On the seventh day of social & digital media, Clayton Dodds of Brewer Offord & Pedersen LLP dives deeper into creating graphics for social media and shares his love of the artboard feature in Photoshop.
What is a tool that supports your social and digital marketing efforts that you cannot live without?
There are a few tools that make up our firm’s media technology stack, and each one plays a vital role in executing our social media strategy. The core of these tools is built around Adobe Photoshop. When our firm first started producing digital media, I explored using a range of tools for creating the media assets for social media posts. Most tools were limiting, either pre-configured for only one social media platform or restrictive of output quality and sizes. So, I took the plunge and learned Adobe Photoshop. This tool allows me to create digital assets quickly — whether it is for final production or just mocking up concepts. With pre-configured palettes and templates, I can ensure that each and every image produced is consistent with our firm’s brand identity. Additionally, graphics can be exported in many different file sizes and formats, which helps resolve upload and display issues on certain platforms.
However, the tool that I absolutely cannot live without is the artboard feature in Photoshop. One of the biggest headaches in implementing a social media strategy is cross-platform posting. Each social media platform is optimized for different image dimensions, where the image size for Facebook posts is different than that of LinkedIn, which is different than Twitter, etc. It is thus challenging to get a high-quality visual product on all platforms with just one image size, because the top might be cut off on Facebook mobile, or the image might appear blurry on LinkedIn. Previously, I would create a completely different graphic for each platform, which took significant time to produce for a marketing department of one. With artboards, I can create multiple image files — all with different size dimensions — from one graphic. Each artboard is sized based on the specifications for each platform. All of the artboards appear on one screen are part of one design file, which helps keep the design consistent for each image and also makes it easy to duplicate graphics. As a result of using artboards, I can create different image files from the same design, and the images are optimized to the size specifications of each social media platform.
Artboards have streamlined the process for creating digital graphics for social media, which has resulted in a significant reduction in production time, an increase in efficiency, and an improvement in quality. A successful social media strategy implementation should be continuous, consistent, and efficient, and the artboard feature in Photoshop is a tool that helps me achieve that!
What is one resource you recommend to legal marketers who want to learn more about social and digital media?
When I want to learn more about the latest trends and topics in social and digital media, I turn to a variety of sources. First, check out the webinar replays on the LMA website, available for free to all LMA members. These webinar recordings feature subject-matter experts presenting about topics related to social media or digital marketing. I’ve learned so much by watching these webinar replays, which cover a broad range of topics, such as strategies for using video to market legal services, techniques for coaching lawyers on LinkedIn, tutorials on new content tools, and statistics on the media channels that in-house counsel are using. Of course, if you have a question, you can also ask it on the Social & Digital Media Special Interest Group (SIG) message boards! Everyone in the group is extremely helpful, and you’ll find multiple, helpful answers to any query you have. Perhaps the strongest resource you can have when evaluating and improving your social and digital work is your fellow LMA members! There are so many great people in LMA who are experts in their respective fields. And it’s not just the holiday spirit that encourages everyone to share tips, tricks, and best practices, it is a fellowship enjoyed throughout the year!
Finally, I would definitely recommend that legal marketers check out the articles and e-books on the Attorney @ Work website – www.attorneyatwork.com. The folks there have assembled a mountain of content about every marketing & business development topic imaginable, and they post new articles daily. There are some terrific resources specific to social media and digital marketing, such as the e-book “Engage! A Lawyer’s Guide to Social Media Marketing”. Whether you need statistics, suggestions, or talking points for coaching attorneys, you can find it on Attorney@Work.
ABOUT Clayton Dodds
Clayton Dodds is the Director of Marketing at Brewer Offord & Pedersen LLP, located in Palo Alto, California. He is a frequent author and speaker about marketing technology-related topics, including marketing automation, APIs, and social media. He is the 2019 chair of the LMA Bay Area local group, and he previously served as the LMA West Region communications committee chair in 2017 and the communications chair of the 2018 Legal Marketing Technology Conference/West. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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The Social & Digital Media SIG is excited to host a cocktail meetup at the Annual Conference in 2019. Details to come.