A reporter asked me this morning what’s the number one mistake lawyers are making when it comes to the Internet.

They’re going too fast, was my response. Lawyers want instant gratification when it comes to online marketing and business development.

How many followers do I have? Where do I rank in the search engines? How many unique visitors does my blog have. Like these are measurements of success anyway.

We’re talking relationships and reputation as the goals. They take time. Maybe a couple years. Definitely not a couple months.

Marketer and author, Seth Godin, writes today:

The number on the speedometer isn’t always an indication of how fast you’re getting to where you’re going.

You might, after all, be driving in circles, really quickly.

Think Godin’s point here applies to law firms?

Campbell’s Law tells us that as soon as a number is used as the measurement for something, someone will get confused and start gaming the number, believing that they’re also improving the underlying metric, when, in actuallity, they’re merely making the number go up.

Amazing how traffic, likes, and followers became the metrics for building trust, nurturing relationships, and enhancing a word of mouth reputation. Lawyers ought have more common sense.

Borrowing from Godin a little, here’s just a few measurements where law firms have speedometer confusion.

  • Twitter followers vs. Anything
  • Facebook likes vs. Liked
  • Web stats vs. Reputation
  • Visitors vs. Relationships
  • Length vs. Quality
  • Income vs. Skill
  • Content vs. Engagement

I’m with Godin. “Faster? How about better?”

Image courtesy of Flickr by Randy von Liski