What to Do with that Business Card You Just Got at a Networking Event

Here is a networking strategy that I like because it combines your real world networking with your online networking. When you receive a business card from another person in a networking or other type of event, as soon as you are at your computer, search for him or her on Facebook and LinkedIn. If that is the case, send a friend or contact request (depending on the site). It won’t take your new networking connection long to forget you. Someone you meet today may not remember who you are two weeks from now. But if you get them on your friends or contacts list, then you can make sure the person never forgets you.

Once you have found your real world prospect’s social networking profiles and added him to your list, a good next step is to join groups that the person belongs to. Post responses to group messages, and post your own information when relevant. You want your name to appear often in summaries of group activity. This will keep your name not only in front of you new prospect but also other members of the groups.

Make sure you are active enough on the particular social networking site for your name to appear on updates. In LinkedIn, for example, if you just make a minor change to your profile, your name will appear in the updates that are emailed to members who are part of your network.

Just think of your online connections as a pool of people to whom you can expose your brand and your message. The bigger that pool, the more opportunities will arise from your online marketing. One good way to do this is to make sure that you add people you meet in the offline world to your online pool.

Here are a couple more sites to check out for legal marketing advice:
www.law-firm-internet-marketing.net
lawfirminternetmarketing.ning.com
workmedia.net

Twitter: Keep it Interesting!

After many months, I have updated my Twitter profile and uploaded an image of myself. I am no longer a brown squiggly. I will now post a minimum of one Twitter post a day (hopefully more if I can find the discipline). I feel good about this new initiative, although I’m going to have to give myself some visual reminders to post.

Are you on the Twitter yet? You may feel like sitting around typing little snippets about your life is a waste of time. And justifiably so. But here’s the lowdown. Twitter really can help you build up an online network of people who are interested in what you have to say; who can influence events in your life. It has a real world business purpose.

So start today. Sign up for an account. Add a custom background. Modify your profile. Replace the bland brown icon with a picture of yourself. Give people something to look at.

Your Twitter posts should: contain relevant keywords; be industry specific; and be interesting to read. Being funny sometimes ain’t a bad idea either. People need to enjoy reading your posts.

I’m a professional search engine marketer, but I’m a newbie at using Twitter. As I learn things, I will share them with you here. But I guess one thing I do know at this point is that you’ve got to make things interesting!

If you would like to check out my Twitter profile, my URL is: http://twitter.com/jwork

Also check out The Law Firm Internet Marketing Book, available on Amazon.com, to learn how to build and execute an aggressive online marketing campaign for your law firm’s web site.

Law Firm Marketing with Ning

We’ve started playing around with Ning, which is a very interesting concept. It’s basically a social networking site that allows users to set up their own social networking sites. So we set up one specifically for law firm Internet marketing:

http://lawfirminternetmarketing.ning.com/

I also joined another group on Ning:

http://lawmarketing.ning.com

Ning is the type of site that Google loves, so it would behoove you to set one up for yourself. For instance, let’s say you practice divorce law in St. Louis. Why not set up a St. Louis divorce Ning site? It would be another way for people to communicate with you and learn some things about divorce law. And of course, as the creator of the site, you could pepper it with links back to your site and place your marketing message prominently on the site. You may even find that your Ning site ranks higher than your own main web site, but that’s just fine.

The site has lots of interesting features that you can add to your own site: forums, blogs, videos, images, etc., all of which get added to the main menu. It really does let you create some powerful, interactive sites.

I invite everyone reading this to come join us on our law firm Internet marketing Ning site. You just might learn something…and you don’t even have to pay us!

Law Firm SEO using Squidoo

I’ve been updating some Squidoo lenses this week. It had been a while since we had logged in (shame on us!), and noticed that there have been some changes to the Squidoo interface. One of the great things about Squidoo is all of the modules you can use that make the pages dynamic by updating themselves from various information sources (blogs, Google News, RSS feeds, etc.). So a Squidoo lens, if built the right way, will update itself forever.

The new Squidoo interface makes it much quicker to add modules and align modules on your page. Formerly, this was a very slow and tedious process. The new system is much better.

So why should you set up pages in Squidoo to promote your law firm? Because Google really loves it. Often, a page on Squidoo that pertains to your practice area will rank quicker and higher than your own web site. So links from Squidoo carry a lot of weight. And as you know, one of the things you should be trying to do in your law firm seo campaign is build a catalog of links from web sites that Google holds in high esteem.

You should incorporate Squidoo as part of your social networking/content distribution campaign. If you publish a blog for your law firm, you should use the RSS module to stream your blog posts to your Squidoo lenses. And use some of the other modules to stream legal news or other blog posts to your Squidoo pages. It is a simple and quick way to build a high quality industry page that links directly to youf firm.