If you’re an attorney with a busy practice, you may not see the value in social media marketing for law firms. You already have a website that is updated regularly and pulls in decent traffic. You also have a solid Google Business listing. It took a while for your law firm to appear on the first page of search results, but you’re finally there.
It’s completely understandable if you think that social media for law firms is a waste of time or even inappropriate. Do you really want your law firm’s posts to show up in feeds next to cat videos and vacation photos? Actually, the answer to those questions is an enthusiastic, “Yes!” Please bear with us while we explain why social media is an important addition to your overall digital marketing strategy.
Why Social Media for Lawyers is Important
There are two very good reasons why your law firm needs a presence on social media:
- That is where your client base spends their time and attention these days. Pew Research’s latest Social Media Fact Sheet provides valuable insight into American’s social media habits. The survey shows us that social media is used across all demographics in the U.S. And, most Americans are accessing their favorite platforms every single day.
- Social media puts your law firm’s name in front of potential clients before they have a need for your services. When people come to your website, it’s usually for one of two reasons. It’s either because they’ve done a Google search for “car accident attorney near me,” or they’ve looked you up based on a recommendation from a family member or friend. In other words, they need an attorney and they need one now.
There are a number of social media sites out there, and it seems like new ones are popping up all the time. How do you know which platforms provide the best social media for lawyers? Research shows that there are three social media platforms that stand out from the rest.
Effective Social Media Marketing for Law Firms
You don’t have the time or money to waste on pointless or ineffective social media posts. Knowing which platforms to target is the first step in creating your social media campaign. Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter are where lawyers want to be.
Facebook reigns supreme in the social media landscape. Its users are a cross-section of the population in all demographics: age, race, education level, income, and gender. And, 70% of Facebook users say that they are on the platform daily. Facebook is the second most accessed social media platform, coming in only after YouTube.
Facebook is extremely flexible when it comes to the content that your law firm can post. Short posts, long posts, video, photos, and links all have their place. In addition, your Facebook page’s “About” section gives readers easy access to your office location, phone number, and website.
A Law Firm That Makes the Most of Facebook
For an example of a law firm that is making the most of Facebook, we can look to Michigan-based The Sam Bernstein Law Firm. This personal injury law firm does more than advertise on Facebook. For example, at Thanksgiving time, they asked Facebook users, “Who do you want to thank?” As a result of their genuine engagement, their page has 34,400+ followers.
The Sam Bernstein Law Firm also makes a point to post timely and seasonal topics. In the fall, they post about hunting accidents. And in the winter, they discuss slips-and-falls on ice. The law firm also uses Facebook to talk about their community involvement and volunteer work, which ensures that they are a household name in the greater Detroit area.
Since 2018, more adult Americans have been on YouTube than any other social media platform, at 81%. And just like Facebook, YouTube users are a good representation of the general public. People do tend to log onto YouTube a little less than Facebook: 54% of users watch videos daily while another 29% tune in weekly.
YouTube is unique in that you can only post videos on the platform. It cannot accommodate text-only posts or still photos. Videos have the advantage of bringing to life the personality and overall feel of your law firm. YouTube is also one of the best places for client testimonials. Seeing and hearing a client talk about your firm can lend more credibility than a written review. We explore this more in our post on video marketing for law firms.
A personal injury attorney that isn’t camera shy
Justin Ziegler is a Florida personal injury attorney with a thriving YouTube channel. His channel “JZ Helps” has 6.79K subscribers and 1,700,000+ views. His success can be credited to his eye-catching thumbnails, SEO-rich video titles, and detailed storytelling. Attorney Ziegler also boosts his credibility by featuring clients who are happy with their settlements.
Twitter skews towards younger, higher-income earners. For example, only 7% of people aged 65 and older say that they use Twitter. You likely won’t reach the diversity of people that you could on Facebook or YouTube. However, Twitter has some unique strong points that make it a good choice for social media for lawyers.
First and foremost, Twitter has an urgent, “real-time” feel to it. Nothing on social media comes close to the frenzy of comments and retweets on a trending Twitter topic. Your law firm will gain exposure and name recognition when you weigh in on breaking news.
Secondly, Twitter was made for short and sweet content. The word limit on a tweet is just 280 characters. You don’t have to have a lot to say when you post here. In fact, a tweet can be as simple as a few lines from your latest blog post, along with a link. Be sure to post photos and videos, too, as Twitter users love visual content.
A law firm with pitch-perfect tweets
It’s really no surprise that global law firm DLA Piper has 41.1K Twitter followers. Every tweet has a video or photo, appropriate hashtags, and relevant tagging. DLA Piper also tweets several times a day, which is key to Twitter success. Most social media experts agree that the average tweet’s lifespan is only about 15-20 minutes.
Make Social Media Part of Your Marketing Toolbox
A tweet or video could never replace the authority and professionalism of your law firm’s website. However, as part of a holistic strategy, it can make your firm “real”, and likeable. You can learn more about SEO for law firms in our definitive guide if you are still trying to master that portion of your strategy.