Following on from my recent blog, this post is a case study looking at social media for law firms and the ways I can support them in their social media management.
A local law practice approached me requesting “help with social media”. They had an existing presence on both Facebook and Twitter, but that was as far as they had ventured. Knowing they could make more use of social media but unsure how to do it, they were open to suggestions. As they had no dedicated marketing department, the responsibility for the upkeep of their profiles had passed from one hand to another. The result of this was no clear branding and no distinct tone of voice. In the past, posting had been ad hoc, depending upon workloads and other time pressures. Everyone had better things to do than spend valuable fee-earning time on social media!
Social Media for law firms – steps to success
The first step in getting them social media savvy, was to analyse all existing profiles. What was working and what needed a few tweaks? An hour’s discussion allowed us to decide what they wanted their social media to achieve. We came up with a list of goals and then decided which to focus on. (far better to concentrate on three, than the overwhelm of too many!) For this practice, their priorities were:
- To increase brand awareness in their geographical location and surrounding area.
- An increase in engagement with their local community.
- To showcase their various specialisms.
From this, I was able to create a strategy,and a content plan of what we would post and when. Previous content consisted of posts promoting their services and were quite one dimensional. I now included a “spotlight” feature, introducing individual team members. This showcased the “human side” of the practice, helping to build trust amongst their audience. We also added bite-size chunks of information, reposts from other local businesses and even some humourous posts … because even lawyers have a sense of humour!
A few minor adjustments would ensure their branding was clear and recognisable across all platforms. This consistency was paramount in ensuring they were recognisable, wherever they appeared online. We had discussed their brand “tone of voice” and decided on how best to be professional, whilst still approachable to their audience.
The second step involved looking at their followers and who they were following. We looked at increasing both engagement and reach by posting relevant and consistent content and ensuring the practice commented and engaged as much as possible.
Blog and video
A blog page was set up on their website, allowing them to post a monthly blog. This simple step has resulted in footfall to their website increasing . A rota was set up, sharing responsibility for blog writing. This also gave variety to the content of the posts – trainees were able to write about “My first year”, and more experienced practitioners could post on recent legislative changes. So far, there has only been one “slot” which was late!)
The great thing about this firm has been their approach to the change that social media has brought. From very little social media presence, this practice has embraced the opportunities that social media has presented and been keen to show that they are a modern, forward-thinking practice. Nothing has demonstrated this more than their adoption of video as part of their content marketing!
Social Media for law firms … and action!
When I suggested this, there were, to be honest, a few raised eyebrows. Yet, a day with a videographer, resulted in a very professional introduction to the firm. Short video bios of key team members embedded into blog posts meant a rich source of content for their social media channels.
At this stage, we also discussed creating a YouTube channel. (I admit, a radical step in social media for law firms, but do remember that Google owns YouTube and so, any content will impact on search engine rankings)
Step by step, a practice before reticent in the use of social media was seeing results!
As a way to increase local interest, they started organising regular after-hours seminars. This was great as a way of increasing brand awareness, footfall to their website and social media profiles and gaining them a few new clients. A total win-win situation!
Social Media for law firms – the work continues
Work with this practice continues. They are now much more social media savvy and appreciate the important place that social media holds in their marketing plan. They have discovered that not all content works, but what is important is that they remain fluid and flexible in their planning and content.