The way you present your firm and yourself alike will have a lasting impact on how successful your firm or “brand” is. It can have an effect on the types of relationships you foster, your clients, and even your reputation within a given industry. Every law firm will have a different view of how they want to be perceived and what they want people to think when they see their brand. The firm must decide what they want their brand to be known for and make sure they continue to work on that reputation for years to come. So, in order for us to discuss the tips for branding a new law firm, we must first identify exactly what a brand is.
What is a Brand?
Many times, people instinctively think a brand is just a logo, but this is certainly not the case. A brand is something that represents who your firm is and what it is you do. You as a lawyer must sit back and think, “what is it that makes us, well us?”. All firms have a story of how they started and the road that got them there, this in essence is your brand, it is what makes you special and you should highlight that. In the case of law firms, your brand would also be considered what practice area you want to pursue. This could be family law, civil defense, corporate defense, contract law, immigration law, personal injury, etc. The list goes on and on and your decision will have an impact on how potential clients will find you and their thoughts on your service.
There are over a million attorneys in the United States alone, so your potential clients have plenty of options when deciding who they should choose. Your marketing or brand strategy should focus on the things people want to see or are most important to them. Your brand is the various unique selling points of what makes you different. To draw clients to your firm you must convince them that you are different than the others and you have special attributes the other firms do not. As you can see, a brand is not just a simple logo, it is what people will think when they hear or see your firm’s name.
Now that we know a little more about what exactly a law firm brand is and what it means, let us take a look at the importance of having and continuing to build a strong brand.
Having a Strong Brand – Why is it Important?
Your law firm is not an international fast food company that excels in making hamburgers and has been around since 1955. That said, the strength of your brand is just as paramount to you as it is for McDonald‘s. Having a strong brand will do many things for you and your firm, for starters, it will build trust within the community and potential clients. If your brand is strong it will help build trust to clients because it will be transparent (they know who you are and what you do), authentic, and it will also be client-focused. If you can convey these things through your brand it will continuously help you build trust, and once a client trusts you, they will always be loyal to you.
It will also set you apart or differentiate you from other firms and competition as mentioned before. It will help you be seen through all the other clutter people see every day either in person or on the web. If they see your brand and believe that you hold the same values they do, it will be an easy decision for them to make on why they want to give their case to.
Once you have a strong brand or a plan to start building one, it will keep you focused on achieving that goal and continuing to be known for your firm’s values and mission. This helps because you will not waste efforts, time, and even money for things that do not coincide with what your firm’s beliefs are.
We have highlighted what a law firm brand is and why it is so vitally important to have a strong one. Now we can discuss how to identify your brand and some things you should keep in mind while doing so.
How to Identify your Law Firms Brand
We have talked about a few things you should keep in mind when thinking about your brand but let us take a deeper dive into it. The first thing when starting a firm and trying to decide what your brand should be you need to set the “why”. So, you chose to be an attorney but why? Why did you choose the practice area you did, does it have something to do with your story of becoming a lawyer? These questions must be answered in order to figure out why you do what you do. For example, if you came to America and became a citizen, maybe you wanted to practice immigration law to help others achieve the same dream you did.
After you have answered these questions you must then ask yourself, what is your ideal client? Who would you want to serve and help? Many times, firms will say “well I want all the clients I can get!” but this is nowhere near the truth. Every firm and attorney have an ideal client in mind, someone who is let us just say in need of a helping hand and who is also courteous. If this is the case, then mold your firm’s beliefs around what your ideal client’s beliefs would be.
The voice of your brand will also need to resonate with your ideal client. It is essentially the language you will use to communicate to your ideal client through your brand. You can ask yourself, “how would your ideal client like to be spoken to?” If you are an attorney practicing family law focused on child custody and divorce, then a brand voice that is welcoming, warm, and still professional might be the avenue you want to take.
As you can see, a brand entails a lot more than just a logo. It is what you will be known for, your story, and other unique traits that make you different. Also, you can visit here to see even more tips for branding a new law firm. Branding a new law firm can be a very exciting time, just make sure your brand aligns with who you want to serve, and you will be successful.