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.
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