Advertising your law firm through social media can have a profound impact on your campaign and is the perfect tool for reaching legal clients. However, when used incorrectly, this marketing channel can potentially hurt your reputation and reduce your firm’s brand equity. Here are three social media mistakes that can be killers and need to be avoided.
1) Not Responding Quickly
In order to build rapport and make connections, it’s crucial to be responsive any time someone leaves a comment or contacts your firm through social media. According to a 2012 research report by the Social Habit, “among the respondents who have ever attempted to contact a brand, product, or company through social media for customer support, 32 percent expect a response within 30 minutes.”
Making people wait, especially longer than 24 hours is a surefire way to hurt relationships and lose followers. That’s why it’s smart to have one or more people in charge of monitoring comments and questions so your firm can respond as quickly as possible. Luckily, using mobile devices and email alerts can streamline this process and your audience won’t be left waiting.
2) Ignoring Negative Comments
One byproduct of the digital age is that it’s easier than ever for people to air their grievances is a relatively anonymous way, so it’s common for brands in all industries to receive their fair share of negative comments. No matter how great of a job you do, you’re probably going to encounter some negative feedback from time to time. The initial response of many people is to simply ignore or delete the comment and sweep it under the rug.
In reality, this can do more harm than good because the unhappy individual may go out of their way to damage your reputation, which can cause some serious PR issues. A more effective response is to apologize on the social network and then email the person to resolve the problem in private. Doing so shows others that you legitimately care about your audience and should prevent a minor issue from escalating into something worse. In some cases, you may be able to turn a foe to a friend. The only exception for deleting a comment is when someone is deliberately “trolling” to intentionally start an argument.
3) Taking the Same Approach to Different Networks
At first glance, it may seem that all social media sites are essentially the same. While they all operate on the same general premise, each has its own audience, guidelines and etiquette. For instance, you wouldn’t want to take the same approach to Tumblr as you would to Pinterest because there are different demographics and the subject matter that’s popular differs as well.
Although it’s fine to tweet 10 or more times a day on Twitter, creating 10 posts a day on Google+ would just be annoying to followers. To truly optimize your efforts, you should do your research on each social network and know who the audience is, what’s the ideal posting frequency, what type of content people respond to, etc. This way you can get the most from each platform and can grow your audience more quickly.
Forming the right habits and avoiding certain social media mistakes is a big part of having success. By staying away from a few unsavory practices, you can better please your audience and build a positive reputation. To learn more about getting social media to work for you, check out Going Social: What Your Law Firm Needs to Know About Social Networking.
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