Social media has evolved through the years to become a necessity in any legal marketing department’s arsenal. Our industry may have been slow to adapt to it at first (and some may still be kicking and screaming in an attempt to avoid using it), but it is an important part of your firm’s brand and thought leadership maintenance, as well as to your attorneys’ personal brands. Luckily, there are many tools out there to make the constant updating and repurposing of content through social media channels more efficient and effective, regardless of the size and capacity of your marketing department. Two of these tools are Hootsuite and Clearview Social.
Hootsuite is a social media management program that helps organize social media use over several channels simultaneously. Users can post content, or repurpose already existing thought leadership pieces, to multiple social media outlets at once; you can select all of your firm’s accounts, or pick and choose the audience you would like to reach with each particular post. Once all of a firm’s social media accounts are linked to Hootsuite, a user can simply enter the content to be shared, check the boxes for the desired accounts, and the information is pushed to each of them simultaneously. A user also has the capability to schedule LinkedIn posts, Facebook posts, or tweets ahead of time, which creates a seamless deployment of content on a regular basis without someone having to manually post each time. Hootsuite also offers helpful tips as to what time of day and what day of the week a post will garner the highest levels of readership. The scheduling feature allows a user to set up deployment on a regular basis while inputting the information all at once, which helps with planning and efficient use of time.
Another helpful feature in Hootsuite is its applications section; several of the applications that can be downloaded in this section (many are gratis) allow you to curate content on a particular subject matter, and have that feed show on your homepage. This helps find other thought leaders to follow, interact with, and repurpose for your firm’s accounts, with less effort on the part of the legal marketer. This stream can result in finding thought leaders in specific industries to connect and engage with, or even finding topics with particular relevancy that your attorneys might find helpful in structuring new content for their own blogs or social media outlets. All of these features can be found, and a free trial is offered, at www.hootsuite.com.
The new kid on the block in this arena is ClearView Social. This software, created by Adrian Dayton, is designed to help legal marketers repurpose their firms’ content through the networks of their attorneys on LinkedIn. The marketing department constructs an email that is sent to all attorneys, containing recent content, announcements, news, etc., that the firm would like to push to as many people as possible. In that email, attorneys can quickly select which content they would like to share on LinkedIn by simply checking a box, and with the click of a button it is pushed out to their networks. The content is curated in one email, and it is very easy to use; very little effort on the part of the attorney, and the marketing department gets the reach they are looking for. There is also a competition factor involved, whereupon marketing can notify attorneys of who is doing the most sharing on Linkedin, drawing on lawyers’ natural tendency to compete with one another. There appears to be another update coming down the pipeline, which would allow the marketing department to bypass the attorneys (if given consent, of course) and push content directly to their LinkedIn pages without having to involve the attorney at all. This may help particularly stubborn attorneys who want to keep their LinkedIn pages relevant but “don’t have the time” to share the content themselves. Check them out at www.clearviewsocial.com.
The legal industry may have been slow to adapt to the onset of social media, but it is definitely here to stay. Products like Hootsuite and Clearview Social can help even the smallest of marketing departments handle the need to constantly refresh content, find thought leadership pieces to repurpose, and automate some of their social media posts to be more efficient and effective in their outreach.
By Jenna Schiappacasse, Director of Marketing at Rosenberg Martin Greenberg, LLP, for the March/April 2015 issue of the Capital Ideas Newsletter.