JDB 079: Can Lawyers Really Get Clients through Social Media?

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For many lawyers the whole concept of social media is just a big waste to time.  And it can be.  Whether it is Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Google+ social media is a guilty pleasure for most, but can it actually be a valuable tool for marketing your law firm?

In this episode of the podcast I discuss some of the surprising statistics when it comes to the various social media platforms, which platform will be most effective for your law practice, what kind of content you should be posting on social media, and tips using it for the greatest impact.

Which Social Media Platform is Best For Your Law Firm?

A consumer based practice (bankruptcy, criminal defense, family law) will likely find a receptive audience on platforms like Facebook and to a lesser extent Twitter.  If your law practice provides legal services to other businesses or professionals a platforms like Google+ and LinkedIn – particularly if you are members of groups that are relevant to your specific practice area – can be very beneficial.

What About Facebook?

Even if your law practice focuses on providing legal services to other business I still believe you can gain a lot of benefit from creating a robust presence on Facebook.  Check out some of these Facebook statistics:

  • Facebook Users: 1.55 billion monthly active users
  • Percentage of adults that visit Facebook at least once per month:  72%
  • Total number of daily active users:  1.01 billion
  • Percentage of Facebook users that use it daily:  65%
  • Time spent on Facebook per user per day:  20+ minutes
  • Percentage of all U.S. senior citizens that use Facebook: 31%
  • Percentage of drivers that admit to checking Facebook while operating their vehicle: 27%

Nearly 14% of the world’s total population is on Facebook nearly half-an-hour every day!  Anytime a platform has that kind of engagement and just sheer numbers it is important that your business has a presence there.

What About Twitter?Twitter for Lawyers

I know a lot of lawyers are really active on Twitter.  And while I believe Twitter is a valuable tool for making contacts and building professional relationships the reach of Twitter and ability to provide really valuable content to potential clients is limited when compared to Facebook.  Check out these Twitter statistics:

  • Total registered users on Twitter:  about 1 billion
  • Daily Active Twitter Users:  100 million
  • Number of Twitter accounts that have never sent a tweet: 550 million
  • Percentage of Twitter users that created an account and never sent a tweet:  44%
  • Percentage of active Twitter users that log onto it more than once a day:  34%

Statistics from:  ExpandedRamblings.com

The Twitter statistic that gives me the most pause is the last one – 34% of active Twitter users log onto it more than once a day.  That means that 66% are not logging on more than once a day, and with the average lifetime of a tweet being just 18 minutes the chances of reaching much of an audience at all on Twitter is very small unless you are tweeting at several points throughout the day.

I personally like Twitter but have not found it to be much of a benefit at all to my law practice when it comes to gaining new clients and because of this I don’t spend a fraction of the time there as I do in Facebook.  If you want to learn more about the use of Twitter in building a law practice check out episode 54 where I interviewed attorney and social media expert Adrian Dayton.  He is a big proponent of social media and particularly the use of Twitter in establishing a law practice.

Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Law Firm Facebook Page

Cover Art:  When you create a page for your law firm on Facebook there are some pretty great tools to help you customize the look of the page and attract more visitors.  A key element is the cover art.  You can create custom cover art with your own photos through a simple graphic design software known as Canva.  Check it out.  It is free and you can easily create something that looks professional.

Uploading Video:  I have found that if you upload video directly to Facebook (as opposed to sharing a link from YouTube) that the amount of views you will get on the video will be 10x what you would get organically.  If you are posting the videos to YouTube just take the .mp4 file and uploaded directly onto your firm’s page.

Boosting Posts:  In the old days if you posted something on your firm’s Facebook page there was a good chance you could get your content in the news feed of those people who had ‘liked’ your page.  However, Facebook has changed the rules of the game and now when you post content on your page it is likely only going to be delivered into the news feed of less than 10% of the people who have liked your page.

The way to get your articles/videos/content in front of more eyeballs is to “boost” the post.  After you post the content Facebook will offer you the ability to pay an amount of your choosing to get your content in front of more people.  This is extremely costs effective as you can boost a post for as little as $5 and make a big difference in the number of people who see the post.

One of the neatest features of boosting a post is you can select specific audiences you would like the post to be shown to, or even create your own audience based upon criteria and profile traits that Facebook has collected from its users.

Facebook Remarketing: One feature that I been using lately is boosting my post to an audience of those people who have previously visited my law firm website.  This is done through remarketing /retargeting and is very easy to set up.  You can see step-by-step instructions on how to set this up in Facebook by checking out the show notes to Episode #69.

The Key to Great Social Media is Creating Great Content

Social media can be a valuable tool in building your firm’s online presence but it is important to remember that your focus should be on creating great content that you can share via social media. If the articles you are writing or the videos you are shooting aren’t helpful to the people you hope to attract as clients then you likely won’t be successful with social media.

It may require you to come out of your comfort zone a bit, and if you aren’t already using social media socially there is going to be a bit of learning curve, but social media can be one of your most powerful tools is spreading the word on your law practice.

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