AHLA Annual Meeting 2011 Social Media for Lawyers by David Harlow


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  • Today, I’m going to speak about some of the reasons why lawyersshould be using social media, and how you can do so without getting into trouble.
  • We can all give a million reasons why NOT to use social media – but there are more reasons TO use these tools. I’m here today to tell you that it’s relatively easy to get started … but you MUST have a long-term commitment to stick with it … because it isn’t a short-term ad campaign, it has to become part of your regular daily or weekly routine. What are we going to do today? Learn some do’s and don’tsThink of social media as a power toolIf you don’t know how to use the tool properly, you could get hurt
  • On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog. This cartoon is almost 20 yrs old and reflects an internet ethos of an earlier timeAnonymityToday - flamers &trolls aside - There is a decided preference for owning one’s online presence.. Particularly in the realm of SoMeThere are some anonymous bloggers, but for the most part, since authenticity is the name of the game, anonymity is out.Key: Be Authentic.As Oscar Wilde once said, Be Yourself – Everyone Else is Taken.
  • You can’t ignore it …
  • Another way of answeing the question - Why Social Media? All the cool kids are doing it . . .Willie Sutton logic: it’s where the money isRemember: It’s one arrow in the quiver •Social media: a tactic, not a strategy
  • What is Social Media? Online content created by people using highly accessible and scalable publishing technologies.A shift in how people discover, read and share news, information and content.A fusion of sociology and technology, transforming monologues (one to many) into dialogues (many to many), and the democratization of information, transforming people from content readers into publishers.
  • .. Or at least from the past that we know. Thru most of human history:We’ve shared info thru Word of Mouth19th-20th C. – Mass Media – Now On the waneHyperlocal, or hyperspecialized … & socialized – back to WOM
  • The Cluetrain Manifesto ……And if you want to be in a market, you need to be in a conversation.On any given day, people share 830 million items on Facebook, upload 6.1 million photos to Flickr, add 2.1 million minutes of video to YouTube and send 65 million tweets. [According to Google’s Eric Schmidt,] every two days now we create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003.
  • We need to meet people where they are, and we need to speak their languageWe need to ensure that the platforms for conversations are in placeIt takes Hardware, software, human capital, If you are an org of any size, You need to have Policies and procedures – to be developed out in the open, – inclSoMe users throughout org – folks who are excited about this stuff, and who can help communicate the rules informally once they’re adopted)
  • I would submit that you need to be in the conversation – because it’s happening without you.
  • Yes! Why? Bcs: People are flocking online to find and share information using a variety of tools, as illustrated by Brian Solis’ Conversation PrismNot going on line to read your latest boring newsletter – going online to find something that could help solve a problemConversational tone of social media is just right for these sorts of interactionsRemember -- Think of social media as a power toolIf you don’t know how to use the tool properly, you could get hurt
  • I’ve gotten new clients, and paid speaking gigs, as a direct result of my social media presence
  • Culture Clash-Need to acknowledge that up front and address it-Need to convene appropriate groups to develop relevant policies and proceduresEthical stds can be observed
  • This Old House: Measure Twice, Cut Once
  • General Counsel? Need to adjust tactics accordingly. Different rules apply depending on the target audience.
  • Many social media toolsTo my mind, the blog is at the core. All of the other tools refer back to the blog.
  • BLAWG - what is itLegal web log = law blog = blawgWeb 2.0Online journal, posted in reverse chronological orderInteractiveLinksCommentsRSS: (“push”)WHY do it?PR/marketing for your practice and yourself•Improved web presence (Google loves blogs)•Networking/CommunityOther bloggersReaders Referral sourcesClients•MarketingHigher Google profile more press calls
  • How to blogPick a niche and start writingDon’t stop . . . commitment mattersYou will find your voice . . . or several voicesDon’t do this unless you really like writing and have something to sayBut don’t be put off by the fallacy: “If I’m thinking it, then everyone must be thinking it.”Begin publicizing after writing several postsRead voraciouslyJoin the conversationComment on, and link to, other blogs
  • Read other blogsFind them via directories, e.g.:Blawg.comJustia.comABA JournalmyHq:blawgsRead Blawg Reviewand posts from other blog carnivals (definition) (examples) and follow the links•Subscribe to blogs using a feed reader, e.g.:Google ReaderSeesmic(integrated social media client)
  • Technical stuffBlogging infrastructureChoose a platformDIYTypepadBloggerWordpressPosterousOthersHosted, designed, optimizedJustiaLexBlogSyndicationTune into the magic of RSS –“really simple syndication” for your feedRegister with Feedburner(RSS & email for the dinosaurs)•Link loveYou must give in order to receive•Track readershipTrack reactions and links with Google AlertsFreshness and authority countTrack incoming traffic with StatCounterorSiteMeterSEO: Adjust writing based on this information
  • Participate in blog carnivals (definition) Submit postsHost carnivals•General and specialized; legal and non-legalSeeBlogCarnival.com Blog carnivals I contribute to and/or hostBlawg ReviewHealth Wonk ReviewGrand Rounds•Others:Carnival of the CapitalistsCavalcade of Risk
  • Blogging -> conversation (law blogs less so than other sorts) Twitter is really a conversaitonal medium, shouldf not be used only as a briadcast channelSo what is TwitterMicrobloggingplatform --140 character limit per post Millions of registered users, including big business and lawyers from solos to Am Law 200“Broadcast” vs. interactiveCan be used for one-way communicationMore effective as medium for conversationNetworking and communication tool
  • TwitterMicrobloggingplatform --140 character limit per post Millions of registered users, including big business and lawyers from solos to Am Law 200“Broadcast” vs. interactiveCan be used for one-way communicationMore effective as medium for conversationNetworking and communication tool Some Twitter toolsTo find other tweepstofollow:Twellow(index organized a la the original Yahoo!)Twubble, MrTweet(once you’re following some)JD Scooplist of 500+ twittering lawyersLegal Birdsaggregator (Justia)LexTweetaggregator (LexBlog)To follow tweepswithout being overwhelmed by the volume; lets you assign tweepsto groups; integrates with other social mediaTweetDeckorSeesmicTwitter on the goUberSocial, OpenBeakorEchofonIntegrate tweets into other social mediaE.g., tweet via Ping.fmTweetDeckorSeesmicconfigured to post to Twitter, Facebook, Linked In. Feed blog through TwitterfeedorFeedBurnerso post titles end up in “tweetstream” with links back to the blog.•Posterous, other platforms allows for easy integration into multiple streams Google and Bing Twitter search increase blog posts’ and tweets’ exposure
  • Using Twitter effectivelyNeed to establish tactics that further your marketing strategy, e.g.:Broadcast blog posts“Tweet” information/links not worth a whole blog post or that you have no time to blog aboutFollow other “tweeps” of interestEngage in dialogue –public or private –with other tweepsFollowhashtagsof interest; post with hashtagsParticipate in tweetchats
  • (My 17 y.o. son says I’m using it wrong …)Online networking communities•Leverage your network to avoid cold calls•Allow you to feed content to their sites, including RSS feeds of blogsTweets•Allow you to remain top-of-mindNeed to use the right online tools to reach each of your target markets Personal pages and business pagesPersonal pages –access may be limited to “friends”Business pages open to allExamples: David Harlowand The Harlow Group LLC•Turned “friend” into a verb•Useful platform for communication with defined groups and friends
  • Linked In–“Facebookforgrownups”Allows for exploration of contacts’ networksIncludes Q&A forums to demonstrate expertiseAdding functionality mimicking FacebookGroupsFeedsSlideshareJDSupra–Legal Updates•Convergence of Linked In, Facebook, Twitter
  • Overall – remember social media etiquette … don’t be too pushy … but also remember why you’re doing this
  • The reasons behind your use of social media will drive the way you use these tools – don’t forget why you’re doing this.
  • We’re getting to the point where there are more & more reasons to engage in social mediaBut remember, readers are fickle.It has to be about the audience, not about the writer – offer value, not advertisements.
  • Simplified version of that slide that sort of looked like a hurricane …
  • To sum up –Anyone can join the vanguard by being smart:Plan what you want to do, understand why you’re doing it, and be clear on your approach up front You can stay on the right side of legal and ethical issues in the use of social mediaRespect the power of the tools you useThink about the framework we’ve looked at today, and plan for the future
  • AHLA Annual Meeting 2011 Social Media for Lawyers by David Harlow

    1. 1. Why Should Lawyers Use Social Media?Marketing and Branding Your Legal Practice Using Social Media<br />American Health Lawyers Association Annual Meeting<br />Boston MA<br />June 28, 2011<br />David Harlow JD MPH<br />The Harlow Group LLC<br />blog • healthblawg.com<br />twitter • @healthblawg <br />
    2. 2.
    3. 3. “On theInternet, nobody knows you’re a dog.”<br />
    4. 4. Facebook Nation is the third largest nation in the world<br /> global warming   <br /> sex   <br /> facebook <br />
    5. 5. “Why Do You Rob Banks?”Willie Sutton:“Because That’s Where the Money Is.” <br />
    6. 6. Social Media is People …Transforms monologues into dialoguesDemocratizes information<br />
    7. 7. Marcomm in the 21st century is radically different from the recent past<br />
    8. 8. Markets are conversations<br />Markets are conversations<br />MICROSITE: www.accu-chekdiabeteslink.com<br />
    9. 9. People want to engage<br />
    10. 10. But many attorneys tend to be very conservative about these things<br />
    11. 11. Is social media right for lawyers?<br />
    12. 12. PS:It Works<br />
    13. 13. Open-book ethic of social media v. the legal establishment’s sense of decorum<br />
    14. 14. You must plan effectively in order to communicate effectively<br /><measure twice cut once kind of pic><br />
    15. 15. Who is your target?<br />
    16. 16. Influence requires trust, and trust requires engagement<br />No shortcuts.<br />No matter what your reasons for engaging via Web 2.0, you must develop trust in order to gain influence<br />
    17. 17. So how do we do this?<br />Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff, Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies, April 2008<br />Monitor, rinse & repeat<br />17<br />
    18. 18.
    19. 19. Specialized tools for specific uses<br />
    20. 20. What is a Blawg and Why Should I Care?<br />What is a Blawg and Why Should I Care?<br />
    21. 21. Just do it.<br />
    22. 22. Learn the ropes<br />
    23. 23. Blogging requires making some technical choices … and then forgetting about them<br />
    24. 24. Blog Carnivals<br />
    25. 25. Google juice in action<br />25<br />Health Blawg<br />Politico<br />CNN<br />ABC<br />CBS<br />The New Republic<br />
    26. 26. From blogging to microblogging . . .<br />
    27. 27.
    28. 28.
    29. 29. Facebook: 500 million active users<br />
    30. 30. • • •Facebook for Grownups<br />
    31. 31. Give and you shall receive<br />
    32. 32. Don’t forget: One key reason to do this is to grow the top of your sales funnel<br />
    33. 33. Social Media of the Future <br />
    34. 34. Learning to fly<br />David Armano, SVP Edelman Digital http://darmano.typepad.com/ 3.22.10<br />
    35. 35. Your social media strategy is ready to evolve<br />
    36. 36. for contact info in an sms<br />txt dharlow to 50500<br />harlowgroup.net<br />healthblawg.com<br />twitter.com/healthblawg<br />david@harlowgroup.net<br />Thank You<br />David Harlow JD MPH<br />The Harlow Group LLC<br />