Attorneys Flocking to Twitter for Marketing

Follow me at http://twitter.com/LarryBodine
From where I’m sitting, 2009 will be the year Twitter becomes the major business development trend.

Why? 

  • Because lawyers don’t have time to update their own bios.
  • They don’t have time to write articles.
  • They don’t have time to update a blog.

But they DO have time to type 140 characters. And lawyers can search twitter to find clients. 

 

twitter, lawyer marketing, law firm marketing, business developmentJDSupra.com has identified more than 500 lawyers and legal professionals using twitter

 

Attorneys are part of a massive increase in professionals using the website Twitter.com as a marketing tool, according to Lawyers USA. Twitter had 282,000 users at the end of 2007, but will boast over three million by the end of 2008, according to the third party site TwitDir.

 

Twitter is essentially micro-blogging based on a simple question: "What are you doing?" The site then allows the user just 140 words to answer.  Through Twitter, friends or colleagues can monitor these brief alerts, known as "tweets."

 

Shortly after graduating from the Oklahoma City School of Law, Chris Moander of the Moander Law Firm in Milwaukee signed up for an account on Twitter.com.  Within six weeks, the business attorney had added a host of new clients thanks to the site.

 

"I found that Twitter isn't full of teenagers or time-wasters," said Moander. "There is this whole demographic of local bigwigs, decision-makers, entrepreneurs, people who have an influence on economic life. That's an appealing demographic for me."


@LeeRosen  talks about his practice area divorce law. There are 279 people following his tweets, it’s a small community that literally have “online conversations.”

 

Twitter is valuable to legal professionals as it shows reaction with current trends, many of these posts are made from mobile handheld devices, so not having access to your desktop is no longer an excuse to blog. There has been a lot of reaction from lawyers on the global recession and how it has affected the legal world. It’s not all legal talk on twitter. It is not uncommon to see legal professionals tweet about their hobbies or funny family stories from the holidays.

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Greg Lambert - January 6, 2009 10:55 AM

I don't know, Larry... I'm going to play Devil's Advocate on this one.

I'm a big Twitter fan myself (@glambert), but if an attorney can't take the time to update a bio, or write a blog or publish something on the legal topic that he or she is the expert in, then I don't see them using Twitter either. Twitter is generally a resource of building relationships, that is true, but it is also generally a tool for linking to additional information. So, if the attorney has an old bio, and no blog or publications, what do they gain in 140 characters?

I'm coming at this with a "BigLaw" perspective (read: AmLaw 100 BIAS) - where we are looking for methods of marketing to legal departments of large companies. And, from my experience, I'm not seeing a lot of GC's on Twitter. So, how can I tell a Partner or Associate that they need to be using Twitter in order to build relationships with our aspirational audience, when that audience doesn't seem to exist?

My question is this: If we Tweet, will they come?

My answer is this: Maybe. But, it would take a leap of faith on the Partner or Associates part to take the chance of spending the time on Twitter (and believe me it is much more than posting a 140 character Tweet.)

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