Social media is no longer just a place to keep up with friends and family, it’s a tool for businesses to sell, market, and connect with current and potential clients. As a law firm in 2019, you might be asking yourself, “Do I need to be on social media? Is legal marketing relevant for social platforms?”
The answer is most definitely, yes! If you intend to be competitive in 2020 or 2023, the answer is absolutely.
According to Instagram, 80% of users follow at least one business. That is a huge opportunity on one platform alone for you to obtain new clients and increase brand awareness! Imagine how much your business could benefit from being present on all major social platforms.
Now the real question is: what’s the best way for lawyers to use social media marketing?
We get it — law is a serious subject. It’s going to take more than talking about your law firm’s practice areas and case results to grow a genuine following. So, we put together the top five strategies law firms use for social media marketing and which one we think gets it right.
5 Social Media Legal Marketing Strategies
5. The Ghost
This type of law firm social media personality has a “barely there” presence. They post infrequently, and when they do, it’s often dull or not engaging. The law firm may even pay a person or company to post news articles every week to their accounts, which doesn’t sound bad in theory. However, these articles are often too intense for the average user to enjoy. Seriously, who would “like” a disturbing shared article about devastating injuries in a local car accident?
This social media personality may have low engagement–for example, not many comments or likes, and likely no increase in followers. In the social media world, consistency is ideal to grow a following. If you do not adhere to a regular schedule, you can confuse readers and potentially lose them. Unless you are Gerry Spence or of highly established presence, you can’t expect your number of followers to continually rise if you post now and then, or only upload negative content.
Does it work?: Sharing outside content is beneficial, but it should not be the only thing you do. Also, create an upload schedule and stick to it! There are multiple social media scheduling platforms out there, such as: HeyOrca, Hootsuite, and Buffer.
4. The Funny Firm
Not a bad approach per se, we all love some humor and relatability from businesses we see online. This law firm uploads daily and adds high entertainment value. Their growth will likely increase quickly due to the high volume of engaging content output, however, there is little opportunity to discuss matters that are important to the law firm.
This type of social personality is great for branding and standing out in a sea of dull legal content, but if your goal is to enhance discussion on issues or gain potential clients, humor alone can be detrimental. There is a possibility you could alienate potential clients or worse, offend people. Not great for your brand image!
Does it work?: A little sprinkle of humor can really make you stand out, but be cautious and consider any negative implications that could arise from the content. It might make it hard for your followers to take you seriously when you need them to.
3. The Promoter
This law firm social media personality is like a walking ad. They will upload one to three times per week with all content being promotions and nonstop calls-to-action. They offer little-to-no value to the audience, and friends or family make up most of their followers. They wonder why no growth is happening.
It’s true — businesses can benefit from occasional promotions on social media. However, most people do not go on social platforms directly looking for a lawyer, so keep the selling to a minimum.
Does it work?: A rule of thumb for businesses is to keep self-promotion to 10% of what they post. In other words, one in ten posts can be advertising. This way, if a potential client happens to stumble upon your social media, they will get engaging content first but also know you are available for hire.
2. The FaceTimer
This law firm is not afraid of being real and a little TMI. They treat their business account like it’s their personal one, often sharing private subject matter, family events, and opinions. They’re not focused on being professional or perfect, and most likely speak to the camera with bad angles and a casual tone.
This social media personality will gain a lot of genuine followers for their openness. However, when it comes to talking about their business, it can come off staged because they haven’t established their credibility. They may struggle to gain leads or followers interested in what they do as a law firm.
Does it work?: Being open and personable is a great way to increase loyal followers, just make sure to keep it professional. Keep in mind who you are trying to target. If you wouldn’t want a business contact knowing personal details of your life, consider leaving it out.
1. The Perfect PH Balance
This law firm is not too hot and not too cold. They understand the audience wants a mix of everything: personable content, serious news articles, the occasional self-promotion, and firm updates. They upload around two times per week, and all content is well selected. Engagement received is genuine and followers do not jump ship.
This firm also understands the importance of sharing involvement in the community as a way of strengthening brand awareness. A whopping 69 percent of people ages 18-44 say they would hire attorneys who are active on social media, so representing yourself in a trustworthy manner is vital.
Does it work?: Of all the ways for lawyers to use social media marketing, we think this one is the most effective. This strategy is ideal; they encompass all the good elements and don’t go overboard on one single tactic. Law firms seeking to brand themselves online should take note!
Need help with your social media?
Do any of these social media personalities sound like you? We hope you are
The Perfect PH Balance, but if not, good news! It’s never too late to change your style. Social media marketing for law firms can be tricky, and that’s why we want to help you find the right strategy that works for your goals.
A savvy firm will understand that a bit of everything is needed to grow a well-rounded online presence. Not only is varying content important, but timing, consistency, and engaging with the audience all help your law firm succeed in the social media world.