We’re living in the age of social media overload as usage numbers are higher than ever. In fact, half of the entire world’s population is active on social media (Statista). This has created an unparalleled challenge for new and established law firms as they struggle to break through the cluttered social media landscape to engage their audiences.
In a past post, we talked about the social media trends law firms should follow to remain relevant in the current landscape. Along with those trends, here are a few tips to keep in mind when crafting social media posts.
Social Media Tips For Increased Engagement
1. Share Happy and Encouraging Content
Researchers at Cornell University partnered with Facebook to conduct a study on 500,000 users and found that happy social media content is shared faster and wider than sad content.
As a law firm, you should leverage happiness with your social media strategy, because it’s an opportunity to affect the well-being of your target audience. Simultaneously, your brand name reaches further and wider. For instance, amuse followers with your wit or post inspirational achievements (preferably ones that your lawyers have accomplished).
2. Include High-Quality Images or Videos
As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. According to Facebook, a post with a photo makes up 93% of the most engaging posts. Furthermore, Tweets with images receive 150% more retweets than those without and LinkedIn videos earn 3x more engagement than text-only posts.
Video has become a crucial component of social media, while animated gifs and infographics continue to gain attention and provide real value to your followers. Studies show that multiple forms of media capture more attention than text alone, so your post is much more likely to stand out with the right graphic or multimedia attached. In fact, we found in our study of America’s top law firms’ social media usage, The Social Law Firm Index, that video marketing was one of the biggest trends this past year.
To really make your posts stand out, take things a step further by ensuring your images and videos are high quality and tailored to your firm’s branding. If you’re going to use a stock image, edit it using a program like Canva so it has your logo, color, and any brand elements on it. You can also use Canva to create unique videos.
Related: Video Marketing for Law Firms: 10 Techniques That Will Drive Success
3. Understand Length Conventions
No doubt you’ve heard this before, but that’s because it’s good advice. Everyone is busy and our hyper-connected world means people have a lot of demands on their attention. People visiting social media are simply scrolling, they aren’t there to really read long-winded content. The shorter and more concise your post is, the more likely it is to be read. Understand that some platforms are geared toward shorter posts while others are geared toward longer posts. We suggest keeping posts to 100-200 characters on Facebook and 100 for Twitter, while LinkedIn research says 100-250 words is ideal for their posts. Instagram is a media-focused platform, so most of the attention should gravitate towards the media, while the caption should remain short and biteable.
Related: Advanced Social Media Strategies for Law Firms eBook
4. Create Headings That Draw Attention
Your goal is to intrigue your followers right away and “stop the scroll”. Interestingly, the best way to do this varies by social channel. For example, on Facebook, questions tend to get great responses. However on LinkedIn, “How to” headings perform the best. Do some research on every channel and observe the best practices for garnering the most attention for each. Some ideas could be to lead with an interesting question, a captivating statistic, a bold claim, or a fun fact.
5. Incorporate Two-way Communication
Do not treat social media as a broadcast platform for your own agenda. Social media is really about creating conversations. Your law firm’s goal should be to engage with your target audience, not simply talk at them. Try to encourage likes, comments, shares, etc by sharing a real point of view and quality content.
Savvy law firm marketers take things a step further by commenting on posts, joining groups, asking questions and responding, tagging others, and replying to comments on their own posts. To promote engagement, end your posts with a CTA leading the user to like, share, or comment on what they think.
6. Be Authentic
If people take the time to follow your law firm on social media, then they want to engage with your firm, hear what your firm has to say and learn more from your firm. Post consistently, with a genuine voice and point of view. Share your law firm’s personality through your posts. When it comes to following a law firm on social media, audiences are looking for real insights and expertise, along with an understanding of what they stand for. Try to convey these elements in each post.
Related: A Legal Marketer’s Guide to Writing for Social Media
7. Share Educational Content
Simply promoting your firm’s services on social media isn’t going to cut it. In fact, it’ll do the exact opposite of making you stand out. Instead, focus on sharing content that’s educational in nature. Create your own content like blogs, infographics, webinars, ebooks, or videos, and share it with your socials. You can also find insightful articles online from reputable sources and share them on social with your own take on them in the caption.
8. Hop on Trends
Not every trend is going to be tailored for law firms, but you can find a lot of unique ways to connect with your audience on social media by staying up to date on each platform’s trends. For example, TikTok had a trend going around where different professionals shared 10 Things They’d Never Do as an *insert profession like an optometrist, forensics detective, real estate agent, etc. So, many lawyers took their own spin on it by making videos like 10 Things I’d Never Do as a Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer
9. Use Automation and AI Wisely
Law firms will do well to leverage an automation tool like HubSpot so they can schedule their posts in advance. And if you’re ever stuck on a good caption, consider leveraging AI like ChatGPT to help get the ball rolling. (Note: you probably shouldn’t depend on AI to do all the work if you want really quality content but it can help give you a basis for a caption). Also, you can leverage tools like Grammarly to help ensure your grammar is correct or Canva to help you create stand-out images and videos.
10. Draw Inspiration from Non-Legal Accounts
The legal industry can be notoriously slow at picking up on new trends and leveraging them. It’s great to get some inspiration from accounts in the legal industry, but consider drawing inspo from those outside the legal industry as well. Take some time to scroll on social media, explore pages or follow interesting accounts and see how they’re leveraging various platforms.
11. Have Strong Branding
Cohesive branding on your social media pages is a great way to make your page look professional and stand out. Create a set of brand guidelines that go over a color theme(s), font, voice, writing style, and any design elements you may use like borders or shapes. Leverage these branded elements in everything you do across platforms.
12. Vary Content Types
Try to vary the type of content you post. Most platforms have platform-specific post types that you can try out like Instagram Reels, LinkedIn Newsletters, or Twitter threads.
13. Promote Your Firm’s Personality
Take opportunities to share your firm’s culture and values. Post about your lawyers, post about relevant holidays that are important to you, or share content from events.
Tip: use this Social Media Holidays Calendar to find relevant holidays to post about.
14. Write in the Second Person
Writing in the second person is a great way to get the reader involved in a more personal way by speaking directly to them.
These tips are a good place to start in refining your social media strategy to get more attention in a crowded space. It’s always a good idea to review what your competitors are doing, too. Take inspiration from their great ideas, and see what is resonating with their audience.
Do you need help engaging your audience and driving real business results through social media? Our social media offerings can be customized to your law firm’s needs and realities. In addition to social media management, we offer social media consulting and training for our clients. Contact us today for a free consultation.
This post has been edited and republished from Dec. 7, 2020.