Yesterday, I talked about what improvements you  might want to make to your LinkedIn profile to get the best results from it.  Today, I’ll talk about the home page screen and why it’s useful to be logging in to LinkedIn periodically – I have LinkedIn set to open as one of the tabs on my browser, so every morning, I open Outlook and Chrome, go through my emails, and check on my browser tabs.  This includes taking a quick look (no more than five minutes) at my LinkedIn home page screen.  Lawyers, I know you’re busy, but if you make this part of your morning routine, you’ll only have to spend a few minutes looking at LinkedIn, you’ll stay up to date on what your network is doing, and you won’t have to try to remember to visit LinkedIn.

There are four things I find of particular importance on your home page screen (which looks like this):

 

  • Share an Update: At the top of the page is a box that allows you to share an update.  As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, here is where you can share with your network what you’re reading, any recent successes or articles authored, if you have an upcoming trip, or if you want to ask questions of your network.

    You can also link this update to Twitter if you have an account with them – some people will update everything to both Twitter and LinkedIn, but it’s my personal feeling that you want to be a bit selective.  Twitter is more like a conversation, so you can update it multiple times a day and talk to people in almost real time.  It’s not necessary to update LinkedIn that often, and your network may get irritated with you if their news feed is taken up with tweets from you.  So I’ll update both if I’m posting an article or news item to LinkedIn, but otherwise, I use them separately.

     

  • People You May Know: In the upper right hand corner of the home screen, LinkedIn gives you a list of people you may know. This is based on the list of people you’re already connected to, and it’s useful to scan through this each morning and see if there’s anyone else you should be connecting to – and remember, when connecting to someone, it’s a good idea to include a personal note, so that person has a reason to accept your invitation.

    You can see that in this list, LinkedIn is just sharing the person’s professional headline with you, which is another reason I emphasized including a descriptive professional headline in yesterday’s post – you want to give people a reason to connect with you when you come up in their "people you may know" list.

    If you have some extra time, you can also click on the "see more" link, which will take you to a longer list of people you may want to connect to.

     

  • Updates: This is the bulk of your home page – where all of the updates from your network, including items posted, any updates that they’ve "liked" or commented on, and upcoming travel will pop up.  Generally, when I log into LinkedIn, this is what I’m focusing on.  I think it’s the most useful for a busy lawyer too, because at the minimum, you can "like" an update from someone in your network and this will a) remind that person that you’re a connection and you’re interested in them and b) share that "like" with the rest of your network, which will pop you into their news feeds with a minimum of effort.

    But the updates feed is useful for other reasons too – you can see who others in your network are connecting to, and identify whether you should also be connected to that person.  If it’s someone you know, feel free to connect directly (remembering to include a personal message). If it’s someone you want to know, reach out to your mutual contact and ask them to introduce you.

    The updates feed will also show you when someone has an upcoming trip, or has noted that they’re attending an event or conference.  It’s a good idea to keep an eye on these, in case someone is coming to your city (or vice versa) and you want to reach out to have a face to face meeting. Social media is great, but I think most social media enthusiasts would agree with me that it’s most successful when you take the relationships offline – LinkedIn is doing the work of finding people to connect you with, both in person and online, so take advantage of it.
     

  • Applications: As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, applications can have a lot of utility in enhancing your profile.  Additionally, they can make your LinkedIn experience more valuable.
    • JD Supra: JD Supra’s application is a great addition to LinkedIn for anyone in the legal field (or with legal concerns). On your profile page, this application is going to show a list of recent articles that you’ve uploaded to JD Supra.  But on your home page, it’s going to deliver a list of items that might be relevant to you – LinkedIn is doing the work of finding what’s of interest, so you don’t have to search for it.  From this, you can extrapolate that your updates on JD Supra are similarly being delivered to those who would find them of interest.
       
    • TripIt: Similarly to JD Supra’s app, TripIt will post your upcoming trips on your profile page, and will let you know on your home page who will be nearby on those dates.  This is excellent if you have a bit of extra time (or can make time) to meet with some of your LinkedIn contacts face to face. You don’t have to go searching through your network to see who might be in the same place – LinkedIn does that work for you.
       
    • Events: I recently added this application to my page, and although it involves an extra step of clicking a link to see what your connections are attending, it’s a great feature to see who might be attending the same conferences you are. For example, INTA recently held their annual conference in San Francisco with over 9,100 attendees. It’s unlikely that you’re just going to bump into someone you know, so although you’ll already be keeping in touch with your friends from INTA, checking out who else in your network may be attending is a great way to form some new in-person connections.
       
    • Other applications: LinkedIn has a number of applications that lawyers might find useful – Company Buzz shows you the twitter activity associated with your company or firm, and you can set up searches to look for what activity there might be about your clients. There are several options for private workspaces to allow you to work with your connections – when you have some time, browse through the applications to see what will be most beneficial for you.
Sometimes it may seem that LinkedIn is really an online resume service, but there is much more to it than that, and investing a bit of time initially (or having your assistant or marketing professionals invest it for you) can really put LinkedIn to work for you.  Tomorrow, I’ll talk about the benefits of groups and how to leverage them. 
 

 

 

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Photo of Lindsay Griffiths Lindsay Griffiths

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. In this capacity, Ms. Griffiths is responsible for the oversight and management of day-to-day operations of the International Lawyers Network (ILN). She develops strategies and implementation plans to achieve the ILN’s goals, and handles…

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. In this capacity, Ms. Griffiths is responsible for the oversight and management of day-to-day operations of the International Lawyers Network (ILN). She develops strategies and implementation plans to achieve the ILN’s goals, and handles recruitment, member retention, and a high level of service to members. She is engaged in the legal industry to stay on top of trends, both in law firms and law firm networks.

In her role as Executive Director, she develops and facilitates relationships among ILN member firm lawyers at 90+ law firms in 67 countries, and seeks opportunities for member firms to build business and relationships, while ensuring member participation in Network events and initiatives. These initiatives include facilitating referrals, the management and execution of the marketing and business development strategy for the Network, which encompasses all communications, push-down efforts, and marketing partnerships, providing support and guidance to the chairs and group leaders for the ILN’s thirteen practice and industry specialty groups, the ILN’s women’s initiative, the ILN’s mentorship program, the management and execution of all ILN conferences, and more.

JD Supra Readers Choice Top Author 2019

During her previous tenure as Director of Global Relationship Management, the ILN has been shortlisted as a Global Law Firm Network of the Year by The Lawyer for 2016 and 2017, and included as a Chambers & Partners Leading Law Firm Network since 2011. She was awarded “Thought Leader of the Year” by the Legal Marketing Association’s New York chapter in 2014 for her substantive contributions to the industry, and was recently included in Clio’s list for “34 People in Legal You Should Follow on Twitter.” She was also chosen for the American Bar Association Journal’s inaugural Web 100‘s Best Law Blogs, where judge Ivy Grey said “This blog is outstanding, thoughtful and useful.” Ms. Griffiths was recently chosen for as a Top Author by JD Supra in their 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards, for the level of engagement and visibility she attained with readers on the topic of marketing & business development. She has been the author of Zen & the Art of Legal Networking since February of 2009.