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For today's lawyer, a strong social media presence is almost as much of a professional requirement as a website or working phone line. A majority of consumers now look to social media when deciding whether to hire an attorney, according to a new FindLaw survey. Fifty-four percent of consumers say that they would be likely to hire lawyers who are active on social media, while 40 percent said that they would be more likely to hire an attorney who can be found on social media.
Legal Consumers Look to Social Media
Ten years ago, few people would have turned to social media when considering an attorney. But not too long ago, consumers wouldn't have gone online to research lawyers, either. Today, both behaviors are common. In fact, 84 percent of American adults use some form of social media, from Facebook (73 percent) to Twitter (27 percent) to Snapchat (16 percent).
And they're starting to use social media to connect with professionals. Thirty-four percent have used social media to pick professionals like lawyers and doctors, according to the FindLaw survey, a number that jumps to 48 percent among Millennials.
You've Got a Social Media Account. Now What?
So, you've made a Facebook page for your firm, or a Twitter account for your lawyerly musings. Now what?
Once you have a social media presence, you need to start using it to build your brand. How you do that takes some strategizing, but here are some broad rules to follow: be authentic, be engaged, and be human.
That's just one of the lessons from a new whitepaper from FindLaw's Lawyer Marketing, which seeks to help attorneys flesh out their social strategy. "From Novelty to Necessity: Pragmatic Social Media for Law Firms" offers tips on how to connect with potential clients on social media and turn your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram into a business development tool.
The new whitepaper from FindLaw's Lawyer Marketing places social media third on a five step process potential clients follow before choosing a lawyer. Coming after initial brand exposure, but before direct contact, social media makes up part of a prospect's attorney research, allowing them to "confirm their comfort and perceived ease of doing business with you." "Social media isn't built for starting the search," as the white paper explains. "It's there to close the deal."
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