Lots of young lawyers have a LinkedIn profile (most, in fact).
But do you know what to do with it?
LinkedIn is for making connections, but are you only connecting with your own colleagues? Well don’t just sit idle – in this episode of Non-Billable you will start making connections and expanding your network today.
Transcript – How Lawyers can Start Connecting Using LinkedIn
What is the best way to make connections and build your profile using LinkedIn? That’s the question I’m going to take a look at today in Non-Billable. Welcome to Non-Billable, my name is Chris Hargreaves, I’m from tipsforlawyers.com. In Non-Billable I take a couple of minutes out of my day to answer some questions, have a bit of a rant or give you some advice that might give you a bit of a quick hit to take you into the day or the next day or the week.
LinkedIn, every professional by and large is on LinkedIn by now.
Certainly hundreds of millions of people use it, but how are you using it?
Do you just have a profile?
What should you be doing?
Is LinkedIn actually a platform where you can accomplish anything or is it just something where you put up your profile and then not do anything after that? That’s certainly my experience with many of my colleagues. They make their profile, they might put up their professional picture, but they don’t end up actually doing anything with their LinkedIn profile.
Really the best way of using LinkedIn isn’t different to using any other social media platform.
It’s about engagement, it’s about relationship. If you want to use LinkedIn to actually develop relationship and have some advantages and meet some new people then I’d encourage you to engage. If you enjoy an article, put a comment on the article. If you enjoy a particular group discussion, weigh in, express your opinion.
If you’re going to disagree with people do it politely. It’s the same way as if you’re going to a networking function really. You’re just interacting with people you don’t have an excuse to get to know. But that’s okay, they’re on LinkedIn. They’re there because they want to network and they want to connect with people as well.
Look, if you’re a newbie to LinkedIn, here’s what I’d do.
Get your profile up to scratch so that it’s an accurate representation of you.
Secondly, join some groups that are relevant to either your profession, in this case lawyering, or to the industry in which you work.
If you’re in building or construction or planning and environment or personal injuries there are going to be specific groups that you might want to join, and that’s a great way to get engagement because groups are where a lot of the discussion happens. You can really get to know people because with groups in LinkedIn you have an excuse to contact people. You can send them a note, hey I enjoyed your article on LinkedIn, hey I enjoyed your other comment on LinkedIn. You can have an in to get in to contact them. Use those opportunities.
Use those functions that LinkedIn gives you because it is a platform designed to help you build a relationship, no different to any other social media platform. It just has a unique set of tools.
That’s how I’d use LinkedIn. I’d get in a group, I’d start weighing in to some discussions, and then I’d start sending people some invites to connect and then I’d follow up with them and see how they’re going. Send them a personal note from time to time. You don’t have to become a stalker, just become the person that is there, who is participating, who is weighing in.
The last thing I’d do, if you’re inclined towards writing and you enjoy writing things, take advantage of the LinkedIn publisher platform. It’s pretty easy to use these days. They are rolling it out so depending on when you’re listening to this you might or might not have access to it, but you will some time soon. If you enjoy writing articles then why not put an article up.
It might get seen, it might get noticed, it might get commented on. All of your contacts will get notified when you publish the article so use that method that you have available. You probably don’t have a website so this is an opportunity for you to get a bit more visible under your personal brand.
Don’t forget, not everything has to be your firm.
You can build your personal brand, and you should be as well. That’s how I’d use LinkedIn, that’s how you should be using LinkedIn. If you haven’t already, subscribe to Non-Billable either in iTunes or on YouTube. There should be a button appearing if you’re watching the video. Otherwise if you’re on iTunes then feel free to leave a comment or a review, I’d really appreciate it. It will help us stand out a little bit more as we’re trying to participate in this.
Thanks very much. I’ll see you next time.