Harnessing the power of social media

Eclipse spoke to Modern Law Magazine around the advantages of social media, and how law firms can use it as a tool to stand out. 

Social media isn’t a flash in the pan, it’s here to stay and these days it plays an important role in the daily lives of virtually everyone, and it’s changing the way clients and businesses interact.

A strong social media campaign is one of the most cost-effective ways to reach thousands of potential clients, and with that comes the ability to increase revenue at a much lower cost than traditional marketing methods. As an added benefit, it also increases a firm’s visibility, and the chance to establish a reputation as an industry leader.

Savvier law firms are using some of the below techniques to harness the power of social media and effectively handle the risks, simultaneously building an online presence of expertise and approachability:

To improve client service – as a starting point, social media can be used to ‘listen’, that is, to see what clients and prospective clients are saying about the services on offer; the solicitors at the firm; the client care; and the overall client experience.

Armed with an understanding of how a firm is portrayed online will provide in-house marketing teams and/or senior management with insights as to how the client service and experience can be enhanced (whether the discussions taking place are positive or negative), and from here can set realistic benchmarks and integrate these into the wider marketing strategy.

To build authority – one of the major perks to using social media is that it allows firms to demonstrate their industry knowledge, whether that’s sector-specific information, or general advice for those experiencing legal issues. The use of online platforms means that firms are in control of what they post and when, and this can include helpful resources and thought-leadership articles on trending topics, or even to simply demonstrate a more ‘human’ side to the firm using its culture and social engagement.

To gain a competitive advantage – the increasing use of social media within the legal profession means it’s easier for firms to gain competitive intelligence, and keep tabs on competitors. This information can then be leveraged, enabling firms to provide differing insights and new perspectives on particular topics, and contributing to a reputation of authority.

For many firms the perceived risks of social media can outweigh the benefits, however missing out on a social media marketing strategy means missing out on an untapped resource of potential business that most firms simply cannot afford to ignore.