Social Media for Lawyers and Law Firms.
Some lawyers cringe at the thought of social media. Some lawyers have received several clients as a result of their efforts on social media. I try to encourage law firms, at a minimum, to be signed up and have control of their social media accounts. You do not have to send out Tweets or engage with people on Facebook every day to get a benefit from social media; it’s a great way to build both links and citations on some of the highest trafficked websites on the internet. Regardless of how engaged or not you plan on being, taking the time to get your accounts set up and correctly linked is well worth it.
Your Basic Profile
With a little effort you can have a logo and a decent looking page (for free) on some of the largest and heaviest trafficked websites on the internet; this is the easiest and most effective way to build citations. I’m not encouraging you to tweet what you had for lunch; I have no problem with setting up these accounts and never saying a single word. That said, not taking the time to at least set up your social media pages is a missed opportunity for you to gain valuable links and citations for your law firm website. Again, like I talked about in the “Internet as an Environment” article, ignoring this does NOT make it go away. Some of these sites will create a profile for your business based on public listings or information found on the web. In these cases, step one is to see what’s already out there, and then work through the confirmation process, allowing you to take control of the listing.
The image is what you see when you Google my business name, “Swell-Sites”. You can see one other site slipped in there, which is bound to happen unless your business name is extremely unique. This is what we’re going for – not just for the SEO benefit, but because when people search your name, you want to control the information that they’re seeing, and get them to your website.
A quick overview of the sites I’d suggest starting with:
Far and away the most important, because it controls the map listing you see when people Google high value searches like “St. Paul Personal Injury Lawyer”.
It takes a little time to get a few pictures cropped correctly and your logo set up, but it’s worth it. Many lawyers blow this (and Twitter) off because they think that they need to actually use it.
Probably the easiest and quickest listing to set up. You just upload your logo, type a few lines and add a link to your site.
In addition to your personal listing on linked in you should also get your business listing set up, and then establish yourself as a member of this business. You do not need to subscribe to your overly ambitious friend’s daily motivation quotes from Zig Ziglar. However, there is a recommendation section on LinkedIn that can be a nice place to display references either from peers or former clients when possible.
This will automatically tie to your Google+ account. It’s only really relevant if you have videos you want to publish or share. It should be noted, however, that your YouTube channel should be associated with your Google+ business page and not your personal profile.
This is often one where you have to claim a listing that they’ve already created. For what it’s worth, I would always encourage people to review you at Google+ first. If they want to fill out Yelp too, great, but the only reason this is listed here is because you have to have control over your Yelp account IN CASE something happens. This is an insurance policy / notification system. This is not where we want to build our reviews. There’s nothing wrong with Yelp, it’s just that having reviews on your Google+ listing is infinitely more beneficial to your overall presence.
I know I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating; you DO NOT have to actually USE social media, you just need to get it set up. If you have questions about how I can help you set this up or manage it, don’t hesitate to contact me at 651.271.8845 or through my website.