“If a tweet falls in a forest and on one is around to share it, does it make a sound?” –Jen Picard
When most lawyers or legal professionals start a blog, they are often most worried about how they are going to produce large volumes of content. They rarely think about how or why their content should be shared on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. Yes, it’s important to create content but getting your content shared via social networks is just as important.
9 Ways to Get Your Content Shared on Social Media
1. Website Sharing Buttons. This is the ultimate social media content marketing sin of all time. Sounds dramatic right? I kid you not, don’t bother writing a blog post if there aren’t social sharing buttons. I will never share your blog post if there aren’t buttons there to help motivate me. There are hundreds of social sharing plugin options – pick one and go with it.
2. Engage with Others on Social Media. This is where the theory of reciprocity comes in AKA you scratch my back, I scratch your back. Talk with other bloggers on Twitter and share their blog posts with your network. Mention them in posts and tell them how much you like their work. It’s called a “community” for a reason. Spend at least 30 minutes per day getting to know your competition, colleagues and target audience online.
3. Write Compelling Content. I’ll share your content if it’s interesting, helpful and most of all, different. Share your unique ideas, perspectives and opinions. Don’t be afraid of being a tad controversial when using social media. You want to strike a chord with your reader, make them see your point of view, in other words, don’t be “vanilla”.
4. Use Software Programs Such as “Click to Tweet”. This is a free, easy tool that makes it easy for people to tweet your content on Twitter. Click here for more information.
5. Create Social Profiles and Share Your Content. This is a fairly obvious step but I’m including it. You need to create social profiles to share your content. Consider creating profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Make sure you get Google Authorship set up correctly if you’re a blogger.
6. Share the Right Content to Each Network. Each social network has a particular style and format and you should style your social post accordingly. Certain types of posts can be posted on all networks, but not all. For example, Twitter has a 140 character maximum; however, you can post very long, insightful “novel” updates on LinkedIn and Facebook if you wish. Remember, business readers are usually pressed for time so think quality versus quantity.
7. Share Your Content at the Right Time. Do some research and figure out when your target audience is on the net. There are varying opinions on this so you might want to test out different times. Software programs such as Hootsuite and Sprout Social can automatically send out posts at “optimal” times as well.
8. Add images to your blog posts. Did you know that according to WebHostingBuzz, 300 million images are uploaded to Facebook every day? People like to share images online. Make sure you adhere to copyright rules when adding images to your blog posts. Personally, I use iStockPhoto for most of my images.
9. Add proper descriptions to your blog posts. There is nothing more annoying then trying to share an article on Facebook and there’s no pre-filled description or picture. Make sure you add the proper SEO plugin. People will be more likely to share your content if they don’t have to do a lot of work AKA filling out the status update.
Although Mashable isn’t a legal industry example, they are a “juggernaut” when it comes to getting their content shared across social networks with over 2.5 million shares per month. Take a look at their various websites and think about how you can incorporate their social sharing structure and navigation into your website.
Content marketing is imperative in today’s social media strategies for lawyers. Written content connects the writer to the reader in a way no banner ad can accomplish.