Networking and word-of-mouth techniques that lead to new business continue to be pillars of legal marketing; however, these tactics are now being bolstered by social media activities. Having a profile on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ increases a firm’s visibility online and allows the practice to build relationships with potential clients in and around the community. A strong social media campaign and presence increases a firm’s visibility, broadens name recognition, and enhances the firm’s SEO.
There are many benefits to using social media to advertise and promote your law firm. For instance, having a real-time response: when there is breaking news that affects a practice area of your firm, such as a court decision or a consumer product recall, you can respond quickly using your various social media platforms and have a timely presence and engagement in online discussions. Well-designed social media campaigns can also help to instill confidence in potential clients. It tells your customers that your firm is trustworthy and can deliver for its clients. This is done by communicating the reputation and character of your law firm through social media efforts.
Social media provides a cheap and efficient way to keep in touch with past and prospective clients. This means you can incorporate it into your content strategy with relatively little investment. It also provides a platform to keep an eye on competing law firms as well as keep up-to-date with trends in the industry so you’ll always be on top of your game and will be consistently seen as a leader in the legal field.
A professional and personable Facebook page can help create a business profile that connects your firm to people in your targeted demographic, shares relevant content with users, and drives traffic to your firm’s website.
Facebook is currently working to reemphasize its star-rating system for brand Pages. This social network is now beginning to display a numerical rating alongside the star icons it showed previously on brand Pages, allowing for even more detail about how your page is received. Additionally, when you hover your cursor over the ratings, a full breakdown of all the business’s ratings appear.
This star rating system appears to be a possible competitor for Yelp, FourSquare, and Google+ Local.
The ratings feature on Pages is available to those businesses that choose to include a physical address on their page. This star rating system appears to be a possible competitor for Yelp, FourSquare, and Google+ Local. Law firms can use this new feature to their advantage by giving them another avenue for ratings and reviews; if you know how you’re being perceived in the social realm, you’ll know what you need to change and how you should direct your content strategy. In addition, it allows law firms to keep in touch with clients past, present, and future. Firms now have another channel to show prospective clients how well they interact with existing clients and really show, rather than tell, their prospects about what they can do for them.
A public Twitter account with tweets relevant to your firm can promote your firm online, making it more visible and sending more traffic to your website. These short, 140-character messages can be used to share content from your firm’s blog or website. Links to articles or stories show that you’re keeping up with topics in your field. Additionally, images such as infographics are a great way to share knowledge easily. These can quickly become viral, demonstrating your insight to a wide range of people.
Tweets can also be put to use by interacting with the community, responding to people, answering questions, replying to tweets, and starting discussions. It’s simple to start or join a conversation with Twitter, and real time feedback can be valuable to you and your clients. These techniques will bring a lot more referral traffic and retweets to your firm, expanding your reach and helping prospective clients find you.
LinkedIn is an excellent place to show off the professional side of your firm and the expertise of your attorneys. This a great platform to bring in and exchange law firm referrals and entice and recruit new employees. Start by creating a company page. Bypassing this crucial step will leave your individual attorneys without a place to display their place of employment and the law firm will appear unprofessional. If you have one central page for your firm, it will be easier for people to find and connect with you.
A professional, up-to-date profile for individual attorneys is just as important as one for the firm as a whole.
The next step is for your law firm to have its employees build profiles and make connections as well as to give answers and ask questions. This can be done by linking up with others on LinkedIn and by participating in discussion groups hosted on the platform. By sharing your individual attorneys’ knowledge, you are showing the value of your law firm as a whole. LinkedIn is a social network mostly built for individuals, but those individuals are connected to a company. Sharing informative content helps to get most out of LinkedIn for the individual as well as the firm.
LinkedIn is also a space for firms to find potential clients. Prospective customers are constantly reviewing the credentials of lawyers and law firms on LinkedIn and often are finding the profiles of individual attorneys in Google search results. A professional, up-to-date profile for individual attorneys is just as important as one for the firm as a whole.
Google+ is more and more playing a prominent role in search engines, sometimes even showing up and outranking other sources in search results. Google+ is a review site and social media platform that allows clients to review the businesses they use. This can be useful for law firms, as it allows new customers to find firms and allows existing customers to provide reviews and feedback. A good client relationship can lead to a positive review that will lead to more business.
Firms are able to customize their Google+ pages: you can promote your firm and brand with photos and business information but can also post content like you would on Facebook or other social media sites. This lets you share news, blog posts, links, images, or other relevant content that might interest prospective clients. You can add clients, partners, groups, or thought leaders to your friends list – called “circles” on Google+ – to easily see and share their posts. It’s a great way to build up a following and showcase your expertise in a field and yet another channel where you’ll be able to reach out and connect with your audience.
Your social media pages will be your brand online, so ensure consistency and professionalism across all platform and be sure that your pages showcase your firms voice and values.
There are many social media channels out there, each with their own uses, value, and, most importantly, audience. It’s important to use each channel wisely to reach the largest group of people possible. Your social media pages will be your brand online, so ensure consistency and professionalism across all platform and be sure that your pages showcase your firms voice and values. Once you market yourself on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+, you’ll see how valuable it can be to have them as a piece of your marketing plan.