April 2010 Archives

April 14, 2010

Mobility Gaining Momentum

These days, when I speak about practice issues to lawyers, I'm often asked to comment on trends for social media and legal marketing.  In my mind, the future points in the direction of increased mobility, and concomitantly, mobile marketing.  In fact, just a few months back, I posted about bullish projections for mobility (as well as tips on how to market on mobile media) and since then, it seems that mobile media is gaining even more momentum.

Consider these numbers.  According to ClickZ.com, Apple's App store revenues are expected to grow from $4.2 billion in 2009 to $29.5 billion in 2013, with mobile advertising predicted to increase to $914 million.  Meanwhile, Android, iPhone, and iPod touch users are averaging a whopping 79 to 80 minutes per day engaged with apps.  Moreover, demand for apps is on the rise, with companies turning to sites like Elance to hire new developers.  And with the recent ipad launch, app demand will likely increase even further.

So who's spending all that time on mobile phones?  As a noted previously, mobile media is more popular with some groups than others.  In addition, it's important to understand not just the demographics of usage, but the purpose for which certain categories of users employ mobile media.

Fortunately, there's some new research data available.  According to Drop Ship Access, women are more likely to purchase from a cell phone, which suggests that they might be receptive to buying legal services through a mobile platform.  On the other hand, men tend to use phones to comparison shop - which means, they'd likely spend time reviewing lawyers' websites and credentials on their phones.

The most surprising statistic to me related to seniors:  Seniors (82%) are much more likely than the traditional user (64%) to use their mobile phones to educate themselves.  With that in mind, lawyers who target senior clients might want to be sure to deliver education based materials, like blog content or produce articles that render quickly on mobile devices.

Bottom line:  it may be time for lawyers to start moving towards mobility when it comes to marketing.
April 12, 2010

Create a FREE Video for Your Website

If you've always wanted to create a video to market your law practice but were deterred by cost, you're in luck!  Courtesy of Google (as well as marketing guru Larry Bodine, who passed the tip along), you can put together a nifty "search stories video" for your practice that mimics the style of Google's inaugural Super Bowl Ad.  A couple of my colleagues have already taken the service out for a test drive, with outstanding results, depicted below (for my own attempt, visit here):


Victor Medina

Robert Kraft

Using Google's search stories video is just one part of the marketing lesson for this post.  Consider this second idea.  Look at how effectively Google is branding itself with these free videos.  Everyone who puts one together and posts it on a site effectively provides another little bit of free advertising to Google (not that they need it!).  Well, what if you could create some type of branded tool that visitors to your website or law firm clients might use and share with others.  For example, if you represent small businesses, you might create an online business plan - users could fill in a form and generate a business plan, with your firm logo displayed on the back page.  Or if you handle adoption cases or estate planning for families with young children, consider creating an online "annual report" for a child, where users could fill out an online form with their children's major accomplishments and generate an attractive mini-report that they could share with relatives.  You could even consider developing an app for a phone that's branded with your law firm that potential clients might use.

Most likely, you probably don't have the tech skills to develop this kind of a generator.  Not to worry.  Turns out that there's enormous demand on sites like Elance for app developers - and you could likely find someone who's relatively inexpensive.  If the costs still seem prohibitive, why not team up with a couple of lawyers in other jurisdictions and share the costs?

Of course, if you don't feel ambitious enough to commission your own online application, Google search stories videos are impressive enough.