The LinkedIn Lawyer

By Mike Kneffel, 2XL Company

LinkedIn, known as the “professional network”, is among the most popular business social networking sites used by attorneys. It’s certainly the most important social network you can use today to promote your practice.

The equivalent of both your resume and your rolodex, your LinkedIn profile should showcase your knowledge, skills and accomplishments. More importantly, it connects you with others including potential clients, current clients and potential referral sources.

Surprisingly, most lawyers have barely scratched the surface of both the features and the potential of LinkedIn.

Having a good marketing plan for your LinkedIn account is the first step to make it work for you and your firm. Consider what it is you would like LinkedIn to do for you and your business.

Build and maintain strategic alliances, establish your expertise, gain industry information and develop industry relationships. It’s a great place to establish another web presence for you outside of your firm’s website.

The first step is to build (or update) your profile. Once you have a LinkedIn presence you can connect with people in your industry to build your business. As a business lawyer you can connect with accountants and business advisors. Elder care attorneys can network with professionals from care giving providers and senior housing professionals. Real Estate attorneys can connect with real estate agents who may refer business. You get the picture.

It’s also important to join groups your prospects are going to for information. There you can engage in conversations, nurture relationships and provide content for both your existing clients and prospective clients.

Joining groups that your peers, colleagues, and competitors belong to allows you to stay in touch with what is happening in your own specialty. This may also give you potential sources of article or press release material you can write to promote your firm.

Update your profile on a regular basis using short messages about you and also those that focus on your audience and their interests and concerns. You can showcase your knowledge on a subject with an article written by you. Announce events or conferences you are attending to build interest or to create an occasion for someone to reach out to you.

Every lawyer in your firm should have a LinkedIn profile that showcases their abilities. It should be linked to-and-from each attorney’s profile on the firm’s website allowing quick and easy access for existing or potential clients. Updating LinkedIn is often easier and less expensive than updates to your company website.

The bottom-line is that by creating and maintaining a presence on LinkedIn, you can share your area of expertise in front of targeted prospects and referral sources thus beginning conversations.

You don’t have to spend much time on LinkedIn to get value from it. The important thing is to be consistent. Schedule 15-20 minutes on a weekly or even monthly basis to monitor updates in your networks or to participate in groups. It’s an important tool for your business and for new business development.

To learn more about this topic please email Mike Kneffel at mike@2XLcompany.com, or feel free to call Mike at 248-818-0007.

About the Author

Mike Kneffel is the founder of the 2XL Company, a marketing company located in Auburn Hills, Michigan. He has provided branding and marketing services to law firms since 1994. Mike began his marketing career in 1982 at Doner Advertising, a worldwide advertising agency just outside of Detroit, where he provided strategic planning and account direction for clients in the retail, service, and manufacturing industries. He then spent two years as the Director of Marketing for the Hoosier Lottery, and after a brief “second tour of duty” at Doner he opened the 2XL Company.

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