Posted On: Aug 17, 2020
Patrick K. Lin, J.D. Candidate, Brooklyn Law
The increasing popularity of social media over the past decade has fundamentally redefined the notions of networking and having an online presence. Law firms and companies build their online reputations to interact with current and potential clients, develop their brands, and recruit law students. With the rise of social media in the legal field, it is more important than ever for law students to establish their online presences and engage in conversations taking place on these platforms.
Having a strong online presence and active social media profiles can prepare you for interviews, connect you with networking opportunities, and allow you to differentiate yourself. Here are three ways that social media can benefit your legal job search.
Prepare for interviews
Social media platforms are where the Internet’s vast ocean of data and information converge. Students can find an abundance of useful information on potential employers and even their recruiting process on social media platforms. Following your target law firms’ or organizations’ social media profiles will allow you to learn more about their practices and initiatives. As law firms continue to adopt real-time engagement, such as webinars and livestreams, you have the opportunity to find current discussions about the industry and developing trends in the legal field. Tuning into these conversations will allow you to have a deeper understanding of the legal profession and its current focus.
Twitter and LinkedIn are platforms that law firms and lawyers are increasingly vested in. Following these social media profiles will allow you to stay up to date on trends and topics that law firms and industry leaders are discussing and sharing, giving you great talking points throughout the interview process.
Digital marketing agency Good2bSocial publishes an annual Social Law Firm Index to not only rank the law firms by their social media content but provides case studies and strategies for improving a law firm’s online presence. DLA Piper, for example, was featured for sharing photos from trips with the firm’s pro bono team and including “key takeaways” in their posts. White & Case was praised for posting videos of partners discussing legal issues and using engaging animations and infographics in their posts. With over 250,000 followers, Baker McKenzie has the highest number of LinkedIn followers out of the firms surveyed in the Social Law Firm Index. The firm’s LinkedIn strategy includes posting at least twice a day and striking a balance of promotional and non-promotional content. The firm often shares articles written by its lawyers and even has multiple podcast series where attorneys discuss different sector trends.
Start a conversation
It has never been easier to network with people in the legal profession. You have access to the profiles of industry leaders, potential interviewers, and lawyers that work at the firms and companies you are applying to. By studying their profiles, engaging with their posts, and connecting with them on social media platforms, you can develop genuine relationships as well as talking points if you meet them at networking events or interviews.
LinkedIn has been and continues to be the best platform for networking. Connect with lawyers in the practice areas you are most interested in. Research which rising 3Ls at your school were summer associates at the firms you plan to apply to. Find out which attorneys at the firm attended your undergraduate school or law school. Not only do you have access to all the information you need to know about the people and organizations you could be working with, you can also make connections that could share valuable insights and tips for navigating the interview process.
Social media is a two-way street. You can search for and absorb all the information you come across to prepare for applications and interviews, but you can go even further. Social media can also be used to showcase your skillset and share the knowledge you gained from other experiences, as well as your opinions on trending topics related to the field of law.
Taking the time to develop a social media presence will allow you to stand out. Maintaining a blog will allow you to share your unique experiences with lawyers and recruiters. Writing articles on a particular legal topic gives you the chance to demonstrate your research and writing ability, as well as how confident you are with voicing your thoughts. A strong social media presence can also signal to law firms that you are tech-savvy as the legal profession continues to embrace technology and social media.
What are some ways you have used social media in your legal job search? Please feel free to share your ideas below!
Tags: social media