Can a Lawyer Advertise on Social Media? All About Social Media for Law Firms
Digital marketing, and especially social media, has become the most profitable marketing medium for businesses of all shapes and sizes.
There are now over 8 million active advertisers on Facebook (one of the best social media platforms for local advertising), with the majority of them being small to medium-sized businesses marketing their services to billions of active users on a daily basis.
Missing out on the digital zeitgeist can be a deciding factor in a company failing to live up to its potential — but can we say the same when it comes to law firms and attorneys?
Here’s all you need to know about social media marketing for attorneys, including how to create a solid campaign strategy and social network for lawyers, and how to leverage the medium to your advantage, no matter the size and scope of your practice!
Should law firms be on social media?
First things first, let’s answer one of the biggest questions law firms might have when approaching digital marketing for the first time: Are they even allowed to advertise what they do on social media?
The answer is a resounding yes!
Law firms and solo practices can have social media accounts and advertise their services on a number of popular platforms to attract new leads and foster brand awareness in your local community, like any other business can.
In a way, lawyers and social media make for the perfect team: Your goal is to be engaged in the local community as much as you can, and there’s no better place to join the conversation and find your next client than social media!
What are the advantages for law firms using social media?
If you’ve been avoiding jumping on the social media bandwagon for quite some time, seeing the many benefits of social media for lawyers might have you change your mind once and for all.
Social media is the gateway to better community engagement, better customer service, better reputations, and ultimately, better leads.
Let’s break it all down:
Social media can get you discovered
Social media has become the biggest driver of brand awareness, helping you get discovered by your community and target audience more easily.
In the digital age, social media presence becomes the first stage of your funnel: As your audience finds your law firms on Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin, you can use the opportunity to direct these potential clients to your website and services, boosting your chance of successful lead acquisition.
Social media helps build your authority
Social media can also help lawyers and firms build their online (and as an extension, offline) authority in their field.
Whatever your specific niche might be, from criminal law to copyright and beyond, you can use social media as yet another platform to project your expertise on, showing your target audience why you’re the right attorney or firm to work with. You can build authority by creating informative posts that will resonate with your clients, presenting case studies, sharing your best reviews, and even sharing your take on the latest policies of your legal niche.
Social media gets you new clients
Finally, we come to what is arguably the biggest benefit of creating a social media presence as a legal professional: Lead acquisition.
New clients are what make any business succeed and grow, and you can easily leverage the digital market to not only drive more potential clients to your practice but also effectively convert them.
According to a 2018 ABA survey, as many as 42% of small firms can attribute gaining new clients to the lead acquisition power of social media alone!
How many law firms use social media?
With so many valuable benefits offered to all types of professionals, social media marketing is truly a force to be reckoned with — and law firms from all around the country are taking notice.
According to the latest ABA survey, while less than half of law firms of all sizes have a marketing budget allocated for both social media and traditional marketing, 97% of bigger firms report having an internal marketing staff dealing with social media and SEO tasks.
In fact, the overwhelming majority of firms and individual lawyers do nurture some level of online presence through social media, with as many as 81% of respondents saying that social media marketing is an integral part of their marketing strategy.
The three most popular mediums for legal professionals are, in order of use, Linkedin, Facebook, and Twitter.
Surprisingly enough, however, most of the lawyers and firms who participated in the survey admitted to not feeling confident about their social media marketing strategies and digital output.
Enlisting the help of an agency or a freelance social media law expert seems to be one of the most popular courses of action for firms that do not feel equipped to navigate the challenges and pressures of social media marketing.
How do I market my law firm on Facebook and other platforms?
Harnessing the power of digital media, lawyers can unlock all the advantages that come from a strong online presence and daily engagement, so it’s not surprising that many professionals choose to enlist the help of external experts.
But while getting in touch with the experts can help you make the most out of your social media presence and save you plenty of time in the process, there are certainly smaller firms and individual attorneys that would benefit from a crash course on how to tackle the basics of social media marketing themselves.
So, what do you need to know to get your social media journey started?
Here are some of the essential steps you’re recommended to take when constructing your first social media marketing strategy, whether you’re looking to advertise your practice on Facebook, Twitter, or any other popular social media for law firms:
Social Media Audit
The first step should be to take a closer look at your current digital presence, examining all the social media platforms you’re already using and identifying what you’re doing right just as much as what you’re doing wrong.
Of course, you might not have any social media presence at all, and in that case, you’ll definitely benefit from diving deep into research and examining what your biggest competitors are doing on their platforms.
Auditing your existing social media efforts requires a fair bit of knowledge on what makes for engaging and lead-generating content, plus quite a lot of objectivity, so leaving this first step to the experts might be a better way of setting the wheels in motion!
Define Social Media Marketing Plan
Next, you’ll want to start thinking about what your social media output is going to look like, creating a curated social media strategy to address all your main goals: Brand awareness, lead generation, and conversion.
Building your plan is all about doing your competitor research, picking out the features that will work for your audience and practice the most, and planning how exactly you’re going to deliver them in engaging bites.
The type of content you’ll be creating should always follow your long-term and short-term goals as a guide: If your main objective is to boost your following and improve brand awareness for your practice, for example, it’d make sense to focus on high-value, informative posts about your field — along with a solid paid advertising strategy.
Create or Improve Social Media Accounts
It’s time to create your professional social media account or focus on the platform you wish to use for marketing and improve it to fit your goals!
When you’ve identified what type of content will resonate the most with your audience and drive the results you’re looking for, you’ll want to plan a schedule to start posting and engaging with your chosen platform consistently.
It might be tempting to just leave the copywriting and posting to whenever you feel like you have time to dedicate to social media, but not coming up with a precise schedule will make consistency a lot harder.
Settle on a consistent frequency of content for each week and stick to it as much as you can: Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, and all the other most popular platforms will always reward the users who engage with the platform the most!
Generate Social Media Ideas & Topics
Once you have identified when you’re going to publish your content and what general type of content you’re going to write, you’ll be faced with the hardest challenge of the journey: Figuring out what, exactly, you’re going to be creating!
Informative blogs and in-depth case studies about your practice will always perform well on Linkedin, as long as you’re using the right hashtags and jumping onto viral topics of discussion.
If Facebook is your main medium, you’ll generally want to focus on sharing news stories that are related to your field and adding your expertise to the conversation, along with paid advertising to make your account in front of the right people: Your local community.
There are thousands of ways you can create engaging content, so with a little trial and error, you’ll soon find what will work for you and your practice!
Test, Evaluate & Adjust
Finally, you’ll want to evaluate how your strategy is paying off, taking a good look at your analytics to determine if your engagement rates, following, and website clicks are heading toward the direction you’re anticipating.
Once again, trial and error is key: Keep notice of what is working well and what is not, and double down on the good stuff for your next campaign!
So, do lawyers need social media?
Social media is not going away anytime soon, and it’s clear that its importance will just continue rising as time goes on — not engaging with this valuable marketing medium now might just be the downfall of many law firms!
So, what’s stopping you from launching or revising your social media presence?
Whether you’re new to this medium entirely or you’ve already delved deep into the world of social media for lawyers, you can take this brief guide as the sign you were waiting for!