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Webinar: Sharing Videos for Your Law Firm Website

YouTube has an audience you just can’t ignore – more than 1 billion unique viewers every month. Becoming a part of the video world sounds scarier than it is. In this month’s webinar you will learn the basics of video blogging and get a step-by-step guide to start making quick, informative videos for your law firm.

Download the full presentation and check out the useful links below.

Webinar Translation

Hello everyone. Happy Thursday. I am going to start in a few minutes, a few seconds here. It looks like we have everybody with us.

So, my name is Allison. I am the content editor at PaperStreet. My main responsibility is organizing and editing content for clients to get ready to add to their content management system and I also run the PaperStreet blog and all of our social media sites.

So, in the last few weeks, we have had a lot of clients asking us about their videos, whether they should add them to the site, how they should add them to the site, what is the best way to do it. It just seems like a lot of work. It’s expensive. So, I am hoping to answer some of those questions and debunk some of those myths. I don’t think creating videos for your website is quite that scary. So, that’s my goal.

So, let’s go ahead and get started. Okay, so this is the goal for the webinar. You know, in the next 15 minutes or so, I hope to explain to you some best practices, give you a big list of topics and some places to start. We will go over the technical aspects of YouTube, actually uploading the video to your site and then getting that code that you can use to put it wherever you would like. That comes both in the form of a link and the embed code. And then, a step-by-step guide to get you started. It’s more of getting everybody on board and, you know, what the first step has to be for implementing some sort of agenda for getting videos to your site.

So, why is this important? YouTube attracts more than 1 billion visitors very month. So, this morning, I did a quick Wikipedia search and the United States has about 316 million people, according to Wikipedia. So, the fact that YouTube has a billion viewers a month, that is a lot of people. It’s an audience you can’t ignore.

So, I did some quick searches in YouTube yesterday, just typed in these fields some things that people might Google in YouTube. And, this is the stuff that came up here, DUI checkpoint refusal, DUI checkpoint. I got lawyer commercials when I typed in “lawyer” and then, again, for “attorney”. Attorney in Tampa, attorney in Roseville, attorney in Tampa, Florida. These are the kinds of search terms that you could be taking advantage of in YouTube. It just shows you that the search is there, the audience is there, the people are looking for these things. This is the automatic search, so you can see that just by me typing in A-T-T-O this is what popped up.

Rockland is actually a city in California and Roseville, there are actually three of them, California, Michigan, and Minnesota. And then when you click on these, when I go down and click attorney in Roseville, that’s what pops up. I get a commercial advertisement for an attorney in Michigan. So, you know, by uploading your videos here, I know sometimes it seems like a moot point, “Well, who is really going to watch my lawyer commercial or my lawyer video or my DUI question and answer?” But, the fact that these are popping up in the automated search, it proves that wrong. It is something that people are searching for.

So, this is my best practices list. I think the most important thing you want to do is establish a rhythm in your posting. We recommend posting once a month. But, if you are just starting out, it doesn’t have to be quite that frequent. But, I would set a plan and then stick with it. In establishing the rhythm, you know, the search engines, Google will come back to your site after a certain amount of time and you want to have the fresh content there for them to index.

We recommend YouTube at PaperStreet. It has more credibility, more page views, it has been around for longer. But, there are other alternatives. Vimeo is a really big one and they do the same features that YouTube does. So, you should use whatever you are comfortable with, but just know that YouTube has a much bigger audience. Vimeo, let me go back to the statistic, they had 135 million viewers in 2013. So, it is significantly less than YouTube, but they do the same thing. So, if your goal is just to get them on your site, it will be absolutely fine to use Vimeo.

Short and sweet. Your videos, they should definitely be under five minutes. But, sometimes, all you need is 60 seconds and that is totally fine. In fact, in one of the next slides, I have a big list of topic ideas and one of them actually is a ten-second shout out. So, they don’t need to be long by any means.

Optimize. You are going to want to make sure that you optimize the title and the video description for your targeted keywords. So, whether you have a campaign going or not, you are going to want to put your city and then what you are. So, it is either “Tampa lawyer”, “Tampa attorney”, “Tampa law firm”. You can add in there the practice area. You know, “Tampa personal injury”, “Tampa DUI lawyer”. You will want to use that both in the title and the description. It just helps people search. It makes the search a little more accurate.

Add relevant tags and categories. They will help people find your video. It gives YouTube a way to categorize your video, so that is important. If you are using YouTube, you have the option to connect the account with Google+. So, that whenever you add a video to your YouTube and it is done uploading, it actually automatically posts to your Google+ account. And that is really helpful because it leaves one less thing for you to do if it is already automatically uploading. So, that is something we would encourage you to do.

Branding. You want to make sure that you have the ability to change the artwork on your YouTube account. You can create a custom URL, you can link back to your website and other social media pages and you can also change the artwork and the photos. So, you want to make sure that you do all that to match the description of your other social media sites and your site. So, all of that branding should be consistent across every platform you have going on the web. All of that should be the same. It should be the same type of photo. It should be the same name, a similar description, and each one should link to the other one. So, YouTube is no exception to that.

Directing traffic. On the home page of your site, you know, most websites have the little button, the Facebook button, the Twitter button or Google+. If you have an active YouTube or Vimeo account, you will want to make sure that you have that button as well. That way you are cross-directing the traffic.

Okay. So, the mega topic list idea. I think all of these are great ideas and there are still so many more. But, I want to talk briefly about the ones in yellow. These are the ones that we have seen people have success with recently.

Did a local story make national news? Share your opinion on it. So, recently, there was a plane that diverted actually. It was going from Fort Lauderdale to New York and a woman on the plane, who was local to us in Fort Lauderdale, she was a Boca Raton woman, she got kicked off the plane because she caused a scene when the person in front of her, reclined his chair. And so, the next day, the story broke and it went national because it was kind of goofy and funny, and of course, a Boca person would be making a big scene and making someone emergency land the plane.

So, the next day I was actually with a colleague and we were doing a presentation and they were like, “We are thinking of doing a video on about this. Is there a legal claim there? You know, what are the laws for that? How do they determine when to stop the plane?” It was a genius idea and because it’s a local story that made national news, it is very possible that your video is going to get into some of those page views, those national Google searches. It is very valuable, so keep your eye out for that.

Answering questions directly from clients. I love this idea because it helps you in two manners. Its going to help your social media, but it also going to give you something to make a video about. So, I would recommend choosing whatever social media platform that is the most popular for you. So, for PaperStreet, it is our Twitter. We get the most engagement on our Twitter account.

So, on Twitter, I would send out a tweet that said, you know, “What do you want to ask a PaperStreeter? You have any wealth development questions? Any IPO questions? Content? Etcetera.” You know, and maybe I get two or three replies back or maybe I only get one. That’s fine. Then, I plop someone down in a chair, I record their video. I say, you know, I basically ask them the question and let them give me a candid answer.

So, the bonus with this is when you create the video, now you have uploaded it to YouTube, so you have everything you need. When you share it on your social media platforms you can then go back and tag the same person who asked the question. So, it is creating two engagements. One, they commented on your first original post. You got to post a video out of it and then, you got to post it back onto the Twitter again and tag the person in it. So, it is really beneficial from pretty much every Internet marketing standpoint, that strategy.

Recap any event with a slideshow of photos. So, your videos are a lot more intense, people aren’t as excited to be recorded as they are as willing as they may be to let you take a photo of them. So, there’s a lot of websites out there, third-party apps, that allow you to take a string of photographs and basically put them to music. It’s like a slideshow. So, it uploads like a video. So, it is something that you would still add to YouTube.

I did a quick search this morning, “turning photos into videos”. When it popped up, I got three different third-party apps, Animoto, Picovico, and Stupeflix. All where you can just upload your photos, you choose the track that you want to run, the music that you want, if you want any music and it spits you out a MP4 file. So, it is something that your could then upload. Then you have the video. If you office is kind of like, “Ur, I don’t really want you to record me. Is that really necessary?” take out your iPhone, take a few photos. You have, I would say, at least ten of them, you could be able to string them together in a 30 second clip.

Tape office involvement in charity events, conferences, speaking engagements. So, I am assuming that your law firm does things outside of the office. Maybe you do presentations in other offices or you do something as a group. Maybe you have a weekly or monthly event or you guys all dress up for Halloween or every year you run in, I don’t know, the breast cancer race. You know, whatever it is, stuff like that has a place on your website. It doesn’t all have to be topical. It doesn’t all have to be legal related.

I think there is a big benefit to showing, yes, you are lawyers, but you are also people too. And, this is what your office does when you are not in the office. So, this is what your office does, you know, extracurricular to your personal injury, DUI responsibilities. So, just keep it in mind, it doesn’t all have to be strictly legalese.

So, group shout out, ten seconds. This is a great idea I had in the middle of the night a few nights ago. It actually stems from something that happened at PaperStreet. We recently worked with a trophy company to make the silly trophies for the team and when we got it back it looked really great. It looked different than we thought, and they had done a really great job on it, so we were thinking that it would be wise to do a group shot shout out to the local company.

So, basically, what this involved is maybe you get a group of, I would say, probably six or more and just get them to all stand in the same general area and you will turn the video recording on and basically the group shouts out, “Thanks so much, PaperStreet,” or whatever it is. It could just be thank you or you’re awesome or we love working with you or anything like that. And it is goofy and it’s fun and it’s really easy. It doesn’t have to be long. Then again, this creates another opportunity for you to engage with social media. You can post it on the person’s wall. You can tweet it to them.

Plus, as a little side note, just a human element, you will probably make their day. So, these are just some ideas. I would love to hear if you have more or if you have some suggestions, some things that have worked really well for you. I would love to keep this list growing. So, please feel free to get in touch and share your ideas.

So, how do I make my videos? You have three options. You can go with the professionals, you can go with a soon-to-be professional, or you can do something in-house. I think all three are really valid options and I have seen all three done very successfully. You know, the professional, hiring a local videographer, is going to be the most expensive option, but it is also going to be the easiest. You know, they are going to tell you exactly what to do and you are just going to have to show up and look nice and do your spiel and that’s pretty much it. So, it is low maintenance, it is going to be a little more expensive.

Soon-to-be professional. It is going to be less expensive. It is a little more work because you have to find someone, but I really think the quality of the product is going to be just as good if not better than the professional.

I actually am working with a student at the local college newspaper here, a videographer, and she is actually going to record my wedding. And she was so excited to get the extra gig, to get the extra work and she is so passionate about it. So, I have only had good experiences working with local students. Whether you go through the newspaper or even maybe if you have someone who is just budding into industry, it’s a really good alternative if you don’t want to drop a bunch of money for a professional videographer.

And then, in-house. You can get your own tripod at Wal-Mart, Target, Best Buy, and you guys can do it just with your regular iPhone. You don’t need any sort of fancy equipment to record a video. You know, use the tripod, grab a friend, and you guys can stage an in-house video session. And you can do something outside, something in the office. It’s not beyond your capabilities.

But, that is more work because you are actually going to have to, you know, upload the data from the phone to a video program and then convert it. Which it sounds scarier than it is, I promise. If you ever get there, I would be more than happy to walk you through how to fully convert that to something that YouTube will accept.

So, strategies to try. This first one is our favorite. It is to schedule your shoot in one day. Bring in a bunch of different clothes that you can switch out. You know, so, for ladies, bring in a few different color blouses or a few different jackets. And, guys, bring in a few different shirts, a few different ties. You know, switch them out. You don’t want to do everything in the same shirt. It is going to be obvious then when you are posting it was all done at once.

Then you can record evergreen topics, which are topics that don’t go out of style. So, they are things that would not be current. And you can do everything in one day. You can do everything in a half-day. You can schedule it out with multiple people in the firm and just knock it all out in one session.

Another suggestion is to create a video host list. If you think that your audience would be more apt to listen to your comments on current events, obviously, that is something you can’t plan for. So, we seemed to have success with a host list. So, let’s say you create a list of five attorneys and this is the order they are going to be in. So, the next time a recent event happens and someone thinks it is a good idea to put a video up online, you know, whoever is next on deck, whoever comes next up on the list, it’s their turn. That kind of helps vary your audience. Obviously, it is different people each time, which is nice. And that way the main responsibility isn’t always on one person.

Then designate a person who is active at the firm to record in-house activities. I know at PaperStreet we have a few people who always have a camera in their hand. Maybe that’s just because we are creative people and that tends to be their forte. If you have someone in the office who just can’t seem to put their cellphone down, you know, tell them just to send you those random photos, to send you those random bits of video clips. You can store them and turn them into videos when you have time.

So, uploading to YouTube. YouTube is very user friendly and they make it pretty easy, you know, to get your videos online. But, basically, I am going to walk you through this. Sorry, I see that I added this fancy effect here and it kind of cut off what I was trying to show you. But, this is the main YouTube account. So, you want to log in first, which you do here with you name and your password. And then, this is the screen you see and then you just click “Upload”.

So after you click “Upload”, you get this fancy box and you just drop your files in there. You can either select here and the box will pop up and you can choose wherever it is that the file is or you can like drag and drop them into here. And then, it will automatically, by itself, it starts buffering and loading and you see this box. So, it starts to upload for you by yourself. This is what it will look like and these are the sections you should fill in while it is loading.

A pro tip, perhaps this is the first time you are doing it, I would recommend after you write out the title and the description, to copy it into a Word doc or the notepad real quick. A few times, I have had an issue where I typed out the description, made it all pretty and it sounded great and then there was an error uploading and it went away and I had to type it all over again. That can be very frustrating if it happens more than once.

But, basically, here, this is the title. You will want to add the title and the description. And keep in mind that both of those should be optimized. So, you will want to make sure you put your city and then the term “attorney”, “lawyer”, or “law firm” immediately after it. Then, optionally, you can add in the practice area. If the topic is specific to a practice area, I would highly recommend that.

So, if you are doing a video on real estate. If you are a Tampa real estate lawyer, “Tampa real estate attorney talks about real estate musts. Shares ten real estate tips.” Something of that nature. Same thing in the description. The same terms. Make it appear in both your title and your description.

Tags, down here. You have the option to generate tags, you know, however you would like. You can type it in, it will automatically fill or you can make your own unique tags. I would recommend tagging you law firm’s name and then anything that is relevant to it. So, these are things like “South Florida”, “Fort Lauderdale”, “lawyer”, “attorney”, “DUI”, “car accidents”, you know, anything like that. If you are doing something on an event, perhaps it is “Mardi Gras” or a local festival or breweries.

Anything that has to do, you know, with the video that you are uploading, add a tag. You can add as many as you would like, so go crazy. And you will see this box pop up too, suggested tags, I would definitely click a few of those.

So, once this is done buffering. This will go all the way across up here and you will be able to click this publish button. And then, it is time to post it to your site.

I didn’t do screenshots for this because Stephanie who is one of our web developers, she did a webinar a few months ago and went through step-by-step how to take a video once it was on YouTube and add it to either Total Control or WordPress. Which is what I imagine all of you are in either one of those content management systems. I’m sure. So, she goes step-by-step and explains how to get the code, the embed code and add it to your Total Control site and/or add it to your WordPress site. She shows you how to add it as a blog post and how to add it to the site itself. And then, she also goes in depth and kind of gives some suggestions about how if you are using playlists with YouTube, you can include the playlist in the actual blog post itself.

I outlined these basic steps here. This is pretty much how it works. But, at the end, I will have the link for Stephanie’s blog and you can see these are screenshots from her video where she goes through step-by-step and explains it. I really don’t think that I could have done it any better than her so I’m going to let her be the expert on that particular topic and I have the link at the end which I will share with everyone and you all can just watch that separately to get the actual advice for that. And if you are in anything besides WordPress or Total Control, let us know and we can set up a time to individually go over with you how to upload that video to whatever content management system you are using.

So, I wanted to go through some real examples of some of our clients who have really great video web practices. So, this is Thorn Tax Law. He is really great at having consistent branding. He has several sites and all of his social media and they all look the same and he also does a great job with keeping the videos short and sweet.

This is one example here. Bloom Legal. He is the king of Q and A. He is proof that you can do quick couch sessions and they can be very successful. All of his videos are done in-house quickly, just in the office, and they are candid and you can tell they are candid when he talks. It is very obvious he is not reading from a script and he is extremely successful. So, this is kind of like a casual work approach.

And then, Fuchs here. This is a good example of a trending topic and how you can jump on the bandwagon with things that are trending on social media. Now, I am sure that if any of you, perhaps you have children or if you are ever on social media at all, I am sure you’ve heard of the ALS ice bucket challenge. I guess it was maybe a month or two now ago that this started and it kind of took off. It was in the news and everything.

And this is what we like to call Internet marketing gold. This is a great way to get a video on your site. It’s funny. It has a human element to it. It’s contributing to a good cause. It’s quick. It doesn’t require a lot of work. You know, something like this, the ALS ice bucket challenge, it is expected that someone is going to hold an iPhone and just record it. It doesn’t need to be of professional quality, that’s not the expectation that is set.

This is a good example of how you can get on board with a trending topic. You know, we would definitely recommend this. I don’t know if you guys are all on Twitter and Facebook and what not, but we did blast out a few examples of, “Hey, get on the ALS ice bucket challenge.” So, we stay on top of this stuff. If something like this does come out again, we definitely try to make everyone aware to take advantage of it.

Step-by-step, I am assuming that you need to get people in your office on board. Whether it is permission to hire a videographer or to go buy a tripod and sit someone down for a half a day and go through these things. So, these would be my suggestions. A team of at least two people who have a similar goal in mind. You both want to get videos up on the website.

Then, I would set a goal for how many you want to do. Again, we do recommend 12, you can post one a month. But, if you are just starting out, shoot for six. That is a great starting place. So, set a goal so you have something to work towards. You want to get six on your website, then, come hell or high water, at the end of the year, you are going to have six on your website.

Create yourself an agenda. So, what do you need? You need to come up with the ideas, then you need to decide who is going to record it, who is actually going to be speaking in the video, who is going to be the tech person and upload it. So make one master document, break it up into different months, have yourself some meetings. Have yourself a topic meeting, come up with a topic. Then, decide which method you are going to use for recording it, whether it is a professional, a soon-to-be professional or someone in-house. And then, designate a person who is going to upload it, or if you are going to upload it, make sure that you understand how to do it. If you have it all down on paper in a plan, then you are more likely to do it. So, I mean, that would be my recommendation.

Then, you are going to need to hire an expert. In this category, if you decide to do it in-house and you are not sure that you know how, PaperStreet would be more than happy to set up a training session with you. My information is on the next slide and you can get in touch and we can schedule a time to go over it in detail. It would be my pleasure.

These are some additional resources. As I mentioned, we have had a lot of questions about this in the last few months, so we have really done our research. And I have sat down with Ashley who runs the social media for our client’s and we have come up with some of these great resources about video marketing. All the basics of this webinar are broken up into Part One, Part Two blog posts on the PaperStreet blog. You can see them there. And then, this Webinar: Videos and Your Website, is the information that I was referring to that Stephanie created a little over a month ago. And this is the technical aspect of uploading your blog posts to the actual content management system, whether it is Total Control or WordPress.

And then, How to Get Rid of Related Videos When Embedding from YouTube. Sometimes YouTube at the end will pop up it will show related videos and that is not really great for lawyers and law firms because it also works for your competitors. If your title is “Tampa Attorney”, it is going to pull up some more titles. So, you know, if you embed that on your website, you don’t want your competitor popping up there. So, there are some good reads if you have the time.

These are our social media accounts. You know, we are active on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google+. If you give us a shout out or follow there, it is an instant follow back. I actually manage it myself, so I can promise that you will be tweeted back or liked back or anything of that nature. And, as I mentioned, we started posting kind of ideas and make sure you are doing this to each of those accounts. It is really Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. If you follow them, perhaps that will help prompt an idea. And when we have these weekly meetings internally, when we come up with great ideas, I just shout them out there. So, perhaps that will pop up in your feed and jog your memory or maybe it will spark an idea even for you internally and you guys can get set.

So, I am going to upload this information to our PaperStreet blog, and you will be able to find it there. And that is just PaperStreet.com/blog or our main PaperStreet website and the button’s at the top upper right-hand corner. Thank you for joining me. I hope that this was a little bit helpful. My e-mail is there. Again, I would be more than happy to go over things specifically with you if there is a question that you didn’t have answered or you are looking for more information on a particular subject, we can do the research and I’ll post a blog post that answers the question for you. Thank you all. I appreciate it. Take care.

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Allison Gagliardi :