Build your brand, reputation, engagement & client base with smart social media for law firms
Through social media, lawyers can extend their reach and create meaningful connections with current and potential clients. With the right approach, social media can personalize a firm’s lawyers as well as educate clients on difficult and sometimes sensitive subjects.
What is the right approach? After two decades of social media marketing for professionals, we’ve discovered the secret sauce: a good mix of content, posted consistently, and designed to further a law firm marketing strategy.
Social media (SM) should act primarily as a reputation builder by showing a firm as an expert in its field. While this basically eliminates silly cat video posts – though those can have a place at times – that does not mean a law firm’s social media should be boring. We can promise that your social media presence we manage won’t be a snooze-fest.
“Look at me!” legal marketing
Social media is a great place to show a more relaxed and sometimes playful side. It is a medium of attitude, likes, shares, and a zillion selfies. It’s vaulted the once-shunned “look at me!” egotistical sentiment to global respectability.
Vanguard’s program of SM management rolls with that philosophy to attract followers online with informative messages that engender engagement and trust in the law firm. At the same time, well-designed posts burnish a firm’s reputation and brand.
How does social media for lawyers help?
In 2022 one of our clients whose social media we manage saw 2,285 website visits coming from social media posts. After we took over social media management for another client in 2022, their Instagram traffic to the website increased 640%. So that’s one way that well-managed social media can help a law firm.
Moreover, social media can enhance and echo larger marketing efforts. Consistency in messaging, values, and imagery across social media, print materials, and other online channels can help increase a firm’s brand recognition and establish trust with clients. By maintaining a consistent and professional look and feel on social media, a law firm can build a strong and recognizable brand, which can help differentiate it from competitors and ultimately attract and retain clients.
Social media mix
But we know that all social media posts should not be self-promotion or linking to your website. Law firms need posts that their audience relates to or that potential clients can benefit from. That kind of social media for lawyers helps build the firm’s reputation as a trusted source of objective information.
So a balance of posts is important. Include in that mix more lighthearted posts, like pictures of a staff get together. Social media is a good way to show legal clients the firm’s personality and how its people interact and have fun.
Highlight a law firm’s employee of the month and other achievements such as a big case win or sponsorship of local events. These kinds of posts help people bond with a firm. A short video of a law firm’s softball team in action shows teamwork, comradery, and egalitarian spirit.
The objective is to be both lawyer like, as in smart and informed, and personable. Existing clients and potential ones are looking for that.
Our guidelines for effective social media for attorneys
- Post with a strategy. This is an overall design for how to achieve social media objectives, and it can vary as needed.
- Measure results and push to increase followers and engagement. If something in the strategy isn’t working, adjust accordingly.
- Follow the rules of the particular platform. For instance, Instagram does not allow links in posts, loading up Facebook posts with hashtags doesn’t work well.
- Post videos, which are arguably the best driver of social media traffic and engagement out there. A one-minute explainer video shot on a smartphone works really well. Don’t sweat production values on social media videos; just shoot it.
- Don’t scrimp on images. High quality photos, charts, illustrations, and infographics bring content to life – and is expected by followers.
- Use the proper tone in copywriting, which can change according to the post. Social media is the place to lighten up a bit.
- Keep posts short, for the most part. The longer the copy, the faster the exit.
- Always have two sets of eyes on a post before publication. Typus can ding a firm’s reputation.
- Feed the newsfeeds regularly. We find that around two or three posts a week on each active platform is the sweet spot: not too little, not too much. And make sure to promote any special events in posts.
- Monitor and respond to comments. This is essential to promote engagement and build followers.
- Post at optimal times for legal practices, which will vary some by platform.
- Consider boosting posts. Sometimes it’s a good idea to pay to “boost” a post’s exposure, which is possible with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn (pricey there). Advertising is also possible on these.
A rundown of players like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter & YouTube
Most law firms already use social media. The American Bar Association’s (ABA’s) TechReport 2022 shows that 89% of law firms surveyed use social media. Here are the ABA’s rankings by percentage of firms that use various platforms:
We don’t recommend that a firm use all platforms or even very many. Three or four should do. And no disrespect to the ABA, but Martindale and Avvo are really lawyer review sites and not so much true social media platforms.
Here’s searchenginejournal.com’s ranking of social media platforms by number of monthly users from #1-10: Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, Pinterest, Reddit, LinkedIn, Twitter.
What’s most popular doesn’t always mean it is the best for a law firm’s messaging and image. Here are our four recommendations.
This one is hugely popular with 2.5 billion users. We recommend going where existing and potential clients are, which is on Facebook. A law firm can earn solid endorsements on Facebook from its client base. Firms can join Facebook groups related to their practice area, post live videos, advertise, and pay to boost posts to extend reach.
Facebook is also a search engine potential clients use to search for attorneys. Firms should want to be on Facebook and look sharp.
Law firms should not ignore the #2 social media platform as well as the #2 search engine (YouTube has more searches than Bing, Yahoo! Ask.com, and AOL combined). Of course, it’s great for sharing videos. And those videos embedded in a firm’s website are viewable on all devices.
Part of Vanguard’s efforts in promoting YouTube for legal clients include first optimizing the firm’s channel and profile with practice links and “about us” information. We organize videos in helpful playlists and optimize each video description for best search engine practices to garner new viewers. YouTube videos are great social media shares.
This professional networking platform is favored by lawyers as a means of gaining referrals and sharing information. Vanguard optimizes a law firm’s LinkedIn profile, including info about the firm, photos, locations, and specialties. We seek new connections by posting info related to the firm’s focus areas, often linking to the firm’s website or external news sources, and mixing it up with photos and in-channel content.
Another highly popular SM platform, Twitter’s beauty is its forced brevity, though that’s a change the new owner is making. Normal users are limited to 280 characters per post: think mini-blog. For $8 a month, Twitter Blue subscribers in the United States can roll out 4,000 characters (about 650 words).
In the world of social media, Vanguard’s services are the ultimate rule of law
Social media is an integral service in Vanguard’s LawMarketLink program of digital marketing for lawyers. Take a look at our legal marketing differentiators:
1. A growth guarantee of 15%-30% in year one.
2. A 29-year track record in meeting the guarantee for doctors.
3. A CEO who’s a law school graduate.
4. We offer not just “SEO,” which can mean different things to different people, but content marketing produced by competent professional writers, who are hard to come across.
5. A turnkey, fully integrated program that includes social media, online reputation management, public/media relations and more.
Think it over then get in touch through the “Let’s talk strategy” button in the footer. We hope to hear from you soon.
In the meantime, connect with us on social media! Our platforms are below.