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Web 2.0: A brief digression from mediation

Are you a technophobe afraid to plug in your hairdryer? Do you scream out for your assistant to rush in to your aid each time your word document simply “disappears” from your screen? Are you the black thumb of death to any computer you touch?

Unfortunately for you it is now terribly chic to efficiently maneuver through your computer’s PowerPoint application. And today it is cool to carry an extra flash drive on your key chain. Blogging has become a way of life. And Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter? If you’re not there – well fuggetaboutit!!!

If you are still leery of the web and its social networking capacity, I provide you with the following must-do social networking steps you can take to dip your toe into these uncharted waters.

1) Establish your internet presence with a webpage for your firm. Profile the members of your firm. Identify your areas of specialty. Include location and contact information.

2) Read blogs on topics of interest to you and your practice. Comment on others’ blogs. Subscribe to blogs to keep updated and current.

3) Write a blog at least once/week. Write about matters of interest to you and your potential clients. Link your blog to your website, other websites and other blogs. Give readers a glimpse into your personality with your writing style.

4) Create a Linkedin account. Use it to refer readers to your blog, your website and your profile. Slowly begin accumulating connections. Establish meaningful connections not just numbers.

5) Create a Facebook page. I suggest keeping a professional page separate from a family and friends page. Link it to your website, blog and Linkedin and Twitter accounts. Collect meaningful friends not just numbers of friends.

6) Establish a Twitter account and tweet at least several times each week. This is just flat out fun! Join Twibes of interest to you and your practice area. Retweet things of interest to you. Follow people in fields of interest to you and relevant to your practice area.
7) Become proficient with PowerPoint or hire someone who is. OK this is not really social networking but an important practice tip. Use this for your mediation opening statements and at trial. Just do it!!

These are just the basics and believe me there are many additional ways to supplement your Web 2.0 efforts such as webinars, podcasts, site engine optimization consultants and the like but take baby steps first. Come on in – the water is fine.

Mediation Counsel
Twitter: @scupchurch
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