Secret Weapon for Marketing Content

Stamp saying Top Secret

Do you want to know the secret to creating a consistent stream of content for your marketing?

My clients tell me that one of their major obstacles to marketing is time – they just don’t think they have the time to do everything they would like to do to market their practice. Between social media, newsletters, email marketing campaigns, their website, writing articles, blogs, and now video, they just don’t know how they’re going to have the time to come up with all of that content.

The good news is that they don’t have to. They just need to learn how to repurpose. Every piece of content that is created by a law firm has the potential to be repurposed with much less effort than it would take to create a new piece of content from scratch.

Let’s look at an example.

Say you did a CLE program for your bar association. It’s likely that you had to develop some materials, whether that included PowerPoint slides, written materials, or both. You can repurpose that content in a number of ways:

  • You might have someone record you giving your presentation and use video clips in your marketing. (or record yourself if it’s on Zoom or a similar platform)
  • Have someone take photos of you giving your presentation to use as images on social media. (or take screenshots if it’s online)
  • Turn your materials into an article to publish in an industry or bar association publication.
  • Then take that article and post it on your website
  • Turn the article into a series of posts on social media
  • Include the article in your firm’s monthly newsletter
  • Break the article into smaller chunks to post separately on your blog
  • Take the first part of the article and post it as a Publisher post on LinkedIn with a link back to the full article on your website
  • Take your PPT slides and post them as a slide presentation on Slideshare
  • Give the presentation again to another audience, or for your best clients

You can do the same thing with legal work you perform. Watch the video above to learn more, or email me to find out how I can help you repurpose content you already have.

Watch more of my videos:

Pre-qualify Your Clients to Keep Bad Clients Out of Your Practice

Do you want to keep bad clients out of your law practice?

In this video series on bad clients, we’ve talked about identifying and eliminating bad clients from your practice, but the best way to eliminate bad clients from your practice is not to take them in the first place.

In my last video, I talked about trusting your gut when it warns you that a new client might not be right for your practice. But I know that realistically, sometimes even when your gut tells you not to take a client, you may be tempted to do it anyway. So today I want to talk about a more concrete way to identify bad clients before they come into your practice by creating a prequalifying process for your clients.

First, make a list of the worst clients you’ve encountered in your practice. What made you classify them as problem clients? What do those clients have in common? Were there red flags or warning signs at the initial consultation? Did those clients exhibit specific behaviors that might have tipped you off that they could become a problem later?

Talk to others in your office as well. How did those clients treat your receptionist or other staff in the office? Did your staff take note of something when they interacted with those clients?

Create a list of red flags or bad client warning signs. You might even consider ranking those red flags – perhaps some are worse than others. Maybe if a new client exhibits only one characteristic you’re willing to take them on, but if they exhibit more than one, you won’t. Or perhaps there are some behaviors or characteristics that would make a client an absolute “no” for you.

Developing a list of these characteristics can help you to say no to problem clients before they come into your practice. You might even develop a system to allow those kinds of clients to self-select out of your practice before they even come to the initial consultation by putting obstacles in place designed to keep out those problem clients.

For example, if your problem clients are overly concerned about price, one way to keep them out of your practice is by charging for the initial consultation. Or if your problem clients are unprepared and don’t get you documentation or information you need in a timely manner, you might require your clients to complete an online form or submit documents in advance of the initial consultation. The idea is to develop a system and a process designed specifically to stop bad clients from entering your practice in the first place.

What do you do to keep bad clients out of your practice? Do you have a pre-qualifying process? Let me know in the comments!

See more posts and videos about client service:

How to Fire a Client

Are you ready to fire some clients? 

In a previous video, I challenged you to take a look at your client list and see if it’s time for you to fire some of your worst clients. But how do you do that without creating a bigger problem?

When you have a difficult client and you feel that the relationship is beyond repair, your first course of action may be to change how you work so the client decides to leave on their own. This may include raising your fees or changing how you communicate with the client. Always check your engagement letter and your jurisdiction’s ethics rules, before proceeding.

If the client doesn’t leave on their own, suggest that client might be more comfortable working with another attorney. Lawyers play an advisory role for clients, and that can be a very personal relationship; your nightmare client might be someone else’s dream client.

Look at your contact list to see if you know another lawyer in your area who might be a better fit for that client. Where appropriate, provide the names and addresses of other lawyers the client can contact.

If the client does not take you up on a referral to another lawyer, you may have to fire the client outright. Set up a call or meeting with the client to tell them that you can no longer work for them. Be professional; don’t allow the client to draw you into an argument. This isn’t the time to tell the client why they are wrong and you are right. Instead, show the client why working with you isn’t serving their needs. You want the parting to be as amicable as possible.

If you are representing the client in litigation, you may need the court’s permission to withdraw from the case. You’ll want to do this as soon as possible for the best chance of success; if you are too close to trial, the court may deny your application and refuse to allow you to withdraw.

Always send a disengagement letter to memorialize the end of the client relationship. Send the client or their new attorney the client’s file, and provide them with any upcoming deadlines or other information they need to proceed with the case.

If you want to know how to fill your practice with great clients, get a copy of my ideal client workbook, “Attracting and Keeping the Best Clients” on my products page.

Find more videos about client service:

Keep Bad Clients Out of Your Practice: Trust Your Gut

In my last few posts/videos, I’ve been talking about firing bad clients. But how do you keep those bad clients out of your practice in the first place?

Pay attention to your gut.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been talking to a lawyer who is trying to get out of a bad client situation and when we start talking about that client, they say something like, “I had a feeling from the very first meeting that this client would be a problem,” or, “Now that I think about it, this client was very focused on my fees at the first meeting, and negotiated a lower fee,” or “I had a feeling all along that the client was hiding something from me.”

Often, lawyers take these clients on even though their gut tells them not to because they feel sorry for the client, or they’re worried about where their next client will come from, or because they’ve been referred by someone they know or a good referral source, but they end up regretting it later. Every lawyer I know has at least one of these stories. The problem comes when you keep repeating the same mistakes over and over.

If your gut is telling you that something is not right, pay attention. You don’t need to take on every client that walks into your practice. You can be polite and helpful, refer them to someone else, or just tell them you are not in a position to take on their case. You don’t owe them an explanation.

Don’t second-guess your intuition, even if your concern is money.

The problems caused by bad clients tend to spread throughout your practice – they take your time and energy away from good clients. They use up more than their share of your resources. They often pay a reduced fee, or don’t pay at all. They are the clients who will either be unhappy with everything you do, and leave a bad review, scaring away good potential clients, or – possibly even worse – they will refer people just like them, who want a discount, are needy, etc. – to your practice.

In my next video, we’ll talk about red flags and “bad client warning signs” that you can watch for in your next meeting with a potential client.

If you’d like to learn more about attracting and keeping the best clients in your law practice, download my Ideal Client workbook, or check out the other videos and posts about client service:

How to Use LinkedIn Publisher

Do you want to get more visibility and engagement with your website content? Or do you want to build up your authority and reputation, but don’t have your own website yet? LinkedIn Publisher platform can help you with both of those objectives.

LinkedIn Publisher is a publishing platform built right into LinkedIn. Any LinkedIn member can use this platform to publish an article simply by clicking on the “write an article” icon in the post box on your Home page. Clicking on that icon brings you inside the publisher platform, which is just like any other word processing program you’re used to. You can type your article, add images, links, and even embed video into your article.

Articles written in LinkedIn Publisher are visible outside of your network, so you get more reach than you would from a typical LinkedIn post – and they show more prominently in your activity on your profile.

If you are already publishing content on your website, LinkedIn’s publisher platform can help extend the reach of your content. Publisher articles are assigned unique URLs which are indexed by Google, and since LinkedIn is such a large and authoritative site, your article on LinkedIn is likely to get much more visibility than it would have on your website alone.

If you’re worried about duplicating content between LinkedIn and your own website, I suggest that you take a portion of the article to post on Publisher and then provide a read more link that points to the complete article on your own website.

If you don’t have your own website yet but want a place to build you authority, LinkedIn Publisher is a good place to start. The social proof that LinkedIn offers – likes, comments and shares from your network, can help build your authority even faster.

If you want to learn more about how to leverage LinkedIn for your practice, pick up a copy of my book, Make LinkedIn Work for You on Amazon.com, join our on-demand LinkedIn Essentials course, or download my free 47 LinkedIn Tips PDF.

I hope you’ll give LinkedIn Publisher a try.

See more about LinkedIn:

Overwhelmed? Focus on Just One Thing

Between pandemics, and elections and riots and crazy ice storms, there’s a lot to be stressed about these days, and it can be hard to get in a productive mood and stay focused.

I’ve been doing a series of videos on motivation, and how to pull yourself out of a funk if you’re just not feeling motivated. But sometimes, even the tips and tricks I’ve been sharing with you don’t work. Or something very unexpected comes up that derails all of the plans you’ve made, and it feels like you’ve hit a brick wall.

I had something like that happen to me this week – I have been trying to juggle a bunch of projects with deadlines so I can go out of town at the end of this month, and one of them came crashing down last night. As a result, my entire plan went out the window.

When something like that happens to me, I take it as a signal that it’s time to slow down to speed up.

What do I mean by that? Sometimes the busier we are, the harder it is to see what is really important.

Stress can become a vicious cycle. As the work piles up, we get more stressed and overwhelmed. And the more overwhelmed we get, the more difficult it is to focus, or to get anything done.

That may be exactly the right time to take a break, take a deep breath, and focus on just one thing. Ask yourself, “What is the single most important thing I need to do right now?” It might be calling a client to let them know that the work will be late. Or it might be organizing all of the projects on your desk so that you can see what needs to be done. Or maybe it’s identifying someone who can help you get through your list and delegating some tasks to them. It might be deciding what to say “no” to.

Identifying just the one thing that is most important in the moment, it can free you from thinking about all of the other projects or tasks on your list.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, try taking a step back and focusing just on the one most important thing you can do today to move toward your goals.

Want more productivity hacks? Check out these videos:

Are Free Consultations a Waste of Time?

Do You Have Problem Clients? Maybe Your Free Consultation is to blame.

Are you wasting your time offering free consultations?

I’m Allison Shields Johs, President of Legal Ease Consulting, where I help lawyers create more productive, more profitable, and more enjoyable law practices. I can’t tell you how many lawyers I’ve worked with who complain constantly about what my friend Nina calls PITA (pain in the a**) clients who won’t listen to their advice, don’t pay their bills or are otherwise a drain on their practice.

The first place I look when one of my clients complains about their clients is at their client selection process – how are they deciding which clients are right for their practice? Sometimes just a small tweak to their initial consultation and their client selection process is all it takes to weed bad clients almost entirely out of their practice.

One of the biggest culprits I’ve found is the free consultation.

Free consultations are ubiquitous in the legal world, but sometimes, they do more harm than good. By offering a free consultation, you’re telling a potential client right from the outset that your time and advice isn’t valuable. It encourages clients who are hyper-focused on price and simply looking for the cheapest solution or just want to pick your brain without paying for it.

Too often, lawyers provide great value at the initial consultation, but don’t get paid for it. Some of those who take advantage of the free consult will walk away and never hire the lawyer. Not only does the lawyer not get paid for the wisdom they’ve imparted during the meeting, but it also may prevent the lawyer from taking another client down the road because of a conflict. The hours spent in free consultations are taking you away from your paying clients and causing frustration for people who have no intention of paying or cannot pay

 That’s bad, but it isn’t the worst case scenario. The worst case scenario is the bad client who actually retains you after the free consultation and then argues about every bill you send them.

What should you do instead? Charge a fee for your initial consultation. You can charge a discounted rate or even credit the entire consultation fee back to any client who actually retains you.

Find out how I can help you improve your initial consultations and your intake process – contact me at Allison@LegalEaseConsulting.com.

See more videos:

Are You Giving Away Clients to Your Competitors?

Are you giving clients away to your competitors?

I recently had a conversation with a client of mine who was telling me that her business has slowed down considerably as a result of the pandemic. She told me that she just wasn’t bringing in as many new matters and wasn’t doing as much business as she was doing last year, and that a lot of her clients had decided not to move forward with new projects because of all of the economic uncertainty.

I asked her what she was doing to stay in touch with clients and to replace the in-person networking she had been doing before the coronavirus hit. She used to be an active networker and marketer, speaking at client events, visiting clients at their businesses, attending social events in the evening. But since the pandemic, all of that has gone away.

She told me she wasn’t doing much at all, and that she’d only been in touch with a few referral sources through Board she sat on that were still meeting virtually, and she’d been in touch with the clients she had ongoing work for, but that she hadn’t been actively reaching out to her other clients or referral sources at all in the past several months. There had been virtually no one-on-one contact at all.

After thinking about it some more, she said, “Come to think of it, I was on social media the other day and noticed a picture of one of my clients with one of my competitors playing golf. My competitor had posted the picture with the hashtag #bizdev. Maybe I should touch base with that client.”

Unfortunately, it may be too late.

Don’t make the same mistake. Yes, the pandemic may have made some clients decide to re-think their legal needs, or to slow down on taking on new projects. But don’t assume that all of your business slowdown is just a result of the pandemic. And don’t assume that your client will come back to you just because you have done good work for them in the past. It may be that one of your competitors has moved in on that client.

Even if you’re not ready to meet one-on-one with clients in person, you can reach out to the virtually – pick up the phone and make a call. Send an email just to see how they are doing. Send a note on LinkedIn, a text, or a private message on social media. Don’t make it about you or about selling your services – just check in.

Remember, if you aren’t reaching out to your clients and taking care of them, someone else might.

Want to see more?

Get Motivated in 15 Minutes or Less

What do you do when you need to get something done, but you’re just not feeling it?

Hi, I’m Allison Shields Johs, President of Legal Ease Consulting, where I help lawyers create more productive, more profitable, and more enjoyable law practices.

In my last video, I suggested that you shouldn’t wait until you’re feeling motivated before tackling a task or project you need to get done. The first step is just showing up – you might be surprised at what happens. Take action first and motivation will follow. (Watch that video here)

Today I want to talk about three more ways to get things done when you’re just not feeling it.

Take a walk.

Sitting at a computer or at your desk most of the day may seem like the best way to get things done, but it’s probably not. And most of us are spending even more time sitting now that courts are shut down and in-person meetings aren’t taking place – there’s even fewer reasons to leave your office than ever.

But sitting too long not only isn’t good for your body – it isn’t good for your brain either. If you’re not feeling motivated to tackle a task or project, try getting some exercise.

Take a 15-minute walk or do some yoga or stretches. Some of my best ideas come when I’m taking a walk or right after a workout.

Phone a friend.

Two heads are often better than one. Seek out a friend, family member, or colleague to talk about the project you want to accomplish. Sometimes just talking about it with another person is enough to get you motivated, or to spark an idea.

Maybe you’ll realize that the task or project isn’t so daunting after all, or you’ll just grow tired of hearing yourself talk about it and just get on with it. Or maybe your friend will have a suggestion that leads to a breakthrough.

Set a 15-minute timer.

The Pomodoro Technique, which I talked about in detail in a previous video, is a great technique to use if you’re feeling stuck or un-motivated.

Set a timer for 15 minutes and work only on the task you’ve been avoiding until the timer goes off. Then you’re free to quit and work on something else – at least you’ll have gotten started on that task.

But you may be surprised to learn that once you’ve gotten started, you’re motivated to continue.

How do you motivate yourself when you’re just not feeling it? Let me know in the comments!

Again, I’m Allison Shields Johs from Legal Ease Consulting, and if you want more tips like this, subscribe to my free newsletter, or see more productivity videos and articles:

Not Motivated? Just Show Up

Sometimes it’s just not easy to get motivated to tackle a project or task on your to-do list. But maybe waiting for motivation before taking action is the wrong approach.

I’m not always motivated to do what I need to do either – one example is not always being motivated to prepare and show up for my weekly Videosocials call to record my videos. But I remembered a saying I’ve heard recently that resonated with me:

Get up. Dress up. Show up.

Sometimes, all you have to do is to show up and motivation will follow.

For more tips on how to get going when you’re just not feeling motivated, check out this article: How to Get Motivated.

More productivity videos:

Can a Tomato Make You More Productive?

Can a tomato make you more productive?

Hi, I’m Allison Shields Johs, President of Legal Ease Consulting, where I help lawyers create more productive, more profitable, and more enjoyable law practices.

I don’t know about you, but lately I seem to be having a very difficult time focusing and accomplishing what I want to accomplish. I’ve worked from home for many years, but lately I seem to get distracted more easily. Perhaps it’s the pandemic and all of the anxieties that have gone along with it. Or perhaps it’s just Zoom fatigue. Who knows? But whatever the reason, I’m finding I have to fall back on some tips and tricks to help me get things done, and today I’d like to share one of those with you.

That’s where the tomato comes in.

The tip I’d like to talk about today is called the “Pomodoro” technique – pomodoro is the Italian word for tomato. The pomodoro technique was developed by an Italian, and it was named after a timer that looks like a tomato.

Here’s how it works:

First, you decide on the task you want to get done. Then you set a timer for a specific interval of time – traditionally 25 minutes – and you work on the task without any interruption at all for that interval. Once the timer goes off, you can stop and take a 5-minute break. Each interval represents one pomodoro.

In the traditional pomodoro method, you would do four consecutive pomodoros, and then take a longer 15-30 minute break.

If you complete the task while the timer is still ticking, you can use the additional time in the pomodoro to review your work or plan tasks for your next pomodoro. Of course, there are all sorts of variations of this technique, and you might choose to make your pomodoros 60, or even 90 minutes long.

But whatever variation you choose, using this system helps you to focus on the task at hand for a long enough period of time to accomplish something significant, but it is a short enough time that you won’t allow yourself to become distracted. Since you have a break every 25 minutes, you can address anything urgent that might come up in the interim.

For lawyers billing by the hour, using the pomodoro technique is also helpful for ensuring that you are billing your time contemporaneously with the work being performed. But even if you aren’t billing by the hour, using the pomodoro technique is useful for improving your ability to estimate how long it takes you to complete certain tasks, which can help your overall time management.

For me, just the idea of blocking out a discrete segment of time with no distractions has proved useful for moving me forward toward my goals, so I hope it will be useful for you, too.

Again, I’m Allison Shields Johs, from Legal Ease Consulting, wishing you a productive day – and now, since it’s lunchtime, I think I’m going to make myself a BLT!

Want more productivity tips? Sign up for my newsletter or watch more videos on productivity:

Do You Need a LinkedIn Premium Account?

Do you need a premium account to get the most out of LinkedIn?

This might be the single most common question I get when speaking or training on LinkedIn.  And while I will say that my co-author on Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals is a firm devotee of the premium version, I personally have always used the free version and found it to be entirely adequate for my purposes. However, there are some situations when a premium account might make sense for you.

There are several different kinds of LinkedIn premium subscriptions, for different purposes. For example, there are LinkedIn Career accounts that can be helpful if you’re looking for a job, Recruiter accounts if you’re responsible for hiring that can help you locate and communicate with potential job candidates, Sales Navigator accounts that help you find sales leads and Business Accounts.

What’s the difference between the free and premium versions of LinkedIn?

The main differences between the free accounts and the various premium accounts are:

In Mail: Premium LinkedIn Accounts give you additional “In Mail” messages, meaning you can contact people who are outside of your network more easily. With a free account you only get 3 In Mail messages; premium accounts provide more, depending on which subscription you have.

Who’s Viewed Your Profile: LinkedIn Premium account subscribers will get more insights and see more information about the people who have viewed their Profile than you will get with a free account. This is one of the main reasons my co-author is a fan of Premium accounts – he likes to see who’s looking at him on LinkedIn.

Search results: Similarly, with a premium account, you’ll get more results in your searches and be able to view more profiles of people who appear in your search results – up to third level connections. But with a well-crafted search, the 100 results you’ll get with a free account should be plenty in most circumstances.

Some of the premium plans, such as the Sales Navigator plan, also include additional search filters that can help you locate and save leads.

Additional advantages: There are other advantages as well, such as access to courses through LinkedIn Learning, and additional business insights about companies on LinkedIn.

In general, for most of my clients, unless you’re actively looking for a job, or are in charge of hiring for your firm, I recommend that you start with a free account. In my experience, most lawyers (and other business professionals) are only using a fraction of what is available on the free version. Once you start actively using LinkedIn on a regular basis, if you find that you are being prevented from finding or viewing information that is important to you, you can always try one of LinkedIn’s premium subscriptions for free for 30 days.

Want more information about how to use LinkedIn? Pick up a copy of Make LinkedIn Work for You on amazon.com, join our on-demand LinkedIn Essentials course, or contact me for one on one guidance.

Check out my other LinkedIn videos here:

What Should I Do With My LinkedIn Connections?

What should I do with my LinkedIn connections?

This question is one I get from lawyers all of the time. They have lots of connections on LinkedIn, but they’re just sitting there – they aren’t doing much for them.

In my last video, I gave a couple of suggestions to answer this question, including looking at the LinkedIn Groups your connection belongs to for ideas about Groups to join that might contain other people similar to this Connection, and reviewing your Connection list weekly to identify people to contact so that you continue to strengthen your existing network.

Today, I want to give you a few more suggestions.

Mine your Connections’ Connections. In many cases, once you’re connected to someone on LinkedIn, you can see who else they are connected to by clicking on the number of their connections in their introduction card at the top of their LinkedIn Profile. You can also sort and filter those connections so, for example, you could filter their connections to see only their connections that are in your geographic area or in a specific industry. This provides you with a whole list of potential connections, many of who are likely to be in your target audience.

But this isn’t about just adding more and more connections. This is networking, so you need to find ways to keep the conversation and the relationship moving forward.

One way to do that is to Offer to Make Introductions for Your Connections. Once you get to know them a little better, invite your LinkedIn connections to review your list of connections and to let you know if they want you to introduce them to anyone.

Review your Newsfeed regularly for posts from your Connections. Networking is just as much, if not more, about giving than it is about getting. Not only will reviewing your Newsfeed regularly provide you with insights about your target audience and their interests, but it also gives you an opportunity to promote the work of your connections by sharing or commenting on what they post.

I hope you enjoyed this video. If you want even more in-depth LinkedIn tips, register for my LinkedIn Essentials online course here.

Watch more videos about LinkedIn here:

LinkedIn Search Hacks

Are you having trouble finding what you want in LinkedIn Search? Or are you running into problems with LinkedIn’s search quotas on free accounts?

Hi, I’m Allison Shields Johs, President of Legal Ease Consulting, where I help lawyers create more productive, more profitable, and more enjoyable law practices, and the co-author of the book, Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals.

One of the best uses for LinkedIn is to expand your network of referral sources and go-to professionals to help your clients with services beyond what you can offer to them. But sometimes it’s hard to find people to connect with using LinkedIn’s regular search features, especially if you have a free account. While the free account is usually quite sufficient for most lawyers’ purposes, I do sometimes recommend testing out a premium account if you start running into roadblocks using LinkedIn. One of those roadblocks is LinkedIn search. But you may not need to shell out for a premium account just yet.

 Today I have two LinkedIn search tips to share with you that might help if you’re running into the problems I just described, and if the filters on the free accounts aren’t proving to be enough for you.

The first tip is to put those legal research skills you learned in law school to use to help you get better results. Those Boolean searches that work so well in legal research will also work in LinkedIn – you can use quotation marks, ‘and’ ‘or’ and ‘not’ or use parentheticals to perform complicated searches in LinkedIn. When using AND OR or NOT, in the LinkedIn search field, you must capitalize them.

My second tip is to use Google to search for people to connect with on LinkedIn – especially if you are doing a lot of searches and running into LinkedIn’s search quotas on a free account. Enter your search terms in the Google search box, and include LinkedIn as a search term. Or put your search terms into Google but limit the search to LinkedIn using Google’s advanced search and the site: LinkedIn. This will give you results within Google, and then you can click on any results that look interesting to view the person’s profile on LinkedIn and decide whether to connect. Since your original search was done in Google, rather than LinkedIn, it shouldn’t count against your search quota in LinkedIn.

If you want to learn how to use LinkedIn more effectively, click here to get your copy of my 47 LinkedIn Tips for Lawyers and Legal Professionals or check out our online course, LinkedIn Essentials.

Watch more of my videos about LinkedIn here:

Making the Most Out of Your LinkedIn Connections

Are you making the most of your LinkedIn connections?

My co-author on Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals, Dennis Kennedy, recently ran a poll on social media asking what one aspect of LinkedIn lawyers wanted to improve the most this year, and the winner was Connections. A lot of the professionals I talk to know how to make a connection on LinkedIn by sending or accepting an invitation, but nothing happens after that. Making the connection shouldn’t be the end – it should be the beginning of an ongoing relationship. Don’t let the accepted invitation be the end of your interaction.

Here are a few ways you can make the most of your LinkedIn connections:

Take another look at your new connection’s Profile. Hopefully you’ve looked at their Profile before you sent or accepted the invitation to connect and found some common ground. Look at their Profile again, now that you are connected. You may see even more information than you were able to access before. What insights can you glean from the information on their Profile? How can you help them, either directly or indirectly?

One great thing to look at on your Connections’ profiles is the LinkedIn Groups they belong to. Scroll to the bottom of their Profile and click on “see all” at the bottom of the Interests box. Then click on Groups to see all of the Groups your Connection is a part of on LinkedIn. Chances are that at least a few of these Groups contain other like-minded or similarly-situated individuals who would also make good LinkedIn connections for you. Consider joining those Groups to get in front of these individuals.

Stay in touch. A relationship that isn’t nurtured will not grow. Go through your LinkedIn connections list weekly to identify Connections to send a message to. It can be as simple as saying Happy New Year, mentioning that you haven’t been in touch in a while and want to see how they are doing, inviting them to a Zoom meeting, or sending them a link to something interesting. Use LinkedIn’s notifications to congratulate those that have gotten a new job or had a work anniversary.

For more LinkedIn Connections tips, download my 47 LinkedIn Tips sheet or pick up a copy of Make LinkedIn Work for You at Amazon.com.

Happy Connecting!