JDB 111: Tools of the Trade – Amazing Teleprompter App for Video Marketing

promptsmart jdblogger

Today’s tool of the trade is Prompt Smart.  If you have built up the courage to start creating videos as a part of your law firm’s content marketing plan then you no doubt have suffered through the starts and stops and complete screw ups as you try and get the words out.

This leads to time-consuming multiple takes and makes editing the video that much more difficult.  I thought that purchasing a teleprompter would solve my problem however I quickly became discouraged when I jumped on Amazon and saw how expensive the typical teleprompter was.

Then I came up on a teleprompter app that would work with my iPad – Prompt Smart.  Prompt Smart is a voice guided teleprompter app that follows along at as you speak the words appearing on the screen.  This is one of those few products out there that simply works.  No matter how slow or fast I speak the words the Prompt Smart app keeps pace and keeps me on track.

I create videos out of my written blog articles by uploading the text file right into the Prompt Smart app, record the video, do some minor edits, and it is ready for YouTube.  This app will cut your video production time in half.  And if you are a little apprehensive about getting in front of the camera this will make the process quite a bit easier.

Teleprompter

While you could very easily prop up your iPad and read the text directly off of it, another inexpensive tool I found was this handy teleprompter that will hold the iPad (it also holds my iPhone 6 Plus just fine) and will reflect the words on your iPad up onto a piece of glass for you to read off of.

It also has a platform behind the glass to set your camera up so you can look directly into the camera as you are reading the text. Click on the picture below to get more information (affiliate link):

 

Do You Have a “Tool of the Trade” You Would Like to Share?

Tools of the Trade JDBloggerDo you have a tool that you use in the marketing or management of your law practice that would be helpful to the JDBlogger community?  Shoot me an email at john@jdblogger.com or hit me up on twitter @JohnSkiba and we might be able to get it on the show!

JDB 110: Dan Jaffe, CEO of Lawlytics – Take Control of Your Law Firm Marketing

Dan Jaffe, CEO JDBlogger Lawlytics

Today on the show I had the great opportunity to interview the CEO of Lawlytics Dan Jaffe.  Dan co-founded Lawlytics with the goal of creating a service that would allow attorneys to have a world class web presence and participate as much, or as little, as they wanted, help them avoid mistakes, increase their bottom lines, and adapt with them through all phases of their law firm’s lifecycle.

Prior to staring Lawlytics Dan was a practicing lawyer in both Washington and Arizona for over 10 years during which time he handled over 100 trials.  Jaffe’s real world experience as a lawyer and expertise in the fields of legal marketing and website design make this a particularly valuable episode for the attorney looking to take back control from the high dollar SEO companies and create a more intentional online presence.

Recently I read an article where Dan presented the argument that there is a lot of predatory behavior in area of law firm marketing – much of which occurs because lawyers are busy practicing law and often don’t have the time to invest in educating themselves on the tools and tactics that will actually drive new business to their law firm.

In today’s episode we will discuss:

  • Dan’s background and how he transitioned out of the law and into legal tech.
  • Whether a law firm blog should be part of the law firm’s website or a stand alone platform.
  • What types of strategies are most effective for law firm’s with an existing web presence.
  • Advice for law students and how they can begin building their online platform now.

Learn more about Lawlytics and Dan Jaffe by clicking HERE.

JDB 109: Tools of the Trade – Incorporating Live Chat into your Law Firm Website

Tools of the Trade JDBlogger

A big part of what I really enjoy about running a law firm is all of the new technology that is designed to help law firm owners run and market their law practices more effectively.  For those of you have have been with the JDBlogger Podcast from the beginning you will likely recall that I used to include in each new episode a segment called “Tools of the Trade”.  That segment was dedicated to providing information and tips on technology, apps, software, etc. that I had come across or that I had implemented into my law practice that I thought would be helpful to share.

I really enjoy talking about all of the new gadgets and have decided to release a “mini” episode each Thursday that will discuss a new Tool of the Trade that you can use to make running your law firm more efficient and hopefully more enjoyable.

These episodes will be shorter – usually running about 5- 10 minutes.  Leave me some feedback and let me know what you think of these shorter episodes and please, if you have a tool you would like to share let me know about it and maybe we can do an episode on it.

This Week’s Tool of the Trade – Ngage Live Chat

This week I am spotlighting Ngage Live Chat.  I have never incorporated a live chat feature into my law firm website before because I was always concerned with having too many pop-ups or other distractions from the content on my site.  However, I spoke to a few attorneys who told me that the live chat had converted well and I should hat least give it a try.

Recently I signed up with Ngage Live Chat to provide the live chat services to my site.  It was super easy to set up – only requiring a small bit of code that Tom Paci of Ngage emailed over to me and in a matter of hours it was up and running.

Here is a screen shot of how it looks on my website:

 

JDBlogger Ngage Live Chat

 

When the potential client clicks on the “Live Chat” icon an operator comes on an “engages” with the client to obtain information about them, including their city, name, telephone number, and email address.  I have noticed that they are careful to not provide any type of advice to the potential client with the goal being to get them to contact that attorney.

After the chat session is complete I get an email that provide all of the collected contact information as well as a transcript of the chat the operator had with the potential client.  Then I can have my assistant reach out and set up the appointment.

I was skeptical if this feature would actually be of much benefit but was pleasantly surprised that within the first 48 hours I had approximately 20 people use the chat feature. Many of these people were not from the state of Arizona so I wasn’t charged for the use.  Not only that, I called up Tom and talked to him about the issue of receiving non-Arizona leads and he was able to adjust the settings so as to restrict the “live chat” feature to those websites with an I.P. address in my geographic area.

On of the great features Ngage offers is you only pay for the quality leads that you receive.  For example, I practice bankruptcy law in Arizona.  If someone clicks on the chat button to talk about bankruptcy but they live in California, then I can request that I not be charged for that particular lead as it is outside my geographic area.  This was a big deal to me because I didn’t want to be charged for leads that had no chance of turning into paying business.

So far I am happy with Ngage from the actual product to their customer service.  I recommend giving it a shot, even if you have been skeptical about live chat I think it provides another opportunity to engage with a potential client and increases the number of opportunities to convert business.

I have been working with Tom Paci at Ngage.  You can reach him at tpaci@ngagelive.com or at (512) 931-4501.

JDB 108: How to Drive Traffic to Your Law Firm Website with Video with Jonathan Ginsberg

Drive Traffic to You Law FirmWebsite JDBlogger

 

For sometime now I have been talking about the benefits of incorporating video into your overall law firm content marketing strategy. And while I have dabbled in video I recently became aware of the YouTube channels created by attorney Jonathan Ginsberg.

Jonathan is a bankruptcy and Social Security disability attorney in Atlanta, Georgia. He starting creating videos to market his practice 2010 and currently his law firm YouTube channel has more than 1,700 subscribers and his videos have been viewed more than 500,000 times.

In this episode Jonathan walks you through his video creation process, including discussing:

  • How to choose the right type of video camera without breaking the bank.
  • The importance of good sound and a good microphone
  • Lighting for your video
  • Editing software
  • The pros and cons of using a teleprompter
  • How to choose interesting topics
  • Video editing and production
  • How to distribute your videos via social media and why you need to upload your videos to Facebook
  • Why you should look into other video platforms like Vimeo, Wistia, Brightcover, and Amazon.

If you have been on the fence about video creation this is a “must-listen” to episode to get you motivated to start  using this very powerful tool for your law practice.

Resources Mentioned in this Episode

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JDB 107: The New Legal Consumer – #Lawyernomics 2016

Lawyernomics JDBlogger

The hallmark of Avvo’s Lawyernomics Conference this year was the substantial amount of law practice data provided by the speakers.

The second day of the conference kicked off with an excellent talk by Avvo founder Mark Britton on Adapting to the New Legal Consumer.  The relative ease of access to information, forms, and case law by consumers has changed the way in which people solve their legal problems – often foregoing the hiring of an attorney and instead opting to do-it-themselves.

Some interesting data provided by Mr. Britton:

  • 59% of people are going online to resolve their legal issues
  • 56% of people want to speak with a lawyer but in the end what to deal with the legal issue themselves

Often I think the assumption is that DIY legal crowd takes on their own case because they lack the funds to hire a lawyer.  However what this Avvo study demonstrates is that while money is likely an issue for some consumers there remains a large body of consumers who simply want to retain control of their case.

The study also demonstrates though that consumers, while seemingly very comfortable in trying to resolve their legal issue on their own still want access to attorney as a guide if the going gets rough.

Attract Clients Through On-Demand Services

And when they say they want access – they want it now.  Mr. Britton argued that lawyers must be more responsive and adaptable to consumers who want immediate answers.  The days of letting emails and phone calls go unanswered are over – at least for those attorneys who wish to remain competitive.

To this end he advised lawyers to build their own “on-demand” systems that will allow them to conform to the client’s expectation of a near-immediate response.  Here are a few of Mr. Britton’s suggestions:

  • Creation of a structured intake and response system
  • Making sure you have someone who can respond immediately to client questions/concerns – possibly an “on-demand manager”
  • Use CRM Software (Salesforce, Constant contact, Ignite, Unsightly, Zoho)
  • Offer contact options, i.e. phone, text, firm representative, chat, intake forms, online calendaring, etc.

Mr. Britton’s talk was followed up with additional data from Nischal Pathantia, Avvo’s group product manager.  He provided some interesting statistics:

  • 80% of people who have a legal issue do not hire an attorney
  • 59% are choosing to do it themselves
  • 77% of consumers say that lawyers are too expensive
  • 42% end up needing a lawyer’s assistance

Much of the morning’s talks lead to a discussion by the Avvo employees on the new legal services offered by Avvo, including their new forms that are being offered for free to consumers.

I have spotlighted the Avvo Legal Services before and have taken the position that even though many lawyers are skeptical, I believe Avvo Legal Services are something that could benefit the consumer and the attorney a like.  While Avvo is brining in the client through its website the actual legal work is being performed by independent attorneys who have opted in to Avvo’s system to be a legal service provided.

However, one down side to this new offering is that the legal services are set at fixed flat rates.  While I know consumers appreciate a fixed fee – I offer them in my law practice as well – what Avvo has done is effectively set the default rate for basic legal services nationwide.

Avvo offers a uncontested divorce for the flat fee of $995.  Local practitioners who provide representation to non-Avvo clients in uncontested divorces will now be hard pressed to charge more than $995 – even when the amount of work would warrant a higher legal fee.  Avvo’s setting of fees on a nation-wide basis for its legal services may inadvertently cause a race to the bottom when it comes to practitioners trying to keep their prices competitive to the services offered through Avvo’s contract attorneys.

Resources Mentioned in this Episode

 

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