Weekly Edge#16: Facebook for Lawyers

Years ago when I was first discussing the concept of “Facebook for lawyers” and whether it was even worth it for lawyers to be using the platform for their businesses, I was very skeptical. But now I’m a convert. While Facebook may or may not be ideal for your practice for business development, it does have a lot of potential to help your practice in other areas.

Today we break down Facebook for lawyers – the why and the how.

Weekly Edge #16: Facebook for Lawyers

Facebook 101 – Why Lawyers should be on Facebook

via Lawyerist by Leora Maccabee

Lawyers use Facebook in a variety of ways that make the platform much more than a tool for generating business. While this article broadly and very briefly mentions “business development”, it touches upon several other areas in a more concrete way. For example, Facebook is often used for investigating cases. The evidence gained from Facebook has been used to prove in court a defendant’s motive, participation in a crime, that a defendant had no remorse after committing a crime, evidence of the crime itself, and the extent of a plaintiff’s injuries. Also, if you are evaluating a job applicant, check up on their Facebook profile. Favorite action point: Use Facebook to follow and investigate other parties and witnesses involved in a case, because a smoking gun can be in plain sight on a user’s profile.

Facebook for Lawyers: The Right Forum?

via Web Marketing Today by Micah Buchdahl

An alternative argument to the question, “Should a lawyer be on Facebook?” The answer here is “maybe”. Facebook is the personal social media counterpart to LinkedIn’s business-oriented platform. The article argues that you should definitely have a page for your law firm, but your use for the page may differ if you work primarily with consumers or businesses. The harder question though is whether you should be Facebook friends with your clients and prospects. Favorite action point: If you’re looking to keep personal and business separate, you can make business acquaintances part of a “business” group of friends who only see certain content that you choose to share with them.

Lawyers Use Facebook to Target People Busted at Festivals with Drugs

via Mashable by Jenni Ryall

Here’s an anecdote on the power of targeted Facebook ads. While setting up a Facebook ad campaign trying to reach prospective clients, you can target people with specific interests and demographic profiles. A criminal defense law firm in Sydney, Australia created a campaign targeting young people interested in a local music festival with the tagline – “Busted with possession or supply of drugs at Field Day? Call Sydney’s best drug lawyers!” Favorite action point: Create targeted ads to reach people with demographic and interest profiles of those of your ideal prospective clients. This allows you to reach better prospective clients directly without spending your ad budget on people less likely to need your services.

Facebook for Lawyers: 5 Tips for Your Law Firm

via Nextpoint Blog by Jason Krause

And now, some tips on how to get the most visibility for your law firm’s profile pages. For one, Facebook doesn’t share everything a user or page posts into friends’ news feeds. So, you may have to pay Facebook to “boost” a post to ensure your followers get to see it. Also, you can reach beyond your followers by utilizing hashtags to get others involved in your conversations. Favorite action point: People like images in the posts they read. Text alone gets overlooked. Use images to help tell your story and draw in readers.

10 Tips for Avoiding Ethical Lapses when Using Social Media

via ABA by Christina Vassiliou Harvey, Mac R. McCoy, Brook Sneath

There are some activities that, while they may seem innocuous on social media, may be ethical violations. For example – be careful when trying to friend or follow unrepresented third-parties; if a party is represented by counsel, friending them or otherwise reaching out would be impermissible. Some lawyers have been reprimanded for sharing confidential information on social media, even though they assumed that they did a good enough job anonymizing the clients. Favorite action point: Don’t friend a judge without reading your state’s ethics guidelines first. The rules vary from state to state.

And now, this…

In Your Facebook!

via Ellen

Be warned – you may get sucked down the YouTube video rabbit hole. This video is part of a series, and the others are pretty good too.

Andrew Cabasso
About the Author: Andrew Cabasso
Andrew Cabasso is a practicing attorney and VP of Web Services at Uptime Legal where he runs JurisPage, an Internet Marketing firm specializing in online presence solutions for law firms including website design, SEO, and search marketing. He has given many lectures and CLEs on website design and Internet marketing to legal professionals. He is the author of Search Engine Optimization for Lawyers and The Complete Guide to Attorney PPC. Follow Andrew on LinkedIn, Google+, or Twitter.

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