Psssst – Do I Have Your Attention?

“Johnson, we’d like you lead the communication effort of this initiative.” 

Your mouth runs dry, pulse quickens.  Beads of sweat appear on your brow.  You’ve have just been tapped to relay important information to an audience with all eyes on you to make the message stick.

“And when you have the information ready to present, let’s have the partner-in-charge give it.”

Whether you are the presenter or you are preparing the information for presentation by someone else, the success of your efforts boils down to one thing – engaging your audience. 

Presenters compete against dozens of distractions to pique the interest of an intended recipient.  So how are legal marketers presenting information in new ways that keep the audience tuned in and ensure the message, whatever it may be, is delivered?

Amy Knapp and the team at Knapp Marketing has been using Prezi for about four years, helping clients create rich presentations that convey information visually. “Prezi gets attorneys to think graphically and away from the 8.5 x 11 page of bullet points,” says Amy.  The platform “innately brings the sensation of movement to a presentation,” commanding the audience’s attention and delivering the message with a powerful combination of words and graphics.  In one instance, Knapp Marketing prepared a client to moderate a panel discussion, allowing the client to animate the points, trends, headlines, and legislation the panelists were discussing as they moved through the presentation.  In another, a client put on a mock trial at a sports law conference incorporating Prezi in the background to hammer home the points of law, jury considerations, news headlines, etc.  It was so popular, it was actually mentioned in an ESPN article reporting from the conference. 

Legal marketers are helping their attorneys capitalize on breaking news, proposed or passed legislation/regulation impacting the industry, updates in a trial, etc., by creating 90 second video clips explaining the event’s significance to clients and the industry at large.

‪These are produced in the office, in real time incorporating 2-3 slides to create a short burst that can then point to previously produced content, announce upcoming events, etc. There is also a built in capability to easily share on social media and grow an audience.

Continuing with video, one international firm has begun to introduce laterals and new partners via video in lieu of the time consuming road show.  Internal communications from the Chairperson of the firm are being used to disseminate information to employees.  In the recruiting realm, videos featuring employees discussing their experiences at the firm are gaining popularity to attract the best and the brightest.   On the flip side, a new trend amongst recruiting firms is to help professionals create video profiles to build their professional brand.

The need to present information will not change – how you engage your audience will.   New and old technologies will be there to help legal marketers do just that.  

By Michelle McWhinney, Founder, Navigate Recruiting for the July/August 2015 Capital Ideas Newsletter.

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