“New year, new you!” come the cries every January – and the nation is divided into those who embrace this wholeheartedly and those who eschew the whole process.

Social media divides lawyers in a similar fashion. Plenty welcome it, many half-heartedly attempt it and others ignore it completely. 

Whichever camp you fall into, make sure your digital footprint is in the best shape it can be with these social media resolutions.

1. Be human

Show a little personality and don’t be afraid to be engaging, maybe even crack a (non-offensive) joke or two. Clearly in the legal sector, whacky, crude or unprofessional posts are not going to be appropriate, but a more relaxed approach is usually best.

2. Respond promptly

Ignore the comments and replies on social media and you risk damaging your reputation. Being ignored on social media is one of the top complaints for users who are interacting with professionals – particularly now as people expect company accounts to act as customer service.

Make sure you’re monitoring your accounts and mentions on social media – online monitoring platforms such as Hootsuite make it straightforward to do so.

3. Complete your profile

If your social media profile is woefully out of date, then it may as well not be there at all. Make sure you’re regularly dusting it off and maintaining a profile that gives an impression of you as a professional, as opposed to just the bare bones of what you’ve done. Keep your connections updated with award wins, promotions, or news stories that piqued your interest.

4. Quality, not quantity

A word of caution. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that too much content is better than too little. Regular yes, but you don’t need mountains of content to achieve your objectives. We all follow that person on social media who feels the need to share everything they’ve read. Find the balance between posting frequently, while not losing sight of quality.

5. Don’t hide your light

If you’ve written a blog for your company website or have been featured in the press with commentary, an article, or a quote – make sure you share it. Get your firm involved too – they may be able to help by producing graphics to illustrate your post. And if they haven’t already, ask them to share it on their own platforms as well.

Half-hearted won’t win the race

Whether you take New Year’s resolutions seriously or not is unlikely to affect your reputation. But when it comes to social media, a half-hearted approach isn’t going to work and ignoring it could see your reputation fall behind your competitors. You don’t have to shout the loudest to win on social media – you just need to have a voice, so invest some time in honing your own to see almost-instant results.

If you need guidance on the dos and don’ts of social media,  request our social media guides.