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Let’s Talk Twitter: An LMA Social Media SIG Webinar

Today, I had the pleasure of sitting in on a webinar presentation from my friends Nancy Myrland of Myrland Marketing and Lance Godard of JD Supra. The Social Media Special Interest Group for the Legal Marketing Association has been putting on monthly webinars, and this month’s focused on Twitter.

Since it is a member benefit, I won’t give all the secrets away, but I did want to offer the highlights: 

How Can I Use Twitter? 

  • Firm Use: The firm twitter account can be considered a curator for all of the firm’s information on Twitter. It can also be used as a watchdog for client activity, and a market softener – when people see the firm’s name then in other places, they’ll be more receptive.
  • Individual Use: This is where the rubber meets the road. You can show personality and brand, generate relationships, and position yourself as an expert in your field.

Broadcast versus Social Media

  • “Servant Leadership:” Be a leader, but do so by first serving your followers with the intent of helping them.
  • Your use of Twitter doesn’t have to be all social – it can be a hybrid. It’s okay to be a broadcaster if you surround yourself with enough other personality.

What Can Twitter Do For Me?

  • Develop relationships: This does take work, but it helps to peel back the layers of unfamiliarity that usually take months to peel back.
  • Can support your business development efforts, and serve as an additional tool to plug into your marketing plan.
  • Establishes your attorneys as thought leaders: Here, you have more control over the conversations that are taking place, and attorneys can stay ahead of the game in their respective practice areas.  It also helps the attorneys become go-to sources and curators of information.
  • Source for information: Here you can get your news and substantive information, as long as you look at it in context.

Twitter by the Numbers

  • Over 500 million users (up from just over 100 million this time in 2011, and 75 million this time in 2012)
  • 340 million tweets PER DAY
  • 1 million new users PER WEEK
  • Use by general counsel is low, but it’s an opportunity to be on the cutting edge of a very popular tool in other industries.

I’m on Twitter; Now What? 

  • You bring the activity to you – sync your address book, so Twitter can tell you who you already know.
  • Use Twitter as your search engine – find people to connect with by searching key words and saving those searches (can also use third party tools for Twitter, like Hootsuite and Tweetdeck).
  • Look at who your competitors follow and who follows them – a goldmine of information.
  • See who Twitter suggests that you follow.
  • Interact with peers in your field through the use of hashtags, both for searching and monitoring, and within your individual tweets.
  • Follow and use conference hashtags, even for firm events.

I have Followers, Now What? 

  • It depends on your goals, but you’ll want to talk to them before you just start broadcasting information.
  • With the way Twitter has evolved, people are jumping on and off more frequently, and not all of your content will be read. There’s a need to make sure that you’re always refreshing your content.
  • Everyone uses the tools differently, so you’ll have to see what works best for you.

Ethical Considerations: Whatever you follow in real life, you need to follow on social media tools. “Don’t do anything stupid” with respect to client confidentiality.

A final takeaway – Twitter is growing in importance and it’s a tool that law firms need to be using.

Thanks Lance & Nancy!