As a lawyer, it can be difficult to strike a balance between being professional and appearing approachable to both new and current clients. Luckily, it’s possible to do both with social media: it’s the perfect way to have control over your image, while also promoting your services and making yourself available to the public.
Here are some reasons all lawyers should be on social media, as well as a few tips for making your presence on the platforms the best it can be.
Reason 1: It Builds Brand Awareness (and Gets You New Clients on the Way)
Sometimes it can feel like there are all these great potential clients out in the world, but you just can’t reach them! Since there are 4.20 billion social media users worldwide, a number which only continues to increase, that’s a pretty vast pool of possible clients just waiting for you. To add to this, 54% of consumers said that they would hire a lawyer who is active on social media.
These numbers don’t lie: social media is a global phenomenon, and one of the best ways to get your name out there in the current market.
Since all it takes to be active on social media is downloading an app or two on your phone and getting your first post out, it truly is one of the easiest ways to spread the word about the amazing work you do. Once that word is spread, you’ll be able to build trust with your followers (or even those who casually navigate to your profile while looking for a lawyer), making them more likely to contact you when they need legal assistance.
This being said, it’s not as simple as someone just seeing you on social media and wanting to hire you as their lawyer immediately: it can take time to build trust with both your followers and casual viewers of your profile. At the end of the day, however, it’s better to have a social media presence than not, as you are even more visible and available to your current and prospective clients.
As many people feel overwhelmed by where to start when looking for a lawyer, showing that you’re open for business to the mass of social media users in your market is only a good thing for you and your law firm. In fact, social media might even be the first place many younger people go when looking to hire a new service, so having your law firm on there means you are automatically considered.
- Make use of paid ads! It’s possible to target your exact client niche on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Getting social media ads just right can be difficult, so it’s worth it working with a digital marketing agency (like TechWyse) to really take your paid social media presence to the next level.
- Video is a great way to show your face to the world, and it just so happens to be the current most popular form of social media post! Yes, video is having a huge moment, so there’s no better time than the present to leverage it to boost your brand awareness and perhaps bring in some new clients. Video is available across pretty much all social media platforms now, from Twitter to LinkedIn, so there’s no excuse not to use it!
Reason 2: It Allows You to Engage With Conversations Online
Using social media to get your name out there to build brand awareness and attract new clients is important, but it’s also a great way to listen in on the conversations that are being had online, and connect with members of your community to understand what their needs are and how you can help them.
Social media platforms make it easy to determine the conversations that are being had in your community and how you can participate in them in a way that benefits all involved. Participating in these conversations in a productive way allows even more people to see who you and your law firm really are. As a result, they are more likely to have a positive association with your brand.
Social media is also a great way to know what exactly is being said about you and your law firm online. This means you can get ahead of any potential client issues, or provide excellent customer care in situations where clients are praising you. Social media platforms make it easy to search for specific terms and learn exactly what the conversation around those terms is. The truth is, ignorance isn’t bliss when it comes to how your law firm is being spoken about — and being on social media means you are always aware of what those conversations are.
“Listening in” on these conversations doesn’t mean that you are spying on your clients or those who are speaking about you! In fact, it has become common practice for brands to engage directly with users when they are mentioned, albeit in a friendly, careful way. Remember: anything you say online or on social media exists forever, even if it’s deleted.
- Utilize LinkedIn to get referrals from other lawyers. Connecting and engaging with other lawyers and their content on the platform will allow them to become familiar with you and your practice. Then, when they are approached by a client who doesn’t specifically suit their area of expertise, they might refer you instead. It’s a win-win situation for all parties involved: you get a new client and a new contact, the client gets their needs met, and the other lawyer knows they will be able to rely on you in the future (I mean, you owe them one)! Because you engaged with this lawyer or their content on LinkedIn, you were able to make a connection you wouldn’t have otherwise.
- Take time to respond to any comments or queries you receive on your profiles. You should have a strategy in place so that whoever manages your law firms social media profiles knows exactly how to respond to both positive and negative comments — there’s nothing worse than a social media manager going off script and representing your business in an unprofessional way! When done correctly, this type of customer interaction is highly profitable, and can even earn you new clients. More than just turning negative situations around, this is about demonstrating your firm’s level of professionalism and responsibility to their clients.
Reason 3: It Establishes You as a Thought Leader
Social media is a great way to demonstrate your expertise and knowledge in your field. Maintaining a regular presence on one (or more!) platform will allow you to show the world what you know, while also giving potential clients a taste of who you are — and what you can offer them.
Establishing yourself as a thought leader within your industry means others will see you as an authority, or the go-to person for specific topics. This means those people are also more likely to approach if they need to hire a lawyer. This type of social media posting may, at first, feel like bragging, but it should be an essential component of your social media strategy: think of it as offering a taste of the benefits you could offer your audience if they were to hire you.
This being said, thought leadership doesn’t necessarily need to be about mentioning all your skills and accomplishments. Instead, it is a way of providing valuable information to your audience that they can use to learn about something new, or expand their knowledge on a specific subject. Using social media to display your thought leadership provides values to both your audience and you, as it helps your reputation, and provides an outlet for displaying all your hard work.
- Instagram is a great platform for posting shareable, educational graphics that your audience will want to send to friends or post in their stories. This will expand your audience, and get new social media users intrigued about what you and your brand have to offer. In addition, you can use social media to highlight your employees and the amazing work they do: this shows that everyone working at your firm is an expert in their field, and that your law firm has a supportive environment.
- Sharing and curating other lawyers’ posts is another great way to demonstrate your thought leadership. This means that you are constantly engaging with social media, and staying up to date with what others in your industry are posting on. These days it’s not enough to simply use social media to post your own content – users want to see that you spend time on your social media platforms engaging with other posters’ content as well.
Get Your Law Firm on Social Media Today
The truth is, there’s a whole world waiting for you on social media, and the possibilities are truly endless. Creating a social media strategy is a great way to ensure that you approach your law firm’s social media presence as intelligently as possible. It’s also a great idea to test out platforms you aren’t extremely familiar with before launching your business on them, just to get a feel for how they work and how users engage with them.
Check out more of our digital marketing blogs written just for lawyers here.