99* reasons why law firms should take social networking seriously

Ever wondered if your law firm should start doing more with social networking services such as Facebook and Twitter? The budget hotels group Travelodge has just published the results of a survey of 6000 adults in the UK (the survey was conducted in November) on their social networking habits and trends. Among other things it discovered that

• 72% of the sample spend their time in bed before falling asleep either updating or checking their friends status updates on Facebook.**  
• On average Britons will spend 16 minutes each night socially networking with pals between the sheets on Facebook – with the peak chatting time being 9.45pm.
• A further 18% of adults tweet every night in bed whilst one in five (20%) catch up on the latest news from their favourite celebrities and friends via Twitter.        
• Further research findings revealed that 65% respondents stated the very last thing they do before nodding off at night is to check their mobile phone for text messages. On average Britons will spend around nine minutes every night texting before falling asleep. Four out of ten adults (40%) reported they have a regular text communication with friends in bed every night.
• So bad is the obsession with bed-texting that 20% of Britons surveyed confessed they have stopped mid-way whilst making love with their partner to check on an incoming text message.***
• 27% of adults reported they are regularly awoken during the night by an incoming text message. Whilst a quarter of workers (25%) reported they frequently get a late night work related text from their boss.          
• 51% of adults surveyed stated the very first thing they do when they wake up – before even getting out of bed is to check their mobile phone for new texts or emails. One in ten respondents (10%) reported they will respond to any texts that have come through the night before getting out of bed.   
Psychologist Corinne Sweet says “We have become a nation of online-a-holics. This addiction for social networking supports Maslow’s theory of humans having three basic needs. One of these is the need for love, affection, belonging and self-worth and Facebook provides the perfect solution to fulfil this requirement. By socially networking we can fulfil our need to communicate and share our news in one hit with all of our contacts across the world 24/7 and obtain a comprehensive snapshot of what they are up to at any given time.”      
As well as socially networking, a quarter of the nation (25%) does their weekly grocery shopping between the sheets. Whilst one in ten adults (10%) settles any outstanding bills online before nodding off. Over a third of the nation (35%) likes to surf celebrity news websites in bed for the latest showbiz gossip before slumbering. With the festive season fast approaching 47% of respondents reported they are spending their time before falling asleep shopping for Christmas presents and making the necessary festive season arrangements. One in ten singletons (10%) surveyed admitted they like to check out online dating websites before falling asleep in the hope of finding their perfect partner.        
The study also found that 84% of adults now using their mobile phone as an alarm clock. On average 36% of adults will get out of bed immediately once the alarm goes off whilst 42% like to press the snooze button a couple of times. One in ten adults (10%) will set their daily alarm half an hour earlier than they need to get up, so that have 30 minutes of snooze time every day.       

* We lied, there are not 99 reasons
** Surely if you are staying in a Travelodge, you are on a business trip and so are more likely to use social networking to keep in touch with your loved ones, significant others etc back home?
*** Surely if you are staying in a Travelodge, you are on a business trip
and so are more likely to be making love to one of your work colleagues and will be using social networking to lie to
your loved ones, significant others etc back home? “Yes dear, I’m hard at it preparing a PowerPoint presentation for tomorrow.” Seriously, isn’t stopping to deal with a text message, email, Tweet  or whatever a guaranteed passion killer?