October 5, 2009 – Social networking is an incredibly worthwhile and advantageous marketing strategy for a lot of lawyers, unfortunately, not many of them understand the fundamentals of what is means to participate in a social media environment.
Your website is the main vehicle to promote yourself on the Internet. This is where you can talk at length about the value of your law firm, your expertise, awards you have been given, cases you have won, and so on provided you are also publishing relevant and engaging SEO content that informs your clients about their cases as well.
Social media is a different animal and cannot and should not be used exclusively for self promotion. If all you do on your Facebook or Twitter accounts is talk about you, you won’t make any friends and your online marketing efforts won’t result in any new clientele. That is because social networking isn’t a predominately promotional vehicle, it is an online community where people learn and share ideas with each other that can in turn become a promotional vehicle if utilized correctly.
Sharing and interacting on social media means listening to what other people are talking about and responding/engaging in those conversations. This can include:
- Reposting (or Retweeting on Twitter) links, quotes, ideas, and so on posted by other members and giving the credit for it
- Promoting ideas, links, articles that are in no way associated with your website
- Asking questions and answering questions other users ask you
- Participating in surveys and polls, and likewise creating your own
Of course you are going to tell your online friends about your new blog post or article, but when they write a great blog, you are going to tell your other friends about it as well. That is networking. On social networking websites the whole concept is about spreading ideas, taking part in the conversation, and being involved in something bigger than yourself.
It is a balancing act, but one that is imperative if you really want to create a presence on social media that will benefit you in the long run.
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