While the Winkelvoss twins may very well be gearing up for another court house rumble with social networking powerhouse Facebook (appealing to SCOTUS, no less!), we here at the Sociable Lawyer are taking a less aggressive approach to social media. Below you will find a collection of posts that will help you better navigate social networks. It’s not enough to simply create a Twitter handle with haphazard updates or merely be the first to claim that vanity Facebook URL; continuous and meticulous follow-up of your online community is what reaps real world results. Online engagement that leads to real business is something that all lawyers can agree to ‘like.’
“It’s relationships built on trust that are the foundation of business development success for you as a lawyer, whether you’re in a large law firm or on your own. Rather than look at the Internet as law firm websites, alerts, and email newsletters, look at the Internet as an opportunity to accelerate relationships and grow your word of mouth reputation as a good lawyer. Facebook is such an accelerator.”
Kevin O’ Keefe advocates for lawyers to utilize their Facebook profiles and pages as effective marketing mediums online. The argument here is that your online presence should be an extension for your various ‘relationship baskets’ from offline, e.g. parents of your children’s playmates or peers from your professional social circle. You can apply a professional and personal approach to your online interactions, peppering your digital footprint with hallmarks from both realms in an effort to create or maintain genuine connections. In turn, these relationships enhance your ‘word of mouth’ reputation as a lawyer and yield real world results for your practice.
“There’s a whole other level of commitment when someone likes your Facebook Page. They’re exposing their personal diary to you. It’s a proactive “like” rather than a reactive Twitter follow-back. Fans are privy to one or two meaningful posts each day, unlike the 23 status updates on Twitter, coalescing the attention and response of a budding community.”
Are you discouraged by the fact that your thousands of followers on Twitter only net you a handful of retweets and occasional mentions? Maybe you’ve grown wary of blogs that are bombarded in the comment section with ‘BUY DESIGNER SHOES NOW’ or ‘DISCOUNT PERSIAN RUGS’ spam accounts. When it comes down to the quality and quantity of feedback for social media outreach, Tim Baran believes that Facebook offers the most powerful platform for exchange. Facebook Pages as a strategic marketing maneuver can increase traffic towards your practice’s website or blog, while also creating and maintaining a community that is not only aware of your legal profession, but engaged too. Again, the interactions you cultivate in the virtual realm build your credibility that translates into business in the real world.
“According to the defense motion, filed by attorneys at Moore & Riemenschneider, Piccolo (plaintiff) testified she had a Facebook account and was asked at deposition if the defense counsel could send a “neutral friend request” to Piccolo so that he could review the Facebook postings Piccolo testified she made every day.”
“Company Pages are a company’s profile of record on LinkedIn and a powerful way to speak to millions of professionals through word-of-mouth recommendations and trusted testimonials. It’s like a LinkedIn profile for a company.”
Perhaps you’ve heard that just yesterday, a little start up known as LinkedIn finished their first day as a publicly traded company that placed their value at roughly $8.9 billion. If there was ever an acceptable time to jump on the band wagon, that time would be now. Straight from the 8.9 billion dollar horse’s mouth, this overview guides you through the process of setting up your law firm’s corporate profile on this professional network. With the ability to integrate your company’s blog posts or Twitter updates, a company page provides another way to humanize your firm while interacting with millions of professionals online. Think of how your own LinkedIn profile may have benefited you in the past; a company profile can prove to be just as beneficial for your firm.
‘”We’re really looking for people who are using this technology,” Chris Reuscher, chair of the hiring committee, told Cleveland.com, “and students are looking for firms that are ahead of the curve.”‘
Yup, there’s an app for that, too. Favorite comment from the blog post goes to Tim, who writes: “Soon to be followed by an app that notifies applicants they’ve been rejected.” Ouch. Now there’s an iPhone update we can do without.
Do you have something to share? Guest blog entries can cover any range of topics relevant to new media and legal technology. If you would like to submit a blog post to The Sociable Lawyer, please contact us and let us know!
- The Sociable Lawyer Weekly Roundup – Cinco de Mayo Edition (sociablelawyer.org)
- Another Great Day in L.A. (sociablelawyer.org)
- Look, What’s That In The Sky? Spreading the Word with Facebook and Twitter (sociablelawyer.org)