Social Media for Lawyers: Best Practices for Law Firm Marketing
As a lawyer, there’s an expectation that your communication skills are top-notch. But how do you measure up when it comes to marketing your law firm on social media?
It would be a mistake to overlook social networks when promoting your law firm. After all, most of your competition is already there. According to the American Bar Association’s latest Legal Technology Survey, 89% of law firms use social media to market their practices. But the idea of creating posts, sharing other’s content, liking responses, and monitoring results might seem overwhelming. Some lawyers even avoid it completely because of this.
Here’s why you shouldn’t ignore social networks, some of the platforms that deserve your attention, and a list of social media best practices for lawyers to keep you on the right track.
How Your Law Firm Can Benefit From Social Media
Social media is one of the cornerstones of an effective digital marketing strategy for law firms. Since consumers are most likely to turn to the internet for answers to legal questions and to find a lawyer, your firm wants to be where they are. Often, that’s on social sites. Here are several ways your law firm can benefit from social media marketing.
Builds Brand Awareness
Social media allows your law firm to build brand awareness through ongoing posts and comments. As more people become familiar with your firm’s name, they’ll be more likely to reach out to you or recommend you first when a need arises.
Boosts Credibility and Trust
Because social media is a two-way conversation, it allows your law firm to establish credibility and trust with consumers. It can do this by answering questions and opening up social profiles to reviews and testimonials from real clients.
Improves Client Service
According to one North American survey, slow response time is the leading deterrent to hiring an attorney. Social media gives you another platform with which to communicate with potential clients and learn more about ways you better serve your target audience.
Enhances Marketing Efforts
While Google says social media isn’t by itself a ranking factor, it does help. How? When your firm’s name receives mentions on their social media profiles, Google amplifies and ranks that content higher.
Provides Lead Generation
Just over half (52%) of U.S. attorneys use social media to generate leads, according to one ABA survey. When it comes to leads, social media can truly shine in terms of adding links and action buttons and taking advantage of social media ads.
Social Media for Lawyers — Which Platforms To Use
There are hundreds of social media platforms out there. But it only makes sense to focus your efforts on a select few of them that will help your law firm engage with its audience.
Facebook is one of the most effective social media platforms for law firms, with more than 3 billion active monthly users. No matter what your legal practice areas are, you’ll be able to connect with your target audience here.
According to the ABA, LinkedIn remains one of the leading social media networks for law firms, with 87% having a presence there. Many lawyers use LinkedIn to connect with other lawyers, which can be an excellent source of referrals. LinkedIn can also be incredibly useful if your target audience is other professionals.
Twitter, aka “X,” isn’t used by nearly as many law firms as the other three platforms mentioned. But it still works well for some firms for branding purposes and creating some meaningful industry connections.
Social Media Best Practices for Lawyers
If you want to take full advantage of what social media can deliver for your law firm, you have to approach your marketing the right way. Here are some social media best practices for lawyers that will help you get the most out of these platforms.
1. Understand Your Ideal Client
It might seem obvious, but this is a good starting point. Make sure you are targeting the right demographic on social media platforms. Specifically, you should understand your target audience’s basic demographic profile and most common legal challenges. What do they care most about?
2. Create a Clear Social Media Policy
Every law firm should have clear and concise social media policies and processes. These will outline things like:
- Who has access to the social media accounts
- Who is responsible for posting content
- How often new posts get published
- How negative feedback is handled
3. Establish Your Social Media Marketing Goals
Before you begin, you should also have a social media strategy in place that includes your goals for each platform you plan to use. What does your firm hope to accomplish through social media? Some of the short and long-term goals law firms establish include increasing website visits, building brand awareness, and gaining more clients.
4. Post a Variety of Engaging Content
Plan what type of content you’ll post to your law firm’s social media accounts. To get the best results, you should post consistently and change it up by sharing a variety of engaging content that includes:
- Original content you create related to your practice areas
- Shared relevant content from other respected pages like Avvo, Nolo, and Lawyers.com
- Video content that explains legal concepts
- Posts conveying your firm’s brand and personality
- Images and infographics that tell a story, share statistics, or answer questions.
When posting on social media, focus on including images as much as possible. LinkedIn reports that posts including images get twice as many comments as those without.
5. Position Yourself as an Authority
Being viewed as an authority in your practice area can build trust between your firm and potential clients. It can also set you up for more professional referrals. It will take time, but you can use your social platforms to position yourself as someone worthy of trust and respect.
6. Interact With Your Audience
Social media is not a one-way conversation. It will never work for your law firm if you post content and hope for the best. You’ll get the best results when you invest the time and resources to have an interactive presence on social sites. This might involve:
- Answering general legal questions within reason
- Sharing and commenting on other’s posts
- Participating in conversations about legal trends
- Networking with other professionals on your state and bar association pages and attorney networking groups like Martindale-Avvo
- Thanking clients for leaving feedback and responding to feedback promptly and professionally
- Inviting commenters to contact you privately for a free consultation
7. Consider Paid Social Media Ads
Another thing you may wish to consider is creating paid social media ads on some platforms, like Facebook. Over 10 million active advertisers use Facebook ads. That’s a lot of competition. However, you can tailor your ads so only your target audience sees them. This is another excellent way to harness the power of social media to drive more traffic to your website.
8. Closely Track Your Results
A social media strategy won’t be complete without capitalizing on the data available to your law firm. All social media platforms offer free analytics, giving you detailed insights into where your visitors are coming from and how they’re engaging with your content. Compare your results with the goals you established for your social media marketing efforts. Use this information to figure out how you can improve your efforts moving forward.
Does Your Law Firm’s Social Media Strategy Need Help?
If you want to remain competitive, having a strong social media presence is a must. By focusing on these best practices, you can begin connecting with existing and potential clients on various social platforms to grow your business.
Does your law firm’s social media strategy need help? We’d be happy to support your efforts. Contact Martindale-Avvo to find out how we can help you develop a winning social media presence that works for your law firm.