Introduce Yourself to Prospective Clients — by Video.
Internet video is one of the most promising, innovative and powerful advertising methods available for attorneys who are seeking opportunities to meet new clients.
Why is video so effective?
Most people would rather see and hear an attorney rather than read about one. A professionally produced video creates an emotional bond and allows prospective clients to “meet” you before making a decision to hire an attorney. Studies show that people will, on average, check out five attorney websites before making a decision to call or hire an attorney. The number drops to only two websites when the websites feature video.
The big difference is video’s ability to deliver what advertisers call a “lean forward” experience versus the traditional TV experience that is considered a “lean back” experience. This is why so many TV commercials are loud and annoying: The audience is disengaged, leaning back in an easy chair, thinking about something else so the advertiser has to hit them over the head with a message.
On the Internet, video viewing is much different. The person choosing to watch your video is engaged and actively seeking a lawyer. The prospective client is “leaning forward” and listening to every word. Therefore, it’s very important that the lawyer come across as knowledgeable, believable and trustworthy. Just as a website visitor judges the credibility of a website in less than five seconds, an online video viewer will judge the credibility of a lawyer in an instant. If the video is not high quality or does not convey the right message, the viewer will leave.
Video Improves Conversion and Increases Visitors
In terms of performance, video does two things: (1) It greatly improves conversion (the number of people who actually contact you from your website) and (2), thanks to video optimization, video increases the number of total visitors to your site.
For clients who add video, we see an average increase in contacts (e-mails and calls) of 22 percent. Other metrics like “time on site” and “page views” also increase with the addition of video. We have also seen that overall traffic increases by 19 percent after video has been added to a website.The metrics are backed up by anecdotal evidence from my clients, who have seen an appreciable increase in contacts after adding video. More importantly, many of my clients were struck by the number of their new clients who talk about the video and insist it was the major reason for making the initial appointment.
Video Harnesses the Reach of Google and YouTube
In a continuing effort to improve the search experience for its users, Google unveiled the concept of “universal search” in 2007. The universal search system blends listings from its news, images, local and video search engines among those it gathers from crawling web pages. Google’s goal is to provide a much more robust and diverse search result that would include not only websites but also images, book results and, of course, video. You can see this already making a difference in legal marketing.
YouTube is now getting 100 million unique visitors a month, making it the second largest search engine after Google. Google’s purchase of YouTube in 2006 for $1.5 billion makes it a certainty that the impact of video on search will continue to grow. There is speculation that Google is developing technology that would allow them to index the “spoken word” as they have the written word, making online video an essential medium in the not-so-distant future.
Quality Does Matter
If you choose to do video –, make sure you do it well. Remember, the video is the first chance to sell yourself to an already qualified visitor. The bottom line is that you need to make sure the production quality is commensurate with the quality of your firm. You also want to be sure that you are prepared for the video shoot. Have a plan and basic script worked out before the video crew gets to your office. I think that a documentary style works best so make sure you have your entire office prepared for the day of the shoot and have the crew shoot plenty of B-roll footage. Finally, keep your answers short and to the point. Each video should not be more than a minute and a half.