legal matter and billing, for example.

FAQ .   About one third of YouTube searches are for questions related content, meaning a video addressing frequently asked questions is a great strategy for your website. Answer the same general questions you get on a regular basis in person, and remember to give information, not advice.

Testimonials. While having you and your partners on video can help build trust, consider having client testimonials as well. Testimonials can help prospective clients see how real people were helped by you and your firm.

Webinars. Record speaking engagements and presentations and upload them to YouTube. Offer them as webinars on your site. Educational webinars help build your firm’s online reputation .

Video is an online social medium, which means you must:

  • Keep the videos short—preferably 90 seconds to three minutes, and no more than five minutes for complex information.
  • Publish frequently.
  • Tag content.
  • Share your videos through social media, monthly e-mails, and your SBM member directory profile page.

Create a video strategy. Before producing videos, view other marketing videos other entities have put online. You ’ll see the mistakes to avoid, such as videos that are too long, feature unnatural delivery, or have bad sound or light quality. Keep it simple— this is online video, not a feature film.

Because lawyers have ethical rules, check with the Michigan Rules of Professional Conduct or call the SBM Helpline at (877) 558-4760 before you start. Next, set aside a day for a videographer to shoot your videos . Shoot multiple videos on that day.

Finally, measure results. You can measure views, referrals, and the number of times the videos are shared. Knowing this information helps you learn what works for you.

Roberta GubbinsRoberta Gubbins has served as the editor of the Ingham County Legal News. Since leaving the paper, she provides services as a ghostwriter editing articles, blogs, and e-blasts for lawyers and law firms. She is the editor of The Mentor, SBM Master Lawyers Section newsletter.

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