Originally published on Sept. 9, 2015, and updated on Oct. 3, 2019:

One of the most common questions I get from attorneys is how to identify the right social media networks for their firms.  Frankly, it’s not that hard.

The most important thing in identifying the right social media platform is to know your target market.   If you don’t know that, then any marketing you are doing anywhere is just a shot in the dark.

Once you know the characteristics of your market, you can then focus on the social media networks that do the best job of reaching that audience.  Here are demographic breakdowns on the most popular social networks from SproutSocial:

 

 

 

 

 

If your market is business-to-business, you want to have a robust presence on LinkedIn.  If you market to consumers, then Facebook is your best bet.  If you want to go after a female clientele, then be sure you have some presence on Pinterest.

Once you have done the necessary homework on knowing your prospect inside and out, then it’s much easier to find the best places to reach them.

Next, to create a social media plan for your law firm, take the following six-step approach:

Step 1:  Choose your social media networks.  Frankly, you don’t want or need to participate on every social media network out there.   Where you need to be is where your clients and prospects are – see above to figure that out.

Step 2:  Complete your profiles.  Once you have selected your social media networks, you need to complete your profile on each network.  Include both visuals and text and make your profiles consistent across all the platforms.  Be sure to include your address for local SEO and to let people find you easily.  Include your main keywords.  Keep the content fresh by updating.

Step 3:  Find your voice.  Spend some time on each social network you have chosen to participate on to discover the right tone and voice for your posts.  Since social media networking is much like offline networking, be yourself.  Learn what is appropriate — and not — to share.

Step 4:  Schedule your posts.  Participating on social networks means just that — participating!  Research shows that you should be posting on Facebook 5-10x/week, Twitter at least 5x/day, and LinkedIn once every weekday. Try to include an image with most if not all posts — research also shows posts with photos get shared up to 35% more.

Step 5:  Analyze, test and repeat.  Check your stats on your social media networks to see what posts are getting the most traction online — you can use a reporting tool like Buffer Analytics to create a dashboard for all your networks so you can review stats at a glance.   Then repeat your successes.

Step 6:  Automate and engage.  There are several online tools you can use to automate the scheduling of your posts that will save you a lot of time and enable you to keep things running smoothly when you’re too busy or away.  However, there does need to be a person responsible for monitoring your social media networks so comments or questions are answered promptly.

Need more guidance? Read this recent post on social media marketing for law firms: 7 Social Media Marketing Essentials for Attorneys.  Then click below for my free Lawyer’s Guide to Social Media Rainmaking: