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Of Am Law 100 Firms, 29 Are Tweeting

It was more than a year ago that the Wall Street Journal declared, Twitter Goes Mainstream. Now comes proof that Twitter is reaching the mainstream of the legal profession. A survey finds that 29 of the Am Law 100 law firms actively use Twitter. Weil Gotshal was the first of the lot to tweet in October 2008. Since then, it has been joined by the likes of Skadden Arps, Mayer Brown, Reed Smith, Akin Gump and Seyfarth Shaw.

Still, the survey -- conducted by -- found that relatively few of these 29 firms apply "best practices" to their use of Twitter. Indeed, some of the firms, such as Skadden, have a Twitter account but have never posted a single update (accumulating several hundred followers even so.) The survey finds that just nine of the 29 firms post to Twitter on a regular basis and that just nine do so on a timely basis (meaning they post news within 24 hours).

A chart that accompanies the survey also depicts use of other forms of social media by these firms, showing whether they have Facebook pages, blogs, RSS feeds and electronic newsletters.

Most interesting is that the survey attempts to slice and dice the numbers in search of a correlation between social media use and a firm's bottom line. Comparing the firms' Am Law 100 rankings in the two most recent years, it found that of the 29 firms using Twitter, 13 gained in rank, 11 fell and five were unchanged. In aggregate they picked up 35 places and averaged a 4.54 percent increase in revenues. Not surprisingly, firms using Twitter were also more likely to have blogs and Facebook pages, the survey said, indicative of a firm's overall approach to client communications and marketing.

Definitive conclusions about Twitter use are hard to draw, the survey concedes, but analysis of a firm's overall social media use was at least "suggestive," it said. "The 38 law firms that have embraced two or more forms of social/new media (with or without Twitter) did in fact beat the 4.36% average for the AmLaw 100, averaging a 6.46% increase in revenue, with the 17 firms using three forms averaging a 5.93% increase and the 7 firms using four or more, averaging a 6.5% increase."

The survey's author,'s founder Nick Montgomery, uses the survey as a launchpad to describe a set of best practices for the use of Twitter by law firms. His thoughtful and detailed advice is worth considering by any firm that uses or plans to use Twitter.

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on January 6, 2010 at 03:34 PM | Permalink | Comments (7)


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