The New Year started in fantastic fashion as far as we were concerned with regards to the legal world on Twitter. Here are some of the best tweets from lawyers so far in the year of 2016. See if you can get published on the list for February 2016.
I've been out of the office all week, but got dozens of emails that ended with 'I'll leave it on your desk'. I am afraid. #lawyerproblems
As we have previously blogged it’s essential for personal injury lawyers and accident claims companies to have a Twitter presence – you can see that advice here. Here’s some more advice and hints / tips about Twitter for lawyers and solicitors below.
Legal Notes and tips:
a) Account name and profile picture
next to its own real name is to assign a account name. This defines the address, which your Twitter profile is reached (www.twitter.com/Account-Name). Foreign brand and name rights have to be considered, of course.
For the sake of SEO is much evidence to use his own name as an account name in order to achieve better findability in search engines. For their profile picture (48 times 48 pixels) are the rights to be observed in the image.
Whether a Twitter profile is subject imprint, is controversial. Anyway, who twitters business, subject to after what is probably the predominant view – which I share – the imprint obligation. Although this question is not yet finally clarified, I guess for safety urgently to a profile Contacts to go potential warnings from the outset of the way.
Unfortunately, Twitter has only limited possibilities to fulfill the information requirements.
Following the Supreme Court case law (http://alturl.com/hxdf) an accessibility via two links and an easy recognizability is sufficient. With Twitter you can to that end – use “bio box”. Put a link on the website of your firm, on a proper imprint can be immediately found. In addition, you can fill in the “Web” box, or embed the Contacts text in the background image. To this end, I recommend an image size of 1500 times 1300 pixels for the best visibility on all screen sizes.
Step 2 – Create yourself a personalized news feed to your field of interest with the Google Reader
The first requirement for a successful Twitter that you are always yourself up to date state of affairs. This not only helps you in your daily work and expands your knowledge but also forms the basis in order to provide their listeners with exciting tweets at Twitter.
The Internet is full of interesting news, even from all legal areas of interest. It lacks only to order, selection and clarity. Here, for example, helps the Google Reader (http://www.google.de/reader, Google account required). It is a tool used to receiving so-called personalized. RSS feeds.
An RSS feed, a message channel, the Google Reader is ultimately so to speak, a reader for news channels. Almost all websites that contain current posts, make RSS feeds available (see for example the RSS feeds of Spiegel Online. Http://alturl.com/eihe).
The interior of the RSS feeds for Google Reader is simple: you search the Internet for important for you RSS feeds and feed it through the button “Add Subscription” in your Google reader. As a subscriber to the RSS feeds you can directly follow the links provided and read the corresponding pages for the full message. Generate in this way a high quality and comprehensive compilation of the RSS feed to your field of interest and you are always well informed and one step ahead!
a) They are not confined to the purely legal news! A lawyer who specializes in the field of M & A, should of course know also first when about Telefonica O2 takes a internetaffiner lawyer about the latest technological developments of the Internet communication know etc. If you are also interested in art, for example, you tweet quiet occasionally the last exhibition that you have visited, to round out your profile and make it more lively and personal.
b) With the Iphone app “Newsstand” You have your news channels from the Google Reader also be accessed on the iPhone anytime.
Step 3 – twittering going on!
Since you are always informed from now on first about the latest developments in your field of interest, you can provide your Twitter followers at all times with exciting news. You have 140 characters per message space to draw attention to interesting developments and if necessary to comment briefly.
Legal Notes and tips:
a) The restriction to 140 characters it will be a single Tweet, due to its very low power design not as a work within the meaning of § 2 para. 1 can view No.1 Copyright Act so that it can be no copyright due to low level of creativity in most cases.
b) Of course, insults, false allegations, racist remarks etc. to be criminally relevant! This means in particular that tweeted facts proven true and opinions expressed may not be the abusive criticism.
c) Use the Twitthat Tool (www.twitthat.com). Any Orders placed on this website can be sent and you inputted comment as Tweet which helps with one click Included statement (a shortened link to the relevant page so).
Step 4 – Follow people with similar interests!
Find people with similar interests or people who might be interested in what you tweet.
Here you can, for example, the Tweetscan (Tool http://www.tweetscan.com) help a search engine for Twitter messages. Even followers of other you interest-Twitter users may be interesting for you, as well as those users who follows you an interest user itself. Even in a very short time you too many Twitter users to follow! Take advantage of these contacts, exchange ideas, help each other and open up new mandates!
No communication (online) by the effective law firms is impossible without strategic marketing plan. Lawyers are increasingly likely to engage in marketing. However, they often confuse marketing and communication. A good communications plan is based, in fact, a strategic marketing plan. Social networks occupy a prominent place in modern communication plan used by lawyers.
Introduction: do not confuse marketing and communication
Law firms are venturing gently on the marketing channel. Although they often still confuse marketing and communication, lawyers quickly understand what really marketing. They are well aware that its purpose is to attract new customers and retain existing customers more, with a view to growth and improved profitability.
Unfortunately, they still rock very often and too quickly in the communication and generally forget that a powerful and effective marketing communication is only possible if it is based on a well defined strategic marketing plan. They overlook a fundamental rule “segment before communicating.”
Strategic Marketing Plan
Lawyers and other professionals are facing unprecedented challenges.
These challenges stem from fundamental trends that feed on each other, for example internationalization still more accentuated, the increasingly high tax burden, the subjugation of the bar to VAT or strengthening of competition at all levels the economy, resulting in constant pressure on prices.
But that is not all. Internet redraws, too, fundamentally society. Think of the massive amounts of information available online and market transparency. This revolution is far from over and everyone must constantly adapt their behavior and habits in this rapidly changing environment. No business would break the rule.
However, not lose sight that all threats conceal possibilities. It is however not clear, certainly not innate or intuitive, to identify them. Yet it is the foundation of the strategy of your law firm. Identifying these opportunities is, in addition, that the first step of the process of attraction, retention and customer satisfaction.
The second step is to align the purpose of your firm and / the option (s) identified (s): this is the strategy. Much simpler than it seems, however, that such harmonization is essential. And again, this is not an automatic or intuitive process. Desired steering needs change.
A strategic marketing plan however is not as complicated as we think. Specialized advisory firms gradually emerge to assist lawyers in this direction, if necessary.
If several methods are proposed, broadly remain as follows:
clarification of the matrix product / existing market (Who What how?);
location of potential growth, eg by means of the classic Boston matrix
different combinations of product / market or using a SWOT analysis, possibly on the basis of a questionnaire submitted to clients;
defining a strategy:
what, for whom and how?,
define what is needed to move from the current situation to the situation envisaged (in terms of personnel and training, potential partnerships mentioned, communication and brand …)
effect of the new strategy on the calculation results (compared to the current calculation of results).
The communication plan
Once the firm has defined its strategy, existing and potential customers must be constantly informed of its unique approach and expertise: the communication plan.
The “communication channels” most used by classical lawyers are participating in networking events, whether or not as a speaker or trainer, publishing articles in the press (specialized) and sometimes , sending a paper newsletter. The electronic newsletter is a little more modern tool.
Be aware that the channels of communication created by the Internet, such as social networks, are numerous (and often cheap). On these channels, it is nevertheless very difficult to maintain an approach that will distinguish your firm from others, which will make sure that your “message” be seen and read by people it targets. We croulons all sub information. Hence the importance of being able to convey the right message to the right person at the right time. This requires planning and careful preparation. Communication is not a matter of intuition.
Building a communication plan (online)
It is quite possible that the new product matrix / desired market be identical to that which already exists. But this is that once you have a good idea of the product / market matrix (desired) and segmentation that you can work on a communication plan (including brand policy).
To establish your communication plan, you can pretty much from scratch. But it is recommended that you rely on what exists. This often helps to have an intuitive idea of what works (good) or not. The validation of the intuitive knowledge by analyzing the effect of existing channels is therefore a good starting point for creating a communication plan: an analysis of the traffic on your website (how, who, why …) how are read any newsletters, analysis of other possible activities results as organizing events …
The creation of a good brand policy: a clean challenge for lawyers
Apart from a few large firms, often international, it is complex to establish a strong brand policy. In addition, the solicitor-client relationship is often a relationship of trust. The “personal brand”, the personal brand of the lawyer, is therefore more important than the brand of the firm. This does not mean that the mark of the firm is not at all. Customers, and even more so business customers are well aware that the quality of service provided by “their” lawyer is closely linked to the quality of its support (infrastructure, staff …).
To attract and retain customers and allow growth, marketing communication should be focused on the development and sustainability of the firm related trademarks.
It is often essential that the marketing communication strategy at the bar takes into account the development of personal brands, along with the brand of the firm. The various related marks are mutually supportive and not contradict each other. A task that is far from simple.
I have already spoken of this complex balance. See brands lawyers Policy.
The role of social networks
Fortunately, social networks are there to lend us a hand. These are extremely personal networks. Twitter and LinkedIn, and generally also on Facebook, these are people who attract “followers” or “friends” faithful. What makes these networks of all designated channels to support the creation of a personal brand.
These social networks are therefore at the center of the marketing communication strategy of lawyers.
Here again, improvisation is not appropriate. Based on the firm’s marketing strategy (see above) and the envisaged positioning of different brands of the firm, it should carefully plan that communicates what, when, how and where.
The communication planning on social networks may seem contradictory. It is impossible to predict what the impact will be a message or whether it will be “viral”. However, by carefully selecting a number of “opinion leaders” relevant in selected niche activities and constantly watering the unique information and, most importantly, advice or “expert opinions”, there Chances that your “tweets” spread. At stake? A “traffic” relevant to your website which in turn will result in leads that could lead to new contracts.
Deployment (relentlessly) of such communication is a daunting task. Each individual lawyer should get help, otherwise they will not get out. Each partner must also benefit from central support in developing your personal brand. This is also one of the advantages of (potential) of a power cabinet. We return to the organization of the central support in a future article.
A communication plan should always be based on a specific marketing plan. It is first to know what products and services offer what customer segments, in what way (single) and through which brands.
This marketing plan will identify what needs to be communicated, when and where. If intuition is important for this purpose, the communication improvised more. A substantiated analysis (and objective) of the current communication effect is generally quite useful.
Social networks are, too, part of any modern communication plan. Their use is like an art and requires a certain talent. But even the most talented musician will play properly without partition or rehearsals with different instruments.
The reputation of a lawyer on the internet is paramount
At a time of exponential development of new technologies and the Internet, it is important to consider the role of the lawyer in the digital world. Today, is it necessary to have a website and accounts on social networks (such as Twitter) to exist and develop its activities? How to use these new tools effectively?
The lawyer profession he has to adapt to new media development to be competitive? Internet also having its shortcomings, the question is how to protect its reputation against a very rapid dissemination of information on the Web.
This article presents and succinctly these communication modes that can prove to be a real asset in the growth a law firm or a lawyer practicing individually (1). However, in the development of their business through digital tools, the lawyers will have to adopt the necessary measures to protect their reputations and respond appropriately in the event of damage to their reputations (2). 1.
Internet: essential tool to improve visibility?
Internet has become a very useful tool for lawyers practicing individually or in a firm to enhance their image and improve their visibility to their customers, prospects and even colleagues. Some lawyers have a website but also using social networks like Viadeo, LinkedIn, or recently social networks dedicated to the legal profession to promote themselves, expand their network, grow their customer base or build relationships closer in their professional relationships. a.
Creating a website: Firm showcase
Many law firms now have a website, showcase to enhance their image and promote their professional activities. The websites generally have the following headings: statement of the firm, team dynamic presentation of lawyers (skills and professional curriculum) expertise / areas of expertise, legal news / publications and touch. When visiting the website of a firm lawyers, a client must be able to obtain the information it needs and ensure that the firm has the human and technical capacity to respond clearly and effectively to their needs.
The image of the firm must be clear, understandable and recognizable hence the use of an ergonomic graphics allowing the firm to benefit from a real visual identity. In the absence of such identity and ease Use a website can quickly become a liability for a lawyer’s office, contrary to its first promotional purposes. Indeed, a poorly made website can tarnish the image of a law firm. It is therefore very important to have the means to create a website (ergonomics, features, tree, structure, graphics …) for a real valuation of the firm. In addition, it is increasingly recognized that the requirement of customers to their lawyers goes beyond the technical expertise, professionalism and internationalization.
Customers want more value from their lawyers such as proximity, creativity, flexibility or customization in their relations with their lawyers. To this end, many firms indicate on their websites share these values in order to create a real connection with customers and strengthen relationships. Some firms have ISO 9001 certification the very clear on their website to the extent that this certification reinforces the quality of their work and raise customer confidence in the firm and lawyers. When a law firm or lawyer sole practitioner wishes to provide an Internet site, it is finally important to remember that this site must comply with the ethics of lawyers.
As a reminder, Article 131 of Decree No. 91-1197 dated November 27, 1991 which states that “advertising is permitted counsel to the extent that it provides the public with necessary information. The means which it is resorted to this are implemented with discretion, so as not to undermine the dignity of the profession and communicated to the Bar Council. “In parallel with the creation of a website, some firms and / or lawyers use the Internet to promote their activities through social networks and blogs. b.
Social networking / blogs: enhancing visibility
lawyers have increasingly likely to use professional social networks and the blogs to enhance their visibility. Many lawyers are members of professional and social networks such as LinkedIn or Viadeo. Some firms even have Facebook pages and Twitter accounts. These networks, are becoming increasingly important and are a useful channel to improve its visibility and expand your professional network. It seems, however, that law firms are still cautious on these social networks and do not even limited use. Many lawyers have created profiles on these social networks without yet being proactive.
However, a partial and limited use of social networks by lawyers could also tarnish their reputation with customers and prospects that could tend to be seduced by other lawyers / law firms with more dynamic profiles. It is thus very important for a law firm / lawyer to regularly update its profile when it (s) decide (s) to join a social network. The lawyers also benefit from social networks dedicated Vox-like or Hubavocats Lawyers.
These social networks are reserved for lawyers and allow contact between colleagues. These networks also offer dedicated services very useful in the practice of professional activities: job advertisements, application postulation / representation, request for assistance, exchanges with colleagues on points of law and procedure, hotlines / GAV, documentation , writing articles on legal matters … These social networks are good tools to bring together lawyers from different bar associations and improving mutual assistance between colleagues. The use of professional and social networks social networks dedicated to their profession and shows Ascending lawyers want to use the networks as a springboard to develop their professional activities and benefit from a network with colleagues. In addition, many lawyers have also created personal blogs or shared with several colleagues.
These blogs are exchanges between lawyers and Internet spaces for dialogue on topical issues, specific legal issues or providing practical guidance to users. These exchanges are promoting an image of lawyers nearest Citizens , sharing their worries and concerns. For these exchanges, lawyers are also known on the Internet by the word of mouth of users, improving their visibility. Nevertheless, it is useful to remember that users can use blogs as spaces where they can express themselves freely.
It is thus important for attorneys to properly control the customer reviews to ensure compliance with the law and avoid their responsibility may be engaged. Therefore, the Internet and the social networks and blogs can s’ prove to be real assets for law firms / lawyers individually to promote their image and improve their visibility. However, while being a vector with high added value, the Internet also has its shortcomings and presents risks including the safeguarding of its reputation on the Internet, the “e-reputation”. 2.
Internet and reputational “e-reputation”
The Internet and the various communication modes allow extremely rapid dissemination of information, as this information is positive or negative, especially in the absence of a genuine right to be forgotten, unfortunately, the damage may extend in time and the disputed information can highlight several years after the facts the origin of the damage to reputation. Currently, companies have realized the need to protect their reputation and adopt more measures to limit the risks of achievement and promote their reputation on the Internet “e-reputation” . Like companies, lawyers must be aware of these risks. A.
Risk of damage to its reputation on the Internet
Very recently, following certain events reported by the media, television, radio and especially the Internet, many French and foreign multinational companies have faced very virulent attacks on the Internet have seriously damaged their reputation. During these events, some companies have established a very effective communication strategy to stem the damage to their reputations on their website (eg creation of a dedicated window on the website with shortcut on the Facebook page company) and on social networks (Facebook, Twitter), responding to infringements by users.
These companies want to face criticism and respond constructively explaining the origins of difficulties / damage encountered and the solutions implemented to eradicate and prevent them extend in time or recurring. The companies have adopted a more opaque position were strongly criticized on the canvas. Internet users want, in fact, a true dialogue be established with these companies when they face these crises.
To improve their image and react appropriately and proactively in a crisis, companies increasingly equip “community managers” responsible for disseminating information and positive content through various Internet communication channels (social networks, blogs, forums …) they have. These community managers are established on these different platforms and have a very good knowledge of their functioning and their rules.
Some law firms have a dedicated department or rely on outside companies for communication and promotion of cabinet. As part of their duties, these actors could, in case of damage to the reputation of a firm to react efficiently and become the privileged interlocutors of users on the web. An internet business reputation is, therefore fragile, it can be done very quickly and then discard. The lawyers are not immune to bad advertising. Any person, natural or SME / multinational, may be comments / articles / very negative criticisms seriously undermine his professional reputation. It is thus very important for lawyers to be aware of these risks and adopt appropriate measures upstream and downstream to protect their reputation and avoid a loss of customer confidence towards them. B.
Possible solutions to protect its reputation Internet
It is possible for a law firm to use the legal arsenal that is at its disposal to defend its rights and to end the infringement of any damage to its reputation. A firm may also establish internal procedures to reduce the risk of damage to its reputation. In case of damage to its reputation, a law firm has several legal grounds to stop it.
On the basis of the Act on Confidence in the Digital Economy (“LCEN”) dated June 21, 2004, in case of damage to its reputation, it is possible to exercise its right of reply or contact the editor the website to ask the removal of the disputed content (website publisher is responsible for the editorial content of the site). In the absence of response on the part of the site editor, it is also possible to ask the host of the website to delete the content (s) manifestly illegal (s). The notification must respect certain formalism and contain the information provided for in Article 6.I.5 ° LCEN to be enforceable against the host.
If the damage can be classified as an insult or defamation, it is possible to act on the basis of the Act of 1881 on freedom of the press. For the record, the limitation period for this action is very short on the Internet, it is three months from its first posting. Further actions are still possible on the basis of the violation of privacy (Articles 226-1 and 226-2 of the Criminal Code), violation of image rights (Article 9 of the Civil Code) or since the LOPPSI Act II in case of usurpation of digital identity (Article L. 226-4- 1 of the Penal Code).
It is finally possible to initiate tort of the perpetrator and thus seek payment of damages. In addition, a law firm may also establish internal procedures to protect its reputation particular order avoid damage from its staff, voluntary or involuntary, for lack of information.
It is possible to adopt a charter or IT best practices guide whose function is to inform the staff of their obligations regarding the protection of personal information and data, security information system, use IT tools (computers, mobile phones, tablet computers, USB sticks, CDs, DVDs), good use of the Internet or the corporate email available to them.
It is also important to recall that the staff is bound by an obligation of discretion and confidentiality in and outside the workplace. Considering the recent case law concerning cyber, including decisions on enforcement of employees who disparaged their employer on social networks or blogs, the implementation of such measures is a good way for a law to limit the damage to its reputation and demonstrate teaching with regard to its staff.