Do’s and Don’ts of Legal Branding

According to a study by the American Bar Association, people distrust lawyers more than banks, contractors, and doctors. Huh! I wonder if the situation is different in India regarding trust.

No, but the situation is very much similar in India. So, what can be done?
Establish your brand and communicate your values and unique goals. Whatever you will communicate sets your brand identity and authenticity and will go a long way in building a relationship, based on trust, with your exisiting and prospective clients. A robust legal brand can help a firm stand out in a crowded market, attract clients, and build a positive reputation.

Growing competition in the Indian legal market and opening up soon to foreign lawyers/firms are other reasons that call for you to build a brand and relationship with your audience.

Indeed, establishing a brand and client relationship is imperative for developing a successful law firm! Before executing your plan to build your brand, here are a few Do’s and Don’ts, including the best practices you must remember.

Do’s:

1. Do define your target audience: Before you begin any branding efforts, it’s essential to define your target audience. Who are your ideal clients? What types of legal services do they need? Once you clearly identify and understand your target audience, you can tailor your branding efforts to appeal to them.

2. Do maintain a consistent brand identity: Consistency is an essential factor in branding. Your logo, website, social media profiles, colour palette, design style, and other materials should all have a consistent look and feel. This will help build brand recognition and make your firm more memorable.

To implement this, you can also create a brand guidebook containing all the guidelines defining the regular use of the brand elements.

3. Do focus on your USP: What sets your firm or chamber practice apart from the competition? Is it your expertise in a particular area of law? Your commitment to personalized service? Your innovative approach to legal solutions? Whatever your uniqueness is, make sure it is easily noticeable in your branding efforts.

4. Do use language that resonates with your audience: When creating marketing materials or writing content for your website, use language that resonates with your target audience. Avoid using legal jargon or language that might be confusing to non-lawyers. Instead, focus on clear, concise language that speaks directly to your audience.

5. Do maintain a website: In a country where lawyers are not allowed to advertise, maintaining an attractive website is a great move. Your website reflects you as an individual and your firm’s expertise, values, and goals.

6. Build a social media presence: Make sure to create profiles on all the major social media platforms and post regularly so that you stay in touch with your network. Remember, your social media handle is a very personal space. Do not sell your services but add value to your audience’s life by providing valuable information. Creating valuable content can help establish your law firm as an authority in your area of law.

Additionally, you can send email newsletters frequently to your clients or potential clients, which is another way of enhancing your presence.

Do not forget to diversify how you present your content to the audience- written, audio, and visual.

7. Do involve in the community/events: Getting involved in your local and online community can help build your law firm’s reputation and increase brand awareness. Consider attending events pertaining to your practice areas, participating in charity drives, or offering pro bono legal services are a great way to give back to the community.

8. Do stay updated with technology & CLEs: With the rise of artificial intelligence, machine learning and data analytics, law firms can automate tasks, streamline processes and improve their efficiency. Moreover, the lawyers in order to provide better legal advice and serve clients, should maintain their expertise and stay current on changes in law.

9. Do seek feedback: Finally, don’t be afraid to seek feedback from clients and colleagues. This can help you identify areas to improve and adjust your branding strategy.

10. Invest in professional branding: Unless you have a background in branding and design, it’s worth investing in professional branding services. This will ensure your brand looks professional and consistent across all communication channels.

Don’ts:

1. Don’t use generic stock images: Generic stock images can make your law firm look unprofessional and unmemorable. Instead, use high-quality photos that showcase your firm’s unique personality and values.

2. Don’t be afraid to show personality: While professionalism is essential in the legal industry, that doesn’t mean your branding has to be boring. You can always infuse some personality into your branding efforts. This will help your firm stand out from the competition and make it more memorable.

3. Don’t make false claims: Importantly honesty in your branding efforts is essential. Don’t make false claims about your firm’s expertise or experience. This could lead to legal trouble and damage your firm’s reputation.

4. Don’t just copy others: You need to maintain the uniqueness of your brand and not drift away from your branding values and goals. Along with that, keep making the necessary improvements from time to time.

5. Do not measure your growth or popularity with the number of social media followers: In the case of lawyers, it is usually the opposite, and here is why? Because firstly, your clients may hesitate to follow you as they do not want to publicize; in many cases, the legal situations tend to be personal and confidential.

6. Do not expect short-term results: Establishing a brand is an investment that requires your time, energy, and complete involvement. It is just like nurturing a very young child.

Branding is critical to building a successful law firm brand and making it stand out in a competitive market and attract potential clients. A well-crafted brand can communicate a law firm’s values, personality, and strengths, making it more appealing to clients who share those same values. It also helps to build trust, loyalty and credibility with clients. This is particularly important in the legal industry, where clients often seek out lawyers they feel they can trust.

Following the Do’s and Don’ts mentioned above can help you create one that resonates with your audience. Remember to be authentic, consistent, and focused on delivering value to your clients, and you will be on your way to building a successful legal brand.

Congrats! Now you are aware of the do’s and don’ts of legal branding. We hope you found these pointers helpful to your firm’s branding strategy!

If you need support, please feel free to contact us to discuss preparing and executing a positioning and branding strategy that aligns with your goals! If you have specific queries about any of the above procedures, we’re here to help you.

AUTHOR:

Aashi Sharma, Brand Associate (former) at WeYou Partners.

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