How Law Firms (and others) Can Use Social Media In A Crisis

Here’s my article, How Law Firms Can Use Social Media In A Crisis, that was just published as part of a cover story theme on crisis management in Strategies, the Journal of Legal Marketing. It’s in PDF format, so please click on the first link above and just scroll to the second page. Of course, the information here applies to any company or organization. Thanks to the Legal Marketing Association for including my contribution.

Note: The article was published right before I changed my company name from LawFirmsPR to Rich Klein Crisis Management.

Please leave feedback/comments below.

Questions? Please email rich@richkleincrisis.com. Find me on Twitter @RichKleinCrisis.

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Law Firm Partners: 10 Actions To Polish Your Reputation in 2013

December is a great time for law firm partners to plan for significantly raising visibility and improving reputation in the new year.

Here’s 10 actions you can start implementing right now so you are positioned for business growth in 2013:

1 – Fix your biography so people can learn quickly what you’ve accomplished for similar clients in recent years. Did you win a high stakes litigation for a Fortune 500 company? Did you handle a mega-merger that was favorable to client? Lead with your best stuff, NOT where you went to law school!

2– Put some meat on your LinkedIn profile. The same revised biographical info on your firm website can go on LinkedIn. Be sure the copy is about how you serve and succeed for clients and not a laundry list of fancy titles and bar memberships.

3 — Learn how to use the Advanced Search capabilities on LinkedIn to create a powerful list of prospects customized by items such as geography, job title, company, etc.

4 — Consider launching a practice-specific blog. And, no, you don’t have to blog every day. You can post as little as once per week or month and the posts can be just a few sentences or a short audio or video.

5 — Create a Twitter account and start Tweeting every few days. An easy way to start is by sharing other people’s news that is related to your practice or linking to your new blog post.

6 —  Record and post to YouTube a 2 to 3 minute video that analyzes a hot legal issue in your practice (s) area. This is one way to establish/expand your thought leadership and will improve your search engine results very quickly.  Here’s one we did for a client earlier this year that received 8,000+ views and another that has surpassed 10,000 views.

7 — Identify and secure speaking engagements where your best prospects gather. Want to be a more powerful presenter? Study Steve Jobs and read The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs. You can also watch a wide variety of great presentations at TED. Here’s one by Seth Godin that is a great example of excellent presentation and inspiring content.

8– Learn how to deal more effectively with the media and consider hiring a professional who can help you with messaging, transitions, body language and answering the toughest questions.  (At LawFirmsPR, we now do this kind of training by Skype, including a video recording and written audit, so you can quickly learn and improve.)

9– Increase your likability and trust. I highly recommend reading The Likability FactorTrust Agents and Book Yourself Solid.

10– Learn more about crisis/litigation communications for your firm and your clients. A good place to start is The Crisis Show,  a weekly Internet broadcast I started in June 2012 with case studies on a wide variety of crises that touch the legal world —  and with nearly 20 hours of free content so far.

How Law Firms Can Use Social Media in 2011

Here are my 10 predictions about law firms and their use of social media in 2011. (Disclaimer: It’s also a wish list!)

1–Lawyers will start using Facebook for business. (And many will say I’m nuts for suggesting this). Want to start one? Click here and the link takes you to Facebook’s page site.

2- More law firms will discover the benefits of using high definition digital video to promote their firm’s culture and they will link to YouTube.

3–Law firm management will pay much more attention to the use of social media to protect reputation and especially during a crisis.

4- Twitter use will increase among lawyers, who will use it for linking to their white papers, news releases, bylined articles, media coverage and court decisions relevant to their practice areas.

5–Lawyers will start using their LinkedIn profiles’ status bar to begin posting valuable information of interest to prospects and clients. Of course, if you also have a Twitter account, LinkedIn makes it easy to simultaneously Tweet your Linkedin status as shown in the hyperlink above. (Lawyers will also discover the power of LinkedIn’s many targeted groups to distribute this information and begin using LinkedIn’s search engine for gathering intelligence).

6–Microblog sites like Twitter, Posterous and Tumblr will slowly but surely grab the attention of lawyers because they allow for short posts that can written quickly and uploaded easily from tablet computers and mobile devices.

7–Educational podcasts, using sites like BlogTalkRadio, will allow more lawyers to reach larger audiences from their desks rather than traveling and spending $$ to get a large audience into a hotel conference room.

8–Law firms will discover the power of live video streaming and begin using sites like USTREAM and Justin.TV for reaching new prospects anywhere in the world.

9–Companies that build websites for law firms will see a steep decline in business unless they can also prove they understand how to use social media effectively and integrate it with a firm’s entire online presence.

10–Law firms will increasingly make social media part of their business development planning and execution. And hopefully, these firms will opt for an experienced person or team to manage social media instead of an intern or junior staffer.

What do you think? And, are you using any of these social media tools? Please leave any comments below.

P.S…Here’s my post from this time last year on law firm communications. Hint: there’s a connection between last year’s post and this one.

For more information, please visit http://www.LawFirmsPR.com.