Ryan Shelley is the Managing Director of Pepper IT, a full service digital and social media agency with a growing reputation as the leading agency for leveraging digital media for professional services firms.
Regarded as a social media expert, Ryan is regularly called upon to give expert advice, recommendations and presentations on all things Digital Marketing.
With over fifteen years' experience working in boutique and consulting roles for some of the nation's largest professional service organisations - from law, real estate, property and private equity to the NASDAQ stock exchange, Ryan enjoys the diversity and complexity of the technical side, while working with his clients to enhance and leverage their online presences.
We had the pleasure of sitting down with Ryan recently to discuss key challenges and opportunities facing the industry today.
When it comes to social media, Ryan Shelley, Managing Director of Pepper IT, knows what he’s talking about. From providing expert social media commentary on ABC News, Channel 7 or CEO magazine to developing digital strategy with law firms across Australia, Ryan has a strong presence in the Australian media and marketing landscape. For a number of years now, Ryan and his digital marketing agency have focused on providing practical and actionable digital marketing and social media solutions to the professional services industry.
Ryan believes that a managed presence on social media should be an integral part of any law firm’s marketing and business development strategy. It provides an effective platform to engage with your clients and share your firms’ human side. It’s an opportunity to share your successes and values, as well as positioning as a thought leader in your respective legal field.
“The great thing about social media is the opportunity to speak directly to your clients and prospective clients in a casual but regular forum. Once you gain an understanding of the fundamentals, social media for law firms really becomes an effective and essential marketing and client engagement tool - when leveraged correctly, of course.”
Drawing on his many years of experience running an international digital agency, Ryan Shelley is all too aware of the challenges that many law firms face when trying to establish their online presence, “Whether you’re a small or large partnership, it’s easy to forget that social media is, first and foremost, Social. It’s important not to get caught up in the numbers, such as how many ‘followers’, or ‘likes’. Now, I’m not saying these things aren’t important, but more crucial to the business is getting your message across to your target audience. – you need to engage and build relationships with genuine followers that convert into clients, and that’s something I’m looking forward to sharing with the audience at the Legalwise seminars.”
When asked what you can learn from the mistakes of other law firms, Ryan shared that the most common mistakes are often around social media content - either thinking you have nothing valuable to share or alternatively posting irrelevant or unappealing content to your preferred social media platform. Ryan explained that a balanced and rounded approach is needed. “A holistic approach is essential and there must be a strategy in place to ensure success. There is no point if your posting is ad hoc, inconsistent in the content, or if it’s irrelevant to your target audience. You want your audience to engage with the content and ultimately with you!“
Just like your non-digital marketing strategy it is all about building trust, reputation, adding value and maximizing client engagement.
With real, actionable insights into successful social media for law firms, Ryan will be speaking at the 10 Points in One Day seminar, being held on Saturday 10 March and at the CPD Compulsory Units for All Lawyers seminar, being held on Friday 23 March at the UNSW CBD Campus, Sydney. Whether you’re planning your firms’ first foray into social media marketing or you are looking for tips to further improve your existing digital marketing activities, this is a talk you will not want to miss!