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7 EXAMPLES OF COMPELLING, NOT CHEESY, LEGAL COMMERCIALS
Every lawyer can play in the TV advertising space and win new business. But you have to be doing something different than the other firm. The originality and authenticity of your campaign is critical to capturing new eyeballs; making prospective clients stop, think and remember your firm; establishing an initial element of trust; encouraging people to share your message; and ultimately possessing people to take action.
This begs the question: How can attorneys distinguish themselves from one another in such a highly competitive space?
- How can a TV commercial come across as so compelling that viewers simply can’t turn away?
- How can a legal advertisement’s creative license inspire action in a way that no message has done before?
- How can the elements that make a legal brand different from the firm next door truly reveal itself on screen?
- How can attorneys without massive advertising budgets still compete on TV against lawyers with national reputations—and exposure?
- How clever can law firm television advertising campaigns get and still make the phone ring?
Facts continue to show the enduring value attorneys place on law firm television advertising. TV advertising already constitutes more than $70 billion in annual spend nationwide and is predicted to hit $90 billion in the next three years. Law firm TV advertising makes up a huge chunk of this figure, growing six times faster than all other ad spending between 2008 and 2014. And today legal services sits at the number six spot among the top 20 biggest broadcast advertisers in the U.S.
There are so many best practices that professional video production artists, including our own in-house studio staff, use to help lawyers distinguish themselves in the marketplace.
However the most successful law firm TV advertising campaigns today include these components:
- Sound, smart and savvy scripting
- Professional-grade visual and audio production
- Expert talent execution and editing
- Video diversification and dissemination
- Strategic digital placement and social promotion
After being in the business for more than 30 years, our legal marketing experts could tell you some tips and tricks for helping law firms advertise on television and online, but it might make more impact if we employ video itself to tell the story. Here are seven of Network Affiliates’ most effective law firm television advertising spots—and why they work. These include both original commercial creative as well as a few new favorites from our library of pre-produced ads that can be customized for law firms practicing in some of the most common areas of law.
OUT OF CONTROL
Why it works: This shocking campaign stands alone in a sea of lackluster legal advertising. “Out of Control” is a series of commercials that attempts to recreate the formidable, frightening feelings accident victims experience in the days, weeks and months following an injury. When the victim mindset takes hold, people typically feel panicked, lost and taken advantage of by everyone—from the careless driver to the bill collector. While the spot undeniably fuels this tension by reminding viewers of how bad it is, there’s immediate payoff for reliving the pain: help. Expert legal counsel can quickly show victims a way out from under water.
Why it works: One of our most memorable law firm television advertising spots to date, “Shattered” goes against everything you’ve seen in the legal industry before. Switching the emphasis from touting the accolades of a chest-pounding lawyer to showing the physical reality of a car-accident victim, this production phenomenon actually slows down footage to create the sense of how a life can be shattered in an instant. Props included a stylized, turntable-mounted car cabin, silicone “glass” cannons and two air guns to create a haunting and lasting visual impact.
NEED TO KNOW
Why it works: This totally out-of-the-box, totally fun and totally informative spot shakes things up in the traditional legal TV advertising community by using a no-nonsense script and bright, quirky graphical cues to keep viewers tuned in. It’s like a favorite tips piece—only in video format. People are intrigued by anything that informs them in a way that makes them feel more in control during what is inevitably a very stressful and confusing time. Simply knowing some steps to follow when dealing with insurance companies gives viewers an immediate sense of confidence—and ideally enough resolve to take the next step to call a lawyer.
Why it works: Underscored by tight art direction and high production value, this spot’s fundamental play is emotion. Humans can quickly identify with a moment when they, too, felt downgraded to a nothing but a “number” by an insurance company whose best interests were in dollar signs. It’s happened to the best of us, and it leaves us every one of us feeling powerless. In this quintessential moment of weakness and vulnerability, having a trusted attorney to turn to restores a sense of power over the situation. “Claim Number” is a poignant, engaging ad designed to connect with clients after a life-changing event.
Why it works: This pre-produced segment is simply a modern interpretation of the old-fashioned testimonial spot. But instead of a generic talking head, we get a real-life story, a universal sports scenario that people of all ages and backgrounds can relate to and find meaning in. This encapsulated 30-second ad demonstrates how video is a powerful mechanism for putting the viewer in the victim’s shoes. These dramatic, testimonial-style scripts are simple to produce and can be customized for any law firm looking to capture and engage viewers in an entirely fresh and responsive way.
TURN TO DUST
Why it works: Goose bumps. Any commercial creative that gives you goose bumps has generated a strong physiological reaction that will no doubt leave a lasting impression. This is one of those legal spots that you literally feel. And after it washes over you, you’re left feeling like you need to take action—reach out to a loved one, protect yourself or call a legal expert who can take over. This completely original message is visceral and serious. It’s incredibly effective for those reasons and the fact that there’s simply nothing like it on TV. Perfectly juxtaposed against our graphic “Need to Know” spot, “Turn to Dust” demonstrates the vast range of creative approaches that can work to tell your firm’s story and connect with an audience through different emotional triggers.
JUST ANOTHER DAY
Why it works: This fast-paced dramatic reenactment is immediately engaging and entertaining because it’s relatable: Unexpected things happen to people just like you and me every day. This unforgettable commercial is especially effective because it draws viewers in, hooks them and then builds to an emotional crescendo. It’s this creation of suspense that drives home the ultimate message: We’re all just one moment away from an accident. The authenticity created by filming people doing real-life things helps prospective clients connect to the spot. But the real magic happens when viewers are left breathless by the tragic ending to “just another day.” They’re compelled to think twice about whether they have the right legal representation ready—if and when they need it.
Want to separate your law firm’s message from the competition? It starts with compelling, one-of-a-kind creative. The production artists at Network Affiliates’ in-house video studio are highly skilled and highly creative thinkers. See how great creative can help you grow your market share today. Call (888) 461-1016.