In this inaugural reboot episode, new hosts Gyi Tsakalakis and Kelly Street talk with Mitch Jackson about identifying your "whys," newsjacking, and other digital marketing strategies.
Lunch Hour Legal Marketing
Mitch Jackson was admitted to the California Bar in 1986. He is a founding Partner and Senior Litigation Partner...
Gyi Tsakalakis founded AttorneySync because lawyers deserve better from their marketing people. As a non-practicing lawyer, Gyi is familiar...
Kelly Street is the Marketing Director at AttorneySync, a trusted legal digital marketing agency. With almost 10 years in...
Why did you start a law practice? Was it to help people struggling with family law issues or to work for yourself in a strong business? It is important to understand your “whys” — the essential reasons for becoming a lawyer — to build a foundation for your firm’s marketing. In this inaugural reboot episode of Lunch Hour Legal Marketing, new hosts Gyi Tsakalakis and Kelly Street, are joined with lawyer, speaker and consultant Mitch Jackson. He talks about his marketing success in his own firm and how he has helped other lawyers grow their businesses. Mitch goes in depth about how to build a digital footprint using newsjacking, in which lawyers can become experts using their knowledge to comment on current events.
Mitch Jackson is a senior partner and founding attorney of Jackson & Wilson in Orange County, California. He was the 2013 Orange County Trial Lawyer of the Year, is an investor, speaker, consultant, and founder of LegalMinds Mastermind.
Lunch Hour Legal Marketing
Spotlighting Your “Whys” in Your Digital Marketing Strategy
Gyi Tsakalakis: Welcome to Lunch Hour Legal Marketing where you, we and we talk.
Kelly Street: Hey Gyi Tsakalakis!
Gyi Tsakalakis: Hey Kelly Street, what’s on the menu today?
Kelly Street: Today we are going to be talking to Mitch Jackson who is an incredible lawyer and guy also known as streaming lawyer.
Gyi Tsakalakis: We are very lucky to have Mitch today and we really can’t wait to dive into Spotlighting Your “Whys,” but first I have a very important question for you.
Kelly Street: Yes Gyi.
Gyi Tsakalakis: What are you having for lunch?
Kelly Street: I am going to have a delightful and healthy Mediterranean salad. How about you?
Gyi Tsakalakis: I am probably just going to walk to the salad bar again.
Kelly Street: So my lunch is definitely going to be better than yours.
Gyi Tsakalakis: No doubt about it.
Kelly Street: Alright everybody else grab your lunch and listen in to Lunch Hour Legal Marketing. The reboot!
Intro: Welcome to Lunch Hour Legal Marketing, with your hosts Gyi Tsakalakis and Kelly Street, teaching you how to promote market and make fat stacks for your legal practice, here on Legal Talk Network.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Thanks again listeners for dropping by. It’s great to be here. We have got quite a show for you today. We are going to be talking about Spotlighting Your “Whys” with Mitch Jackson. And we are very, very excited to have Mitch here today. Thank you so much for taking your time and welcome to the show.
Mitch Jackson: Well Gyi it’s good to be here. Kelly it’s great to be here. I am having a Mediterranean salad for lunch also Kelly so great minds think alike.
Kelly Street: Awesome.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Very sensible.
Kelly Street: So Mitch can you tell our listeners a little bit more about yourself in case they are unfamiliar with you and many of your social media channels or your very own really good podcast?
Mitch Jackson: Oh! Thank you for asking and saying that but I’ve been a trial lawyer for 32 years here in Southern California. First professional, first lawyer in my family, met my wife in law school and we have been practicing together and married together ever since and we enjoy helping victims who have experienced catastrophic injuries or wrongful death. We also do some business litigation. I love helping people brand at their practices and do online social media and digital marketing.
I just think it’s a great way for lawyers to show their human side and when you combine all of that together, that’s Mitch Jackson that’s what I do on a daily basis and I’ve never been more excited to come into the office and practice law than I am today and that tells me we are doing something right. So it’s a pleasure to be with you guys today and it’s fun to be on your podcast.
Gyi Tsakalakis: That’s awesome. So happy to have you here today as we reboot the show and I listen to your, I think you titled it your best video of 2017, we’ll include a link in the show notes but I think it’s a really articulate way of summing up your approach or your view of how you use the web and I want to dive right in using some of the ideas that you talked about but one of the things you talk about is identifying your whys and I wanted to ask you, about your whys and tips you might have for listeners that are trying to explore what their whys might be.
Mitch Jackson: I think it’s so important for lawyers and other professionals to show their human side on social, on digital and oftentimes to be able to do that and the easiest way to do that is to really tap into why we are doing what we’re doing, why are we alive, why do you enjoy living your life, why have you opened up a law firm practice, why do you do the things that you do and for me my why happens to be centered around Mike the milkman’s three keys to success and Mike’s my father-in-law, he started off loading milk crates on the back of a milk truck 20 years later when I met him he ended up owning his own dairy distributorship, very successful man retired at 52, not bad for a milkman.
And Mike’s three keys to success are number one take care of your physical and mental health because unless you are healthy you are not going to be any good to anybody else. Number two take care of your family, take care of your spouse, your significant other, your friends. And number three take care of your practice. And as long as you keep those three steps in order you’re going to have a long meaningful beneficial career regardless of what you do.
What your why is naturally fits into Mike the milkman’s three keys to success and so that’s why it’s something that I’ve always stress. If you don’t mind me just going into a little bit more detail, I think it’s really, really important as to what we are going to talk about next. Is that okay with you Gyi and Kelly?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Please do, go deep. We want you to go deep.
Kelly Street: Yes absolutely.
Mitch Jackson: Alright so and I get excited about this stuff because this is game-changing stuff that anybody listening to this podcast if they take this thought these principles and apply them to their online efforts they are going to see massive change.
And I grew up on a guest ranch in Tucson, Arizona that my mom and dad owned and it was a dude ranch. People from all over the world would come and stay at the ranch. My wife Lisa also grew up in a family-owned business, the dairy distributorship that her mom and dad worked together in.
So we both came from entrepreneurial families and brought that into our law firm. But going back to the guest ranch in Tucson we had a lot of famous people from around the world staying with us each and every year a lot of them were return guests, people like Walt Disney, John Wayne, Morley Safer from 60 minutes and a lot of other really well-known executives and lawyers and things like that. They would come out and play cowboy for a week.
What I noticed my mom and dad being very, very good at was having a human-to-human conversation with our guests. When guests flew into town, when they stayed at the ranch, when they put on their cowboy boots, when they went out and walked in the horse manure and did our rides each and every day, whatever it might be, what I would watched my mom and I do was bond with these guests and talk about everything but their business, their profession, the television show they were on the week before, Disneyland in Anaheim.
What they did is they just talked about the human side of family, friends, interests, passions, hobbies, community service projects, and that’s what connected my mom and dad with the guests and that’s what kept the guests coming back year after year.
Well what I have noticed once I became a lawyer back in 1986 well before the Internet as we know it, what I noticed and what allowed me to build my practice was doing the same thing, connecting with other lawyers as a referral sources as the clients and really focusing on the human side of who we are, the why as to what we’re doing as opposed to well I’m a trial lawyer so if you have any cases that need to go to trial please refer them over to me.
I mean every lawyer in town that’s a trial lawyer is sharing that message and so what we tried to do is we really focused on connecting on a human level, which is the why, I’m answering your question and what I have noticed with social media, our first website went up in 1996 about eight months later a million dollar case came through the website, I have never been accused of being the sharpest knife in the drawer but I realized right then and there, there was something to this internet thing.
And we did everything you can think of with respect to blogs and websites and bulletin boards and fast-forward to social media and digital and what I noticed was when we took those traditional offline human to human relationships skills and brought them into the social media platforms, especially over the last eight to ten years, that’s where the magic started to happen, that’s where the relationship started to be formed.
And unfortunately what I see is that a lot of lawyers are approaching social and digital just like traditional offline direct marketing, using direct marketing approaches and things like this. That doesn’t work on social media.
I think what really works well is to connect on a human level especially if you are a lawyer, show your human side, that common bond when it’s rotary or the church or community service events or for me running, working out, flying the drone, racing motocross, whatever it might be and that’s where the connections start happening.
So what I did in my mastermind and I have got a mastermind where I have got lawyers from all over the world where we share these concepts and principles is I noticed lawyers coming into social media and really trying to do the same old traditional old-school marketing approach. If you’ve been injured in an accident call me at and that doesn’t work on social, nobody’s interested in that, nobody cares.
And I noticed lawyers continuing to try to build their practices using those techniques and I just wanted to disrupt. I wanted to interrupt that mindset and share with them the concept that I have just shared with you of allowing yourself give yourself permission to share your why, why are you here, why do you practice law, why are you interested in getting out of bed in the morning, why and how are you interested in helping the community, share that on social media. And by doing that you start building relationships, by doing that you start building networks and referral sources. And that’s where the magic happens.
So that’s why I did that video because it was clear to me that I needed to get that message out there so that people would start doing things the right way on social media and the feedback has been just exceptional. I have had lawyers tell me this has changed my practice Mitch. I never thought it was okay to shoot a video of me running having not shaved, down by the ocean with a dirty baseball cap on and talk about how to do an opening statement.
Now I am realizing that’s what connects me as a human being to my audience, people reach out, they feel like they know me, they feel like I am the neighbor next door and guess who they call when they have a case.
So that’s the reason I shot the video as to what’s your why, and I was trying to just empower my audience to bring that why in a very human way onto the digital platforms using a lot of the different social and digital approaches that you guys are sharing with your company.
Kelly Street: That’s wonderful.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Powerful stuff, yeah, very powerful stuff Mitch. Love it, love the authenticity. I think the way that you articulated that where you’re taking the traditional notions of relationship and reputation and just applying them online, so spot-on.
Kelly Street: Yeah, so Mitch I had a question for you on the video, so I watched it as well about creating your why, and I was wondering you mentioned that for you, one of your whys is drunk driving, distracted driving and I was wondering how you came to that as a why for you and as a passion point for kind of directing your social media causes towards that?
Mitch Jackson: So glad Kelly that you asked me that. This is not scripted you guys. I didn’t know Kelly was going to ask me that. April is distracted driving awareness month and we were doing this podcast in April and I’ll tell you what, over the years what’s really bothered me as a catastrophic injury plaintiff’s attorney where clients come into the office who had been injured or family members who had had loved ones killed because of drunk driving.
And whenever I handled his drunk driving case, I really rolled up my sleeves and just it was personal, okay, I have zero tolerance for that. Over the last 15 or 20 years once mobile devices — let’s just say over the last 15 years with mobile devices we’ve started to see more distracted driving cases and that resonated with me the same way drunk driving resonated with me back in the day. What I then started to notice is more and more people being harmed by distracted driving and it really got under my skin.
And I started representing families who in wrongful death cases. I just settled another big case last week because of distracted driving. And it’s such a self-centered activity that’s preventable, that people know it’s not safe but people do it anyway and it really upsets me. Over the last two years both of my kids, one is 23, one is just 18, they both been hit from behind by distracted drivers. My daughter’s car was totaled. Thank god she’s okay, although she did have some injuries. My son’s vehicle was damaged and he had a concussion. It kept him out of half of his junior soccer season in high school. And so I take this stuff personally.
What’s happened though Kelly is that is one of my why’s. One of my why’s is raising awareness as to the dangers of distracted driving. Sharing 4000 to 6000 people a year are killed because of distracted driving, sharing the fact that 400,000 to 600,000 people a year are injured because of distracted driving which is two to three times the number of injuries from drunk driving. This is a huge problem.
By sharing information about the dangers of distracted driving, by doing live video shows, by doing podcasts, by interviewing experts in the area of distracted driving what’s happened is, it’s allowed me to make a difference and people have actually reached out to me. Mitch, I’ll never use my phone while driving again because of the podcast you did or because of the live video you shared or the story you told when you were being interviewed.
And so I know it’s making an impact. But guess what else has happened. What else has happened is from all of the content that we’re creating and all of the social good that we’re, we’re genuinely trying to put out there when somebody has been involved in a distracted driving case, guess who they call? I don’t care where they’re located in the United States, our phone rings and we have that perceived image of being experts when it comes to representing people in distracted driving cases.
And so there’s actually a business model to doing social good, whatever that cause may be, developing a perceived expertise in your social media communities and then the referrals happen thereafter, because look when it’s all said and done and I’m treating this as a business podcast, when it’s all said and done what I want your audience to understand that everything we’re talking about you can do good as a human being, as a lawyer, we all know that but you can also convert that good into a long term business revenue model if you go about it the right way.
And that’s where things really start getting exciting so one of my whys is distracted driving. Another one of my whys is the Rotary Club. I’m a fourth generation Rotarian. Rotary is all about community service, it’s not about business networking, it’s all about doing good at the local, national and international levels.
What the heck does that have to do with building a law firm? Well, to most lawyers absolutely nothing, but the reality is once you become a Rotarian, once you show your true colors that you’re there for service and not to build your business over the long-term guess what happens. When all the other Rotarians in town need a good lawyer they’re going to reach out to you for help or a referral that you can make to the appropriate firm.
So these are just a couple of things that we do that really focus around what our whys are and then from those whys we’re able to build our brand, develop expertise and when it’s all said and done improve or increase end of year revenue.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Fantastic. Really, really great tips here. So I wanted to do — maybe not a shift but a slight tactical conversation. I know you’ve talked about this in the past and for our listeners that maybe aren’t familiar with it, three-part question. What is Newsjacking, how do you use it and what can you tell our listeners about how they can use it at their practices?
Mitch Jackson: So Newsjacking is the approach of jumping on a breaking news story and as a lawyer sharing your unique perspective on that breaking news story that reporters generally are unable to find elsewhere or easily find elsewhere and there’s a right and wrong way to newsjack. And by doing this what happens is reporters will reach out to you, they’ll see your tweet, they’ll see your quick blog post, they’ll see your Periscope which is a great tool that I use, for those of you not familiar with Periscope it’s a live video that Twitter purchased, it’s Twitter Live or Periscope. It allows you to instantly broadcast to the world.
So what I do is when there’s an interesting story, it has a legal twist to it or it’s a story I hear that I know there’s a legal twist to it but nobody else has really thought of it, they’re looking at it from a different perspective I’ll jump on Periscope or Twitter and I’ll share my thoughts, that unique perspective by the time I get back to the office I’ve got three or four messages from reporters whether it’s local, national or global or an interview or for further commentary of whatever it is, I just newsjacked.
So it’s a really powerful tool to separate yourself from everyone else in town and to build your brand. That’s the first answer to the first part of your question. I’ve never been accused of being the sharpest knife in the drawer, so I’ve already forgotten the other two parts to your question. Sorry about that Gyi.
Gyi Tsakalakis: No, I think you kind of know, no not at all you answered them. I think any tips that you have for lawyers that are just kind of getting started with this concept, I know and I’ve encouraged folks, number one, to follow Mitch online because you’ll see a lot of great examples of him using this, but just for Mitch what kind of tips do you have for someone that’s just getting started with this concept of Newsjacking, how do you do the research for finding stories, maybe some of the nitty-gritty detail of how you go about it for someone that has no idea what they’re doing?
Mitch Jackson: So the first thing I would do is I would swing by David Meerman Scott’s website. David is a friend of mine. He is a gifted speaker, consultant. I’ve been onstage with David at Tony Robbins in Las Vegas. I’ll be there again in August in Las Vegas we talk about Newsjacking and marketing and branding. But if you go to davidmeermanscott.com he has a book on Newsjacking. It’s a short ebook, read that first because it’s a two-edged sword. If you go about newsjacking the wrong way you’re going to slice your big toe off. That’s how powerful newsjacking is.
But what I would suggest is look at a story that’s of interest to you. For example when the State of California a year and a half ago came down with the new law and this new law had to do with making sextortion illegal, it codified in the criminal code and cleaned up a few problems with somebody taking somebody else’s video during a private sexual encounter and then later on using it to extort somebody to blackmail somebody and that’s since become a crime in California and it should be.
And I actually did a blog post on that. As soon as the law came out I immediately jumped online I did a short blog post as to the pros and cons of how this new law was written. I had a lot of people reach out to me at that time can you comment on this. Why don’t you think it’s a good idea, what could they have done to improve that and that’s newsjacking a new law that just came down.
What a lot of people don’t realize is newsjacking has a very long, long tail to it. So a year later when the China and Rob Kardashian issue came down on Instagram where Rob was accused of posting pictures of China that probably shouldn’t have been posted USA Today did a search in California came across my blog post, reached out to me a year and a half later and interviewed me about what California law is and how it might apply to the China and Kardashian Instagram case.
Had I not newsjacked that original new law, USA would not have reached out to me a year and a half later and it was a full-page interview in their online edition. That’s one example of newsjacking. Some other things that I enjoyed doing was the Bill Cosby case. I was down on the beach running. I heard about the Bill Cosby allegedly placing drugs in female’s drinks to take advantage of them sexually, allegedly doing a run and I took a break looked down at my phone and saw this breaking news story when it first came out. I immediately hopped on Periscope, shared my two cents worth about not really Mr. Cosby but in the state of California as a dad my daughter was just starting school at UCLA, if this happens to somebody what are their rights, what are the remedies can there be double exposure, can there be criminal exposure.
And so I talked about the case through the eyes of a father who also happens to be a lawyer focusing on California law which was a different venue than where the Cosby case was pending. What happened was when I got back to the office I had a bunch of reporters who wanted to follow up because all of a sudden they have got a lawyer commenting on certain specifics that they haven’t thought of before. So it’s a matter of you want to immediately jump on these stories. You want to be the first one out there and that’s why I like using Twitter and Periscope to do this.
If you can then piggyback your initial newsjacking effort because reporters are looking for someone right now, not tomorrow, not next week but in an hour to interview. You need to be agile and mobile, Twitter and Periscope are great ways to do this. Facebook Live is a great way to jump on and then once you do that come back to the firm, pound out a 500-word blog post, incorporate your earlier videos or audios into that blog post and hit stand or publish and you are off to the races. So that’s what I normally do.
Now here’s a little secret that I actually shared for the first time last August at the Tony Robbins Event that David hadn’t thought of it before and that is as you start getting interviewed by reporters and if you make it easy for them and the interview is enjoyable and so you have given that reporter value. At the end of the interview ask the reporter listen I really enjoy doing this stuff, would you like me to reach out to you the next time there’s a breaking news story on this topic or a related topic, what do you think and the reporters unequivocally will tell you, absolutely Mitch reach out to me. Here’s my Twitter handle, here’s my email, yeah just reach out to me if you’d like to comment on the next story this was fun.
Then put that information in your database. So now what we do is when we newsjacket a breaking story we will turn around and immediately email maybe 198, 205 news reporters with that breaking newsjacking effort, 10% of them will reach back to our firm and then the interview dance continues. The reason that’s important is it gets your name out there, it helps you build your brand from local and take it to global, it develops a perceived expertise on the topic and it’s just a great way for a lawyer or a law firm to expand their sphere of influence and to create top-of-mind awareness with the general public.
If you go about it with a positive spin which I think is very, very important, in other words don’t be a negative individual, always sharing the downside of something, approach these breaking news stories with a positive upbeat spin, a unique spin and make it your own a spin that the reporters can’t get anywhere else. That’s what I think works really well when it comes to newsjacking. You can see I am excited about this because it’s one of the most powerful tools that we have used over the years to do all of the above.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Absolutely I mean this is such phenomenal stuff, the listeners will greatly benefit from this. It’s very specific really, really great stuff.
Kelly Street: So Mitch how much time do you usually spend doing all of these things? How do you manage that as part of your day and still have a practice where you are a successful lawyer?
Mitch Jackson: Kelly I am glad you asked me that because I am still a full time trial lawyer and I had someone on Sunday ask me that very question regarding how they would be introduced me at a conference that’s coming up. So here’s the deal. I honestly feel that if you are not building a digital footprint, if you are not building out your digital presence right now in five to seven years you are not even going to be relevant. I mean that’s how important this stuff is.
When people are looking for a professional generally what they are doing is they are tapping and swiping on their mobile device, they are asking friends and that’s how they are finding out who you are. So you have got to have a digital presence.
Kelly Street: That’s a very Gary Vaynerchuk answer. I appreciate that.
Mitch Jackson: What Gary will tell you that’s a very Mitch Jackson answer, okay?
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah, that’s awesome.
Mitch Jackson: Alright and so it’s still important to understand that more people around the world have access to a handheld device with an internet connection and they do drinking water, working toilets or toothbrushes and everyone is walking around with smart devices in their hands. They are referring people out based upon who they find on their smart devices.
So what I have noticed is, this is critically important to doing everything we have already talked about and because of that I now look at coming into the office, sitting down and working on my files, trying my cases and being on social and digital as a big blur. In other words, I don’t distinguish between the two. After 30 or 45 minutes of answering written discovery, I will push it aside, I will stand up, grab a cup of coffee, come back and then I will hop on my desktop monitor, I have got all my tabs open and I will check each of my platforms.
Because I enjoy doing it and I have seen the benefits of doing everything we are talking about and I will spend about 70% of my time engaging the audience, answering their questions, commenting on their post, giving them hearts, liking what they are doing, letting them know that I appreciate the content that they are sharing and the other 10% or 20%, maybe 30% will be my content, will be new things that I am putting out, new ideas.
So majority of my time is listening, engaging, empowering, making other people feel good, giving them a knuckle bump, a digital knuckle bump when they deserve it and just like any other relationship this happens all day long. It’s a lot of work. I mean it takes a lot of work to do what I am talking about but the benefits are unlike any benefits I have ever seen before.
And what I do like Kelly about social and digital is right now wherever you are, whatever we are doing, did a couple of runs this weekend, I mean while I am running down the beach, I will stop share a picture and maybe post with a link to a blog post we shared earlier this week. You can create this content on the go. The more you do it, the easier it gets. The more you do it, the faster it gets.
And so what I try to do is — have you guys ever heard of the book and I am sure you have, it’s ‘How to Win Friends and Influence People’ by Dale Carnegie.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Yeah.
Kelly Street: Absolutely.
Mitch Jackson: Yeah, it’s a classic, right 1937 classic but here’s the thing. It’s more applicable today because of how you can use these principles on social media then it’s ever been and I would encourage all of your listeners to come into the office, combine social and digital with their daily work schedule, it actually makes work a lot more enjoyable by the way but while you are doing that incorporate many of the tips that Dale Carnegie teaches in ‘How To Win Friends And Influence People‘ into your social media efforts.
In other words, use other people’s names, use other people’s social media handles. Go out of your way to be a good listener. Go out of your way to engage others. Go out of your way as a lawyer to speak from the heart, to be sincere, to be genuine. Sometimes that’s a little challenging for some lawyers especially trial lawyers but as soon as you give yourself permission to be that lawyer to engage with others on social using those qualities and embracing those qualities that’s what will get you to stand out above the noise and that’s what will get you to be noticed for all the right reasons that will allow you to help more people.
It will build in the consumers’ mind, plant that seed that you’re a good person who’s trying to do good things in the world and that’s where the magic happens. So I think by combining social with the practice, incorporating Dale Carnegie’s approaches into all of the above efforts that’s where the magic happens. And I keep saying that’s where the magic happens, that’s even a phrase that I use. I am as excited you guys. So that’s where the good stuff happens and that’s where you are going to see results, a return on investment with your time on social media.
Gyi Tsakalakis: No it means it’s just so spot-on, you use an example or made a point that I wanted to come back to about, I think it’s so true. We talk about this all the time. The lines are truly blurring. It’s not offline versus online and I think that the more that you embrace that the blurring of those lines and recognize that and apply what you are talking about with these traditional concepts of relationships and reputation and doing well by doing good being out in the community and then you set it on fire with these social media tools, that’s exactly what you are talking about. And I think it’s really great stuff and really actionable too for our audience. So thank you so much for that.
Mitch Jackson: Absolutely! It works and it’s fun to do too. I was actually speaking with David Meerman Scott the other day about what we are talking about and it kept coming back to hey Mitch this makes doing business fun again. I mean this is the fun factor to what we are talking about, most lawyers that have been practicing for a couple of decades, they are cross-eyed, they are drooling all over themselves —
Gyi Tsakalakis: _______00:29:51
Mitch Jackson: I am telling you guys there’s a completely different way to practice law and what you want to do, online and offline, I don’t care what type of law you practice, I don’t care what platforms you are on when it comes to digital, if you’re doing things like everyone else in town, you’re probably doing things the wrong way.
In other words, be different, be unique show your internal song, display your internal art, what makes you unique, give yourself permission to be that guy or gal on digital and it’s going to change everything.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Great advice. So people are using the Internet and social media to look for legal information and to find lawyers.
Mitch Jackson: I think big time. I think for the most part, now look if you’re an established firm in town like we are, the referrals are going to come from other judges, from opposing counsel, from years and years and decades of satisfied clients but the reality is when it comes to brand new clients that aren’t referred to you by existing referral sources.
And I think we all need to have this as part of our branding and marketing and relationship building plan, you need to focus on digital to make that happen. The challenge today Gyi is time and attention okay, nobody’s got enough time to do everything we’re talking about and nobody has the attention span to deal with everything we’re talking about; whether you’re opposing counsel, whether you’re a prospective client. It’s a big problem.
And a friend of mine Sally Hogshead wrote in Fascinate that the average attention span a hundred years ago was about 20 minutes. Today, it’s about 9 seconds, the same attention span as a goldfish.
Now, maybe it’s 9 seconds, maybe it’s 19 seconds, maybe it’s 30 seconds, who knows. The point is that it’s short and so what you want to do is when you’re creating content on digital especially when it’s live streaming and live video and we need to emphasize how powerful live video and live streaming is. It’s a game changer for lawyers because you’re looking people in the digital eyeballs, what you need to focus on though is you’ve only got a couple of seconds to capture someone’s attention.
Someone looking for a lawyer to refer a mom and dad to, someone looking for a lawyer to help with their next startup and so because of that when you’re doing everything that we’re talking about, you have to be engaging, you have to immediately capture your audience’s attention. You’ve got to start off not by introducing yourself, sitting across from your desk with your hands folded, being bored, being that you are in life, instead you need to jump on and say listen today, we’re going to talk about six ways to create a limited liability company that will protect you, your family and the family dog. Let’s get started.
And then you dive into your six steps to creating an LLC. There’s a right and wrong way to use digital and social media and so, for the lawyers out there listening, don’t be afraid to add a little excitement, a little entertainment value, be engaging, have a pop to what you’re doing and if you’re not good at that, learn these things. These are things you can learn how to do. It takes time, it takes practice but over the long term what I’ve seen Kelly and Gyi is some of my videos from 15 years ago, I’m embarrassed about.
I mean we shot them in the back of the office, we used a green screen, they were way too long, I was reading off a teleprompter and although they’re really bad videos, some of them have 50, 60, 70,000 views on YouTube. I’m embarrassed to look at them they’re that bad. But here’s the thing.
It was a foundation for me to learn how to hop on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook Live or Periscope and pound out a very effective 60 to 90 second video, something I couldn’t do 15 years ago because I didn’t know how. So everything we’re doing today is a foundation for your success tomorrow; whether it’s offline with how to give an opening statement in court or online with setting up your Facebook page.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Love it.
Kelly Street: So who are you learning from besides your friend David and suggesting people read Dale Carnegie’s book, where else are you getting your info, your tips or is this all just years of trial and error, no pun intended.
Mitch Jackson: Yes. Well you know what, it’s probably a combination of all the above. Let me just say that a very, very powerful book that has nothing to do with social media but everything to do with being successful on social and I think in court is a book by a friend of mine Bob Burg, and Bob wrote The Go-Giver which is a very popular book but his favorite book of mine is a book called Adversaries into Allies, Adversaries into Allies.
I will not even mentor a young trial lawyer today until they have read this book and it’s all about people’s skills, it’s all about many of the principles we’ve already talked about but books like that, I think will help you understand how to use digital. When you talk about who do I look up to or who do I get some of my inspiration from or ideas from, once again I don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings.
I mean there’s a lot of really talented experts out there. I just had David Meerman Scott on a show that I shared with my LegalMinds Mastermind Group, he was on that show because I respect his approach to using social and digital. It’s a matter of really just being yourself. I don’t want people to model other successful people on social media that doesn’t work.
What works is being yourself. So having said that, I’m going to have to give that some thought okay, and the reason I’m giving it some thought Kelly is because your audience is primarily attorneys and other professionals. And I do think that we need to do our due diligence when we’re watching or following someone online because anybody can click and create an online presence and end up on stage or build a large following that doesn’t mean he or she is someone that you should be modeling or someone you should be following.
In other words, with the wild, wild west of social and digital, I think lawyers need to be careful who they associate themselves with. There’s a lot of misdirection, there’s a lot of misuse out there that the general public just doesn’t know about. The reason I know about this is I’m the one getting the phone call.
I’ve kind of built my brand where even though I’m a catastrophic injury and wrongful death attorney in California, I’m also known as a lawyer that helps online businesses and social media influencers do what they’re doing. And so I get a lot of calls about a lot of people. So I have to be careful about who I would recommend or who I would endorse for those reasons and they’re very, very good reasons.Otherwise, I’d throw some names out there for you guys.
All I would suggest is pick up a couple of books, read blogs that you can relate to people who you enjoy the way they write, you enjoy the message where it’s coming from, how they’re approaching different topics on social and then once you do that, take those ideas, understand this is a brand new animal.
There’s no right or wrong way to do anything we’re talking about. Make it your own, get involved, be consistent with quality, helpful, useful, engaging content, respecting the time and attention of your audience, and I think everything else will just fall into place.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Well I’ll tell you somebody who I’m learning from and that’s Mitch Jackson. Mitch I wanted to thank you again for spending the time with us today and sharing these phenomenal tips and your experiences. I encourage everyone to go find Mitch online. He is prolific. I don’t know how he does it. He somehow has slowed down the rotation of the earth because he’s everywhere.
And Mitch, what’s the best way if folks want to connect with you, if they want to learn more about what you’re doing what’s the best way for them to get a hold of you?
Mitch Jackson: Gyi, thanks for asking and Kelly, thanks for having me on. It’s nice to meet you. Probably the easiest way to connect with me is at my non-legal blog okay, I have a traditional website you guys and it’s a boring law firm website but what I’d like everyone to do is connect with me over at streaming.lawyer, that’s where we share our social media content, online business tips but all of my contact information is at streaming.lawyer.
And if anyone has any questions, if they want to just stop by and say hi, if they want to give me a digital fist bump, just meet me over at streaming.lawyer and let’s start the digital dance. It would be my pleasure.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Fantastic. And thank you again, and thank you all for listening today. We’re really excited for this reboot. If you liked what you heard today, you can find us over at legaltalknetwork.com. Please also remember to rate us in the Apple podcast and/or follow us and Legal Talk Network on Twitter and Facebook. And we are very, very interested in hearing your feedback. If you have suggestions for show topics and guests or questions about anything we talked about today, please don’t hesitate to reach out and connect to us online.
And thank you again to Mitch Jackson and thank you Kelly Street.
Kelly Street: Gyi this was awesome. I love doing another podcast with you.
Gyi Tsakalakis: Kelly, excellent job, at least from where I am sitting, looking forward to future episodes of Lunch Hour Legal Marketing.
Outro: Thank you for listening to Lunch Hour Legal Marketing. If you would like more information about what you heard today, please visit legaltalknetwork.com. Subscribe via Apple Podcasts and RSS. Follow Legal Talk Network on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram and/or download the free app from Legal Talk Network in Google Play and iTunes.
The views expressed by the participants of this program are their own, and do not represent the views of nor are they endorsed by Legal Talk Network, its officers, directors, employees, agents, representatives, shareholders, or subsidiaries. None of the content should be considered legal advice. As always, consult a lawyer.
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