Life without doubt is speeding up, so much so that sometimes it is hard to make time to save time. If you haven’t heard of LinkedIn then perhaps today you have discovered the missing link or should I say effective links. Networking as a tool for generating more clients and preserving relationships proves an invaluable and time effective connector.
LinkedIn is a California-based online business-networking company. LinkedIn has shown rapid growth with approximately 90 million members worldwide.
LinkedIn for Lawyers
LinkedIn is Facebook for professionals – a business networking site. Although LinkedIn has been around for a while, for Lawyers LinkedIn now has the critical mass to be an effective and powerful tool with the number of lawyers and their clients increasing every day. You would be surprised how many of your colleagues are on LinkedIn.
Overtime, clients and colleagues become trusted friends and are often the non visible human capital that endorse your credibility and provide referrals. Just visualise if every contact you make on LinkedIn has 50 contacts in their network and each of those a further 50 contacts, that is 2,500 potential contacts. This is a conservative estimate, the permutations are endless. So why is this important? As you develop your relationships and share knowledge, people are more likely to think of you when speaking to other colleagues. This is critical to successful networking.
LinkedIn doesn’t replace the old fashioned method of direct contact by telephone or meeting up after work for informal drinks. I understand the reticence of those who may not consider networking as ‘who they are’ or view the cyber world as another planet, but in reality we are always networking. This approach adds to your network potential, particularly those of you who are time limited and feeling under the pump. Lawyers and Accountants are stretched for time, so this article aims to help you save time and increase your marketing presence for success.
Key Benefits of LinkedIn for Lawyers
Now let’s have a look at LinkedIn for busy people. The key benefits are:
- You control your online profile – it is an opportunity to show your expertise and interests on your terms.
- Increase your visibility. Other members on LinkedIn can see your profile or you can make your profile public.
- Improve your connectability. You can share with people details of your personal biography, so they can quickly review your experience, credibility and career path. Importantly, you can maintain up-to-date contact information, no more curled business cards or aged contacts. No disrespect to the wise ones.
- Stay in touch: LinkedIn enables you to connect with colleagues and friends.
- Address book: Your address book remains current with your contacts contact details and position.
- Contact updates: As contacts update their files, yours automatically update.
- Connect to Jobs: You can also be surprised to find head hunters looking for you, or opportunities like ‘bolts out of the blue’.
- Professional Reputation: Through your expanding network of contacts you raise your profile. As you become well known, opportunities can abound.
- Improve Google Page Ranking: Did you know that LinkedIn usually appears close to the top on a Google Search for your name. Great way of being visible to those investigating your background or following up a lead.
- Publicise your website: You can promote your website.
- Reference check tool: This is an important function as you can check company references, personal backgrounds, evaluate expertise or you may be seeking a candidate for your business. LinkedIn is helpful for gaining insights into bona fide contacts.
- Answers: Answers on LinkedIn provides the network with free professional advice. A significant benefit of LinkedIn is access to other professionals who freely offer advice to learn, share and interact in a real time or live community. Expertise expanding credibility and trust across the network.
- Add video to your profile to give life to your message.
- Set up 3 website links.
- Share slides with others. Presentations can send a professional message in clear and concise slides that explain how you can benefit others.
- Add your blog through the WordPress addin.
- New feature is mapping, you can visually see who connects with whom.
Connectivity is the new currency.
We continue with our 5 part series on LinkedIn next week. In Part 2, we will walk you through the best way to set up your LinkedIn profile.