7 Awful, But Common, Excuses for Avoiding Live Video (Guest Post)

I can find a reason to NOT do almost anything if I turn my mind to it, and live video is no exception.

However, if you’re going to avoid such a powerful marketing tool in your practice, then at least come up with some decent excuses. The ones I’m hearing these days aren’t very good at all.

The truth is that live video is an amazing opportunity to connect with your current and future clients in a real, personal way. This is because people get to see a bit of the real you. Done right, it build trust and confidence in you as a person and as a lawyer (not that the two are incompatible with each other…)

Here are my top 7 out of many bad reasons that lawyers want to stay away from live video.

It’s Not Professional

Let’s punch this one right in the face, because it’s the most common excuse I hear.

Normally it’s followed closely by me asking “what’s professional mean?”.

Often it turns out that “professional” in the mind of the other participant is a synonym for “high production value videos” which, of course, isn’t true. They think that every video needs to be a Spielberg blockbuster.

While the video-slash-movie approach for lawyers is coming along nicely, there are still a vast number of train wrecks out there produced by people who think that “professional” means a dull sound track, suit and tie, law books in the background, and an earnest discussion about “rights” and how they can go about protecting yours.

The problem is in the process. You hire a film crew, get big lights, and all of a sudden find yourself in a weirdly alien environment that you’re not comfortable in. In addition, a heap is riding on this because you’ve now invested a bucket of money into the process. As a result, many lawyers kind of freak out.

The resulting wooden, scared looking videos are rarely worth the money that was invested in them.

But at least they’re “professional”…

I Might Make a Mistake

If you replace “might” with “will” then this is completely accurate.

You are absolutely, 100% guaranteed to make a mistake in a live video at some point.

So what?

With a tiny amount of preparation, the chances that you’ll say anything so outlandish as to attract a barrage of abuse is fairly low.

The most likely risk is that nobody will tune in, or it will be a bit boring. If you can’t live with those risks then you’re probably in the wrong profession.

I’m Afraid of I Can’t Use the Tech

That’s because you haven’t tried.

I know this, because you could start a Facebook live video right now in about 9 seconds by clicking 2 buttons.

Given the vast amount of information you take in, digest and put out every single day the suggestion that you can’t get your head around something this basic is preposterous.

I Don’t have the Right Equipment

Yes you do. It’s probably in your pocket or your hand right now.

If you want to invest $10k into gear then go for it, but don’t suggest that you can’t get started right now just because you haven’t written the cheque yet.

The great thing about live video is that people (at the moment) have fairly low expectations about how fancy the video needs to look and sound, so the quality you get from your phone is usually fine.

I Have Nothing Interesting to Say

This is a bit of a furfy.

What do you say to clients when they first see you?

What are the most common question you’re asked?

And even outside the law, do you have a life? Hobbies? Experiences? Travels?

You’ve definitely got things to say that matter to your people, either at a technical level or in a human way.

And who are you to judge, anyway? It’s up to your audience to tell you what they care about, and if you’ve had just 1 client in your life then you already know at least a little bit what made them tick.

Joe tried it and it went badly

That’s tough for Joe.

But you know, Jane got disbarred and can’t practice anymore, but that didn’t stop you turning up today did it?

And Bob wrote a great article once that nobody read, but you still produce that newsletter, don’t you?

If you’re looking for failure stories, then there are plenty to go around.

Success is seen by those that turn up – day in, day out. If you don’t turn up then you’ll avoid the chance of failure, but you’ll also avoid the chance of success.

I’m Embarrassed How I Might Look/Sound on Video

Nobody ever says this, but often it’s what they mean.

I promise you that you’ll HATE the way you look and sound for a while, and that feeling doesn’t really go away completely.

Yes – seeing yourself on video is weird.

But so was the first day you turned up to work as a lawyer. You got over that, right?

So Where to From Here?

Most strategies fail because they’re not acted on.

If you’ve ever even considered doing live video, then start – NOW. I mean it.

Literally the moment you stop reading this article, do the steps I’ve suggested below and share the result with Mitch Jackson and I on social media. And if you want to take it further and get specific advice, feedback and know-how, then don’t forget to check out Mitch’s mastermind group here.

Here’s what to do:

1.  Pick 1 common question you’re asked by new or prospective clients;

2.  Get your phone and log in to your Facebook page or your Instagram profile;

3.  Click the buttons to start a live video;

4.  Say hello, tell them what you’re talking about, and talk about it;

5.  If you are lucky enough to get comments, then say hello to people and engage with them and their thoughts;

6.  End.

Then do it again. And again. And again. You’ll be happy that you did.


About Chris Hargreaves

Chris is an Australian lawyer and digital marketing consultant to law firms. He helps lawyers develop marketing strategies that they can actually execute and expect results from. He’s kind of tall and lanky and doesn’t have a good dress sense, but amazingly manages to function in life anyway.

Author: Mitch Jackson

I'm a California trial lawyer trying to fix the world one client, cause, and digital interaction at a time.

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