Vlog or Blog – What’s The Difference and Who Cares?

Jun 23rd, 2023 | Law Firm Marketing, Legal Marketing in Brief

Video killed the radio star and is on the rampage to fully take over the way we consume content in the future. By now everyone knows what blogging is and most understand its effectiveness. But what in the what is a vlog??

Let’s start with a little background…

After two decades of search engine optimization, most law firms have seen how meaningful and relevant content is crucial to ranking high on the search engines and ultimately creates case inquiries through a firm’s website. Finally, written content is no longer a negotiable marketing tactic and cannot be ignored.

Now, cue video. For years, I have been encouraging or working with law firms to create meaningful, authentic videos for their attorneys and overall marketing. This tactic has been gaining momentum for more than 15 years since the launch of YouTube and can no longer be ignored in a firm’s marketing strategy.

Google may be the number one search browser demanding written content, however, it also owns YouTube which continues to be the second most popular browser and growing especially with Generations Y and Z.

If you plan on attracting the next generations of legal service buyers, then I suggest you create a digital marketing approach with both written and video content included.

So what exactly is a vlog?

In addition to YouTube, you have probably heard of a little thing called TikTok. These are two of the most popular vlogging platforms in the world. Vlogging was born from the availability of smartphones and Internet combined with vlogging platforms like these to give a voice to an entire generation of social media influencers and YouTube stars.

Don’t believe that video and vlogging are game changers for the future of marketing? These statistics for online video and vlog consumption are loud and clear.

  • The average person spends 100 minutes a day watching videos online which amounts to watching 5 billion YouTube videos per day in total.
  • Forrester Research states that one minute of video is worth one point 8 million words.
  • According to Forbes, 59% of executives would rather watch video than read text.
  • According to Hootsuite, YouTube is the second most preferred platform for watching videos for those between the ages of 18 to 34.
  • According to a HubSpot survey on the use of video, 78% of people watch videos online every week, and 55% view online videos every day.
  • As of 2020, 85% of businesses use video as a marketing tool.
  • Cisco, a worldwide leader in IT and a multinational technology conglomerate, reports nearly two-thirds of the global population will have Internet access by 2023. There will be 5.3 billion total Internet users (66 percent of global population) by 2023, up from 3.9 billion (51 percent of global population) in 2018.

If these statistics are not convincing enough, I don’t know what is.

Blog or vlog – what is more effective?

The answer is here: both.

Content in written form is still crucial for online search engine optimization.  The search engine algorithms are built to spider websites and index written content so it can deliver the most recent and relevant information to the searcher.

If you prefer writing, I encourage lawyers to write their content in its traditional form, and then create a quick synopsis of the content in a short video (vlog) using a smartphone or high definition web cam. Video content is easier to share and consume on social media and helps to visually capture your audience while directing viewers to your written blog for more information.

If you prefer to speak or talk over writing, you can record the video blog first and then transcribe it into text for the blog.  Efficiency tip – I use an app called Temi to transcribe my videos into text within a matter of minutes. It’s amazing.

The key was creating any video is to keep it under two minutes. Research finds viewers will hold steady on a video up until the 2-minute mark, and then drop between 2-3 minutes. That said, for more complicated or detailed videos, viewers will hold steady from about 6 to 10 minutes. The point here is to keep it short, sweet, and to the point.

Also, keep your topic bulleted with helpful tips referenced, and authentic delivering your ideas in a storytelling mode. I recommend staying away from script reading if possible as it may come across rehearsed.

As with most video today, make sure you have good lighting, clear communication, and a clear picture to produce the best vlog experience. I suggest using a ring light or find a well-lit area inside your office or home, invest in a high definition webcam for clarity, and consider a separate microphone depending on your webcam’s capabilities. Finally, buy a tripod to give yourself the most favorable angles for your face and stability while shooting your vlog.

Ultimately, vlogging and blogging separately are important and effective marketing tactics every firm should considering implementing. If you’d like to write, then write.  If you prefer speaking, consider a video blog. And if you’re open to both, combine them to get the most traction from your efforts.

Remember, the best marketing is about re-purposing one good idea into different mediums and sending them down different avenues to get the most traction from of your efforts.

We look forward to “seeing” you on video soon.

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