Speaking the visual language of Instagram is not something most busy attorneys find on their list of priorities, but it can be an invaluable way to reach potential clients and showcase your achievements. Consider that humans remember approximately 10 percent of what they hear, 20 percent of what they read and 80 percent of what they see, and you have a strong case for including Instagram in your marketing strategy.
Keep in mind, however, that not all images are equal. It takes a little forethought and creativity to engage your audience. Here are a few tips that will help you to do just that.
When taking photos try not to center your subject in the middle of the frame. Unless it's a symmetrical scene like architecture or roads, it will result in a boring, uninspired and predictable visual that is easily dismissed by the human eye. Instead, imagine dividing your frame into nine equal parts, three vertical and three horizontal. To make this easier, there is a grid feature available in the camera settings of most phones, and if you would like to use the square shaped photos of Instagram, use the square option on your camera.
Now, place your subject along one or more of the lines or where they intersect. For instance, when taking a picture of a fellow attorney, align his or her eyes or face at one of the intersections. Be careful to leave headroom before the top of the frame and ample space to the side and in the background. If outside, make sure the horizon lines up to the top or bottom horizontal line of the grid.
Apart from symmetrical scenes, paying attention to the "Rule of Thirds" will add visual interest and harmony to any photo.
An interesting angle can be the difference between just another mundane photo or a captivating, emotionally engaging piece of art that will draw the attention of users. For instance, add a little drama by getting low and pointing your camera up for a worm's-eye view of your building or signage. Zoom in for a closeup of one of your firm's attorneys to solicit a stronger more intimate connection for the viewer. Get an overhead, birds-eye view of an event or charity drive you are involved in.
Nothing makes a social user scroll past an Instagram photo faster than one that is clearly staged. Try to capture spontaneous, natural moments and steer clear of filters or heavily edited images. Utilize the above techniques to share your hobbies, interests and passions in a thoughtful way that will add visual interest and paint an honest portrait of yourself and your firm. For example, check out the Instagram pages for Big Horn Law and Greenberg Traurig. Notice the authenticity of their posts. With these tips in practice, success may be just a picture away.
For more information on using Instagram to up your game, download our latest playbook, Not Just for Travel or Food Bloggers: How Top Attorneys Can Use Instagram to Connect with Potential Clients.
If you think Instagram is only for millennials, think again. It's fast becoming one of the top marketing channels for building your brand and meeting potential clients, with relatively little effort. That's good news for a top attorney like you with a busy calendar.
Not convinced? Super Lawyers' new playbook, Not Just for Travel or Food Bloggers: How Top Attorneys Can Use Instagram to Connect with Potential Clients, explains how embracing the fastest-growing social network can help to convey the values of your firm, build trust and showcase your exceptional reputation.
Social media is about engaging your audience and building personal relationships. Instagram is based on building those relationships visually. Images are powerful and can succeed where words fail. Studies show that humans remember approximately 10 percent of what they hear, 20 percent of what they read and 80 percent of what they see. With those statistics, it's no wonder that more than 71 percent of U.S. businesses are on the platform.
We all know that people connect with images on an emotional level. Therefore, giving potential clients a glimpse behind the scenes of your practice and showing them your human-side through imagery can be key to securing future business and building trust. Now their connection to you has become personal and that makes Instagram a powerful tool.
The best way to make Instagram work for you is to first know your audience. Grab their attention through images that they find intriguing. For instance, Big Horn Law, who represents victims of motorcycle accidents, fosters connection by posting images of their attorneys and their bikes. Take their example and connect on a personal level by sharing your hobbies and interests. Most importantly, put some thought into showing them exactly who you want them to see.
We realize that this is easier said than done, but don't worry, we have you covered. Download our new Playbook on Instagram for Super Lawyers selectees to learn more about how you can bring awareness to your firm and set the stage for Instagram success.
If you think law school was difficult, it has nothing on the circumstances these Super Lawyers overcame. From escaping political unrest in the Philippines to trying to change the views of women in an entire profession, the following stories evidence the varied backgrounds yet similar resolve of Super Lawyers selectees. Read each story and see what's happening with other Super Lawyers and Rising Stars selectees.
The women in this cover article joined the male-dominated legal profession in the 1970s and started a shift in its demographics. Here are some of the things they heard along the way:
"These women blazed a trail, facing challenges I can't imagine dealing with," says Christine Segarra, whose class of 2013 at Tulane Law School was nearly 60 percent women. "They established what is acceptable and what will not be tolerated in this profession. ... I'm grateful that they made it possible for me to have a normal work environment."
José Bautista was born in Makati, Manila, the central business district in the Philippines. It was a comfortable life. Yet he remembers open sewers where trash would be running.
He grew up in the brutal era of Ferdinand Marcos, the dictator who declared martial law and crushed political dissent. Those detained for political reasons might disappear forever.
One day, when Bautista was 8, rumors circulated that people were threatening to kidnap him.
It's still a mystery to Bautista what it was all about. "I can never get a straight story from my father," he says. "I'm not sure I want to know. It was very politically charged then, but whether or not that had any link to why we fled, I couldn't tell you."
After being told to pack a bag, Bautista and his parents left immediately.
The family arrived with the clothes on their backs and $5,000. Bautista's father started an office supply company, walking everywhere until he could afford a car. They spoke English in the home, and as the office supply company boomed, the family moved to Palos Verdes, an enclave on the Pacific coast.
After attending Washington University as an undergraduate, and then law school at St. Louis University, it took the help of a former St. Louis law professor to land him in Kansas City via a clerkship with Circuit Court Judge Michael Manners.
He soon landed at Franke Schultz & Mullen, taking on insurance cases, and then moved in 2002 to Davis Bethune & Jones, where he joined a small shop of seven lawyers and began laying the frame for his railroad work.
In 2009, Bautista decided to launch his own firm. At first he and his partners were shoestringing it-MacBooks, iPhones, letterhead and a P.O. box.
Less than a decade later, Bautista is standing at the entrance to Bautista LeRoy's new digs, a two-story, 15,000-square-foot building in an up-and-coming part of midtown Kansas City. It's another significant crossroads for a guy who's no stranger to being the new kid on the block.
Read the entire article to learn about Bautista's upbringing and how he became one of the top-rated attorneys in the country.
The statistic is noted by nearly every lawyer interviewed here: Women make up 50 percent of law school graduates. But their representation in firm leadership remains unequal. Despite the strides made during the last few decades, challenges remain for women in the legal industry.
In the feature article, we talked about these issues with eight Milwaukee-area women on the front lines-some who blazed trails in the 1970s and others making noise in the early stages of their careers.
Look at the full article to read their stories and see the entire list of Wisconsin selectees.
Also, catch up on all the latest issues of Super Lawyers Magazine in the digital editions.