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.
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