Personal branding is receiving a lot of attention from the legal world. Though many lawyers
want to learn about building their own brand, demanding carriers and other obligations often
comes in the way of having time available to pursue an additional project. In addition, the
world has turned digital. Online presence and networking have never been so important to
develop connections amid the COVID-19 outbreak. As of today, clients search for a lawyer
online, and honestly, they do not have any other choice at the moment. Therefore, it is
essential to establish a digital presence in order to maintain sustainability and upscale further.
And as per a commonly observed practise, new clients focus on the lawyer rather than the
firm to which he belongs. Your reputation as an individual will make more impact than any
marketing campaign; therefore, it is essential to make sure that you stand out as a personal
It doesn’t matter that you have been laid off, are planning to leave a firm, or running your
own small firm. You should be able to monetize on the basis of your personal brand. As per
the ongoing business scenario, your reputation can make a big difference between making a
smooth landing and crashing downward.
Meaning of a Personal Brand
Firstly, let us understand what it means to develop a personal brand, as it will provide you
with leverage to create and promote. The best way to explain it is a society’s beliefs and
impression of an individual. Being a lawyer, your personal brand is the way your legal
community perceives you. In short, your personal brand denotes your reputation in the
Purpose of personal branding
Around 85% of American recruiters and HR professionals believe that an employee’s online
reputation influences their hiring decision to some extent. Associates at firms that invest in
personal branding initiatives are likely to feel optimistic about the future of their company by
Workers on average, have ten times more followers as compared to their company’s social
media accounts. About half the recruiters say that employee branding is the first thing on
which they will increase their investment in the upcoming year.
Methods to build a personal brand
Before building and promoting your brand, you would have to first establish it. To start, you
should concentrate on figuring out things you are good at and for what you are known for
within the community.
Step 1: Identify current strength:
Personal branding is comprised of way more things than hard skills. Yes, it is fitting that your
robustness as a lawyer is required for your area of expertise. But other than that, it is also
essential to acquire competency beyond your specific industry. Working outside the sector
further contributes to building a lawyer’s personal brand as it denotes that they have
knowledge and skills. This makes them special among their peers. Therefore, discover your
unique strength. Find what interests you and write down the best things that you can come up
Step 2: Decide a destination:
After you have found your best interest and traits, the following thing which you should be
deciding is where you want to be with respect to your profession. For that to happen, you
have to utilize your personal brand as a tool to your benefit. If you aim to work at a Fortune
500 company, your personal brand approach will be a little different from a person who
wants to become a partner at a litigation firm. Making a commitment to a single career goal
may seem difficult.
Therefore, begin by choosing two or three potential directions you are happy with. Then,
make a medium-term aim that lets you pursue any of these three after you have acquired
enough understanding regarding where you want to go in the future. This will assist you with
the successor steps of building a spellbinding personal brand.
Step 3: Outline 2-3 ways you can prove your worth:
Actions speak louder than words. It is one thing to proclaim on your website that you are the
the best lawyer in your industry and another thing too:
• Be listed as an “expert” of your specific industry in national lawyer rankings.
• Have a column published in a law journal that is peer-reviewed.
• Be present in major trade associations or industry events of your field.
• Draft specific law reform submissions for bringing better changes.
• Share compelling and valuable content on social media platforms related to your industry.
Bringing value and providing assistance as an expert in a field involves massive work that
cannot be monetized. However, while the result may not generate a return from a financial
aspect, the outcome can be significant with respect to your visibility, network, and credibility.
In addition, more clients will be attracted by such gestures resulting in the growth of your
law firm. The last suggestion related to content creation on social media may look off-topic
for some. But this is not uncommon. It isn’t like that everyone has to be good at or enjoy
social media, and efforts are also required to generate a sound ROI. However, it is worth
investing in social media and developing a strategy to acquire some basic techniques.
Step 4: Create a compelling website:
A law firm’s website acts like its virtual ambassador. Therefore, it must be effective enough
to greet visitors and furnish relevant information regarding your services. If you built your
website a long time ago, isn’t safe, not fast enough, or does not provide the correct
information, you won’t see the results you expect. Your site should be as per modern norms
and compelling. In addition, it must display your services and experiences. Make use of your
website to showcase prospects about how better you are. Also, make sure that you
consistently optimize it for search engines.
Step 5: Generate a convincing narrative:
On the journey of creating a personal brand, running into speed bumps is inevitable. Building
new connections and sharing credential is not a difficult task. The challenging part is to
demonstrate your new personal brand to the old contacts that you have. For this, it is required
that you craft a captivating ‘story’ that explains the reason for your new career direction or
focus on a particular area of the legal industry. Select an experience that inspired you to take
pursue this journey or goal. Demonstrate how you reached where you are so that you are not
perceived as impulsive or amateur. Invest some time in building a narrative that creates a
connection between your past and your new direction. This will help you in strengthening the
support of your old clients and contacts.
Step 6: Brand positioning:
Once you have generated a personal branding statement, it’s time to position it correctly. Now
the first important marketing consideration to make is regarding the perception of the firm
operations. This means having clarity related to the types of client’s you want to attract and
the services you will be offering them. It is vital to develop a clear strategy regarding this
thing as it holds the concept of market positioning. In addition, things like these are observed
carefully by prospective clients that are looking for lawyers.
Hence, there are three main questions an attorney must share regarding his practice:
- In which areas of law do you have expertise?
- What makes you better than your peers?
- What kind of message do you want to promote to the market?
These will display the fundamental bases of your firm, which will be utilized to derive
effective decisions in the marketing and advertisement campaigns your firm will organize and
how you will attract your clients.
Step 7: Networking:
There are numerous low-tech marketing ways to fulfil your marketing requirements. For
example, it is sometimes getting involved in the community. Attend as many events as you
can to get your name heard. Meet and network with local business people and community
leaders. Also, you can sponsor an event in the community. This can benefit you a lot as you
get a chance to hand out business cards, flyers and build connections. Creating a place in
people’s minds will definitely get you more referrals.
The business of law is entirely based on human interactions. Therefore, it’s important that you
make an ample amount of effort in order to form a lasting professional relationship. And the
most effective way to do this is networking. You are your own brand, and you should attend
local or state bar conventions, community events, or any other occasion like one. Showing up
in such networking events provides you the opportunity to present your brand in front of
others and let you create brand ambassadors that can help you expand your network
significantly by growing your brand into their own network. Hence, to build a personal brand,
focus on these methods and witness the changes yourself in the upcoming future. Also, along
with focussing on acquiring clients, it is equally important to manage your existing one
efficiently. Therefore make sure your law office management is optimum.
Author Bio :
Norma Harris is a senior paralegal in Cogneesol. She has been a major contributor to the
legal sector for the last 8 years. She writes about the technological transformation of the
legal sector, helping legal professionals and law firms to manage their legal offices and
helping them to drive growth in the agile market.