Screaming, ranting and raving has been an advertising strategy for attorneys since they first started airing television commercials. And as content marketing often proves, the more things change, the more they stay the same (see: advertorials and native ads).
It was actually illegal for attorneys to advertise until 1972, when the Supreme Court decided America needed a good laugh, said “WTF” and gave ambulance chasers everywhere a chance to get on the teevee.
And it attracted clients. Just like in the old days, the attorneys that scream the loudest seem to get the most attention. The people clearly want an attorney who will FIGHT, FIGHT, FIGHT for their parking tickets to be dismissed. Or maybe it’s just that in the digital age, nothing short of the absurd will get our attention.
In any case, here are five attorneys who have gone digital with various degrees of success. Each video is rated on a five star scale according to the just made up Batsh*t-o-Meter.
Jim Adler on Top of Truck –
“The Texas Hammer” is an OG of the attorney advertising game in Houston. His commercials have been jarring people who fell asleep watching the tube back into startled consciousness since the mid-80’s. The nearly 35,000 views show that he’s doing his best to transition to the digital era.
But that’s not the only thing this spot has going for it Batsh*t-o-Meter-wise. Jim Adler speaks in all caps, which is essential for a high rating. He even yells his phone number the way the average person would yell for help if their kidney was on fire, which definitely earned him a star. Standing on top of a semi obviously scores him huge points, but it isn’t moving, so he falls just short of a perfect rating.
David Komie – An Attorney that Rocks –
Austin-based attorney David Komie lets his guitar do the wailing. He also looks very much like an Austin-based attorney in the sense that he has dreadlocks, seems to be wearing mascara and is maybe trying a bit to hard to be cool.
He gets three stars because he can actually play the guitar, and he plays it loudly.
The only thing holding back his rating is that no matter how much he rocks, he can’t help looking like the best defense he could possibly offer would be, “Your honor, my client is innocent. I know because the weed was mine.”
Connecticut Social Security Attorney Rob Levine TV Commercial – “Red Tape” –
Rob Levine is trying, he really is. Unfortunately, the only actual screaming in his video are the squeals of what is supposed to be a frustrated old lady dealing with Social Security red tape. But this commercial just isn’t wacky enough to get attention – it only has around 500 views.
Perhaps the problem is that this is obviously a TV commercial that Levine threw up on Youtube because somebody told him “You gotta be on Youtube, man!”
Tough Times – Attorney Larry H. Parker Commercial – No Stars
This is another likely made-for-TV spot that’s now passing for a law firm’s content marketing strategy. These guys really need to wake up and realize that they can produce a digital-only spot with a much larger reach at a fraction of the budget of a traditional TV ad.
But that’s not what earned them zero stars. These guys claim to be tough attorneys for tough times, but where’s the screaming? Nobody wants an attorney that uses his indoor voice in an ad, especially if they don’t even have the decency to stand on a truck or stage a rock concert. That seems obvious. More yelling, less telling. That’s the name of the game.
Bryan Wilson, the Texas Law Hawk: Commercial 3 –
The Texas Law Hawk is screaming his way to content marketing success that would make a millionaire out of a professional marketer if they could trap lightning in a bottle the way he did. This video alone has captured almost 1.5 million viewers. His viral videos led to an appearance on Fox News and a nice little post about him at TexasMonthly.com. He’s getting media requests to the point where he is actually trying to charge reporters to be interviewed. True story.
The only reason he only got five stars is because the Batsh*t-o-Meter exploded into a zillion-million shards of happiness when we watched his video. They are undeniably hilarious. It’s probably not a coincidence that the attorney who has best been able to harness the power of content marketing is a recent law school grad. He’s also got a pair of balls that would impress Chuck Norris. This dude threw caution to wind when he put these videos out there. Most attorneys probably would have told him they would ruin his career before it even started.
Wilson is a guy that grew up in the digital generation, and it’s obvious he gets it a lot better than his fellow attorneys.
And he screams. Every. Single. Word.