Just as the invention of the internet changed the face of legal marketing, the advent of social networking is changing the way people conduct online searches. As a result, legal marketing strategies need to adapt and accommodate for this change. Presently, most law firms work towards having their website appear at the top of a Google search results page. However, with the popularity of websites like Facebook and Twitter growing every day, the focus must now also include understanding how potential clients search using these websites.
The following is an overview as to how social networks are changing the way people conduct web searches:
- Email messages are proven to be the most trusted form of communication on the internet
- People view personal endorsements of a product or service as being more reliable than reading reviews or judging based upon which law firm appears at the top of a Google search
- Social media has now become just as trusted a form of communication as an email from a friend
- Social media allows people to gather information quickly and from sources that they trust (their online “friends”)
- Instead of typing a Google search and doing research based upon the search results, people now can simply post a question asking for feedback on a social networking site. As an example, a person may say “I am selling my house and need an attorney, anyone have any recommendations?”
- The responses that people receive to these postings affect their decision making
- The responses are also highly geographically specific, as people are not going to recommend an Orlando attorney if the person posing the question lives in Baltimore
- In the not-so-distant future, Google rankings will take into account how your website interacts with other websites, including social networking sites
It is not only important to be aware that potential clients may be conducting searches through their social networks, it is also important to have an active presence on these sites. That way, responders to the postings can post a link directly to your page. On the page, you will of course have a link to your main website. The idea of the law firm social networking page is to drive traffic back to that site.
For more information about the effects of social networking on attorney marketing, contact the experts at Great Legal Marketing. Fill out our online form or call our office at 703-591-9829 for more information.