30 Apr Why do solicitors still talk in tongues?
Solicitors on the whole are very clever people. They are well-educated, possess vocabularies leaving the average man scrambling for a dictionary, and when making a point give detailed explanations.
However, whilst these sound like attributes they are also a major reason why many of them are going out of business.
The problem is a communication issue.
I genuinely believe legal firms are amongst the most interesting industries to do PR for, purely because they have so much information that the rest of society has to know. It is massively relevant and always changing, but to the public at large legal news is seen as dull.
Why is this? Simply, because it’s not explained in layman’s terms or looking from the perspective of the would-be customer.
It never ceases to amaze me when I visit the news sections of legal firms how so many of the stories are written in a dull manner and using twice as many words as needed. These tales will seldom be read outside the firm.
The reason is we live in an era of information overload, so if what you’re saying doesn’t smack people between the eyes straight away they will move on.
In the average newspaper tabloid, a good guideline, as on the net people will not read the way they would an in-depth tale in the Telegraph. Around 300 or so words is enough.
Here are some tips.
Before you start think clearly what the effect of what you know will have on the masses and note the points you wish to get across. The public need the headline. How will it affect me? When, why, where etc.
Only then is it time to take to the keyboard.
Also keep words simple and write in a chatty style. Do not over-elaborate or use fancy words either or your potential catch will be on Ebay before you know it.
Our attention spans are shorter than ever so be sure to be exciting. It’s possible – many legal firms are doing it well.
You may find that by exciting and relevant stories and giving expert advice the public needs, you may just become the trusted voice of law in your community.
There is a wonderful opportunity out there for those wanting to be understood. The competition isn’t really as strong as some would have you think. Good luck.