As legal marketing specialists, we’ve always been a little reticent about strongly encouraging law firms to embrace social media platforms as being their primary medium for lead generation. It’s a little like the old adage that one shouldn’t keep all your eggs in one basket.
The major algorithm changes by Facebook this week reinforces that scepticism as this social media channel introduces sweeping changes that will impact on your firm’s Facebook footprint.
In a practical sense, if your firm has invested time, money and energy shaping, growing and cultivating your Facebook community, the time has now come when your updates will no longer be seen by all your community members (those who have “liked” your page). For example, if you’re a criminal law firm and have long seen your social media strategy as being all about getting as many people to like your Facebook page as a mechanism to reach a large targeted audience, those people will no longer see your Facebook updates to the extent they once did.
Facebook this week announced plans to kill-off the organic reach that businesses have been harnessing, unless of course your firm is prepared to pay a fee for those views.
Ultimately where this will end up according to most industry observers is that it will become significantly more expensive for your firm to reach the demographic you’re wanting to target. More broadly this algorithm change by Facebook and the recent death of Google Profile pages (which many firms did head miles trying to integrate, including us) reminds law firms of the risk associated when building out digital assets on platforms that you do not own or have reasonable control over.
The best advice is that if you are going continue to invest in building out communities on social media platforms, ensure that there is some data capture points at your end that allows you to reach your nurtured audience in the event that further algorithm changes make it economically challenging to do so for your firm. In other words, ensure that you have have lead capture strategies in place that drive traffic from your social media to your website where you are capturing audience details.
Last, but by no means least, do not ignore what should be your primary aggregator of new client business, your law firm’s website and the great eclectic, diverse and rich mix of content that underpins it.