Making the most of social media – advice for professionals from Cilla Snowball
Last week BCKR members were treated to a talk on how professionals can make the most of social media by advertising guru Cilla Snowball. Cilla is chief executive of the UK advertising and communications business, AMV/BBDO. She also chairs the Advertising Association and sits on the boards of BBDO Worldwide, Comic Relief and the Women’s Business Council.
Here is a summary of her presentation;
How can we make social media work for the risk averse legal profession? Until recently, you could allow your work to speak for itself but as a means to an end, whether or not you are looking for a NED role or wanting to raise your own profile, it is important to explore the why, what and how to use social media as a tool to get you there.
Why – you are all leaders and it is incumbent on you to inspire others. Social media is a good way to express your voice
What do you want to be known for and what content themes would you like to pursue
How – Clarify your purpose – is it getting the NED roles?
What do you want to be known for?
What is your profile?
What is the unique value you would bring to a board?
Do you have a specialism?
Lawyers are most likely to fall into the professional publisher category (see slide 7). You can choose to be on transmit mode, without being reactive to your followers. Cilla follows the key clients and key campaigns on Twitter but doesn’t engage with them.
Fuel your voice
Build an active online presence that is useful to you and others
Be ruthlessly determined to promote this strategy
Useful stuff you’re doing anyway can be posted and increase your presence
Be a curator – commenting on developments and innovations, awards etc is often uncontroversial
Promote others successes
Humanise – bring to life teams behind the scenes
Whatever you put out needs to have value. It should be current, relevant or predictive about the future (your opinion)
Whether it be twitter, facebook, linkedIn or any of the many other choices you need to find the right fit for you.
This process may force you to examine who you are beyond your day job? Do you want to be a vibrant practitioner within your firm or remain faceless. Your identity is so tied up with your firm. Stepping away can be challenging.
Focus on what is important to you – interests, causes, pursuits beyond your work are also areas you can talk about.
Though lawyers don’t give opinions they can still talk about an issue
Bear in mind that future employers will check your social media profile. Lawyers ‘conspiracy of silence’ doesn’t always help when it comes to recruitment.
Take small steps. Go carefully – editing is critical. Own up to being a luddite and get help to make it work for you. Assume that what you put on the social channels publicly will be looked at by employers etc.
Only 25% of law firms have a documented content strategy for their media presence which is VERY LOW for a business sector