Daily Dispatch

The Friday Five

LinkedIn for Lawyers: Five Tricks That Work

By | Oct.04.13 | Business Development, Daily Dispatch, Law Practice Management, Social Media, The Friday Five

Friday Five

LinkedIn has 175 million users so far. All of whom are looking to network with business professionals specifically. For an attorney, this is an untapped market for potential clients. And, of course, in terms of employment-seekers, it’s a potential opportunity to find (or become) a new hire. So, more than with other social networks, it’s important to maintain a professional presence on LinkedIn with a well-curated profile. Let’s put the emphasis on “well-curated.”

Five Ways to Put Your Best Foot Forward

Since you can’t be there in person, it’s important that your LinkedIn profile page does a superb job of representing you. Here are some of my favorite ways to brush things up and make a difference.

1. Brand your URL. What’s better? A URL with a thousand numbers or a URL branded with your name or law firm? Users are more likely to click on a profile that is specific rather than on a jumble of digits. Branding your URL also helps other LinkedIn users find you easier, whether through Google or LinkedIn’s search results. There is no downside to making yourself easier to find.

2. SEO your Profile. There’s nothing better than coming up first for certain keywords in Google search results. Add the keywords you want to rank for in your profile. The best places are the heading, summary and resume sections. Don’t over-optimize the actual links on your profile page, though. You want your links to be clickable. Change the link’s anchor text to something attention grabbing. Instead of “Click for law firm,” change it, for example, to “Click for client-first law firm.”

3. Create a Profile Badge. If your law firm has a website, which it very much should, you’ll want to promote it on LinkedIn with a clickable badge. There are quite a few badge designs to choose from. They are a great way to make your website recognizable and clickable; more clicks equals more clients.

4. Don’t forget the applications. There are a variety of underutilized applications available on LinkedIn. They allow a user to showcase blog articles, presentations, stories or other web content attractively. The Event application might be my favorite: It allows users to see what events their connections are attending in the law firm industry.

5. Don’t over-network. It’s great to join a lot of groups, but you don’t want to join so many that you cannot possibly get to know your fellow group members. Join no more than 50 relevant groups, and then weed out the less helpful ones as time goes on. Once you’ve got some hyper-relevant groups that you’re a part of, start engaging in discussions, forums, content sharing, answers, pools, news and ads.

There you go, five easy tips for creating a successful LinkedIn page. They are simple, but extremely effective.

Rob Bohn is a personal injury lawyer in the San Francisco Bay area who studied at Santa Clara University. When he’s not helping out local California residents with their legal needs, he can usually be found on the lacrosse field with his sons.

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8 Responses to “LinkedIn for Lawyers: Five Tricks That Work”

  1. John
    4 October 2013 at 4:06 pm #

    This post is a bit stale, I’m afraid. LinkedIn no longer supports the LinkedIn Events application. I also can’t find anything on the current site regarding “profile badges”

    The post fails to give any detail or guidance on how to actually execute its suggestions.

    But I like the idea of this post, since LinkedIn continues to be the hardest nut to crack of the web 2.0 offerings.

  2. Steve Harton | Cloudlawyer
    7 October 2013 at 1:04 am #

    Well, I actually found this article to be quite helpful. I have recently revived my long dormant LinkedIn profile, and these five pointers were right on point. Implementing these tips took just a few minutes.

    1. Branding the URL – I didn’t even know you could do this. Just go to Edit Profile, then by the URL listing below your photo, you click edit. You will see on the bottom right Your public profile URL box. Just click “Customize your public profile URL,” and then type in your custom URL.

    2. SEO your profile – I just added a bunch of text in the Summary section, kind of like the About Me page on a blog. I placed a few keywords in there.

    3. Create a profile badge – The profile badges are found right below the public profile editin box. When you click on it, you get a selection of badges. Mostly they say “view my LinkedIn profile” or similar. I picked the badge I liked, and then copied the HTML code, which I then pasted into my website.

    4. Applications – I just used the Activity app this time. I noted that I recently recently wrote about dressing for court, and I included a link to my blog post on the subject.

    5. Don’t over network. – No problem there, because after taking a cursory look at some groups, I did not join any, but logged out and helped my wife cook supper.

  3. Paul Jackson
    7 October 2013 at 4:58 am #

    Hi John,

    With regards to the profile badges I believe Robert was referring to the widgets and plugins LinkedIn provides on their developer site: https://developer.linkedin.com/plugins

    This resource on the EJ Legal site provides 19 up-to-date tips for lawyers to improve their LinkedIn presence, with 5 additional “don’t do’s” – I hope it helps. http://bit.ly/17tF6tE

  4. Rob Bohn
    7 October 2013 at 7:59 am #

    Hi John –

    Yes, at the time that I wrote this article, LinkedIn Events were still supported. Thank you for catching its discontinuity! That’ll be very helpful for future readers.

    Here’s the link to profile badges: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/profile-badges

    I figured that the readers of this site were smart enough enough to guide and execute these suggestions without much help (your discovery of the LinkedIn Events proves that).

    But, please, readers, if you have any questions, let me know by commenting!

    Rob

  5. Tony
    9 October 2013 at 7:58 am #

    I agree with John. This is a stale post. The best thing I have found to do with LinkedIn is to scroll through your connections’ connections on the LinkedIn iPad app for people to whom you’d like to be introduced. I say to use the iPad app because, unlike the web version, the contacts on the iPad are both sorted alphabetically and listed completely rather than in no particular order and listed in groups of 10, as is the case for the web version.

  6. Rob Bohn
    9 October 2013 at 10:32 am #

    Steve, I’m glad you found the post so helpful! The tips and tricks were meant to be quick and easy.

    Paul, thanks for the contribution!

    Tony, I’m sorry you feel that way, though, if you read the last tip, it’s best not to over network. Scrolling through the app does little to help your actual profile so that people can find YOU. But, if you feel that’s enough, that’s up to you.

    Rob


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