More and more law firms are branding themselves on social media. A recent My Case study found that 57% of law firms maintain a LinkedIn presence, 35% can be found on Facebook and 21% are actively using Twitter.
But what about Instagram? Turns out the app wasn’t even included in the survey, begging the question: why are law firms off the map when it comes to social media’s fastest-growing platform?
Perhaps there’s a disconnect between The Powers That Be at law firms and Instagram’s younger demographic, with more than 75% of users under age 35. Or maybe it’s the perception that Instagram is reserved for sunsets, skylines and swimsuits that is keeping law firms away.
Regardless, firms intent on branding themselves around their community, their culture and their clients are missing a golden opportunity to tap into a base of users that’s 700 million strong – and growing.
Instagram’s audience may skew younger, but the millennials of today are the clients (and employees) of tomorrow, making the platform fertile ground for building a brand online.
Here are three areas where every law firm should be focusing as they plan their Instagram debut:
Potential hires – and clients – want to know that a firm is cultivating a strong corporate culture. Company outings, philanthropy, holiday celebrations, birthdays, office design and firm achievements offer moments that are tailor-made for Instagram. Have fun with it by getting firm members engaged. At Schwartz Media Strategies, we’ve launched an #SMSStrong hashtag to highlight the personal accomplishments of our employees outside the office – from climbing Machu Picchu to helping disadvantaged children in Guatemala.
Law firms large and small boast about being ingrained in their communities when courting new business and potential hires, and Instagram offers a blank canvas for illustrating just that. From spotlighting a firm’s support for a local nonprofit, to posting about the best place to grab a business lunch in a specific neighborhood, Instagram allows law firms to brand themselves in line with their locale.
Firms are sensitive about promoting their clients, and in some cases may be contractually prohibited from doing so. But in the event a client’s work is public, Instagram presents an opportunity to align a firm’s brand with the types of casework it knows best. Maybe it’s a real estate practice showing off beautiful renderings of a client’s development or an environmental practice spotlighting a remediation project. Both examples underscore how a simple image can sharpen the way clients, referral sources and consumers perceive a firm’s strengths.
Compelling visuals are a powerful branding tool for any business, making Instagram a cost-effective and creative platform for strengthening and communicating a firm’s character.