Social media is a good channel for establishing trust. It should be a useful marketing tool for lawyers. You can establish a rapport with potential clients online and give them the confidence to come in for a consultation. In fact, you could probably do most of your preliminary discussions over the Internet. Despite the obvious benefits of social media, few lawyers have actually mastered it, so maybe it’s about time to take another run at this potential source of clients.
A key element that your social media strategy may be missing is “influencer” contacts. An influencer doesn’t have to be someone who leads a large group – it could be a former client. However, the concept of influencers on social media is that they draw the attention of others to your posts and thereby enable you to attract clients to your law firm. If you have been link building for your firm’s website, you will recognize the concept of connecting to influencers on social media. They are like the Webmasters of other sites and a mention from an influencer is like getting a link to your site on an authoritative website.
If your social media marketing strategy isn’t working, it is highly likely that this is caused by your lack of influencer outreach. So, here’s some more advice on how to find those influencers, what topics interest them, and how to get them to give you a mention. You will see a number of tools referenced in this guide. Again, you will notice that this task is a lot like link building. Also, this article has a few tips on social media content that draws those influencers onto your profile – essentially this is like putting your own link on someone else’s Web page. The people who would influence your target market depends entirely on you law firm’s area of legal specialization. Making a list of the types of people who could be influencers for your firm is a good place to start.
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Here is another way in which social media platforms are just becoming like a mini-Web. Just as you need content for your law firm’s website, you also need content for your social media profiles. The Facebook Instant Article format has great potential for lawyers. You could write a series of short encyclopedia-type explanations on different legal terms, or specific laws that impact people and post them here. Obviously, demonstrating your legal knowledge is the first step in establishing trust with potential clients. If they click through to your profile you can get them to see your face, and then start chatting with you, enabling you to establish a rapport.
An annoying factor with social media is that your well-honed legal advice can quickly get shoved down the page by lots of other social media marketers posting just after you. This is particularly common on Twitter, where tweets have a very short period of visibility. One solution to this problem is to use a scheduler to time your posts. Smart schedulers detect when the maximum number of your followers are online and then commit your tweets. This gives you a better chance that your followers will actually see your musings at the top of their feeds, rather than having to scroll down – which few people do. However, if everyone uses these tools then there is a massive flood of posts all at the same time, resulting in your posts getting shunted down the page anyway.
A lot of people have doubts about Twitter. They have performed very badly over the past few years, and other social media platforms, such as Pinterest and Instagram have grown bigger, causing many social media marketers to abandon Twitter. The problem for lawyers, through, is that the picture-based format of Pinterest and Instagram doesn’t lend itself well to the marketing of legal services. Now Snapchat has overtaken Twitter as well. This is another picture-based platform, and so also presents problems for marketing legal services. Perhaps a stream of winning clients leaving the courthouse, punching the air might work.