Wednesday, June 4, 2014

“ATTORNEYS: TAKE YOUR TIME BUT SAY ‘YES’ TO SOCIAL MEDIA”

By the time I am writing this, it’s my 90th day, 12th hour, 46th minute and 17th second of my business trip to USA. This is my first trip and I almost travelled and landed over most of the known States/Cities – Florida, Atlanta, California, Las Vegas, Houston, New York, New Jersey...

It is an exciting and a fruitful trip where I am able to meet people from across the world not only the attorneys and counsels but many businessmen, storekeepers, cab-drivers, sheriffs, and the list goes on. One thing that amazes everyone here in the USA is the overall customer service one gets. I am too excited about the fact that I got many opportunities to meet the legal industry experts with whom, beside work, I could talk and gain knowledge about the real legal industry. As my profile talks about business development and marketing – “Yes, I may be one of them who had called or sent messages to you”, I am glad all my face to face interactions gave me a sense that senior attorneys and counsels were ready to hear my part of story as well. I may not know much about legal marketing and various social media tools and activities but whatever little I know they paid attention to and I am pleased that some of them implemented it by taking time out of their busy schedules and creating their profiles on Google+, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and some are giving a deep thought that how and when they should start working on this.


Why Social Media?
I know legal professionals still love the black and white features and show more trust on the paper work and word of mouth marketing but trust me social media will make it more powerful and will increase your reach from a community to society, city, state and to the whole world. We are living in a world where we have an amazing amount of information which we can gather and share at the cost of few clicks. The varied options - print, visual, and multimedia give us a chance to explore the diverse social and psychological behavior of people in most interactive and personal ways. This is an era where even computer systems are finding it difficult to make a place in our offices/homes. Everyone, now a day, talking about I-Pads, I-Phones, and Android systems. So why to question the credentials of Social Media…? No doubt it increases your reach, allows you to communicate better and is most prominent, quick and easy method to share information. So what are you waiting for?? Go for it!!

LinkedIn:
I believe by now you must have made your profile on LinkedIn, and if not you should do that. It’s a professional networking website which not only gives you a chance to network with like minded professionals but also allows you to know the latest trends in the industry/area of your interest. When it comes to the legal industry, it is one of the best and the most popular tools used by the legal professionals worldwide.
  • Connect with hundred, thousands of like minded professionals, share and gain insight from their life experience, knowledge.
  • Make your company’s profile there and post updates under your company’s name.
  • Create a LinkedIn group where you can invite your connections and other members in the community to join. This allows you to run your small networking/informative group by sharing your blogs, webinar, podcast, post and current updates of your business.
LinkedIn reports more than 277 million acquired users in more than 200 countries & territories and is getting paced among the legal professionals too.

Facebook & Twitter:
Facebook and Twitter not only makes you aware of people prospects and views but also help you to socially know your partners, clients and competitors. You are one post away to get likes, comments, re-tweets and get noticed from millions and billions. These platforms allow you to share your content to your connects, their connects and this chain goes on. Facebook also gives an option to promote your company page amongst your prospects.

For Facebook & Facebook Page:
  • Market your legal services by using blogs, real case studies, law association or government legal updates.
  • You can even run a contest for your prospects/clients and get ‘LIKE’. Example: Join our contest and get free legal consultancy.
  • Look for paid promotions, make groups, and engage your followers and keep interacting with them through your posts/comments.
For Twitter:
  • While using Twitter use Hashtags (#). Example: #Attorney, #PersonalInjury to make your content appears to relevant readers.
  • Interact and share information with people using their handles (@abc) – Be ethical and try not to be seen as a “Spammer”.
  • You can create a contest monthly, quarterly on Twitter to attract followers.
  • How can you forget the #FF (Follow Friday) messages? Use this to appreciate your audience for their involvement and say thank you.
Google+:
I am sure in our lives there is one moment when we don’t ask questions from GOD. We get all our answers from “GOOGLE” (Just Google it down). Now, create yours and your company’s profile and use this platform to market yourself. Like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn you can share your posts, write blogs, connect with others and do your own SEO (Search Engine Optimization) at your level.
  • Make your Google+ profile, your Google+ company page.
  • Share updates, news, blogs.
  • Connect with people, join groups, and associations.

You all will be happy to know there are other such social media platforms which can schedule your 100’s of posts, updates, and tweets in advance and can launch multiple campaigns at one time, few of such websites are – Buffer, Scoop it, HootSuite, etc. Though there are multiple other tools which can be beneficial for today’s legal professionals for marketing and networking, I believe, if one gets active on the above mentioned platforms, in addition to the physical interactions, the very purpose of marketing and branding oneself and one’s organization will get fulfilled.
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