Hey legal marketers and social media enthusiasts! If you’re like me, then you know social media can be a valuable tool for attorneys to generate new clients for their firm – but we still struggle to get them to “buy in” to using social media for marketing. Trust me… I get it!
As both a social media attorney and law firm marketing consultant, I’ve heard every excuse under the sun as to why attorneys don’t use social media for marketing. In fact, I surveyed over 400 law firms from across the world to get a deeper understanding of the roadblocks legal marketers face when seeking to get their attorneys to use social media – and I used this information to author a book called The Social Media Guide for Lawyers.
Here are a few tips on how you can persuade your attorneys to finally begin embracing the power of social media for marketing. Here’s number one:
The Top Three Reasons Why Attorneys Don’t Use Social Media (and What You Can Do About It!)
The first reason why attorneys don’t use social media for marketing is they don’t understand why they should spend their time on it. For the most part, attorneys know what Facebook and LinkedIn are (or at least they’ve heard of it), but many of them don’t believe that they can actually generate new clients by using these marketing tools. So how can you demonstrate the why?
I start by featuring social media success stories from their colleagues within the firm or attorneys outside the firm that the attorneys respect. I work side-by-side with the firm’s marketing director to identifying those superstar attorneys within the firm who have generated new business, received industry recognition, or experienced a positive result by using social media – and highlighting their success story to the firm. Once their colleagues see actual results achieved from social media, they’ll want to know how they can get in on the action.
The second reason why attorneys don’t use social media for marketing is that they don’t know how the attorney advertising ethics rules apply to their social media use. This is a major roadblock for attorneys because they are afraid of getting in trouble with their bar association. As a social media attorney, author, and voice of The Florida Bar’s Social Media Marketing 101 for Lawyers program, attorneys feel comfortable listening to my advice on how they can comply with the advertising ethics rules. Once I address the “elephant in the room” by explaining how attorneys can easily comply with the ethics rules, they are immediately more comfortable with actively using social media for marketing.
The third reason why attorneys don’t use social media for marketing is that they don’t know what they need to do to manage social media within their busy practice. Having worked with legal marketers from across the country, I know with absolute certainty that you’re telling your attorneys the right way to use social media for marketing. But despite your advice, many of them still struggle to embrace social media. I’ve learned that the primary reason is because attorneys often look to another attorney who speaks their own language before they adopt a new marketing initiative. Attorneys experience piece of mind once they speak with someone who knows what its like to manage the same billable hours, court deadlines, nagging clients, and still find time to use social media within their hectic schedule. While this shouldn’t be the case, it is simply how lawyers operate. But, once attorneys hear how another attorney uses social media to generate clients while juggling their same professional responsibilities, they begin to gain confidence that they too can include social media in their current marketing efforts.
There are many other reasons why attorneys don’t use social media for marketing. I help legal marketers and attorneys with best practices and innovative strategies to finally convince your colleagues to embrace social media. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me at (407)484-5100 or email@example.com or tweet to me at http://www.twitter.com/ethanwall.
CEO & Founder of Social Media Law & Order
Ethan teaches social media CLE programs to lawyers, law firms, and legal associations. He can design a one hour, half day, or full day workshop at your office, firm retreat, or conference that will be approved for both ethics and general CLE credit. Learn more about how Ethan can be your social media law keynote speaker at your next conference on topics related to social media and the law.