At a recent conference, I shared four archetypes that lawyers often embody when they communicate on social media, particularly here on LinkedIn. Everyone has their unique way of navigating these platforms, guided by their communication skills, personal creativity barometer, and comfort level. However, patterns emerge, and it’s fascinating to observe these archetypes at play.
1. The Firm Cheerleader
The Firm Cheerleader can be a law firm marketer’s dream come true. They eagerly share content vetted by their firm with their audience and may even use their firm’s technology to spread it across multiple platforms. But, here’s the catch – without adding an insightful comment or unique perspective on why the content matters, the Firm Cheerleader’s contributions remain on the periphery of the conversation. To truly promote their abilities and position themselves in the marketplace, they should add their thoughts and provide value to the content they share.
2. The Self-Promoter
We all know the Self-Promoter – the individual who exclusively posts self-focused news. “I’m honored to be ranked in…,” “I was delighted to speak at…,” and the list goes on. While self-promotion is useful, an unceasing stream of self-congratulatory posts can leave your followers disengaged. If you’re among the Self-Promoters, consider adding context to your achievements. Share what your presentation was about or the valuable lessons you learned about teamwork doing all of those deals that earned you your ranking.
3. The Artist
The Artist stands out by infusing creativity into their content. They showcase intriguing visuals, tell captivating personal stories, and leverage LinkedIn’s unique features before others discover them. Their ability to grab attention is impressive. However, their efforts are not maximized without connecting these creative narratives to real-world value or bringing the conversation back to their professional expertise.
4. The Value Adder
The Value Adder is the person who consistently strives to provide value to their audience. They might employ storytelling techniques akin to the Artist or display unwavering support for their firm, like the Firm Cheerleader. The critical difference is that, when they do so, they ensure the information they share is either helpful or thought-provoking for their audience. They might be a combination of the other archetypes, but they are always delivering value.
While you may recognize elements of yourself in one or more of these archetypes, the overarching message is clear: adding value is paramount. Demonstrating and freely sharing snippets of your expertise, knowledge, capabilities, or advice that benefits others is the foundation of effective LinkedIn and social media use.