Social Media for Law Firms 101
Written by Rebecca Barth
Social media isn’t just for kids, celebrities, and influencers. About 72% of U.S. adults are on social media—and most of your competitors have profiles already. However, many law firms still aren’t sure how to build or implement a social media strategy.
In our current environment, where people are increasingly isolated, social media is an essential tool that can help you connect with both your existing and potential clients. You can help them understand your firm’s approach, client experience, and personalities without face-to-face contact, building trust and rapport.
In this article, LaFleur’s social media experts discuss the essentials that every law firm should know. Keep reading to learn more about the power (and responsibilities) associated with a law firm’s social media use.
Social Media Connects You With Your Followers and Clients at Every Stage of Their Journey
Your social media posts should resonate with your readers at every step of their client journey, whether they are looking for a lawyer, just scheduled their initial consultation, or closed their case five years ago. That means your content should inform, entertain, and engage.
Therefore, we suggest posting and sharing a wide variety of content, including:
- Sharing your law firm’s blogs and client success stories
- Educating readers about changes in the law
- Celebrating your team’s achievements and milestones, from winning a case of first impression to sharing pictures from your holiday party
- Highlighting your community engagement
- Posting videos about your law firm and practice areas
You want to provide your followers with the kind of content that they’ll want to like, share, and respond to. If you’re just sharing an occasional blog or legislative update, that’s probably not enough to meaningfully connect with your readers.
Tap Social Media Networks to Increase Brand Awareness
The first step of the client journey is brand awareness. Because of the vast percentage of adults on social media, it is an excellent option for getting your brand out in front of people. You can use social media to boost your brand awareness efforts by:
- Using hashtags to make your content searchable and findable
- Personalizing your profile to stand out
- Posting consistently, so your brand stays top-of-mind
- Tagging and mentioning relevant individuals and organizations
- Posting informative and unique content to become an industry authority
- Facilitating word-of-mouth marketing with profiles and content followers want to mention and share
Social Media Communications Can Nurture Your Leads
Modern legal consumers expect prompt and personalized attention. When a lead or referral source asks a question or leaves a comment on one of your social media profiles, it’s essential that you respond. This personal, prompt communication nurtures your leads, establishing a relationship and building trust.
For example, suppose you share a blog about traumatic brain injuries and bicycle accidents on Facebook. One of your followers mentions that their husband was cycling and got hit when someone ran a stop sign. She notes that he’s been dealing with severe headaches ever since.
Your team quickly responds the comment:
I’m so sorry to hear this! I know you have a lot of questions and concerns right now. The first step is to get an appointment with his doctor. Then, call our office (or direct message us), and we’ll schedule you for a consultation. You need to understand your legal options.
When you make communication seamless and client-focused, your followers will be more likely to convert into clients.
It’s also a good idea to include social media sharing buttons on your blog pages and newsletters. That way, your readers can easily share relevant content with their friends and colleagues. The more you expose a lead to your brand and content, the more likely they are to reach out.
Motivate Clients to Become Social Media Advocates for Your Brand
Word of mouth and peer-to-peer recommendations are still essential for your practice. According to brand advocate expert Rob Fuggetta, 90% of online consumers trust a recommendation from a friend or family member above any other type of advertising or promotion.
Your law firm probably has a group of passionate fans and referral sources already. They could be other professionals, past clients, friends, family, relatives, and employees. A recommendation from one of these third parties may have a significant influence on a potential lead’s decision whether to hire you.
Most potential clients will find a recommendation from a satisfied client, even if it’s not someone they know personally, far more convincing and credible than anything a firm says about itself. But how can you motivate your current and former clients to become brand advocates for your firm?
You can gain social media advocates through organic means and boost their level of advocacy with just a little engagement.
Organic Social Media Advocacy
Organic advocacy relies on your brand’s reputation and the quality of your services. Brand advocates are motivated by the experience they had working with your firm and a desire to help others get a similar level of help.
You can encourage organic advocacy by:
- Going Above and Beyond: Provide memorable, extraordinary services beyond what your clients expect when hiring a law firm.
- Taking a Social Stand: Take a stand on current issues related to your community or practice areas. Give your clients something to engage with that they can be passionate about.
- Giving Back: Taking local cases pro bono or giving back to the community through volunteer efforts will make clients (and others) excited to talk about you.
Engage With Your Brand Advocates
While exceptional service and compelling content can motivate clients to become brand advocates, it sometimes requires a little help. Potential brand advocates will be much more likely to continue championing your brand if you engage with them the first time they reach out.
If they comment or respond to a post, acknowledge them with more than a “like.” Respond even if they didn’t ask a question. Thank them for a compliment, express your appreciation for their loyalty, and confirm that they’re right.
The more you engage with them, the stronger the relationship you’ll build and the deeper their connection to your brand will become. In the future, they’ll be more likely to engage and share your content, allowing you to expand your reach and generate more brand awareness.
Understand Your Bar Association’s Approach to Social Media
Sometimes, social media seems like the Wild West. However, lawyers must comply with their bar association’s advertising guidelines, which are constantly evolving. For example, Florida prohibits law firms from asking their clients to post reviews online. In North Carolina, you can’t offer promotions where you raffle off a prize to someone who likes or shares a post.
If you’re working with a social media partner, they should ensure your compliance. However, if you’re managing your own social media accounts, it’s your responsibility to stay current on the rules.
LaFleur Provides Social Media Marketing Services Tailored for Your Law Firm’s Needs
At LaFleur, we create customized social media marketing strategies that align with your firm’s brand, voice, and goals. Our team consists of legal experts and digital marketing virtuosos with years of legal marketing experience, making us uniquely qualified to handle your firm’s digital marketing needs.
Want to learn more about how digital marketing can benefit your firm? Check out these digital marketing resources designed specifically for law firms. And contact us today at (888) 222-1512 or by filling out our online form for more information.
Fuggetta, R. (2012, August 1). 5 ways to foster fanatical brand advocates. Fast Company. Retrieved from https://www.fastcompany.com/1844281/5-ways-foster-fanatical-brand-advocates
Social media fact sheet. (2019, June 12). Pew Research Center. Retrieved from https://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheet/social-media/