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How Podcasting Can Help Your Law Practice (It’s Not What You Think)

Stephen Seckler


  • Podcasting is not a big lead-generation tool, at least not directly.
  • Podcasting is a way to deepen relationships with other professionals and grow your network.
  • Figure out your voice and understand who you are trying to reach.
How Podcasting Can Help Your Law Practice (It’s Not What You Think)
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Earlier this month, my podcast hit a new milestone. Counsel to Counsel has now been downloaded over 20,000 times. While I am proud of this number and I know that podcasting has been helpful in building my brand, it is important to keep this in perspective. Podcasting is not a big lead-generation tool for me, at least not directly.

But there are many reasons why I plan to continue producing new episodes for a long time to come and many reasons why I believe that podcasting can be a worthwhile endeavor for many lawyers.

In this article, I would like to share some of my observations about podcasting and suggest why you might want to consider producing your own podcast. I will not delve too deeply into the mechanics of producing a podcast (there are many articles already written about that). But I’m happy to talk to anyone who is considering a launch.

Understand Your Target Audience

According to the website PodcastInsights, as of a year ago, there were more than 2 million podcasts in existence with more than 48 million episodes to download. Clearly, there is a lot of competition for our attention, and starting a podcast doesn’t guarantee that anyone is listening. But if you are looking for a way to create content that targets a micro audience and you enjoy interviewing people, keep reading.

The barriers to starting a podcast are very low. With a decent laptop, a very inexpensive subscription to a podcasting host (I use Libsyn), and less than $400 worth of equipment (a good microphone, headphones, microphone stand, and mixer), you can be in business in a day. There are free tools for recording (I use Zencastr, but Zoom works, too) and free tools for mixing and editing your recordings (I use Audacity).

The largest cost of podcasting is really your own time. So, if your law practice is busy enough, you might want to outsource the production and focus on the practice of law. For the time being, I’m happy to do my own production, in part because it forces me to listen to the interviews again.

Four Reasons Why I Continue to Produce Counsel to Counsel

There are four reasons I love having my own podcast. I’m listing them in order of importance.

  1. I Love to Interview People

    For me, the greatest value of having a podcast is that I get to interview people who know more about a subject than I do. In my 80-plus episodes, I’ve spoken with guests about social media, legal marketing, time management, going in-house, career success strategies in a law firm, leadership, executive coaching, selling legal services, alternative legal careers, attorney well-being, mindfulness, retirement, financial planning, lateral moves, going solo, building your network, and interviewing skills.

    Each one of these interviews has given me a chance to deepen my understanding of a subject. I like to refer to Counsel to Counsel as Steve Seckler University. I always choose topics that interest me, and I always choose guests who are willing to teach me something new.

    I’ve always loved learning in this way. From the earliest age, I can remember asking my parents a lot of questions. Back in those days, sometimes the answer was “go look it up in the encyclopedia.” But as the son of academics, a desire to learn has always been deeply embedded in my DNA, so I was never short on things I wanted to learn.

    If you host your own podcast, you have the chance to learn something new from your clients, your referral sources, and other professionals. These are people who can make you a better lawyer and help you understand the problems that your clients face.

  2. Podcasting Is a Way to Deepen My Relationships with Other Professionals and Grow My Network

    When I meet a professionals who serve some of the same clients, inviting them to be on Counsel to Counsel is a way to get to know them better and a way to build our relationship. Spending time interviewing other professionals helps me understand ways that I can be of help to them and that they can be of help to me. It is also a way to stay on people’s radar.

    While the medium has been around for more than a decade, most people that I invite still think of it as a novel way for them to get exposure. If I meet someone through ProVisors (my business networking group) or through any other professional or personal activity, the first step in getting to know them might be to invite them to coffee (in person or virtual). During that conversation, if it seems like they could be a good guest (i.e., because they have something to teach me that might be of interest to my audience), I ask if they would be willing to be interviewed.

    I explain that there is very little preparation and that they can use it as marketing collateral for their own business (e.g., if they need to market for their work.) Most people I speak to say yes. This gives me a chance to speak to them a third time (I usually book the interviews a month or two after our coffee—sometimes more).

  3. Podcast Interviews Are Resources That I Can Share My Clients

    Now that I have been producing Counsel to Counsel for four years, I have a good library of resources that I can share with my coaching clients. If I am working with an attorney on increasing his or her marketing visibility, I might share an interview I’ve done about social media or other types of legal marketing. If a client is thinking about an in-house career, I share several interviews I’ve done with in-house counsel. In short, I have resources to share with my clients, particularly “evergreen content” that doesn’t go stale.

    Professional writing can serve some of the same purpose. Matt Yospin, a solo IP lawyer in the Boston area, has done a great job of creating written content that he shares when he gets inquiries about trademark, copyright, and other generic IP issues. It saves him a lot of time in responding to the many inquiries he gets (many from people who will never become clients).

    But everyone has different preferences. Podcasts are portable, and you can listen to them while commuting, chopping vegetables for dinner, or taking a walk. So having a library of articles and podcast episodes is a way for you to quickly educate your clients on a subject (or answer common questions you get from your clients).

  4. Podcasts Can Be a Lead Generation Tool

    Putting a podcast out into the world is also a way to generate some leads for my coaching business. Over the last four years, I’ve had several lawyers tell me during an initial consultation that they have listened to a number of episodes and that is why they reached out. But it is not a tool that generates a lot of leads, so I’ve listed this last.

    One reason why podcasts help with lead generation is that hearing your voice creates more familiarity. People feel like they have a better sense of who you are when they hear you speaking rather than just reading what you have written. People hire lawyers whom they know, like, and trust. Hearing your voice is a way to demonstrate that you are likable and trustworthy. (Video can also be very powerful in that way.)

    Podcasting has also generated leads for me because doing a regular podcast is a way for me to remind individuals in my network (particularly people I am connected to on LinkedIn) that I exist. Writing and speaking do this as well. But people subscribe to podcasts, so anyone who is a subscriber gets reminded twice a month about my services.

    Finally, having a podcast provides me with marketing collateral to send to people after I have done a free consultation (i.e., I send them a link to an interview on a topic that relates to why they might want to work with a coach). This can help reinforce why I might be the right person to help them.

Miscellaneous Tips for Podcasting Success

Podcasting can be a pretty large time commitment. If you have more money than time, consider hiring a producer who can edit your interviews, create show notes, and help you promote the podcast once it has been released. Here are some other tips to help you be successful.

  1. Only launch a podcast if you like interviewing people. There are many ways to market yourself. I always tell my clients to choose those activities that they enjoy (i.e., activities you enjoy that will help you build your reputation and referral relationships). Don’t start a podcast just because you think you “should”!
  2. Choose a niche that targets the clients or referral sources you want to reach. Most podcasts have relatively small audiences, but if you find the “right” community of listeners, you don’t need a big following to get value. I know a corporate lawyer who several years ago created a podcast to interview owners of craft breweries. She actually got a new client after only three episodes.
  3. Be consistent. The best podcasts are produced at regular intervals so that they can build their audience. I do Counsel to Counsel twice a month and release episodes on Sundays. While you don’t have to commit to twice a month, once a quarter or randomly is not likely to be often enough to keep your audience engaged.
  4. Podcasting is a medium that works best in short format. Aim to keep your episodes no more than 30 to 45 minutes long. Create a part 1 and part 2 if you have a lot of content.
  5. Figure out your voice and understand who you are trying to reach. I try to sprinkle humor into my podcasts, but I don’t go overboard. I’m also not afraid to mix a little politics into my interviews. (See my article “Building Your Business Relationships Through Religion, Politics, and Humor” that appeared in the February 2022 issue of GPSolo eReport.) I figure anyone who appreciates my sense of humor or agrees with me politically is more likely to be a good client.

Podcasting has been a labor of love for me since 2018. In college, I really enjoyed anchoring the news on my campus radio station. But since that time (almost 40 years ago), I had not been behind a microphone to do anything similar. Podcasting brought me back to that passion.

The Internet has truly democratized the creation and dissemination of marketing content. It has never been easier to get your message out. But that also means that it has never been harder to break through the noise and reach the audience you want to reach (whether it is through phone calls, Zoom, email, publishing, public speaking, or now, podcasting).

So, think carefully about whether podcasting is for you. It could be that your time is better spent sitting on a nonprofit board, taking your contacts to sporting events, playing golf with them, or being active in a trade association.

But if you like learning, if you are looking for a way to deepen your relationships with professionals in your network, and if you enjoy interviewing people, give it a try. The barriers to entry are low, and you can see if it is right for you. As always, I welcome your inquiries to discuss.