Social media for law firms is an integral part of online marketing. According to the 2014 Social Media Marketing Report, the overwhelming majority (97%) of marketers participate in social media marketing. Social Media Examiner published the 6th annual study, which is based on input from more than 2,800 marketers. This study also provides insight into how social media is used to promote businesses.
If your law firm does not use social media, the report provides reasons why you should use social media marketing. The report also allows you to compare your social media activities and outcomes with similarly experienced marketers.
- Virtually all marketers are using social media. Pretty much every one of them (92%) said that social media was important to their businesses. In fact, 63% strongly agreed with the statement “social media is important for my business.” This is up from 49% who strongly agreed in 2013.
- Facebook, used by 94% of marketers, was by far the most commonly used social media platform. Rounding out the top seven are Twitter (83%), LinkedIn (71%), YouTube (57%), Blogging (55%), Google+ (54%), and Pinterest (47%).
- Marketers deemed Facebook (54%) to be the single most important social media platform for their business. Far behind in the second spot was LinkedIn (17%), followed by Twitter (12%), and Blogging (8%).
- When asked how they plan on changing their social media use in the coming months, 68% of marketers said they plan on increasing their use of Blogging. Marketers also want to increase their use of YouTube (67%), Twitter (67%), LinkedIn (64%) and Facebook (64%).
- The link between marketers’ experience level and their time spent on social media activities was telling: 51% of those with less than 12 months of experience spent 5 or fewer hours per week on social media, whereas 65% of those with 2 years of experience or more spent 6 hours or more per week. Overall, 34% of marketers had a social media time commitment of 1 to 5 hours; 27% had a time commitment of 6 to 10 hours; and 37% committed 11 or more hours weekly.
- The top benefits of social media marketing, in the eyes of marketers, are increased exposure (92% said their social media efforts generated more exposure for their business), increased traffic (80%), developed loyal fans (72%), provided marketplace insight (71%) and generated leads (66%).
Marketers reported increased benefits across all categories compared to 2013.
Online Marketing for Law Firms – Implications
More than 66% of marketers who spent as little as 6 hours per week on social media marketing saw lead generation benefits. In addition, they saw improved search rankings, increased traffic, and the establishment of a loyal fan base. Spending an hour or more on Facebook per day may be a greater time commitment than you can handle. Therefore, it makes sense to outsource social networking.
Before you dismiss such an investment as superfluous, consider that in the Social Media Examiner study, nearly half of marketers who spent at least 6 hours per week on social media efforts experienced reduced marketing expenses. If this seems counterintuitive, keep in mind that social media largely replaces traditional forms of marketing like print ads. But compared to ads that appear in magazines and newspapers, online marketing allows you to reach a much broader audience for a relative bargain.
Don’t expect immediate results. The study data shows that the best online marketing results are associated with marketers who’ve used social media for one year or longer. In other words, the longer you stay on the social media bandwagon, the more you’ll enjoy the ride. For more information on online marketing for law firms or to schedule a FREE consultation, contact Legal Web Design today.