It’s another Two for Tuesdays here, and apparently, I’m feeling the need for lots of alliteration today, as we’re looking at two tips for Twitter. 

Why bother with Twitter? 

Let’s look at a couple of stats first, and then why those might be important: 

  • 255 million monthly active users (that’s ACTIVE users)
  • 500 million tweets sent per day
  • 77% of accounts are outside of the US

And lawyers may be a bigger deal on Twitter than they think. According to Kevin O’Keefe, the "median active Twitter user (tweets at least once a month) has only 61 followers." So it follows that…

If you’re a lawyer seeing yourself as a Twitter laggard because you have only a few hundred followers, fear not. You’re in the 80th to 90th percentile. Reach 1,000 followers and you’re at the 97th percentile of active Twitter users."

Of course, as Kevin says in a later post

Success on Twitter ought not be measured by followers. Measure it by the value you are providing folks, the relationships you are nurturing, the learning network you are building and the reputation you are earning."

I agree wholeheartedly with that. And that’s where our two tips for today come in – how can you use Twitter (if you’re not already) in a way that enhances your work as an attorney and your business development efforts? 

Tip One: Listen

Using social media to listen is one of the most important benefits of these tools. Your clients are there, potential clients are there, journalists in your industry, conference organizers, etc. and they are talking about what’s important to them. Listening to them will help you to identify trends in your area of expertise, and to respond to what each of those groups really cares about. These days, more people flock to twitter when there is a breaking news story than tune into a news channel, and that can hold just as true for industry news as it does for international news. 

So, how can you listen? 

  • Start by following people you want to get to know better. Look up the Twitter handles of the journalists in your area of expertise, and follow them on Twitter. Find out whether your clients (and the clients you want) are using Twitter and follow them. Take a look at the conference you attend each year in your industry, and add that Twitter name to your list of those you follow. You may also want to follow your competitors (and shh, take a look at their lists of followers and those they follow, and follow them too!).
  • Use a time management tool. is great, but it can be overwhelming in terms of managing those you follow on Twitter. I’ve used Tweetdeck pretty much since the beginning, and I love that I can set up columns for various things. Another tool for that purpose is Hootsuite. Some of this may sound like a foreign language to you, so if you have questions, please feel free to ask them – I’m writing this post from the perspective of someone with familiarity with Twitter as a tool.  

    You can use columns on Tweetdeck in a couple of ways: 

    • Set up Twitter lists for your followers and put them into categories that you’ve created. That way, you can scan their tweets more easily because you’ve filtered them out of the full stream. Perhaps you put all industry contacts in one column, or you separate out journalists, clients, potential clients, etc. It’s totally up to you as to how you define them. 
    • Set up columns for hashtags. You’ll find relevant hashtags in a couple of ways – the first is through looking again at those conferences you attend. They should have a hashtag set up for each event, and you can keep those tweets in one column. That will help you find new people to follow, and will allow you to engage and listen to those attending the conference. (PS, you can also use the conference hashtag to set up meetings, and enhance your conference attendance in other ways). 

      The second way is by listening to those in the industry for a bit first – they will often use the common hashtag in their relevant tweets, which alerts you to what it is, and you can set up a column for that hashtag (or hashtags) so you can continue to follow along. 

    • Set up columns for search terms. You know what the most common terms are in your industry. Run a search in Tweetdeck (or Hootsuite, whatever tool you use) and set up a column to alert you to new tweets using that word or phrase. That’s going to help keep you on the cutting edge of all new information coming out, because you’ll be filtering out the most relevant information to focus on. 

Tip Two: Share

There’s another way to build up what we like to call "social equity," which is defined on Wikipedia as "is the perceived value of individual, organization, or brand reputation and following online."  And that is through sharing.  To me, this is different to broadcasting, which would be tweeting out your own materials – either blog posts you write, or articles, etc. 

Sharing is about putting out information from others that you’ve found that you think will be of value to those who follow you. It can have the secondary benefit of positioning you as an industry expert, because you’re sharing relevant information that you’ve identified as important with your audience. 

There are a few ways to share: 

  • Retweets: Now that you’re following a whole bunch of people, hashtags and search terms, you can retweet those tweets and articles that you find relevant. If you do a traditional retweet, it also alerts the original tweeter that you’re sharing their information, which is an opportunity to build a relationship with that person. 
  • Articles/blogs: In your normal course of business, you will come across articles or blog posts that you find important for your industry. In most cases, if you’re reading these online, there will be a twitter button that will allow you to share it quickly and easily – make sure to add a quick note about what you find valuable so that your followers know why to care about it. If you’re reading something in a magazine or newspaper, do a quick search for the article online so that you can tweet it out from there. 
  • RSS Reader: This is tied into the previous point, because you can feed the blogs you follow through a reader.  Secondarily, you can also add search terms to an RSS reader, which will bring you articles and posts in your area of expertise that you may not otherwise have read.  You can then tweet directly from the reader when you find something relevant to your audience. 

Those are my two tips for using Twitter today – you can check out a post from my friend Nancy Myrland from the end of last year with Twelve Twitter Tips (more alliteration!) and add your own to the comments below! 


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Photo of Lindsay Griffiths Lindsay Griffiths

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. She is a dynamic, influential international executive and marketing thought leader with a passion for relationship development and authoring impactful content. Griffiths is a driven, strategic leader who implements creative initiatives to achieve the…

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. She is a dynamic, influential international executive and marketing thought leader with a passion for relationship development and authoring impactful content. Griffiths is a driven, strategic leader who implements creative initiatives to achieve the goals of a global professional services network. She manages all major aspects of the Network, including recruitment, member retention, and providing exceptional client service to an international membership base.

In her role as Executive Director, Griffiths manages a mix of international programs, engages a diverse global community, and develops an international membership base. She leads the development and successful implementation of major organizational initiatives, manages interpersonal relationships, and possesses executive presence with audiences of internal and external stakeholders. Griffiths excels at project management, organization, and planning, writes and speaks with influence and authority, and works independently while demonstrating flexibility in thinking, especially in challenging situations. She also adapts to diverse and dynamic environments with constant assessment and recalibration.

JD Supra Readers Choice Top Author 2019

In 2021, the ILN was honored as Global Law Firm Network of the Year by The Lawyer European Awards, and in 2016, 2017, and 2022, they were shortlisted as Global Law Firm Network of the Year. Since 2011, the Network has been listed as a Chambers & Partners Leading Law Firm Network, recently increasing this ranking to be included in the top two percent of law firm networks globally, as well as adding two regional rankings. She was awarded “Thought Leader of the Year” by the Legal Marketing Association’s New York chapter in 2014 for her substantive contributions to the industry and was included in Clio’s list of “34 People in Legal You Should Follow on Twitter.” She was also chosen for the American Bar Association Journal’s inaugural Web 100‘s Best Law Blogs, where judge Ivy Grey said “This blog is outstanding, thoughtful, and useful.” Ms. Griffiths was chosen as a Top Author by JD Supra in their 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards, for the level of engagement and visibility she attained with readers on the topic of marketing & business development. She has been the author of Zen & the Art of Legal Networking since February 2009.