While most lawyers realise they should be on LinkedIn, most don’t understand the many benefits associated with it if used properly. LinkedIn is akin to a large networking event. There are many interesting people and valuable connections that can lead to quality referrals.
LinkedIn allows you to quickly create targeted lists and send InMail to that group with ease and efficiency. Without LinkedIn, time would need to be spent researching specific groups and then determining who you would reach out to and what means you would employ to connect with them. For example, a lawyer might want to target a group of legal costs accountants to see who can provide the best quote for case files. When you send an InMail to a pre-selected group, you will likely get a more targeted response and know who is available and willing to connect, network with you and provide a timely response to your query. Lawyers can connect with a large number of professionals and then gain referrals through those connections. Those lawyers who would like to leverage LinkedIn can see multiple benefits if they go about it in the right way.
The following are some tips on how lawyers can get the most out of LinkedIn:
- Utilise a premium account: LinkedIn Premium provides greater access to features that aid in direct contact like the InMail feature.
- Ask your referral sources for endorsements and positive reviews in the “recommendations” section of your profile.
- Utilise video: Video is so important today if used properly. If you have testimonial videos these would be a great addition to your profile and if you don’t, make it a priority to get some video content produced. This will also help establish credibility and trust.
- Choose connections that appear to be putting some effort into the network. If they don’t put any time and effort into their profile, it’s unlikely they will check their messages anyway. Be smart with your time.
- Create a community of like-minded professionals: Your LinkedIn is part of your lead generation funnel. If you are a real estate lawyer for example, you can connect with real estate agents who may refer their clients to you if they are in need of legal advice.
- Create a network of media professionals: More media professionals are on LinkedIn than any other social media site. In fact, 92% of media professionals are on LinkedIn.
- Demonstrate that you are an expert by getting relevant information in front of targeted prospects. This is the best way to attract new clients and additional sources for referrals.
Here are a few tips of things not to do when using LinkedIn:
- Don’t connect with anyone and everyone. This will only clog up your feed and cause you to miss potentially important posts.
- Be mindful of connecting with competitors. This doesn’t mean don’t connect with any other attorney or colleagues; it does mean to be selective about who you connect with because by connecting with someone, you are also sharing your connection list with that person.
- Don’t share irrelevant content. Be sure to select content that will be desired by your network audience. If you post too many things that are of no interest to your audience, they will eventually breeze right over anything you post thinking that it is not important to them anyway.
LinkedIn can help lawyers position their “brand” and increase visibility. LinkedIn is now being considered the “business-to-business directory” as well as the most popular social network for professionals. Interacting with people is the key. Utilise updates by posting your blog or news about new areas of expertise in your practice. Seek out and join the right groups to leverage your professional network and then participate.
LinkedIn is powerful, but you will only get out of it what you put in. You can’t simply set up a profile, add your basic information and expect the referrals to come rolling in. Used properly, it is one of the most effective referral tools available to lawyers today.