The Family Lawyer Brand
As a business owner, I have always been interested in branding. I felt that branding was important in building up a business. No one was talking about branding for law firms then.
In 2019, I came across a young man who was speaking about branding in the social media space. I connected with him and he was the catalyst for my branding journey.
To stand out in the business world, branding is essential. It helps the consumers to know about the business, then the volume of business grows and revenue increases. Looking at well-known brands, I felt branding was about enhancing the law firm’s name.
Behind a law firm, there is the business owner. Knowing more about him, his personality and the values he stands for strengthens the business. So, the focus is on the personal branding.
One of the common places to establish personal branding is on social media channels. Just tap into LinkedIn and you will see many lawyers and law firms sharing their brand through frequent content creation. Content creation is not about sharing the cases we have handled, the accolades we have won or promotions and appointments we have received. It is sharing about ourselves, our personal values and our views about our areas of practice.
People learn more about us and our work through what we write in these platforms. We become thought leaders. I have learnt a lot through the regular posts of many international lawyers who are outstanding thought leaders. Being an active contributor on social media is not about being a brag or seeking popularity. Creating regular meaningful content is hard work. Social media influencers are different from thought leaders.
Through personal branding on social media, I have also created a large network of contacts. Like-minded entrepreneurs not only became friends but have also shared selflessly many ideas and knowledge on becoming effective and successful business owners with me.
Social media platforms are also good places for business referrals. Many of us have paid for advertisements in social media platforms in addition to traditional mainstream platforms. Not only are these advertisement campaigns expensive, they become ineffective after some time.
If a lawyer decides to do personal branding, consider engaging a personal branding coach.
There are many in Singapore. Speak to a few and work with a coach who is able to help you to understand who you are, your values and your passion. He will guide you on how to find your inner voice and articulate your views. He will be able to analyse your posts and give you tips on how to write effective posts. Writing posts on social media is very different from the usual legal writing we do every day.
Do not be shy to share about yourself, your feelings, views and snippets of your life. It took me a long time to understand that people are actually very interested in the life of lawyers. Share interesting pictures with your stories. I found that the hardest to do. Visitors to your page identify with a person better through photographs.
Develop a social media content plan. Identify themes and plan your stories (posts) weekly. Many lawyers post daily. I find that posting three times a week is not only sustainable but keeps you engaging and more visible in the ever changing social media algorithms.
If your practice area or an issue you are passionate about is raised in the traditional media, write a post promptly to ride on the currency of the news.
I started off posting on Facebook. I then moved to LinkedIn, which I find is more relevant as the visitors are mostly professionals. Nowadays, I write on my LinkedIn page and repost it on Facebook which also gets posted on Instagram automatically.
It does take time for the posts to be read, given a “like” by visitors and for comments to start coming in. Posting on social media is a habit and like all habits consistency and persistency is important. Your personal brand will be built over time and you will have your friends, colleagues and prospective clients commenting that they are following you on social media and find value in following you. My 17-year-old nephew living overseas commented on Instagram that he finds my stories interesting. I have continuous prospective clients who reach out to me for legal advice after following me on social media.
You may feel that you are not good at writing or no one would read your posts. It took me a long time to learn to write for social media. My coach used to critique that my posts are musings or good-feel stories. With time, you will see that you stop writing like a lawyer and start speaking from the heart and engaging with the readers.
Personal branding posts are not the same as the social posts or diary posts that we often see on Facebook or Instagram. It is content which speaks about you, the lawyer and your values. Light-hearted and fun posts showing very personal and humorous sides of you can be shared in Facebook stories or reels.
After building a presence in social media for four years, I feel I have grown more as a person, my thoughts have become clearer and my writing is sharper.
One major lesson I have learnt is that a clear mind exudes positivity and I have become a happier person and an effective lawyer.
Do follow me on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. My handle is rajanchettiar.