Social media is a profound marketing tool. It allows you to engage with your audience, establish a voice for your brand, and even generate leads.
Social media is popular in the legal industry; in fact, 76% of law firms maintain an online presence. Social media can help legal firms to keep in contact with clients and prospects, review competitor activity, and stay up-to-date with industry trends. Furthermore, it can act as a bridge to connect your target audience to the legal services that fit their specific needs.
However, social media in the legal space can be tricky to execute. It’s typically easier to post about a tangible product as opposed to a service; especially a service that isn’t attractive to begin with. To elevate your digital strategy, we’ve illustrated some techniques that can help your legal firm use social media in an effective way.
Set Reachable Goals
Set goals and work to meet (and exceed) them. When you start a social media initiative, it can be intimidating – you want to reach prospects, but you don’t want to sound promotional. By defining SMART goals you will set your legal firm in the right direction for success. For instance, rather than setting a goal to increase your social media followers, re-frame your goal to “increase the LinkedIn follower count by 15% over the next 50 days.” This goal is measurable and very specific to one account, number and time frame. Your legal firm will benefit from a social media strategy that is mapped out from the start.
Stay Consistent to Your Brand
Social media is a visual representation of your brand. It highlights your brand every time you tweet, pin, share, and post. Therefore, you must keep your brand consistent in every marketing channel – whether it’s on social media platforms or your website. This will help give current clients and future prospects the right perception of your brand. Start by using the same colors and images on your website as you do on social media platforms. This will initially help viewers to distinguish your brand among the rest.
Additionally, you should make sure that every image on social media is the correct size for each platform. Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter all have different dimension requirements, so be sure to spend time making these correct to optimize the image viewers see. By relaying your brand image through every channel, you will tell the most accurate visual story to your viewers.
Curate Suitable Content
Social media is an inexpensive (or free) way to reach your target audience. While pictures appeal to viewers, content resonates with them. In the legal space, it is important to stay professional, yet approachable. You want viewers to grasp your expertise in the field, while feeling like they can share their specific legal needs with you. Therefore, focus on your audience first and foremost; your brand and messaging will support it. For instance, if you learn that legal prospects are searching for content based on commercial law, focus your content on this area. This will provide your audience with content that they find valuable and will build your credibility at the same time.
Another way to ensure that your content is suitable for social is to create brand guidelines for all of your content. Setting a standard for messaging will help your brand to remain consistent and safe across platforms. For instance, if there are words in the legal space that are not compliant, be sure to make this clear in your guide. Many times, there will be multiple content writers for one legal firm. If you work to unify the voice of the brand, it will be easier for viewers to understand your firm and gain the right message every time.
Choose the Right Platforms
Not every social media platform will be ideal for your legal firm. It’s important to identify the key social platforms for your firm early on so that you can focus your efforts in the right place. We’ve broken down the top social media platforms to help you with your decision.
- LinkedIn – 57% of law firms use LinkedIn. It is a useful platform to network and highlight your firm’s experience. Create a company page for your legal firm, add your banner and logo, and share relevant articles and news. With over 73% of lawyers using LinkedIn, they can be an ideal referral source for your legal firm and endorse the work you do.
- Facebook – 35% of law firms are active on Facebook. This platform is great for sharing cultural and professional content (videos, company photos, industry events, etc.). Create a business page and engage with your audience. People can start discussions on your posts, which will give you even more insight into the needs and insights of your follower base.
- Twitter – 21% of law firms utilize Twitter. While this number is lower than others, it can still benefit your firm. It is a great tool to network in real-time and learn about your competition. Start by creating an account and follow clients, lawyers and other professional influencers. You can re-tweet these groups to show your interest in their content, while also sharing your own educational posts.
- Google+ - Only 10% of law firms use Google+, but don’t let that keep you from looking further into the platform. Since Google+ is a service of Google, it can be helpful with your SEO strategy. Every time someone searches something in Google, the chance that your post will be indexed on Google increases. Write a summary of your firm and connect with clients and prospects in your local area.
With these social media platforms (and more) available to your firm, find which you’d like to focus on the most. They are great channels to provide a quick touch-point with your audience, review your competition, and stay relevant in the industry.
Social media can build up your legal firm’s digital presence. Rather than relying solely on word-of-mouth and local reputation, use social media to reach new standards. It is a great tool to educate and engage, and at the same time, build a following. With the right objectives, consistent brand image, and focused efforts, you can execute a successful social media strategy for your company.
Your legal firm could be one post away from a new follower, and potentially, a new client.