Networking has long been a go-to method for lawyers to build relationships and grow their firms. The advent of the internet has changed that. Add to that our propensity to be less social in the last few years due to the pandemic. Many lawyers reduced or eliminated in-person meetings with clients and drastically cut back on how much time they spend with colleagues.
But is networking dead for lawyers?
The answer might be yes… but with a catch. Networking is still important for lawyers, but it’s just as important – if not more so – to do it in the digital space instead of in-person events and gatherings.
This is called digital networking. It involves connecting with contacts through social media platforms. A comprehensive digital networking campaign also includes:
- Engaging on other industry forums
- Joining online groups dedicated to your field of law
- Staying up-to-date with the latest news and trends
What are the Advantages of Digital Networking for Lawyers?
The advantages of networking online are plentiful. For example, a comprehensive digital marketing campaign allows you to:
- Reach a wider audience beyond your geographical location
- Showcase your industry expertise
- Build relationships with people not available for face-to-face meetings
- Save money and time
Of course, like all things, digital networking has its drawbacks. For instance, it’s often difficult to establish meaningful connections with people online. It can be hard to differentiate yourself from the competition when everyone is using the same platforms. Additionally, online networking can be time-consuming and it’s hard to gauge how effective your efforts are.
Should I Still Network Traditionally?
The simplest answer to this question is “it depends.”
Networking is an essential tool for lawyers to help grow their firms. It helps you build professional relationships and stay connected with potential clients. And few would argue that in-person time together is optimal for establishing and maintaining connections.
Perhaps the best option is to make use of a variety of networking opportunities. This includes:
- Attending conferences and industry events
- Joining professional associations
- Leveraging social media and the other digital marketing tools listed above
The ultimate goal is to create meaningful connections. There are several ways to do this and only you can decide the right mix of digital and in-person networking that’s right for your firm.
Also, remember that networking is not a one-time event. Lawyers must commit to nurturing valuable relationships over the long-term. By setting up regular meetings and staying connected with their network, you ensure your firm consistently benefits from new business opportunities.
What to Do Now If You Want to Improve Your Networking Opportunities
Digital networking can help lawyers build relationships, enhance their reputation, and gain valuable insights into the legal profession. By taking advantage of digital networking opportunities, attorneys can expand their professional reach and stay connected with their peers.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the idea of networking or changing your current networking strategy, you aren’t alone. The idea of using digital marketing tools is intimidating for lawyers who have always relied on traditional methods. Conversely, those focusing their networking efforts online, even if it’s only been for the last few years, can struggle to find the time and motivation to “get back out there.”
If you need new ideas for networking or you want to launch an online networking campaign, Legal Web Design can help. Contact us today to learn more.