The Right Way to Do Law Firm Online Video Marketing

by Mike Mintz on October 18, 2011 · 1 comment

in martindale.com

Do you want your law firm website to capture more client leads? There is a simple way to engage with site visitors, provide valuable information, and establish your expertise and credibility all at once. Produce and post videos on your law firm website.

Law firm online video marketing is nothing new. For years lawyers have posted videos on their websites and YouTube, but an overwhelming majority of this content is promotional rather than educational. As video consumption online continues to grow and many users access sites from mobile devices, law firms that produce engaging, professional, and useful videos will find more value from their websites.

Law Firm Clients Watch Video Online

Here are a couple of statistics and one anecdote to consider:

  • YouTube boasts more than 13 million hours of video uploaded during 2010, 35 hours of video are uploaded every minute, and over 700 billion playbacks in 2010
  • Strategic Legal Marketing cited Lawyers.com statistics that a video on a lawyers profile page increases consumer emails by 127%, click throughs to the law firm website by 138%, and profile views and impressions by 169% and 175% on avergage.
  • A recent Law.com article about marketing attorneys through video cites the success of expert Adrian Dayton in “getting job offers because of video appearances, whereas none had appeared as a result of his copious blogging,” and that “Dayton said video might be a better tool than blogging for marketing attorneys,” because people get a feeling for whether they like the attorney or not.

These findings point to a great opportunity for law firms to market themselves using video content. With the costs of producing and hosting such content at an all-time-low (the equipment required to produce quality video is a few hundred dollars) and the sheer number of consumers watching videos online so high, it’s almost a no-brainer that law firms should be producing video.

So why aren’t more firms doing video?

Who’s Doing Online Law Firm Video Marketing Right?

For years lawyers have been notorious for producing awesomely bad videos that air on late night TV with exploding cars and promises of cash for injuries. Clients online want more than just a hard sell; they want to be empowered.

With close to 50 videos available for free on both YouTube and their website, the law firm of Allen Matkins is a leader in the field of law firm online video marketing. There are six best practices that I’ve seen the firm adhere to in creating a successful video marketing program.

Consistent Postings since starting their video production in late 2010, the firm has committed to posting at least 2 to 3 videos per month. Regular postings help your rank higher in search and give your clients a sense that you are a committed to producing video content. If you can create something engaging and informative you may even get them waiting for the next edition.

Focus on Client Issues – many law firms posting on YouTube and their websites focus on news about the firm. You can see in the early videos of Allen Matkins they also did this, but by 2011 the firm started to produce more videos that focused on client issues. For example in February 2011 the firm produced videos on challenges in commercial real estate, Say on Pay after the Dodd Frank Act, and California construction laws. By creating video content that addresses your client’s issues you create an opportunity for the client to educate themselves and call you for more information.

Keep It Short and Sweet – The video “Did it Pass? The Complexities of Shareholder Voting” demystifies the corporate process for anyone curious on the subject in under two and half minutes. Also, not once does the lawyer host induce viewers to call the firm. In fact, the only “marketing” plug is the lawyer’s name and contact information posted for about 4 seconds on screen at the end of the piece.

Distribute Freely and Encourage Sharing – “Wait a minute,” you say. “We’re producing informational videos, giving them away for free, and encouraging people to violate our distribution rights?” Yup. If your firm can produce videos that go viral (for good reasons) then not only do you reach a wider client base, but you become known as a trusted authority on that subject matter. Post your videos to YouTube, embed them on your website, and then encourage sharing with social buttons from Linkedin, Google+ and Facebook.

Execution: Professional Video – many of the segments on Allen Matkins’ site look like they were produced for a news show with slick editing, narration and voice over, and accompanying text. While you may be able to get away with a more informal approach for attorney bio videos, informational client videos should likely be produced with a little editing.

Video Content v. Written Content – Allen Matkins offers plenty of written content along with their video content. They seem to understand the needs for different user experiences by producing legal alerts and newsletters, a blog, and research along with their video offerings. Think about how using video will impact your user’s experience and what you would like them to get out of each offering on your site.

For additional best practices in creating a great collection of law firm online video marketing assets check out Larry Bodine’s article “Using Video in Law Firm Marketing to Generate New Business.”

Three Quick Tips for Law Firm Online Video Marketing

There’s a lot to be learned from a firm like Allen Matkins.  In addition to the best practices above, the following quick tips will help you get started to building the kinds of videos discussed above:

  1. Brainstorm, plan, and script your content – rather than making one off videos, have a fleshed out plan with some creative ideas about how you will make a video empire over time
  2. Create a mix of professional and “home grown” video – understand that home grown video, i.e., simple, unedited materials may work depending on the subject matter and intention of the video. As you experiment, home grown may be the way to go just to get you started.
  3. Enlighten and delight your audience – steer clear from blatant self-promotion and talking about your firm. It was said above, but bears repeating: clients will be more interested to see you talk about their issues with authority, suggesting a solution than to hear you talk about how great your firm is.

What law firms do you see doing interesting things in the online video marketing space, and what are they doing right?

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LexisNexis Employees
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