LinkedIn: Your Modern-Day Rolodex

Hi, I’m Allison Shields, President of Legal Ease Consulting, where I help lawyers with practice management, marketing and business development, including LinkedIn.

Even with all of the technology available today, most lawyers tell me that they get most of their clients through word of mouth referrals. Their best business development efforts are aimed at networking, and their best assets are their contact and client lists – their address books (or what we used to call our Rolodex).

But this is where LinkedIn can be a gold mine. After all, LinkedIn is a professional networking site; it’s the modern-day Rolodex, with two important advantages: it allows you to continue to “touch” those contacts and clients easily without leaving your office, AND it updates itself, so you’ll always be able to stay in touch with your connections, even if they change jobs.

So how are you using this valuable resource?

First, to make LinkedIn work best for you, you’ll need to actually be connected to all of those important contacts and clients on the site.

Although you can manually search on LinkedIn for each of your current contacts by name to send them an invitation, there are easier ways to find your contacts on LinkedIn.

Here are three helpful ways to quickly find people you already know on LinkedIn

First, you can load your email address book into LinkedIn so you can easily find those contacts and clients and send them an invitation. [One word of caution here – make sure you deselect all so that you don’t inadvertently send an invitation to every single contact in your address book – there are likely people in there you don’t want to connect with. Choose from your list those you want to invite to connect with you.]

Second, you can use LinkedIn’s “People You May Know” feature to help identify people you already know in real life. LinkedIn uses your activity on LinkedIn, your existing LinkedIn connections and items on your Profile to suggest connections – and their suggestions are more accurate the more complete your Profile is.

Finally, you can use company or alumni search to find people you already know. For example, if you know you have several contacts at a client company, it’s easy to find them by doing a search on the company and then looking at its list of employees. The same can be said for alumni. Search for the school on LinkedIn and them click the alumni button to find people who attended during the same years you did.

In my next video, we’ll talk about how to find new connections on LinkedIn and turn them into real-life contacts.

I’m Allison Shields from Legal Ease Consulting. You can find other videos in my LinkedIn series here on my website at LawyerMeltdown.com (or see below).

If you want help with LinkedIn, send me a LinkedIn invitation to set up a consultation.

Other LinkedIn videos:

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