To a layman, the work of a lawyer is little else than a mystery. As is with expertise-driven businesses, it is difficult to explain the complexities of just what a legal or tax consultancy does.
Most people think of lawyers and immediately think of court scenes with dramatic debates and discussions. The reality is probably far from it. Most of a lawyer or legal consultant’s work takes place away from such public situations.
This is why some individuals/small businesses often don’t know where to look when they need legal advice. Either this or they end up looking at huge law firms that might be out of their reach.
Most small legal businesses therefore may face difficulties getting new customers, solely because their reach doesn’t go beyond their immediate networks, powerful as they may be. This is where digital media plays an important role.
How to Increase Online Visibility and New Customers?
As more and more people find themselves browsing on Linkedin and Facebook at least once a day, it is the perfect ground to reach them. But even then, just a digital presence seldom guarantees online visibility. Even though people’s vast networks on these platforms do help spread messages, it still doesn’t demystify what exactly they do, and in what cases someone in the network should reach out to them.
Social media, therefore, makes it easier for legal firms to capitalize on two fronts; to reach out to an existing audience and inform them about what the firm does, and to find a new audience that is interested in the same things on social media as the legal firm.
On social media, interest is shown by what you post, and what discussions you become part of. These two actions if taken up consistently can do a lot of good. Not only can they increase the visibility of a business on social media, but they can also establish the business’ authority on a particular subject.
Discussions on social media
Ultimately discussions take two forms on social media:
- Joining ongoing trending discussions: Social media is all about social. So interacting with other people online through comments on other people’s posts in the feed gets you noticed for your opinions. People see your comment and make opinions about your firm.At the very least if you show people that you like their post by leaving a short comment, it will still guarantee some visibility for your business. Though if you put some thought into it, the simple exercise of putting well thought out comments on relevant trending posts can become very fruitful.
- Posting relevant trending articles: Similarly, if you regularly post trending articles on your consulting page with eg. an analytical remark, it helps establish your authority on that subject, or signals to people what side of an issue you stand on. If you post at a consistent rate (3 times a week for example), people’s trust in your authority on a subject increases.
Back to our point...
Discussion online does wonders for businesses, but how does it benefit a legal firm specifically?
Legal firms can overcome the obstacle of low visibility by talking about their area of expertise on their social media channels.
On channels like Linkedin and Facebook, sharing your opinion on well-researched, popular articles is seen as a way of sharing knowledge, and showing expertise within that field.
This value for expertise-driven businesses such as law firms has been recognized by Linkedin, which allows you to share the most trending articles in your industry along with your short take on it; either endorsing it or sharing your two-cents about it.
Willow goes a step further in offering greater value; With Willow, law firms can find and share content that is particular to their specific industry (eg. corporate law) and their specific customers (small businesses, startups) on all major platforms such as Linkedin, Facebook, and Twitter.
Once a relevant content stream is maintained on the social media channels, prospective customers can recognize the law firm as someone they can trust.
It also removed the cloud of confusion about what sub-categories of law the firm specializes in, and can be contacted about in the future.
Beyond paid advertising on social media, which is costly and therefore not sustainable in the long run, this way of establishing a presence and maintaining a content stream which both informs customers and helps the firm stay on top of their minds is a sustainable strategy for the long term.