Get More Mileage From Great Client Testimonials and Recommendations

In my last several videos, I’ve talked about client recommendations – specifically on LinkedIn, but also on other sites – we’ve covered the mechanics of asking for them, as well as the best way to ask, and also talked about what makes a great recommendation.

So what do you do after you get a great client review or recommendation? How can you get the most from it? Watch the video below, or read on to learn how.

The first thing you should always do after you get a great client review or recommendation is to say thank you! You can do it on the same platform where the client left the recommendation – by sending a thank you on LinkedIn, for example, or you can send them a thank you email or even a snail mail thank you card (hardly anyone sends those any more!)

But to really get the most out of a great client review or recommendation, when you thank the client, ask them if you can use their review or recommendation as a testimonial on your website. If you’re a lawyer or law firm, you’ll want to retain a copy of their consent, so it is best to get it in writing. Even better, ask if you can use their photo to accompany their testimonial on your website.

Testimonials are all about trust, and a website testimonial that is accompanied by a photograph of the client gives your web visitors a level of comfort that the testimonial is from a real client and isn’t just made up by you.

If you already have reviews or recommendations from clients that you haven’t added as testimonials to your law firm website, consider adding links to your reviews on other sites from your websites by saying something like, “see my other reviews on my Google Business page here.”

You can add reviews and recommendations as testimonials to your law firm website in several places – you can create a testimonials or client stories page where you collect all of your testimonials. You can also add testimonials throughout your site where it is relevant. Add testimonials that refer to a specific practice area on that practice area’s page. Put testimonials that talk about your stellar service to the page on your site that discusses how you work. Testimonials that refer to a specific lawyer in the firm can be added to the firm’s bio page.

Check out my other videos:

What Makes a Great Testimonial or Recommendation?

In my last couple of videos, I talked about LinkedIn Recommendations and testimonials – why you need them and how to ask for them.

But what makes for a good client recommendation or testimonial? Watch the video below and/or read on to find out!

The purpose of a testimonial is to help overcome client objections and to help your ideal clients to recognize themselves and see that you are a good choice for them.

You’ve probably heard testimonials on television commercials for lawyers that say something like, “I was injured in a truck accident. The insurance company only offered me $7500 to settle my case, but my attorneys got me $1 million.”

That kind of testimonial tells you what the lawyer does – plaintiff’s personal injury, but I don’t think it quite goes far enough, and it’s a little one-dimensional, focusing only on outcome.

But clients care about a lot more than outcome when they are working with an attorney. They care about what it is like to work with you, how easy you made it for them to navigate the process, whether they felt like you really cared about them and their problems, and more.

You may have also seen testimonials on lawyer websites that said something like, “Allison was great to work with on my estate plan. I highly recommend her.”

This tells you what the lawyer does and says something about the client experience, but it still doesn’t go quite far enough.

The best client testimonials tell a story about the experience – and it’s that story that the potential client reading your website will relate to. Even better would be if the testimonial demonstrates a before and after – what objections or concerns did the client have before retaining you? How did you address those concerns or objections? How does the client feel now?

You’ll want to include a number of different testimonials on your website and recommendations on LinkedIn that talk about various aspects of your service or that address the most common objections that clients have when hiring a lawyer in your practice area.

For example, look at the difference between the following two testimonials:

  1. “Mary was wonderful! She was so responsive, and we really felt that she had our best interests at heart.”
  • “Mary was invaluable in helping us through a difficult time. I was a bit skeptical at first that mediation would be able to help us resolve all of our divorce and custody issues, but Mary took the time to listen not just to what we were saying, but to dig deeper to find out what was really important to each of us and to develop a financial and custody plan that would work for our family. Mary walked us through the process and was patient, even when we got emotional during our mediation sessions. She answered our questions, no matter how trivial and found a compromise that is fair to everyone and enabled us to move on with our lives.”

A good recommendation tells a story and gives potential clients a good picture of what it is like to work with you.

As always, don’t forget to check the rules of professional responsibility in your jurisdiction to ensure that a recommendation or testimonial complies with the rules before posting it; if it doesn’t comply, you may need to ask the client for a quick revision.

For more video tips see below:

How to Ask for a LinkedIn Recommendation

 In my last video, I talked about why LinkedIn Recommendations are useful for lawyers and covered the mechanics of asking for them. But I know that some lawyers are just uncomfortable asking for recommendations. They don’t want to appear to “salesy” or to diminish their professionalism.

There are ways to approach clients for recommendations or testimonials that aren’t pushy or overly promotional. The most important thing is to be genuine. If you truly believe that you have helped this client and that you can provide value to others with the services you provide, and you approach asking for recommendations with that attitude, it may be less uncomfortable.

By far the easiest way to ask for a LinkedIn Recommendation is to do it when a client says thank you or otherwise expresses appreciation for what you have done for them. An appreciative client will always be happy to spread the word about the good work that you do.

Tell the client you were happy to help them, and then ask if they can help you reach others in a similar situation by writing a Recommendation for you on LinkedIn. You can send them a link in an email or simply tell them that you’ll send a recommendation request and that they should look out for it in their LinkedIn account.

But you don’t have to wait for a client to say thank you before you ask for a recommendation. Y ou can make recommendations a part of your regular process. Build a procedure that automatically triggers a request for a recommendation at the end of every client engagement. You can make it a part of your closing documents or email including the link and instructions, or just add to your file closing checklist to hop on LinkedIn and send that recommendation request.

If the client is an ongoing client with no specific end to their engagement, such as a client you perform outside general counsel services for, you could ask for a recommendation every so often, for example at the end of the year, at the completion of a big project, or in conjunction with a certain event every year.

Say something like, “It was a pleasure working with you. Thank you for choosing me to help you with … I have found that potential clients like to read about what it was like to work with me, so I would be grateful if you would be willing to leave a recommendation on my LinkedIn profile.” You can leave instructions right then and there about how to do so and tell them you’ll be sending a request, or wait for the client to respond that they are willing to do it and then send them a recommendation request.

As always, you’ll want to check your jurisdiction’s ethical rules with respect to recommendations and testimonials, and review any LinkedIn recommendations you receive before you post them to make sure that they do not contain prohibited language. If they do, you can always ask your client to revise the recommendation before you post it. And if your practice area doesn’t lend itself to client recommendations with a name attached, you can use these techniques to ask a client for a testimonial that you can post on your website without their name attached.

Be sure to follow up with a thank you after the client leaves you a recommendation!

For more LinkedIn video tips see below:

Should I Request a LinkedIn Recommendation?

Earlier this year I was invited to join a Zoom meeting with estate planning attorneys from all across the United States to talk about how they could use LinkedIn better. We had a great conversation that covered a wide range of topics, but one of the questions generated a significant amount of discussion, and it was a question about recommendations on LinkedIn.

Anyone you are connected to on LinkedIn can leave you a recommendation on your Profile. The lawyers  on the call generally said that they tended to pay more attention to recommendations on LinkedIn than endorsements, which they felt were not particularly valuable, and they thought their clients and referral sources might feel the same way. One of the questions that arose around this topic was whether lawyers should ask their clients for recommendations on LinkedIn, and if so, how to do that.

I think recommendations on LinkedIn are useful for a number of reasons.

A LinkedIn recommendation is like a testimonial on your own website – it’s third-party proof that you provide value for clients.

It is an opportunity for potential clients and referral sources to see what other people say about you, not just what you say about yourself and to tell their story about their experience with you.

And the way LinkedIn is set up, only your connection can write the recommendation – you can only post a recommendation on your LinkedIn Profile is if that recommendation was written by someone else. It takes a bit of time and effort for someone to write a recommendation, so it tends to have more value.

So how do you ask clients for a recommendation on LinkedIn?

First, you need to be connected to them on LinkedIn. Then you can request the recommendation in several different ways:

You can navigate to their LinkedIn Profile, scroll down to their recommendations section and click on “Request a Recommendation.”

Or, you can go to your own LinkedIn Profile, scroll down to your recommendations section and click on “Ask for a recommendation.” You’ll get a popup that will walk you through identifying who you want to ask for the recommendation and then sending the request.

You could also send an email or other request outside of LinkedIn with instructions that make it easy for them to recommend you – send them the link to your profile and tell them how to find the recommendations section. Then they can click on the “Recommend” button and write their Recommendation.

You should always carefully review any recommendations you receive on LinkedIn before you post them to your Profile to make sure that they comply with the ethics rules in your jurisdiction. If they don’t, you can always ask the client to revise it so that it does comply.

Now that you know why to request recommendations on Linkedin and how it can be done mechanically, you’re probably asking yourself (as the lawyers on the Zoom call did), “What is the best way to ask a client to recommend me on LinkedIn?” We’ll talk about that in a future video.

But for now, grab a copy of my book, Make LinkedIn Work for You on Amazon.com or check out my other LinkedIn videos:

Facing Obstacles with Community [video]

We’re all facing difficult times – we need to rely on our communities more than ever!

5 Things You’re Missing From Your LinkedIn Profile

I’ve worked with hundreds of lawyers and reviewed who knows how many lawyers’ LinkedIn Profiles, and I can tell you that most of them are missing these 5 elements:

Is your LinkedIn Profile up to the challenge?

Here are the 5 elements:

1. A header image – otherwise known as a cover photo. The header image appears at the top of your LinkedIn Profile. It is a huge missed opportunity for your personal brand. Your cover photo could include your logo or an image that reinforces your brand. You can also include your contact information in your cover photo – although it appears elsewhere on your Profile, it requires people to make an extra click. Putting it front and center makes it easier for people to contact you outside of LinkedIn. You can use a tool like Canva to create a unique cover image for your LinkedIn profile.

2. Any description of your clients. Remember – your LinkedIn Profile is about you but it isn’t for you – it’s for your target audience, whether that be potential clients, referral sources or other professionals. If I’m looking at your LinkedIn profile, will I know who you help and how? Will I be able to tell what kinds of clients I should refer to you? If I am in your target audience, will I be able to identify you as someone who can solve my problems?

3. Your story. LinkedIn may be structured like a resume, but it shouldn’t read like one. Think of your LinkedIn profile as a vehicle for telling your story and the story of your clients. Don’t just list skills and responsibilities – explain what they mean and their impact in the real world.

4. The jurisdictions where you practice. When you use LinkedIn, you are literally interacting with the world – and that means people outside of the jurisdictions where you practice may be seeing your LinkedIn Profile. Make it clear where you are admitted to practice, and in what courts. It may make it easier for people to refer business to you. Not everyone is going to click over to your website or try to find that information elsewhere. You can include these either in your About section or under Experience under your current position.

5. Any required disclaimers. Check your jurisdiction’s ethical rules  – if your jurisdiction requires disclaimers to be placed on advertisements, your LinkedIn Profile likely qualifies. You can add one to your About or Experience sections.

How did you do? Does your LinkedIn Profile contain these 5 elements?

I’m Allison Shields, President of Legal Ease Consulting, and you can find more tips on using LinkedIn in the book, Make LinkedIn Work for You, available on Amazon.com, or you can download our 47 LinkedIn tips for lawyers on my website at LawyerMeltdown.com.

Setting Goals for LinkedIn Part 2 – An Example

In my last video, I introduced the idea of setting goals for your LinkedIn use. Today I want to give you an example to show you what that might look like.

Let’s say your goal for this year is to expand your practice to represent more small businesses with their legal needs. LinkedIn can help you accomplish that in a number of ways.

  • You can search for, and join, groups containing small business owners – and then post helpful information within those groups, or answer questions posed in those groups
  • You can follow people or companies who focus on small businesses and share their posts or articles
  • You can post information and links to resources that would be helpful to small business owners
  • You can post links to information or articles on your website that would be useful to small business owners
  • You can write articles on LinkedIn that contain information helpful to small business owners
  • You can search for small businesses in your area on LinkedIn and follow the business owners and their businesses on LinkedIn
  • You can modify your Headline, About and Experience sections to highlight the work you do for small businesses
  • You can search for and connect with other professionals who work with small businesses to build referral relationships.

Then you can set specific objectives for LinkedIn related to those goals so that you actually make progress. I think this is where the difference is – making it concrete so you actually have a plan.

For example, you might want to use LinkedIn to:

  • Identify and connect with three potential new referral sources who work with small businesses a month
  • Write one article related to small business a month
  • Make one small-business related post a week
  • Identify and join three small business groups on LinkedIn and post to each of those groups once a month

When you approach LinkedIn with specific goals and related objectives in mind, you might be surprised at the results.

If you want more tips about how to maximize your use of LinkedIn, grab a copy of my book, Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Guide for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals on Amazon.com. Or check out this free download of LinkedIn tips.

Strategic Planning with the EASE Method

When I recorded this video, we were on the quick slide down to the end of the year, and now we’re already almost 3 weeks into January. Either way, the end of the old year and the beginning of the new year is a time when many of us might be thinking about planning for the year ahead. Many of the solos and small firm lawyers I know don’t do much in the way of strategic planning because they either just don’t take the time to do it, or they think it’s too complicated.

But it doesn’t have to be complicated if you use my EASE method of strategic planning.

The four steps in the EASE method of strategic planning will make your planning a breeze:

  • Envision
  • Analyze
  • Strategize, and
  • Evaluate

Envision the Result You Want

This is the first step in the EASE method – Envision what you want the end result to be. This can be as large as what your firm core values will be, or as small as a goal to increase referrals.

Analyze Where You Are Now

The next step in creating a plan is to Analyze your current situation. Take stock of where you are. This is an important part of your strategic plan – if you don’t know where you are now, you won’t know where you need to go.

So if we take our small goal of increasing referrals, you first have to take a look at your referrals now:

  • Who are your referral sources?
  • Are you getting referrals for the kind of work you want to do?
  • Where are your best clients coming from?
  • How many referrals do you receive a month?

Strategize How You’ll Get To Your Vision From Where You Are Now

After you’ve taken stock of your current position, it’s time to Strategize. Take your vision or goals and identify objectives and benchmarks that will help you reach those goals. Create action plans with specific deadlines for completion. The action plans break down your objectives into discrete steps, so that you can move toward those goals.

Getting back to our referrals example, one objective might be to improve relationships with good referral sources.

You might

  • Create a schedule for referral communications with definite dates
  • Contact three referral sources per month and schedule coffee, lunch, etc.

Evaluate and Revise

Finally, our last E in the Ease method is Evaluate and revise the plan. Planning is an ongoing process. Do your goals still make sense as time goes on? Are you meeting your objectives? Why or why not? What do you need to change about the plan?

With the EASE method: Envision, Analyze, Strategize, and Evaluate, you can develop a working strategic plan to help you reach your goals in 2020.

I’m Allison Shields from Legal EASE Consulting, wishing you happy holidays and much success in your planning for the new year!

Setting Goals for LinkedIn

It’s January, and that means you’re probably thinking about New Year’s resolutions like finally getting organized and goals for the year, like financial targets or numbers of new clients, but have you ever considered setting goals for how you use LinkedIn?

Hi, I’m Allison Shields, President of Legal Ease Consulting and one of the authors of the newly released book, Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and other Legal Professionals.

By now, you’ve probably heard that if you’re a professional, you really need to have a LinkedIn presence; most clients, potential clients and referral sources expect you to have a LinkedIn Profile. But you may not have heard much about what to do or how to approach LinkedIn beyond that.

In the book, my co-author, Dennis Kennedy and I talk a lot about setting goals or determining a purpose for your use of LinkedIn. Dennis likes to ask the question, “What are you hiring LinkedIn to do for you?” This is a great place to start.

For most lawyers with established practices, we anticipate that the best use of LinkedIn will be to create, manage, and care for your network of referrers and potential referrers of business. But that may not be the case for everyone. Some lawyers may want to use LinkedIn as a platform to establish themselves as an expert in a specific niche. Others may use it as a tool to identify and attract candidates for employment.

If you’re still not sure exactly what you want to use LinkedIn for, think about your overall goals for the year or for your practice. How might LinkedIn help you to accomplish those goals?

In my next video, I’ll give you some specific ideas about how you can do that. But for now, if you want to learn how to use LinkedIn more effectively, you can get a copy of Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Guide for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals on Amazon.com.

How to Read Make LinkedIn Work for You

In my last video, I gave you a little preview of what’s inside our brand-new book, “Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals,” but today I’d like to talk about some different approaches to how you might use this book, since it may be a bit different from what you’re used to.

While we would love it if everyone read the book cover to cover, we know everyone is busy and that approach probably isn’t the most practical for most people.

The first thing I recommend is that you read this book with LinkedIn open in front of you, whether that’s on a laptop or desktop computer or on your mobile device. This is the fastest and easiest way to take action and to get a real-time idea of what we’re talking about when we go through the different elements on LinkedIn. We purposely did not include screenshots in this book because they change so frequently, but it can be helpful to be looking at LinkedIn while you’re reading.

Since this book is a combination of discussion about high-level strategy for your use of LinkedIn and practical, hands-on tips, I’m going to also recommend that you either keep a notes app open on your device or have a piece of paper and a pen handy so that you can make notes about some of the goals you want to accomplish, such as making a list of the kinds of people or businesses you want to connect with on LinkedIn so that you have it to refer to later.

I’ll give you some more tips about how to get the most out of the book in a future video. But if you don’t already have your copy, you can find it on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle versions, and it makes a great gift for the legal professional – or really, any business person – in your life.

Please leave me a comment to let me know how you liked the book and how you have been using it!

Make LinkedIn Work for You: Now Available!

With the holidays approaching, it’s time to think about holiday gifts, and I’ve got a great gift suggestion for you – which also happens to be one of my major accomplishments this year, and that is the release of my new book, with my co-author, Dennis Kennedy – Make LinkedIn Work for You: A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals.

This book was written specifically for people in the legal profession, but we think it is a useful resource for anyone in any kind of business. If you’re not in the legal world, there are small parts of the book that won’t apply to you, but overall, the advice in the book is sound for anyone.

So, let’s dive in and talk about some of what you can expect from the book. In this book, we’ve taken a strategic approach to how you use LinkedIn and how to incorporate it into your “real world” networking, while also giving you practical tips that you can get started with right away. And if you’re brand-new to LinkedIn, we’ll show you how to get started to build up your LinkedIn presence.

If you’ve watched my other videos or seen me speak about LinkedIn, you’ll be familiar with the “three building blocks” approach that Dennis and I take to LinkedIn, and the book talks about all three of them – Profiles, Connections and Participation – in depth. We end each of those sections with answers to frequently asked questions we hear all of the time when speaking about LinkedIn or working with clients. And each of us share our own approaches we’ve taken to using LinkedIn, and the different things we’ve experimented with and the results of those experiments.

But we also talk about some specialty topics, including:

  • Building your personal brand on LinkedIn
  • Using LinkedIn to search for a job
  • How to use LinkedIn to go into a new practice area or when you move to a new location
  • Using LinkedIn as a student
  • And, for the lawyers, we cover how the Rules of Professional Conduct might affect how you use LinkedIn.

I hope you’ll consider getting Make LinkedIn Work for You as a holiday gift this season for the lawyer or other professional in your life – or even for yourself! It’s available now on Amazon.com in both paperback and Kindle formats.

Make LinkedIn Work for You, A Practical Handbook for Lawyers and Other Legal Professionals book cover

Have a wonderful holiday season!

Want more info about LinkedIn? Check out all of my LinkedIn videos here:

Gratitude is Good for Business

Today I’d like to talk to you a little bit about gratitude. As Thanksgiving and the holiday season approach, I think it’s a good time to take some time to think about what we’re grateful for, whether that be our good health, our education that allowed us to be where we are today, our families, our colleagues, our clients, and more.

Some of the leading studies on gratitude were done by Dr. Robert A. Emmons of the University of California, Davis, and Dr. Michael E. McCullough of the University of Miami, and the work of Dr. Martin Seligman, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania who studies positive psychology

These studies and others have shown the benefits of gratitude and bottom line: gratitude is good for business. Studies have shown that people who are grateful on a daily basis show boosts in both productivity and well-being. Other studies have even showed a beneficial effect on physical health, including reduced inflammation and better eating habits.

As lawyers, we’re taught to look often at the down-side – what could go wrong? Where might a project fail? What risks are inherent in a particular activity? How can we protect ourselves? This habit of negative thinking can be detrimental to our health as well as our productivity. Expressing gratitude on a daily basis is one way to combat that.

Here are three ways to incorporate gratitude into your daily or weekly routine:

Count your blessings-beach at sunset

Write a thank-you note. You can do this by email, but a handwritten note will likely have more meaning. You can write a thank-you note to a client for their business, to a referral source for their support, or even to an old teacher or mentor letting them know how much they meant to you and your career. Write a thank-you note to a colleague who covered you for a court appearance or to your assistant for always being on time. Write a thank-you note to your spouse who is always understanding when you have to work late. The possibilities are endless.

Keep a gratitude journal.  A gratitude journal doesn’t have to be anything fancy or extensive. It can take just 5-15 minutes every day to write down a few sentences about what you’re grateful for. A quick and easy way to do this is just to jot down three things you’re grateful for every day. They can be as simple as being grateful that the sun is shining or the traffic was light on your commute to work. It can be a wonderful way to start or end your day on a positive note. Studies have shown that those who kept a gratitude journal for three weeks or more experienced a decrease in stress levels.

Practice gratitude daily. Make sincere gratitude a part of your everyday life. When saying “thank you” to someone, be specific about what they did and what it meant to you. Seek out opportunities to be grateful every day.

What are you thankful for? Who will you thank today?

How Much Time Should I Spend on LinkedIn? Participation

This is the third installment in my video series answering the question, “How Much Time Do I Need to Spend on LinkedIn?”

In the first two installments, I talked about spending 15-30 minutes a day, or a couple of hours a week on LinkedIn, and how to spend that time first on getting your Profile into shape, and then on working with your Connections.

Our last building block is Participation.

Feed – Like, Comment and Share

Liking, commenting and sharing are probably the easiest forms of participation. If you jump into your Feed for only a few minutes a couple of times a week and engage with what your connections are posting, you’ll stay more ‘top of mind’ with them.

[Pro tip: By default, your Feed is sorted by “top” posts – if you start by looking at the top posts and engage with them, your comments or shares will likely be seen by more people. Then sort by “most recent” to see what’s newest.]

Posts
I recommend that you post something to your Feed at least weekly.

  • Don’t forget that what you post doesn’t necessarily need to be brand-new content that you create.
  • It could be a post to an article you’ve written some time ago, or it could be a link to content created by someone else on the internet.
  • If you can give your observation or perspective on the article or ask your audience a question about it to engage them, so much the better.
  • Don’t forget to tag your connections where it is appropriate.
  • Remember to always provide value.

Groups

Find Groups to join. Start with Groups you already belong to in real life. Think about Groups your target audience belongs to and join those.

Review Group discussions weekly to see what you can engage with, just the same way that you do in your Feed.

Join or create a discussion in Groups. The easiest way to do this is to cross-post what you’re posting already to your Feed in the appropriate Groups. You can now do this easily in the same posting box where you post updates to your Feed – just change the audience in the drop-down box at the top.

Work up to posting weekly in your most important/active Groups.

LinkedIn Publisher (Articles)

Consider writing longer articles on LinkedIn (which usually are more visible than shorter posts). Obviously, this is going to take a little more time, but I like to re-purpose content from somewhere else, or post just the beginning of an article from my website with a link back to my site for the rest of the article. Often your connections will receive notifications about the fact that you’ve posted an article. (You can see how to do this in my LinkedIn post here).*

In as little as a few hours a week, you can gain a lot of traction by posting and participating on LinkedIn.

If you want more information on how I can help you or your law firm use LinkedIn better, please send me an email or invite me to connect with you on LinkedIn.

See my other videos about LinkedIn for lawyers here:

How Much Time Should I Spend on LinkedIn? Connections

Continuing with my video series answering the question, “How much time do I need to spend on LinkedIn,” in this video, I talk about what you should do with your Connections.

The short answer is that lawyers who spend only 15-30 minutes a day or a couple of hours a week can get results on LinkedIn. But how you spend that time is what’s really important.

The last video talked about how to spend that time on the first of the three building blocks of LinkedIn – your Profile. In this video, we’ll tackle the second building block – Connections.

You can gain some huge advantages from LinkedIn by using your Connections wisely even if you don’t do any of the things we talk about in the Participation building block. It’s about building relationships.

First use that time to build out your LinkedIn network and start a conversation with your connections using the ideas from my videos, How to Build Your Network on LinkedIn, LinkedIn: Your Modern-Day Rolodex, and Make Your LinkedIn Connections Work for You.

 You want to approach these conversations with an attitude of helping or providing value – and not just the value you provide as a lawyer in your practice area.

I was at a conference for the NYS Bar Association earlier this week and one of the other presenters was talking about the importance of establishing not just a referral network, but a resource network. You want to be the “go-to” person for your clients, colleagues and potential clients, and that means building your resource network so that even if you can’t help someone, you can direct them to someone who can. So you’ll want to think about that when you’re building your network as well.

But the real value of LinkedIn Connections is using them to enhance your real-life networking. In 15 or 20 minutes, you can make a lot of progress on:

  • Setting up phone calls or coffee dates with your connections.
  • Inviting LinkedIn connections to attend an event with you.
  • Reviewing attendance lists for events you are attending to see if any of your LinkedIn connections will be attending so you can make it a point to introduce yourself. You can even send them a note ahead of time so you can plan to meet.
  • Reviewing your LinkedIn Connections before you travel to see who lives or works in the area of the event and try to meet them.

When you meet a LinkedIn Connection in person, take a photo and post it on LinkedIn, tagging your Connection.

Want to learn more about how to use your LinkedIn connections? Contact me by email or through LinkedIn to set up an initial consultation.

See more LinkedIn videos:

How Much Time Should I Spend on LinkedIn? Profile

A lawyer recently asked me, “How much time do I need to spend on LinkedIn to be effective?”

I get this question a lot from lawyers. I get it – lawyers are busy people, and you want to get the best results you can from your marketing efforts.

Of course, the more time you spend engaging with people on LinkedIn, the better your results will be.

But realistically, if you spend only a couple of hours a week following some of the tips in this series and in my book (with co-author, Dennis Kennedy), Make LinkedIn Work for You, you can get results.

Focus on the three building blocks of LinkedIn – Profile, Connections, and Participation, and spend only 15-30 minutes a day and I guarantee you’ll start to see results.

Let’s start with the first building block, your Profile.

If you’re just starting out, or you haven’t updated your LinkedIn Profile in a while, this is where I would start.

  • First, make sure your headline accurately describes what you do and who you do it for, and that it contains keywords your target audience might search for. (Watch my other video on headline tips for more info)
  • Same thing for your About(Summary) and Experience sections. Make them as descriptive and complete as possible (Watch my ** video to see what I mean)
  • Add relevant Skills, and get rid of any Skills that are not relevant
  • As lawyers, we have to worry about the rules of professional conduct – include any disclaimers that might be required by the ethics rules in your jurisdiction
  • Ask colleagues or clients for recommendations

Then you can move on to adding sections such as Honors and Awards and Publications, and adding media to your About and Experience sections.

Once you’ve reached “All-Star” on your Profile, meaning your Profile is complete, you won’t need to spend much time on your Profile, but we recommend reviewing it every 6 months to make updates.

In future videos, I’ll cover how you should spend that 15-30 minutes a day on the next two building blocks on LinkedIn – Connections and Participation.

But for now, if you’re still not sure where to start or just don’t have time to update your LinkedIn profile, shoot me an email at Allison@LegalEaseConsulting.com or send me an invitation to connect on LinkedIn so we can talk about how I can help you.

See more videos about LinkedIn: