The first lawyer I ever freelanced for invited me to his office for an initial meeting.
It was a modest production — just him and a receptionist buried under dark wood furniture and leather bound law books.
He paced the conference room while I sipped a cup of tea, expressing his frustrations and difficulties in finding clients. He finally turned to me and said:
“Look, I went to law school, not business school. I wanted to be a lawyer. I wanted to help people. I don’t know anything about the business end of all this, but it’s become pretty clear to me that I need to figure it out. Fast.”
That was my first job, but over the years I’ve heard a variation of that sentiment from dozens of lawyers trying to keep their small practices afloat, or push the limits and expand their business.
Not enough time.
Not enough money.
Not enough resources.
Frankly: don’t know where to start.
It’s true — these people went to law school, not business school. They might own the courtroom, but they’ve barely heard of Google Analytics or Facebook Retargeting Ads.
They know that they need to do something to get the phone ringing, but they don’t know what.
The bad news — there are a lot of “somethings” that you can do in the hopes of generating business. And there are a lot of people who will charge an obscene amount of money to run some ads and make you feel like that something is working.
And that’s overwhelming. It makes it hard to know who to trust, and where to start.
The good news — now more than ever, there are opportunities to get your name out there, educate people, and connect with your community. AND you don’t have to spend a fortune to do it.
So how do you do it?
Social media is the way of the future for all kinds of different industries, and law is no different.
Here are 10 reasons why you should invest in social media for your law firm in 2019.
#1: You Don’t Have to Be the Only Referral Source
Tired of the partners being the only referral sources for your firm?
Looking for a way to get your associates and staff members involved in networking and spreading the word about your firm?
Social media is a great place to start.
Your lawyers and staff can build their own following on social media and start to make connections. If they create a page on Facebook and post to it consistently, they will begin to establish a following. They already have connected with most of their friends on social media. This allows them to gently remind their friends that they are available for legal work. If anyone in this audience is ever in need of legal services, guess who will be at the top of their mind?
This is a great way to leverage personal branding and turn it into clientele.
#2: Less Spent on Advertising
One of the great things about platforms like Facebook and Instagram are their ability to get organic reach. Yes, the sites are designed to gear people towards paying for ads, but organic reach is still alive and well in 2019.
If you can reach your audience for free on social media, you won’t have to spend as much money on advertising. This frees up your firm to put those funds to use elsewhere.
#3: Connect With Your Clients Where They Are
At the start of the second quarter of 2019, Facebook had 2.41 billion monthly active users.
1 billion people use Instagram each month.
330 million people use Twitter each month.
Pretty safe to guess that your ideal clients are on social media.
If you already know what has your client’s attention — why not meet them there? Whether you are posting organically or using paid ads, you’ll be sure to reach your ideal client on social media.
#4: Connect With Your Community
People and businesses alike are using social media. Creating a profile for your firm gives you the opportunity to directly connect with the people and businesses in your community.
You can come up with some really unique and fun collaborations with local businesses to enrich both your law firm as well as your community.
#5: Be More Approachable
Who would you make an appointment with — a doctor who barely comes up in a Google search, or this guy?
People connect with people. People hire people.
Using Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, etc. to inform the public about the law and show off your personality puts you in a position to make that personal connection. When it comes time to hire a lawyer, your firm will be top of mind.
You won’t only connect with potential clients online, but other businesses and colleagues as well.
Social media platforms such as LinkedIn are particularly helpful in allowing professionals to network and connect. These people can become great referral sources if you nurture these online relationships.
#7: Inform the Public
Attorneys are stewards of knowledge.
Many are afraid that if they share this knowledge freely, they will become obsolete.
But the opposite is actually true.
We live in an age of quick information at our fingertips. We are used to having our questions answered by typing a few words into the Google search bar. But the public is suffering now from information overload. They need help to cut through the noise and understand the information they have found.
Hoarding your knowledge will not impress potential clients. Sharing it in a simple, honest way will.
Of course, there are ethical implications of sharing information about law on the internet. You need to make sure that you comply with your state bar’s guidelines and protect client-attorney confidentiality.
But giving general information to the public will position you as a thought leader and expert in your industry, and will make people want to hire you.
#8: Make Your Business Accessible
You want to create as little friction as possible for your clients to find you, contact you, and hire you.
Facebook pages for business make it easy for potential clients to DM or call your office. They also provide information about your website, your business address, and more.
Sharing this information about your business will build consumer trust and make clients feel confident about hiring you.
#9: Tailor to Fit Your Needs
One of the great things about social media is that you can build an audience even if you don’t spend a lot of money.
Social media platforms have both paid and organic options for businesses. This means that you can spend as much or as little as you want on these platforms.
Don’t want to spend a lot of money, and have some time to tinker around with your profiles? Take the organic route, post consistently, and watch your audience grow.
Have the money for more? Sponsor posts, create custom audiences, and build ads to reach thousands of people on social.
You can really tailor social media to fit your firm’s changing needs.
#10: It’s Measurable
Ok, all of this is great, but how do you know that it’s working?
Social media platforms have analytics built in for those using brand or business pages.
You can actually see metrics such as:
- Age, gender, and popular times online for your audience.
- Which of your posts perform the best.
- Trends in follows and likes.
- How much reach your posts and videos get.
- Ad analytics.
Analyzing these metrics can help you determine what is working, as well as what you need to improve. You won’t be taking shots in the dark — you will have real analytics to help you make the best decisions for your business.
What’s Holding You Back?
These are just a few of the many reasons why there is so much to gain from a social media presence for your law firm.
If you were previously skeptical about jumping on the social media bandwagon for business, I hope this article helped you see its merits. And if you’re still not sure how or where to start, I’d love to help. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me where you’re stuck. Together we can find the right solution for your firm and get you started.