I am excited to have a guest post this week by Deborah Dietzler, Ed.D. Her post is kicking off a series on lawyers’ use of social media. Over the coming weeks, I’ll be discussing various ethical issues that lawyers need to consider when using social media.
Love it or hate it (or somewhere in between) social media is here to stay. Its influence over our lives continues to grow, and it is increasingly the place where people get not only get their news, but seek out information regarding products and services. The reality is you cannot afford to dismiss social media as an important component of building your personal brand.
Most attorneys are far too busy to devote the time necessary to maintaining robust profiles on the various social media channels. Given that, if you are able to do nothing else, be sure that your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date, with complete information and an engaging profile photo – no sunglasses, kids, pets, etc. Use the Summary to write a third person synopsis of who you are and the areas of law you practice. This is the best place to use search engine words that will help potential clients locate you. Many LinkedIn users neglect to use this section to its fullest advantage.
If you want to invest further in using social media to increase awareness of you (and by default, your firm) consider spending 30-40 minutes each week seeking out relevant content to post to your LinkedIn page. Like, Share, and Comment on the posts made by others in your network and give endorsements and recommendations (be sure to check your jurisdiction’s ethics rules and opinions regarding endorsements). All of these activities help to keep you top of mind with your connections – and it also has a huge impact on your showing up in search results. LinkedIn gives special consideration to users who are more active.
If managing your social media is an activity you’d prefer to delegate, there are several excellent firms that will handle this for you. Service options vary from canned packages to customized content. While canned content is a less expensive option, you may see it appear in other attorney’s feeds and it doesn’t build the credibility that customized content, curated especially for you, will. Regardless of which you choose, utilizing these services will enable you to have a dynamic social media presence – a valuable tool for building your practice.
Dr. Deborah Dietzler, CMO and Founding Partner of ePresence, LLC, is an expert in the marketing of professional services. She is the author of several book chapters and a forthcoming book on the challenges faced by women in navigating the workplace.