At Scorpion, we understand that it took a lot of work to start your law firm. From getting legal experience under your belt to establishing your entity, opening your firm’s doors is no small feat. After all of this hard work, the last thing we want to see is for your firm to suffer because you didn’t take the steps to build your brand.
A brand is essentially the collection of perceptions that your clients have about your legal services. It can also refer to the promise made to clients that set their expectations of your firm. A strong brand will raise awareness about your firm and attract potential clients, which is the ultimate goal of most firms’ marketing efforts. In other words, A law firm’s brand is its story told using technology, messaging, and creativity. Telling the story to the right audience is instrumental to an effective law firm branding strategy.
So what makes up a brand? We thought you’d never ask. A law firm’s brand conveys its values, purpose, and unique identity to its target audience through these strategic elements:
- Visual Identity: A brand’s visual elements, such as logos, colors, typography, and design style, play a crucial role in telling a law firm’s story. These visual elements are carefully crafted to evoke specific emotions, create associations, and communicate the essence of the brand. For example, a law firm may use a sophisticated and corporate-looking logo with a formal color palette to convey its commitment to professionalism.
- Messaging: Through taglines, slogans, mission statements, and other content, a law firm can articulate its story. The messaging should clearly define the law firm’s values, mission, and unique selling points. It provides a narrative that resonates with the target audience and helps them understand the firm’s purpose and what sets it apart from competitors.
- Voice: The tone, language, and style of communication used by a law firm contribute to its storytelling. Whether it’s formal and authoritative or casual and friendly, the brand voice should align with the desired perception and target audience. A consistent and well-defined brand voice across all communication channels helps shape the narrative and reinforce the law firm’s story.
- Client Experience: Every interaction a client has with the law firm, from the website design to the customer service, contributes to the narrative. Consistently delivering on the brand promise and providing exceptional experiences that align with the brand story helps build a strong connection with the audience.
- Brand Associations: Over time, a law firm’s brand develops associations with certain values, emotions, and experiences in the audience’s minds. For example, a law firm that consistently emphasizes its commitment to justice, fairness, and protecting clients’ rights builds a story around trust, advocacy, and positive outcomes.
- Brand Reputation: A law firm’s brand reputation is built through its actions, performance, and client feedback. A positive reputation reinforces the brand’s story, while negative experiences or inconsistent messaging can undermine it.
Building your brand will help potential clients recognize and remember you, and it will also help set your firm apart from the competition. Other benefits of building your law firm brand include:
- Increasing business value
- Increasing recognition
- Generating new leads
- Retaining existing clients
- Building trust and loyalty with clients
Now that you know what should make up your law firm’s brand, here are four ways to boost your brand presence so that you’re appealing to the right clients.
Four Steps to Build a Powerful Law Firm Brand
- Research: There is a lot that goes into creating a law firm brand. It begins with researching competitors, the target audience, and, importantly, the law firm itself.By first looking inward at the law firm’s offerings, mission, purpose, and values, a story will develop. This could mean asking some tough questions about the firm and its attorneys, such as:
- What motivates us?
- What makes us different?
- How do our clients feel about the service we provide?
- How do we make a difference in our clients’ lives or their businesses?
Use client feedback from surveys, reviews, testimonials, emails, and internal discussions to answer these questions. Including a diverse representation of internal stakeholders in the process ensures a complete and accurate law firm story is developed. A competitive analysis provides a review of competitors’ marketing tactics — especially what works and what doesn’t in both their branding and their overall service.
- Target Audience: Identify the people the law firm wants to reach with its branding to ensure the messaging is tailored for them and that they are receiving it. Chances are, the target audience is the persona of the law firm’s ideal client, though it can also be recruits or media. Using the research from No. 1 above, list the target audience’s characteristics, such as legal needs, age, gender, profession, location, and income level.
- Develop the Brand: The brand encompasses the visual and written messaging that reflects the law firm’s story. The law firm’s logo is one of the most visible elements of a brand identity. The color palette and typography work together to convey the desired perceptions the firm wants its audience to have about it. Meanwhile, the messaging supports the logo and other visuals to further communicate the firm’s story and unique selling points. This could be a tagline, slogan, mission statement, or firm history. The messaging also comes through in the law firm’s content marketing strategy, as every thought leadership piece or firm news shared should further articulate the firm’s brand.
- Sharing: Anywhere the law firm or its people go, so too should its branding. This includes the website, social media, advertising, brochures, in-person presentations and meetings, videos, etc. Branding must be implemented consistently across all channels and touchpoints. Creating a consistent and positive brand experience is vital in shaping the audience’s perception and building brand identity and loyalty.
- Develop key relationships with clients and leverage them: Your law firm’s brand is only as strong as your relationships with clients. Make sure that your communication is prompt, thorough, and professional. When you have developed these strong relationships, you can leverage them to garner more reviews and testimonials. Many of your future clients will still find you through word of mouth, so your firm’s branding should be so strong that your clients want to tell their friends.
An effective law firm brand strategy must be nurtured and managed. This includes using analytics and feedback to be consistent or to pivot to reflect changes within the firm’s story or offerings. Just as firms develop and grow, so will their brand strategies.
Scorpion’s legal marketing services will help you create and manage the assets you need to build your firm’s brand and attract new leads. Contact us today to find out how we can help.