How to Host a Successful Law Firm Press Event in 5 Easy Steps

by ON24
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ON24

By now you’ve heard it said a million different ways: thanks to technology, it has never been easier to bring together people across broad geographic areas around a common interest or concern. 

We see law firms like Baker Donelson using their webinar platform to connect with clients around the country (and world!). We see law firms like Stark & Stark count on social media to host live events that bring national prominence to key practice areas.

What is your firm doing?

Here’s an idea: don’t host a webinar. Use your platform to host a live press event. It’s easy.

1. Treat your invitation like a news release

Pick a current news topic on which you’re offering critical analysis. Define a few key messages you want to convey – and communicate these in the invitation. Schedule the webinar for mid-morning so as not to push reporters too close to evening deadlines.

Be sure your subject line clearly conveys the topic. With only so many characters to work with and so much time to grab the reader’s attention, clear and concise wins out over clever.

Blast your media lists, but personalize the invitation. If a reporter has covered the industry or a related topic, mention their article in your outreach. This proves you know their beat and have read their writing, and they will be more likely to pay attention. You may also want to use a wire service to cast a wider net.

Include a brief synopsis of what you will cover, who is speaking, and why they are qualified to speak on the issue.

2. Build the buzz with social content

Identify some key points around your event’s main theme(s) and craft social media posts around them. Schedule short tweets and/or longer posts at different times during the day to maximize your reach. The theme, again: re-purpose, re-purpose, re-purpose! 

Connect with influencers among your key audience, and target them with your posts. People trust a recommendation from someone they know. Ask your contacts to share the event with their networks.

Consider a #hashtag so that those interested can monitor the larger conversation. (The shorter the better.)

3. Practice your answers 

Have one of your marketing team members put on their media hat and conduct a mock interview. They can help your attorneys anticipate questions and refine answers. Practicing helps minimize verbal fillers – ums and ahs.

Reporters want quotable answers. Prepare brief documents to supplement and clarify any explanations you’re providing. Share this content during the live event! (Say it with me: re-purpose!)

Consider putting attorneys on a stage on camera. It’s a great way to personalize the experience. If you pick a site that’s visually interesting or in some way related to the topic, be sure to gauge potential background noise as well as readiness for audio-visual needs.

Give potential in-person attendees (versus the online audience) advance notice, and remind them the day of the event.

4. Create a conversation

Get your audience interacting with you early by starting with opening remarks followed by some planted questions. It will allow you and the attendees to warm up to each other - and set the stage that leads to their questions. Then open it up to additional questions from the audience.

Keep your answers short, and reiterate the key points you identified at the outset.

Be sure to engage attendees with storytelling. Pepper your answers with specific examples and case studies of how you have helped others address the issues at hand.

5. Follow up

For those media members who did not attend, offer the recorded version available for viewing at their convenience. Be sure to mention you are happy to serve as a source for future stories on this or related topics, and offer your direct contact information.

Also consider editing down salient talking points from the entire webinar/press event. Use these shorter video clips for additional media outreach, and general online visibility around your expertise.

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By turning your webinar into a media event, you encourage the news-worthiness of the topic. When journalists write about what you have to say, you extend your reach to an audience that’s already interested and paying attention. When an audience is engaged, they are more likely to answer a call to action and get in touch. That’s how you use webinars to qualify leads and develop business. 

Want to get started today? Give me a call, and let’s talk.

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[Samantha McKenna is a Senior Director, Sales at ON24Connect with her LinkedIn to learn how webinars can supercharge your firm's content efforts.]

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