·  Legal News, Analysis, & Commentary


How Should Law Firms Use Social Media?

— November 10, 2020

Good KPIs are essential if you want to grow your business without losing balance anyway – without metrics, it’s next to impossible to determine if you’re close to meeting your goals in a sustainable manner. 

Businesses of all types are using social media as a way of enhancing their marketing. Like most marketing, social media can:

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Increase website traffic
  • Help you find new clients
  • Help you get repeat business from past clients

Your law firm needs to use social media in order to keep up in the current marketing landscape. You might be new to social media, or looking to grow your social media following. Either way, there’s a lot of information to cover. Let’s dive in:

Choosing Your Platforms

Using social media effectively means creating and disseminating high-quality content. Different types of content fare better on different platforms; images, for example, tend to do very well on Instagram, while primarily text-based posts and blogs can perform very well on LinkedIn.

There are a couple of ways of determining which platforms you’ll want to focus on, especially if you’re just starting out. A good place to begin is to make a listing of what goals you’re trying to achieve. LinkedIn is a social platform that clients are likely to use if they’re actively looking for an attorney – you might focus your efforts there if you’re trying to increase traffic and find new clients.

On the other hand, LinkedIn has a far less active user base than Instagram or Facebook, so you might be limiting your reach. When your goal is to create brand awareness, those platforms might be a better fit. 

It’s important to know that you can crosspost across various platforms simultaneously using tools like IFTTT. That said, you might find more success by targeting your posts to specific platforms, instead.

Choosing Content

There’s a vast array of useful legal content that you can create – exactly what information you share will depend heavily, of course, on your specialty. Take for example attorney Jesse Bright’s YouTube video on DWI Checkpoints in North Carolina. This video was widely shared – content like this can help drive clients to your firm. Of course, a video like that would be of almost no use to a law firm that deals primarily in tax law.

Infographics are a particularly useful form of content for law firms – they allow you to take rather complex legal concepts and boil them down to readily digestible, shareable information. To use an example that might be a bit gauche, you could do an infographic about the potential health consequences of mesothelioma from exposure to asbestos. 

Infographic content tends to do very well on Instagram because of that platform’s visual focus. Even when you’re writing blogs for sharing on LinkedIn and Facebook, you should always include at least one image – content with images tends to outperform text-only content.

There are all kinds of other content you can promote – short videos of your law firm at charitable events, live tweets of your thoughts on Supreme Court rulings – anything that you think provides valuable information that could increase your reach. We’ll talk about how you know what content is worth creating in a moment.

Trends and Hashtags

How deep you want to go down the rabbit hole of trends and hashtags depends a bit on how you’re branding your law firm. A hyper-professional firm looking to acquire high-end business clients probably won’t benefit as much from posting TikTok staff dance videos (especially not if TikTok is banned by the time you read this).

TikTok open on an iPhone. Image via Max Pixel. Public domain.

That said, the careful use of hashtags can expand your reach. Two guidelines to keep in mind when using hashtags:

  • Don’t use too many (8-10 is usually fine)
  • Don’t be too generic (#lawyer is too broad), nor too specific (#bestohioattorney is something no one is looking up on Instagram).

You can check how many posts are using a particular hashtag simply by typing it into the search bar. The fact that you can use a number of different hashtags on your posts allows you to choose some broader hashtags, and some more specific hashtags. You’re basically casting a variety of different nets to find different types of social media users.

Use Analytics

Social media marketing (and web marketing in general) is a game of big data. The more you post, and the more you track your posts, the better you’ll be at finding what works and narrowing down your content. That will mean less effort spent creating content that doesn’t perform well, and better performance from the content you do create.

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn all have analytics baked into them. You can also use a wide variety of social listening tools and paid analytic tools. These tools won’t just help you hone which content performs best – you can also determine at what time you should post that content to get the best results, as well as what types of users are engaging with what kinds of content (and when).

This data can become incredibly granular, so it’s important you have your KPIs well-fleshed out, and that you know exactly what you want out of your various marketing campaigns. Good KPIs are essential if you want to grow your business without losing balance anyway – without metrics, it’s next to impossible to determine if you’re close to meeting your goals in a sustainable manner. 

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