Lawyers often dismiss Facebook for purposes of business and professional development.

Looking to Facebook, if at all, for only personal matters, lawyers and law firms look to LinkedIn first when it comes to business development.

But per a national survey released by the Pew Research Center last week, Facebook is America’s most popular social networking platform by a substantial margin.

Nearly eight-in-ten online Americans (79%) now use Facebook, more than double the share that uses Twitter (24%), Pinterest (31%), Instagram (32%) or LinkedIn (29%). On a total population basis (accounting for Americans who do not use the internet at all), that means that 68% of all U.S. adults are Facebook users, while 28% use Instagram, 26% use Pinterest, 25% use LinkedIn and 21% use Twitter.


Lawyers should note that Facebook’s growth comes in large part from the growing number of older adults who are joining the site. 72% of those age 50 to 64 and 62% of those over age 65 now use Facebook.


In addition to Facebook’s number of users being up 7% over last year, the share of Facebook users who use it daily increased. 76% of Americans who use Facebook visit the site on a daily basis, up from 70% in 2015.

I use Facebook, like many lawyers, to share personal items (family, sports, news) and business items (blog posts, business news).

The engagement on these items, mostly from lawyers and business people, is far greater than on LinkedIn, Twitter or comments on my blog.

This engsgement leads to getting to know people, meeting them and new business.

Just last week I had a meeting with the new head of Bloomberg Law and agreed to meet with one of the largest law firms in the country, both the result of Facebook exchanges on personal matters the day or two before.

Business development is all about relationships. To build and nurture relationships, you need to go where the people are. For lawyers — and for everyone else — that’s Facebook.