Attorneys: Should you create a video bio?


There’s a lot of noise going on in the chat rooms on LinkedIn and some legal marketing sites debating the merits creating an attorney video bio. Big law firms are eager to get their attorneys to create a video biography about their credentials; who they are and where they came from. The midsize firms tend to position themselves on both sides of the fence and the solo practitioners see a video biography as totally useless.

So Mr. or Mrs. Attorney; Which side of the fence are you more closely aligned with? Do you feel that having a video resume on your website is useful? Or are you closer to the solo practitioners who feel that nobody will watch a video that talks about yourself?

The people who advocate that lawyers should have a video resume are typically marketing officers for large law firms. They feel that prospective clients who are looking to hire attorneys in a large firm want to see who the attorney is that they will be hiring. They believe that a video bio is the ideal place to highlight that information. What do you think?

Here’s the basic premise:

Lawyer Jones is good at what he does. He’s experienced and want to generate more calls to his office. He learned that creating video is a great way to do show off who he is and show he’s an expert. His chief marketing officer tells him that his bio page is the highest clicked-on page on their website. Therefore, he must create a video about himself since that’s what people want to see.

Well Mr. or Mrs. Attorney? Do you agree? Do you think that general counsel want to see a video on the attorney biography page? Do you think they want to hear a recitation of where the attorney went to school, what awards he or she won, where they clerked and a verbal recitation of the different jobs they held before their current position?

I am often amused when I see marketing officers for midsize and large law firms strongly advocate creating video to post on their biography pages of their website. Most do not focus on creating educational video, but rather feel the necessity to put lawyers on video to show their credentials. What do you think?

I’ll tell you what I think (as if you didn’t think I’d tell you…)

I think lawyers in large law firms and midsize firms should continue to create video for their biography pages. I think the advice that they are paying for is excellent and will allow them to continue believing that video on the bio page is useful. Personally, I think it’s a total waste of time, money and energy to create a video that talks about yourself. In my opinion, the only people who want to see you talk about yourself is the marketing people who convince you to do this. If you make your family and colleagues watch your bio video, I guarantee you it will come back to haunt you in spades.

Here’s the bottom line

People going online to search for an attorney simply don’t care about you or your credentials. The one exception might be for a savvy general counsel who wants to see how you are different from your colleague at another big law firm. For the most part, your ideal client does not care whether you went to an Ivy League law school, clerked for a federal judge, was on law review, or won the moot court competition for the country. The only question they want answered is “Can you help me solve my problem?” I guarantee that your video biography will not answer that question.

So, to answer the question in the title, “Should you create a video bio?” In my opinion, absolutely not. Tell me if you agree or not and give me your reasons. Thanks for reading!

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2 Responses to Attorneys: Should you create a video bio?

  • Mark Blane says:

    I agree with your view on this Mr. Oginski. Sometimes a giant or midsize defense law firm likes spending money on video bios for their attorneys so they can impress their insurance company clients to use them (then, that might be an exception to being a total waste of time). I think information in a video on how to help their insurance clients would still be better.

  • Mark,
    You are correct. Information about how they do what they do is infinitely better than a verbal resume.

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Well, we recently got two really good cases. We tracked where they came from, the client said they had watched our YouTube videos and they were calling us because of it. The crazy thing is I’m a non-believer. I’m always trying to break out of the box I’ve put myself in and it is amazing. People will call you because of the videos you post.

Greg Stokes
Stokes & Kopitsky, P.A.