During last week’s webinar, “How to Make LinkedIn Work For Your Practice,” you learned how to unlock the full potential of your LinkedIn profile and got real results with these expert tips from Law Marketing Consultant and author of “LinkedIn In One Hour for Lawyers“, Allison Shields. If you missed it, you can watch a recording of the webinar and view the slide deck here to learn all about using LinkedIn as a tool to build your reputation and showcase your expertise so you can stay “top of mind” with your network and grow your practice.
During the webinar, there were a number of great questions asked from attendees that Allison didn’t have sufficient time to answer. Fortunately, she was kind enough to provide us with her answers below:
1) It seems like a lot of people I want to connect with, connect with me, but it is like pulling hairs to get them to speak with me, any pointers? (Peter)
I’m not sure what you mean by “speak with me,” but a couple of things might make it easier for you to engage people. First, if they are people you don’t really know, you might want to try engaging them on LinkedIn or by email before reaching out to them by phone. When you first send the invitation, personalize it so they know who you are and why you want to connect. When they accept your invitation, follow up with a “thanks for connecting” message. Consider what you can do to help them and add that to your invitation to connect or your thank you message. Tell them you’re looking forward to getting to know them through LinkedIn. Look for things you have in common and mention those in your messages, like similar backgrounds, interests, groups, schools, etc. Depending on how this exchange goes, suggest that you would like to connect by phone (or in person) to discuss how you might help one another and/or to learn more about them and their business. Make sure you’re letting them know how this interaction might be valuable to them, not just to you. But remember, some people are not particularly active on LinkedIn – they may not be ignoring you on purpose; they may just not be looking at their LinkedIn account. Try sending a “regular” email – once you’re connected, you’ll be able to see their email address on their profile.
2) Are Company pages different than a company profile? If you have a company profile are there different levels of membership as well? (Anne)
There is no such thing as a Company Profile; on LinkedIn, only individuals can have Profiles, set up under their own names (i.e. Mary Smith); businesses/companies/law firms have Company Pages. Company Pages are run by page administrators who have a LinkedIn Profile. Premium accounts on LinkedIn apply to individual members (who may or may not be administrators of a Company Page), but they don’t apply to the Company Pages themselves. There are options that might relate to a Company Page that might cost money, such as posting a job or an advertisement, but that is different than a premium account. This may not have been as clear as I would have liked it to have been during the webinar.
3) How do I add a photo to the company page? (Katherine)
Adding photos and logos to a Company Page is simple. Once you have created the Page, go to the drop-down menu under your thumbnail photo in the top right corner of the LinkedIn screen and click “Manage” next to Company Page and then click the blue Edit button (or, from your Company Page, click Edit) in the top right. Scroll down until you see Image, Standard logo and Square logo and click Add (or edit, to change the photo). Then follow the prompts to upload the photo or logo to LinkedIn.
4) Can you have more than one profile? (John)
No. Profiles are about individuals. LinkedIn permits one profile per person.
5) Do you recommend a social media consultant in the Minneapolis, St. Paul area. I would like 1-on-1 help with Facebook, Linked In and Twitter. (Todd)
I don’t know a consultant specifically in the local Minneapolis area, but many social media consultants work remotely and don’t necessarily need to be in your local area. For example, I help lawyers and law firms all over the U.S. (both one on one and in groups) with their social media presence – we work by telephone and over the internet. If you’re interested, feel free to contact me.
6) What is the impact when you clean up your connections and remove a number of them who might have been relevant at one time but not any more?Is it advisable to keep the connections anyway? (Sanjeev)
There are a number of reasons why you might want to keep connections even if you’re not in touch with them as much as you may have been at another time. For example, former colleagues and classmates can be potential referral sources or they could be helpful to your clients who have a matters in other areas in which you do not practice. Former clients, even if you are now in a different firm or practice area, seek you out for referrals to lawyers who do what you used to do (or, when they find out what you do now, they might have new work or referrals for you). Being a “hub” or connector can be very valuable.
However, if you want to disconnect from someone (or multiple people) that you didn’t think were appropriate connections for one reason or another, or with whom you don’t want to be associated, you can certainly do so. There is little impact, other than reducing your number of connections. Although some believe that more connections is always better, I think you should only connect to people that you at least know something about – it makes your network more relevant and useful to both you and to your connections.
7) What does it mean to sponsor an update? (Meg)
Sponsored updates only apply to updates done by Company Pages, not updates by individuals on their LinkedIn Profile. When you “sponsor” an update on your Company Page, you can specify a target audience for your update, and they will receive that update even if they are not following your Company Page.These updates appear in the homepage newsfeed of LinkedIn members who fit the targeting criteria. You pay for sponsored updates based on the number of LinkedIn members who see the update, or the number of clicks the update receives.
8) How can you gain followers to a company page?
To get followers to your Company Page, you need to increase the Page’s visibility. One way to do so is by using Ads or Sponsored Updates (see the answer to the previous question). There are other ways to gain followers, including posting links to follow your Company Page on your website, in emails and in regular network updates from your Profile. For more information on getting followers, take a look at the post on my blog: Driving Traffic to your Firm’s LinkedIn Company Page.
Nicole Black is an attorney and the Legal Technology Evangelist at MyCase. Her legal career spans nearly two decades and she has extensive litigation experience. She was named an inaugural ABA Legal Rebel in 2009 and an inaugural Fastcase 50 in 2011. She is also a well known legal technology author, journalist, and speaker. She wrote "Computing for Lawyers" (2012) and co-authored "Social Media: The Next Frontier" (2010), both published by the American Bar Association. She also co-authors "Criminal Law in New York," a Thomson West treatise. She often speaks at conferences about the intersection of law, mobile computing and Internet-based technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.