The Advertising Truth Will Set You Free (Part B)

Misleading, Suggestive, and Just Plain Dumb

There was another case of attorneys playing dirty with their lawyer advertising over in Indiana. These attorneys ran 4 TV ads from a national marketing firm, depicting fictional insurance adjusters in a conference room. The adjusters proclaimed that the auto accident case they were involved in had to be settled just because the two attorneys were on the plaintiff's side.

Now just stop and think about the absurd message they're sending: "Insurance companies will settle your case just at the mere mention of our names!" The idiocy doesn't stop here...the commercials also featured actor Robert Vaughn, famous for his lead role in The Man from U.N.C.L.E. TV series.

While not all state Bar associations ban celebrities from advertising, it was found misleading and unethical to use a well-known actor saying the tagline, "Tell the insurance companies you mean business." There's no way to determine whether an insurance company ever settled a case just because they heard Lawyer X is on the plaintiff's side. The use of Vaughn also packed a second punch when the court found his endorsement violated the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct.

It's interesting to note that these weren't the only 2 attorneys to use the Vaughn footage in their commercial. It came from a national marketing firm that apparently churned out stock TV ads for law firms across the country in the mid-90s. I saw some of these on TV in Fayetteville, N.C. and Vaughn's involvement in the stock footage is even referenced on his Wikipedia page.

A Basic Rule of Truth to Govern Your Legal Marketing

When developing a new piece of lawyer advertising, you need to be aware of the message you're sending. Take a look at any claims or statements your words are making and ask yourself, "Can I prove this?" If you say you have trial experience, you better be able to show cases which yes, did make it to trial. Claiming "million-dollar settlements" should come with the ability to prove which cases settled for amounts equal to or above the one million mark.

It's not just your state Bar association, or a court investigation that may require you to prove validity to your legal marketing statements. Sometimes curious clients will see your lawyer advertising and wonder if your claims of experience and certification are really true. If you get a client like this sitting in your office, you need to be ready to back up your ads with solid proof.

At Great Legal Marketing, we focus on helping lawyers create ethical, outside-the-box legal marketing strategies. When your lawyer advertising methods work from the start, there's no reason to use misleading information to drum up business! So how do you get started? Get a FREE report and CD from legal marketing guru, Ben Glass.

Ben Glass will teach you how to: stop marketing like every other lawyer on the block; grow the kind of practice you can be proud of; and still get home in time for dinner. Contact us today - 703-591-9829.

Ben Glass
Ben is a nationally recognized expert in attorney marketing and the owner of Great Legal Marketing.