Facebook Marketing: Introduction
Facebook is one of the first places a small law firm or solo practitioner should market their practice as discussed in our blog, “Facebook First.” Your Facebook business page will leverage your personal contacts better than any other platform. It will also allow you to target potential clients based on demographics, interests, etc., at a very reasonable and scalable rate in comparison to other platforms and marketing methods.
You could start your Facebook marketing campaign and begin to get new clients as soon as in a few hours and certainly in a few days. If you want to start a Facebook marketing plan on your own, begin by leveraging your personal network. That means spending some time establishing connections with your personal network by “friend requesting” everyone you can think of who you would want to have access to your personal Facebook page, usually friends and relatives. Yes, your Facebook business page is a separate thing from your personal Facebook page, but once you’ve connected with as many people as reasonably possible on your personal Facebook page, you can ask them to “Like” your business page. Then, when you post something on your business page you can share it on your personal page and many of your friends will see it that way.
The key is to share it to your personal network because Facebook is only showing your “Page” posts to a fraction of those who “Like” your page. They do that because they want you to pay them to advertise, but you can at least get some exposure by sharing your professional “Page” posts to your profile page. (Want to get more consistent exposure? Start a “Group” that is relevant to your client base. Group members pretty much see everything posted in a Group. More on that in another Blog!)
You could start your Facebook marketing campaign and begin to get new clients as soon as in a few hours and certainly in a few days.
It’s a much better way to “pitch” to your friends than by doing it as “yourself” on your personal page and you can cherry pick what you want your “friends” to see as opposed to exposing them to everything you are posting as part of your general marketing plan. You may also direct clients to your business Page when they try to friend request your personal profile. Once you start marketing on Facebook, you will find that people who you presume know and remember that you’re an attorney and what kind of law you practice will suddenly contact you with prospective cases. Doing only that much will get you some cases that you would not otherwise have gotten, but that’s only the beginning.
In addition, whether or not your friends end up liking your profile, Facebook knows the relationship between your personal profile and your business page and will target the friends your profile has with ads you purchase for your business page. And (this is even more exciting) they will target your friends’ friends! There isn’t a a more efficient and cost effective way to target your primary, secondary and tertiary connections than this, all of which can be achieved by spending a few dollars a day on Facebook ads.
Granted, if you wing it on your own your ads might not be incredibly effective, but how many cases do you need to get in a month to make a $300 monthly ad buy worth it? On the other hand, you would be better off hiring experienced Facebook marketers to manage any significant ad campaign because there are important “steps” you need take to optimize your platform and ad testing you need to do to maximize your results.
For instance, there are ways to obtain “Likes” for your page from people who would likely be interested in your services and that serves more than one purpose. First, having a substantial number of “likes” provides social proof. What’s social proof? In this context it means that if lots of people like your business page it reinforces your credibility and the likelihood that others will engage with your page and posts. Second, having lots of page likes creates an available, relevant audience a portion of which will regularly and reliably be exposed to your free posts, which will result in new business without the cost associated with paid ads. Third, you can target paid ads directly to this audience without anyone else being exposed to it for a more efficient paid ad delivery.
But let’s face it. If you just use free posts and only have 1000 or so page “likes” you’re going to over saturate and have diminishing returns. If you’re not going to use paid ads, then at least enlist as many of your friends, family, associates, etc as possible to like and share your free posts so that it pushes those posts out further into their networks which is more likely to result in additional cases and page likes. This can work exponentially if you are aggressive enough.
Whether you pay for ads and/or marketing assistance or go it on your own you’ll find that Facebook advertising is very effective for attorneys and you won’t regret it. But you do have to either spend your time or your money, or some combination of both. You’re not likely to publish a free post that just goes viral with no investment of time and money on your part. That’s like hitting the lottery. It happens, but playing the lottery is not a reliable business or retirement plan.
Carl P. DeLuca, Esq