Your questions answered: How to make your law firm's social media marketing more accessible

Your questions answered: How to make your law firm's social media marketing more accessible

View profile for Sophia Stancer
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What is accessible social media marketing?

Our definition is simple. Accessible social media marketing is the use of inclusive design practices and features that make it possible for users to fully experience your law firm’s business or brand, receive communications, and engage with the firm and its services on social media platforms.

Why should we bother making our law firm content accessible?

Put simply, making your content accessible is the right thing to do. It promotes that you care about the needs of those with reduced ability to interact with your content. It also demonstrates your law firm’s commitment to inclusivity and fairness, which we should all be striving towards. This in turn will also allow you to reach and resonate with a wider audience and generate leads for your business.

How do blind, deaf or those with reduced ability access a law firm’s social media?

People with disabilities will often use online tools to interact with social media. Some of the most used are as follows:

  • Screen reader software: Also known as text-to-speech, these programmes read web pages out loud, from text to emojis and images with descriptive text.
  • Magnifying tools: Screen magnifiers are software applications that increase the size of the text and graphics displayed on the screen of a computer or mobile device. These are built into devices, but many people opt for third-party screen magnification software with special features.
  • Braille displays: Like screen reader software, these tools take what’s on a web page, and display it on a piece of equipment that uses tiny retractable dots to display braille. Braille displays are vital communication tools for those with multi-sensory impairments, like people who are deafblind.

I want to make my law firm’s social media content more accessible, but where do I start?

To increase engagement and build followers from diverse backgrounds, we must begin making changes to the way we behave on social media.

Making what might seem like trivial adjustments to your posts can make a world of difference to someone who is using a screen-reader or another assistive technology to navigate social media platforms, like Instagram or TikTok.

So, what are our top tips for creating social media content that’s accessible?

1. Write in straightforward English

Social media content that is easy to read and understand will be more accessible for everyone, including people with cognitive disabilities, dyslexia, and non-native English speakers.

Avoid jargon and complicated language wherever possible. If you’re writing for subject-matter experts, it makes sense to use industry terminology, but the likelihood is if someone is seeking out your law firm's services, they will be looking to you for expertise and will have a limited understanding of legal terms and industry-specific lexis.

2. Make space

Line spacing impacts the feel of a design, rhythm of the typography, and readability. To meet W3C accessibility guidelines “Line spacing is at least space-and-a-half within paragraphs” – that’s 150%. Too tight and text will feel crowded and become harder to read. Too large and lines will appear unrelated from one another.

Write using clear prose in short sentences and leave a space between paragraphs where the subject changes.

3. Do not replace words with emojis

Emojis are certainly fun to use. They support meaning and add feeling to your copy. We’re not saying to avoid emojis, as they help add personality to your messaging. However, we'd advise they're used sparingly to decorate your captions but never to replace words.

Using just an emoji (minus actual text) increases the cognitive load for those replying on assistive technology – because they’re only relying on the alt text that’s being read to them, for their interpretation.

4. Add captions or subtitles to your video content

This will greatly benefit those who can’t hear your audio or have a cognitive disability which means they prefer not to listen to sound, but it also helps to keep viewers engaged. There is a slight difference between ‘captions’ and ‘subtitles’ so make sure you cater to both in your video content.

• Subtitles translate the speech on-screen to text. They are generally designed for viewers who can hear but do not understand the language in the video.

• Captions transcribe both speech and additional audio cues like “kick the ball.” They are designed for viewers who cannot hear the audio in the video.

5. Add alt text to your images 

Alternative text is a short, often detailed description of what is shown in a photograph. It is considerate to include alternative text for every image so that people using screen reader technology can know what is happening in the picture. It’s also a tick when it comes to search engine optimisation (SEO).

So, is your law firm ready to create content that’s accessible?

This blog post has hopefully given you some insight into the simple ways you can make your social media content accessible. If your firm requires ongoing assistance with your social media planning and delivery strategy, give us a call on 0117 325 0200 or