By now, most lawyers are well-acquainted with Zoom, which has quickly emerged as a lifeline for lawyers attempting to re-establish a semblance of their former IRL online. As with any other marketing tools – whether Yellow Pages from days of yore to the web and social media, Zoom is just a medium for conveying content. The message that you convey through that content still depends entirely on you. In other words, whether you get in front of people on Zoom or Facebook or face-to-face-but-six-feet-apart, garbage in still equals garbage out.. With that in mind, below are a couple of suggestions that zoom in on ways that your firm can use Zoom to market make your practice bloom and boom, rather than doom it to embarrassment or ethics violations.
Network Online With Purpose
With most in-person networking events cancelled, some lawyers have tried to fall back on zoom to take advantage of the void by creating online happy hours to replace in person interaction. Having attended some of these online extravaganzas, I can tell you they’ve been a big bust – with dull, stilted conversation, or no meaningful opportunity to introduce myself and discuss my business. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t try a Zoom chat – but rather than just toss out an invitation, think about a topic you might tackle, or hand-select a small group of participants who would enjoy meeting each other. A successful Zoom call isn’t about nabbing that vanity screen-shot grid of 100 participants, but rather, about collaborating, exchanging ideas and making connection. When a participant comes away from a Zoom call that has stimulated that level of discussion, you can bet that they will think of you for case referrals and other opportunities in the future.
Help Others Feel Comfortable Online
Many lawyers aren’t yet comfortable with all of Zoom’s technical features or come across like some character to of the Blair Witch Project because they haven’t mastered lighting or makeup. Why not sponsor a Zoom for beginners’ call where you could help your colleagues or small business clients run through the various Zoom controls and offer tips on background lighting, positioning the camera to achieve a flattering angle and appropriate attire and makeup (if you’re not comfortable talking about appearance face to face, you can send an article like this one from Forbes, or this post from my friend Michael Eisenbertg’s Tech Savvy Lawyer Blog on using a lume cub for lighting. Teaching others to Zoom with confidence will help them generate clients and cash, which increases your chances of being hired or referred cases in return.
Make Content Useable
Zoom is so user friendly and cheap (as in free!) that it’s easy to produce hour-long webinars. Trouble is, who wants to sit through the playback? To make your content more palatable for users, you can do what I did for my nearly two-hour Zoom session which is to annotate the video, or you could transcribe your entire video with cheap AI-powered tools like Trint or Sonix.
Do One on One Zooms
Many clients are now inundated with Zoom webinar offers. – but still demand on on one attention. Invite clients to a personal zoom session or schedule catch up calls with colleagues that are face to face. Or consider a Meet and Eat, an idea I posted about a couple of years ago.
Just Do It!
Finally, if you haven’t been using Zoom at all, now’s the time to take the plunge. Though I’ve been using online video to deliver webinars since the days of now defunct Dim Dim (circa 2008), I hadn’t been a fan of video calls until recently. Just employing the platform on a regular basis has made me a more facile user but also given me new ideas on how to use the platform. Stay tuned!
How are you using Zoom in your practice? Share your ideas in the comments below?