A branding strategy is a long-term plan for the development of a successful brand to achieve specific goals. A well-defined and executed brand strategy for law firms affects all aspects of a business. It embraces the brand’s mission, its promises to customers and how these are communicated. Furthermore, it is directly connected to consumer needs, emotions and competitive environments.
The main goal of a successful branding strategy is to let the world know what is your law brand’s purpose. To develop a brand strategy, begin by setting your business goals. Use those long-term objectives as a basis for all of your strategic branding efforts. We believe the best approach is to follow 7 step process:
1. Define Your Purpose
The first step to crafting a successful brand strategy is to understand the purpose of your law firm. To do this, you need to know why your brand exists, what purpose it has and what it stands for.
Furthermore, include your mission, vision and company values in this step. They should support your strategy and become central to your company’s culture. Moreover, they will become crucial to building a recognizable law brand.
When defining your business purpose, ask yourself these questions:
Who are you trying to sell to? What do they need or want? How are their needs not being met? What problem does your brand solve? Who is your ideal customer? Who is your competition? What is the story behind why your brand was created? If your brand was a person, what would their personality be like?
Once you answer these questions, proceed to the next step.
2. Research Competition
Before executing your marketing strategy, you need to research your competition. Competitive analysis is important for understanding what specifically differentiates you from the competition. Furthermore, it is something you’ll want to focus on in your marketing message. Use these insights to improve your own strategy and create greater value in your overall brand.
For a start, answer these questions: Who will you be competing with for attention? How might they outshine you? What differentiates your law company from others? Besides the stated, there are a number of ways to conduct a competitor analysis. Other popular tools include perceptual maps of industry position and analysis of the 5 competitive industry forces.
3. Target market research
Researching your market and understanding your audience is a big part of executing your brand strategy. To build a brand strategy that genuinely connects you with people, you need to know exactly who you’re selling to. By knowing your audience’s needs, you will easily determine how to serve them and communicate with them.
Start by defining your ideal client or a customer persona. A customer persona is a detailed description of the ideal buyer who will buy your service. It can help you understand what type of person you are targeting with your marketing. When creating your customer persona, ask yourself the following questions:
What is their age, gender and education level? Furthermore, what is their job and what does their typical day look like? How do they gather new information and what was their most recent purchase? Conduct thorough research in order to understand their consumer journey properly.
This will help you come up with a roadmap to move consumers along with the ultimate goal. The final step within your market research is knowing where your audience is, both physically and in the digital world. As a result, it will help maintain cost efficiency in your marketing efforts.
4. Articulate Your Messaging
Next, you need to discover your Brand Essence (your company’s expressions) and your Brand Messaging. Start by extracting and documenting these elements effectively. That way you will ensure honest, authentic and consistent brand communication at every touchpoint.
Brand Essence consists of your personality, voice and tone. Personality is a reflection of your purpose, unique values, mission and vision. Moreover, they are influenced by your beliefs and demonstrated in your behavior.
After discovering your personality, infuse it into every aspect of your brand. From your customer service process to your product descriptions. That way you can differentiate your law company from the competition and cultivate relationships.
Afterward, create your brand messaging by defining your Unique value proposition and identifying messaging pillars. Your messaging pillars are the key stories you want to tell about your brand. In other words – what makes you unique and different. Every piece of content you create should reinforce these core messages across all touchpoints.
5. Design Your Visual Identity
Once you understand your brand and your audience, think about how you will deliver your message. Decide your logo design, colors you choose to represent your brand, general tone of your advertisements etc. These elements are very important for creating a long-term recognizable brand.
Therefore, ensure that these elements are chosen carefully and that they truly relate to your message. In short, the logo, colors, typography, imagery and photography act as the “face” of your brand. A strong visual identity is meant to be purposeful, first and foremost. Thus, a good visual identity is:
- Flexible: It should be able to grow with your brand
- Comprehensive: It should provide brand designers and content creators needed tools
- Intuitive: It should be intuitively designed and well constructed
6. Create Your Brand Guidelines
Depending on your brand, you may need to expand your visual identity over time. Therefore, consider adding brand guidelines for additional visual elements. Your brand guidelines are a document for how to use your brand, specifically in the content and communication you create.
Thus, include enough direction to empower any creator to produce work that strengthens the brand. To ensure your brand guidelines are comprehensive, include direction for both your visual and verbal identity. Once you’ve completed your guidelines, make sure they are accessible to your team and updated regularly.
7. Test, Refine and Develop
Finally, it is important to remember that a brand strategy for law firms should never be stationary. If your brand strategy stopped being relevant and effective in the competitive landscape, it’s time to develop a new strategy.
To do this, you’ll need to identify which tactics are not useful anymore and explore the reasons for this. When exploring the reasons, gather information from your customers, employees, decision-makers and competitors. The next step is to find alternatives, assess the merits of each and finally decide on changes to your strategy.
A successful brand strategy for law firms must be well-designed and executed across all business functions. Furthermore, it should have the capacity to improve the consumer experience, competitive advantage and financial performance. A specific, achievable brand strategy is an essential component of any business because it affects every area of your business. Understanding your purpose and using your values to guide your decisions in the future is the key to your business success.