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Is social media really lagging at large law firms?

December 28, 2011

LexisNexis Says Social Networking Lags at Large Firms,’ reports Evan Koblentz of Law Technology News following the release of LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell’s global audit of law firm engagement in social media.

As evidence of large firm’s lagging use of social media LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell cites, in part, the lack of a like button on a law firm’s website.

Of the five firms surveyed from the Americas — Baker & McKenzie, DLA Piper, Hogan Lovells, Jones Day, and Latham & Watkins — none are using social integration such as Facebook’s “like” button.

Sure law firms could increase their use of LinkedIn (85 are using company LinkedIn pages) and more firms could register a Twitter account (35 have done so), but to measure a law firm’s use of social media by whether they have a Facebook like button on their home page? C’mon… let’s get real.

Law firms taking their social media presence seriously are going to do so by using social media that showcases the expertise of its lawyers. The firms are going to be using social media to network so as to build and nurture relationships and enhance their word of mouth reputation. That’s going to come with something a little more substantial than a Facebook like button.

Look at what four of the five law firms cited as lagging in the LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell report because of the no like button are doing. They’re blogging.

DLA Piper has nothing short of its own blog network with its six blogs on the LexBlog Network.

Hogan Lovells, with two blogs on the LexBlog Network.

Latham & Watkins, with three blogs on the LexBlog Network

Baker & McKenzie, with one blog on the LexBlog Network.

These firms have more blogs on the way. Add to this the other 61 law firms in the AmLaw 200 who are blogging on the LexBlog Network.

Sure, law firms use of social media and blogging is in its infancy. What else is new?

But let’s give credit where credit is do. Law firms are smart enough to know that progress in social media is not going to be measured in any part by the inclusion of a Facebook like button on the home page of a multi-national law firm representing the Global 2000.

Law firms are going to use social media to showcase their expertise, to network, and to build their reputation. That’s only going to come with blogging.

It may be that social media is not lagging at large law firms, but that social media is lagging at LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell.

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