Social Media for Professional Service Firms: Separating Facts from Fallacies

“Our partners and our clients are conservative, so social media is not a good fit for our firm.” Pre SMUPS Blog Image

“Social media is for consumer brands, not for business-to-business firms like ours.”

 “I’m afraid we are way behind the curve. What are your other professional service firm clients doing with social media?

These are the most common comments we hear when talking with business development and marketing communication executives from area professional service firms.

The big question is: Is social media effective and viable for professional service firms?

The 2012 McKinsey Global Institute’s report, The Social Economy: Unlocking Value and Productivity through Social Technologies ( ) suggested that professional service firms are more innately social organizations than other companies.

Because it depends very heavily on social interactions with clients and colleagues to conduct their work and develop new business, the professional service industry has more potential to reap huge ROI benefits from social media than most other sectors.

How social media can benefit professional service firms:

  • Builds overall brand awareness, recognition and reach;
  • Demonstrates subject matter expertise and establishes credibility through thought leadership;
  • Amplifies your messaging and content on website and other platforms;
  • Leverages the power of your employees’, clients’ and colleagues’ networks; and
  • Generates leads on a global 24/7/365 basis and brings prospects to you.

That’s pretty powerful stuff.

While numerous so-called social media sherpas talk about what professional service firms should do … and firms talk about what they would like to do … we feel it’s more useful to study what professional service firms are actually doing today in social media.

So, we’ve conducted a proprietary study, Social Media Use by Professional Services (SMUPS), that looked at thousands of actual posts from the past three months across four popular platforms for 25 of the top Detroit professional services firms.

Our goal is to offer you real data and insight … to identify how firms are using social media and what opportunities for improvement exist … and to provide you tips to boost engagement.

We’ll be sharing some of our findings over the next few months in this blog. If you’d like more information on the SMUPS study, please email Adriana Van Duyn at

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