“Why Should Facebook be “First?””
Why should Facebook be first? Facebook should be the first place you market your law practice on the Internet, if you haven’t started already. Well, not really first, but we presume you already have a website. If you don’t, make sure you get one, though not necessarily for the reasons you would expect. Still, if you had neither a Facebook Business Page nor a website and you had limited marketing dollars, you would get a faster Return on Investment (ROI) from a Facebook Business than you would from a webpage. (Check back for “Why You Really Need a Website for Your Law Practice”) It takes months to build traffic for a website, and your Facebook Business Page could lead to new cases in weeks, even days if you already have a great deal of friends on your personal Facebook page and the cost is nothing unless you run Facebook Ads.
One of the most important principles in marketing is to make sure you optimize the marketing for your existing clients and your network of friends and relatives before you spend time and money looking for business from strangers. This can take many forms including old fashioned peer to peer networking. It is easier to make a sale to your clients, friends and relatives than it is to strangers and your dollars spent doing that tend to yield a better Return on Investment (ROI). This is not to say that you shouldn’t be spending money on general marketing, but if you’re not marketing to the clients you already have and you’re not working to leverage your personal network, you’re not marketing effectively. This is particularly true as an attorney where a big part of the service you offer is you and presumably the people that know you are already predisposed towards you.
“Ask Your Facebook Friends to Like Your Business Page”
Ask your Facebook Friends to “Like” your Business Page. If you have a personal Facebook page you are halfway there. You can leverage hundreds of your Facebook friends into hundreds of networking platforms for you. All that time you spent posting pictures of food and cute cat videos will finally payoff with new clients and new cases! If you don’t have a personal Facebook page you need to start one and start finding and connecting with the people you know. No, you may not use your personal Facebook profile to market your practice. Well, you can, but you really shouldn’t, at least not directly. You need to maintain a professional image when you are marketing.
Next you need to create a Facebook Business page , which is relatively easy to do. https://www.facebook.com/business/learn/set-up-facebook-page
“What Do You Do With Your Facebook Business Page?”
What do you do with your Facebook Business Page? The first thing you should do is fill out all the relevant data such as contact info, website url, business hours, etc. You may also want to prepare an introductory post that you leave “pinned” to the top of your page so that whomever visits your page will be certain to see that post. Then, you need content. You can write about aspects of your practice or even post links to articles that you find relevant to your areas of practice. Never post personal information on that page and certainly don’t use it to express your personal, political opinions. This page must represent your practice professionally and not serve to alienate anyone.
Once you have some content, you then invite all your friends from your personal page to “Like” your Business Page. You can even ask your friends to ask their friends to “Like” the page. When you post things on your Business Page, all those who “Liked” your page will see it in their feed at one point or another. If you use your personal Facebook page to “Like” or “Share” posts from your Business Facebook page, even those of your friends who did not “Like” your Business page will see your posts on your feed! What does this accomplish? It reminds people that you’re alive. It reminds people that you’re an attorney. And, it reminds people what you do as an attorney, if you’re posting the right things. When your posts are “Shared” by your friends they begin to be seen by friends of your friends with whom you do not normally have contact. This extends your network to people you may not otherwise have contact with through a “friend” who is effectively endorsing you by sharing your post and being your “Facebook” friend.
If you have a blog, your post can consist of a link to your blog which will drive traffic to your website. Once at your website your friends, friends of friends, etc will be exposed to a more formal presentation of your practice. If you don’t have a blog, post a link to your practice area pages for the same result. If done on a regular basis you will get leads and eventually cases from your efforts. What is the cost of all this? Nothing! This part is free.
“Compare This Free Advertising With The ROI You Get with Just a Website.”
Compare this free advertising with the ROI you get with just a website. Every attorney should have a website, and that’s the problem. It’s a free for all on a level playing field. That’s not necessarily a bad thing and there are some very important reasons you MUST have a website. However, it takes time and money and work to drive people to your website and you are competing equally with other attorneys for the same audience. In contrast, Facebook Business Pages are free and relatively easy to maintain. Include Facebook Ads in the mix and you have a cost effective way to maximize contact with and extend your personal network and a relatively inexpensive way to obtain potential leads from the people living in your geographical area.
Carl P. DeLuca, Esq