Jeremy Saland, a New York criminal defense attorney and former Manhattan prosecutor, was interviewed for a Wall Street Journal article published today addressing the intersection of modern day lawyering and social media. An interesting article, one of the main themes of the piece was how social media – blogs, twitter and facebook – can help an attorney’s marketing and client generation.
Make no mistake. If done the right way, utilizing social media can certainly help drive business to your law practice. The article made this very clear. However, equally important in generating business over time is not only getting the phone to ring, but to be able to service your clients and to do so ethically and diligently. After all, establishing a career that will span decades is not about merely getting a high profile case or one “big fish” client, but in assisting all clients in all matters with the highest degree of professionalism.
Although not detailed in the Wall Street Journal, today’s internet often dupes consumers into believing perception is reality (how many “experts” are out there today?!?!). It is often difficult to find substance in a website or blog, and sometimes with the actual attorney, through all of the nonsense and exaggeration. If your use of social media is strictly the fluff of client generation and you cannot demonstrate your legal knowledge while achieving satisfactory results, the buzz you have created about your firm – as well as your clients – will ultimately fade away.
At the end of the day, there is nothing wrong with using social media as vehicle for client development and marketing. Don’t let other attorneys who may not be as experienced in this area tell you otherwise. Yet, don’t become a victim of your own hype. The rules of law school 101 will dictate your success. That is, there is no substitute for true lawyering.
Crotty Saland PC is a New York criminal defense firm founded by two former Manhattan prosecutors. Beyond the website, the New York Criminal Lawyer Blog contains a wealth of information ranging from commentary on criminal statutes and cases to analysis of criminal matters in the New York area news.