Before I list some useful tips for law firms using Twitter, let’s start with how-to-create-a-strategy in general.
Put simply, the main questions are always:
- What are you trying to achieve?
- How will you achieve it?
- How will you know when you have achieved it (aka, what does success look like)?
Most firms are happy with a modest set of objectives around using Twitter to make the firm more approachable and modern. Other firms want to generate business directly through it (which, by the way, is what Atom has been doing successfully for years) and are prepared to invest the time required to make this happen.
But whatever your objectives, the part that people seem to get badly wrong is the time and cost element. Unless you keep an extremely tight lid on this, social media can take on a life of its own, gobbling up time and disrupting other work. In fact, once set up properly social media need not take up much time at all.
Here, from experience, are my ten tips for a law firm.
- Write down who your target followers are, eg local managing directors, national dental practices or local high-Twitter-activity individuals.
- Find people who have large numbers of followers of this type. Follow their followers (say, 200 at a time) and 10-30% will follow you back, depending on how attractive to them your own bio and tweets are. A fortnight later, unfollow anyone who has not followed you back, using free software such as ManageFlitter. Repeat these quick processes over and over again to build up a strong following.
- Periodically put all of your relevant new followers into one of four private lists: target market, VIPs, competitors and colleagues.
- There might be 40 VIPs. These are your prime targets, so schedule a time each day to quickly review what they have tweeted. These are the people who you should interact with.
- You need a pool of tweets that you can dip into. Consider using a supplier for these. For example, Atom supplies hundreds of monthly tweets to dozens of law firms and other organisations, at a tiny fraction of the price of creating or finding such tweets yourself.
- Allow yourself some fun while doing Twitter and do chat to the Twitter friends that you make. Support your colleagues who are on Twitter, using the colleagues list. And of course follow the Twitter etiquette of thanking people for re-tweets (etc) where appropriate. But strictly limit the time for these activities each week.
- As the saying goes, “Cream always rises to the top”. If your chosen audience likes what you are tweeting, they will listen to what you say. If too many of your tweets are irrelevant to your target audience, they will ignore you.
- Include your marketing messages in the mix of tweets. Avoid the usual law firm claims and platitudes (eg we are a leading law firm; we understand how stressful divorce is). Instead, provide evidence that you are the right firm for your followers (eg we’ve just completed our 100th house purchase this year; well done team, 96% of clients surveyed rated our work as VERY SATISFACTORY).
- Use scheduling software such as SocialOomph to bulk upload a set of core tweets every month. Or subcontract this simple task to your marketing agency, as they probably have the software.
- Lastly, avoid the downside. Include a social media section in your internet use policy. Whoever is running your Twitter account needs to have a clear idea about your objectives and the sort of tweets that you do and don’t want to see.
To discuss how Atom can help you with Twitter, contact Jack Somervell or Laura Swales on 0117 904 2224.