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It has been almost 20 years since willisville, a prototype online social network created by the writer of the Friends sitcom theme song, attempted to bring together elements of collaborative interaction and media sharing to the Internet and across multiple devices. Social media is beginning to reach maturity, a fact supported by Nielsen’s State of the Media: The Social Media Report 2012.
According to the Nielsen report, the social media audience in the United States during 2012 was 163.3 million users on desktop and laptops and 171.8 million on smartphones and tablets. Men spend more than six hours on social networks per month; women spend almost nine hours, and both male and female users are spending more time on mobile social interaction than on their desktop computers. Social media is growing at a breakneck pace, something that legal professionals cannot afford to ignore.
Almost half of social media netizens who own tablet computers use them to interact with friends when they sit down to watch TV. They are increasingly getting their news from trusted sources on social networks because they are interested in the opinions of their friends regarding current events. They also prefer to turn to social media when they have customer service issues since they want to see how brands relate to consumers on a social platform.
These reports of unabated social media growth should convince all law firms and sole practitioners that cultivating a substantial presence on different social networks is imperative. At the current rate of growth, a Fort Myers motorcycle accident lawyer who uses social media tools to the best of their ability should expect to get increasingly more inquiries from Facebook than Google in the near future.
Social media advertising is still an item of concern for online marketers. About one third of social media users are peeved by the presence of ads in their favorite social networks. Alas, this may improve in the future as marketers find ways to make ads less obtrusive and more engaging.
Social Media Mondays is a CaseDetails.com series covering different topics in the social media world on a weekly basis. Check back every Monday for more news on social media and useful information on how law firms can use social platforms to their advantage.