As social media becomes increasingly pervasive, marketers, small business owners, and large corporations alike are beginning to feel the pressure to adapt to the new medium. However, for many, the scope and size of online platforms can appear intimidating. There are, no doubt, a number of law firms that would like to make the leap to social media but are uncertain of where to start and what avenues to pursue.
Although Skunkworks provides services for all social networks and understands how each can function to spur growth, we believe that one of the best starting points for our clients (think law firms, accounting firms, and other professionals) is LinkedIn. Although not as iconoclastic as Twitter and slightly less youth-oriented than Facebook, LinkedIn is an incredibly popular social networking site and has the fortunate distinction of being geared specifically towards professionals.
The following are five reasons why LinkedIn is a definite “Do” for Law Firms:
- LinkedIn is for grown ups:
LinkedIn provides the perfect online setting for businesses that offer professional services. If social networks were people, LinkedIn would be the one perpetually dressed in an elegant (yet trendy) suit and tie. Whereas an improperly managed Facebook profile or company page could potentially lead someone back to an embarrassing set of photographs from your college years, LinkedIn profiles and pages make this impossible by promoting an overall atmosphere of professionalism.
- LinkedIn is free:
It is possible to pay a premium subscription fee to access certain services on LinkedIn. However, the basic profiles are free and easy to create. The LinkedIn company pages that Skunkworks professionally designs can also be posted to the website at no annual cost. These pages provide an effective and cost-efficient way to increase brand awareness among the many professionals who regularly browse the site. The importance of having a company page listed on LinkedIn is made all the more salient when you consider that it is the 9th most frequented site in Canada and the 12th most frequented site in the world.
- People can perform industry specific searches:
On LinkedIn it’s possible to perform searches by industry. This is a feature that doesn’t exist on Facebook and only exists to a limited extent on Twitter. The absence of a company page on LinkedIn translates to a huge potential loss in brand reach, as more and more people are choosing to get in touch with companies online. For example, I don’t know any employment lawyers in Calgary, but I can run a quick search on LinkedIn and easily locate some. Furthermore, while I may not be able to recommend them, my connections likely can.
- LinkedIn can drive traffic to your website:
A great feature of LinkedIn is the prominence of links that can potentially drive users to your company website. Whereas Facebook tends to bury external links that are posted to personal profiles, LinkedIn does a great job of placing these links front and center on both personal profiles and company pages.
- LinkedIn is an information rich platform:
LinkedIn receives less daily traffic than Twitter, but more than makes up for this shortcoming by allowing for long posts and company descriptions. While Twitter is great for companies that are searching for a high level of interactivity with clients, it is impossible for some things to be adequately described in 140 characters or less. A LinkedIn page is great for professionally providing the information that Twitter and other sites are incapable of broadcasting.
For those of you thinking about entering the world of social media, LinkedIn is an easy and safe first step. However, LinkedIn should only represent the beginning of your journey. LinkedIn, like all other online mediums, works best when used in conjunction with various other platforms. When faced with the question of whether to create a company profile on twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn, the best course of action is usually to judiciously pursue all three. If you require further guidance, Skunkworks is always happy to provide a helping hand.