LinkedIn for Lawyers, Part 2

*Content for this post has been provided by Frank Ramos, Jr., the Managing Partner of the Miami litigation boutique firm of Clarke Silverglate, P.A. Check out Frank’s other books, which include – Go Motivate Yourself, From Law School to Litigator, The Associates’ Handbook, Attorney Marketing 101, Training Your Law Firm Associates, SLDO Strategic Planning Manual, Future of Law. Social Media Musings – My Reflections on the Practice and Life, The Practice and Process of Law – Checklists for Every Occasion and Be Your Own Life Coach. He has written over 400 articles and has edited four books – The Defense Speaks, The Trial Tactics Defense Manual, The Deposition Manual and Leadership for Lawyers. Please follow him on LinkedIn, where he posts daily and has over 42,000 followers, or feel free to e-mail him at framos@cspalaw.com.

Before you jump into this post, which will cover setting up your personal and firm’s LinkedIn profiles, check out Part 1 of this series!

Crafting Your Profile

Whether you decide to become active on LinkedIn or not, take the time to prepare a robust profile. Prospective clients searching for attorneys like you often view attorneys’ LinkedIn profiles when deciding to hire them. Your LinkedIn profile is one of the first items that pop up on a Google search when others are looking for you online. The difference between a strong and weak LinkedIn profile can make the difference between being retained are being passed over.

When creating your profile, use a professional headshot, preferably the one from your law firm website. Provide detailed information about you, your practice, and your firm. But do so in a conversational and friendly tone. Express who you are much the same way you would do so if asked about your practice at a cocktail party.

LinkedIn provides several categories regarding your background information. Complete all of them. List your current and former employers, the schools you attended, your volunteer experience, your skills, the organizations you belong to, your language proficiencies, your publications, and your awards and accolades.

You can include links to your website, provide your email address, other contact information, and links to your publications. Everything and anything you want others to know about you and your career can be included on your LinkedIn profile.

As with the platform as a whole, explore the various aspects of the LinkedIn profile and include as much relevant information about you and your practice as you can. When writing about yourself, strike a balance between a conversational and professional tone, and a balance between self=confidence and egoism. Remember, your profile is an extension of you, your firm, and your brand.

Sharing Publications

LinkedIn allows you to share links to your publications – your blog, your articles, and your e-books. Prospective clients search the Internet for free stuff. They comb the Internet, including LinkedIn, for free legal information they can use in their businesses. By including links to your legal publications, you’re providing a free service to prospective clients who’ll consider that when retaining new counsel. By giving, you can get. And by sharing, you can attract new business. Adding value is the catchphrase for business development. The more value-add, the more attention you will receive from prospective clients.

Creating a Firm Profile

In addition to creating a personal profile, consider creating a firm profile or a company page. This profile will be dedicated to your firm and the content will be firm driven. Whereas I recommend most lawyers create their own personal page, I am less sanguine on recommending a firm page. There are many law firms with successful LinkedIn profile pages and there are just as many with unsuccessful ones. Populating and maintaining a firm profile page is a lot of work and not for the faint of heart. Before going down the road of a firm profile page, spend some time reviewing, inspecting, and studying other firms’ profile pages and see how often they post, what they post and how they interact with their followers. After doing so, ensure you have the commitment of your firm to provide content, participate, and contribute to the firm page. 

Unlike your personal page, a firm page needs regular and frequent content and must draw upon not just your own expertise and contributions but the expertise and contributions of a large number of your attorneys. It is a significant commitment in time and energy and requires the buy and of numerous attorneys from your firm who will be contributing and adding value to the firm’s page. If successful, however, it will expand and brandish your law firm name online.

Promoting Your LinkedIn Profile

Once you have your LinkedIn profile, share it with others. Include a link of your profile on your firm website, your blog, and any other site you use to promote yourself and your practice.  Include the address to your LinkedIn profile on your business card and any other written or printed materials promoting your firm. In addition, include a link to your profile in the signature block of your emails. Share with as many as possible your LinkedIn profile so they can learn more about you, your practice, and your firm. Understand that many others will come to know you and what you do not from your firm website but through social media platforms such as LinkedIn and others. Therefore, promoting such platforms is the best way to get your name, your practice, and your firm out to as many prospective clients as possible.

Settings

LinkedIn allows you to decide with whom you share your posts and articles. You should change your settings to public so everyone on LinkedIn can see what you post and share. Setting it to private will limit those who can see your posts to those who are in your circle of connections and followers. Since the point of LinkedIn is to promote yourself and your brand, there’s no sense to limit who can see and interact with your posts.

In Part 3, we’ll cover the ways you can grow your LinkedIn network. Stay tuned!

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Spotlight Branding

Spotlight Branding is an internet marketing and branding firm for lawyers. Our goal is to help our clients create an online presence that positions them as a credible expert in their field, keeps them connected with their network in order to stay top of mind and increase referrals, and to become more visible online so prospects can find them!