When executed well, a law firm’s brand creates a trustworthy image of the firm, builds confidence with current and potential clients, and helps the firm stand out amongst the crowd. Branding is an effort to establish your image and how you want to be seen by others. The way you present your firm affects everything from your relationships with clients to your reputation in the legal industry.
The value of your law firm’s trust rests in your ability to deliver on your promises. These five tactics below will help you harness the power of branding to present your firm as trustworthy, skilled, and compassionate, thereby increasing your opportunities and meeting your goals.
1. Be transparent
When communicating with prospective clients, you need to have a consistent message across all platforms that is honest and transparent. Prospective clients need to know what your firm is about. Make sure you are transparent about your pricing.
If you work on a contingency fee basis, for example, make that clear in your communications, so they are assured that you will only take fees if you recover compensation for them. If you charge a flat fee, give clients an idea of what that will cost them. Giving them a ballpark figure will let them know whether or not they can afford your services, and it will save both of you time.
When it comes to being transparent, it’s also important to show your past successes. When you list past settlements and verdicts on your site, it lets prospective clients know that you’ve had success with cases similar to theirs. People will be likely to trust a firm that a strong track record of success.
2. Be an advocate for your client
If you make each of your clients feel as though they are family and their case is your top priority, you can build trust. Let your clients know that you are in their corner. If you are working on their personal injury case, for instance, they need to know that you are fighting tirelessly for the compensation and justice they deserve. Naturally, the more time and effort you give to their case, the better job you will do on their behalf.
When you are an advocate for clients, you have a passion for their cause. When a client’s case moves you on a personal level, it will motivate you to persevere in settlement negotiations or in court. The fact of the matter is, it’s hard to build a firm without caring for your clients. The trust and reputation that you build can help bring you more clients through referrals. Strong customer service is essential to your firm’s success.
In order to be an advocate for a client and earn their trust, you must be an active listener. You need to understand where they’re coming from. You need to listen to their concerns and their issues before you can offer legal solutions.
A prospective client is trying to find out how you can help solve their problem, whether it be a car accident, a child custody battle, or filing for bankruptcy. Listening to them during the free initial consultation will give you the opportunity to communicate the exact ways in which you can meet their unique needs.
3. Convey trust through social media
Social media plays a significant role in growing your brand and presenting yourself as trustworthy. You must consistently engage with your community on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and other social medial platforms to show that you are active and knowledgeable within your field.
If prospective clients see from social media content that you know your stuff, they will naturally be more likely to trust you to take their case. With social media, it’s important to be consistent, but don’t overdo it with your posts. Sometimes quality is better than quantity. Create a schedule for when you want to post content periodically so that your audience continually returns to your site.
4. Make use of lawyer directories and reviews
Attorney directories such as Avvo, HG.org, and others can help you get noticed by potential clients and provide valuable links to your site. When a link to your site appears on any other reputable site, it will encourage potential clients to trust your brand. You can also get referrals from reputable sites that will boost your presence in search engines and drive more traffic to your site.
Encourage your clients to leave reviews of you and your firm. Nowadays, people trust real online reviews more than anything. When clients leave positive reviews of your firm on Avvo, Facebook, Google, and other platforms, it can speak volumes for your trustworthiness.
5. Be true to yourself and your mission
When you are building your brand message, make sure you consider your strengths and weaknesses, as well as your experience and goals. There are countless attorneys throughout the United States, but there’s only one you. It’s easier to excel by being genuine and true to yourself than by trying to imitate others.
Think about the core values and mission of your firm and what makes you trustworthy and separates you from the rest. Being genuine ensures that your firm’s brand is original. The general public is good at identifying fakes. If your brand is not authentic, potential clients will see through that and likely avoid you.
Building Trust Takes Time
Building trust takes time and effort. Your law firm’s trust can’t be built overnight, but each small step you take will influence how successful and trustworthy your firm is perceived to be. A successful law firm requires satisfied clients. Satisfying clients starts with building trust.
For attorneys, building trust with clients should be the foundation of everything they do. While there’s no one-size-fits-all approach for building your brand and trust, these five tips will put you on the path to building trusting relationships with clients and potential clients.