Building strong relationships and networks is an important component of any legal practice. With nearly 875 million users worldwide, LinkedIn is an essential tool for professionals looking to stay informed about industry trends, build professional networks, grow their public relations presence, and advance their careers.
Used strategically, LinkedIn offers a unique opportunity for lawyers to develop relationships, position themselves as thought leaders, develop relationships with key members of the media and generate referrals and business. The proof that LinkedIn is for lawyers and is a worthwhile investment of time and effort follows.
Greater than 70% of professionals on LinkedIn are decision-makers at their companies.
Decision-making users on LinkedIn comprise a wide range of professionals, including business owners, CEOs, C-level executives, managers, and other professionals who hold positions of authority and influence within their organizations. These professionals are typically responsible for making strategic and operational decisions that impact their companies at high levels.
This creates opportunities for lawyers to showcase their experience, endorsements, and work in a way that makes it easy for decision-makers to evaluate their qualifications and consider them for potential legal services.
David Burgess, publishing director at The Legal 500 said, “Create more content around social media. You will be surprised at how many people, and your clients, are looking at LinkedIn all the time.”
Additionally, LinkedIn users often share and engage with content that is relevant to their professional interests, which offers lawyers an opportunity to gain insights into the decision-makers’ interests and potential needs.
LinkedIn is available in more than 200 countries and territories and is available in 26 languages.
Even during pre-pandemic times, in-person networking was limited to those who attended events and conferences. As a platform, LinkedIn has a large user base that spans across many countries and cultures, and allows users to communicate and engage with each other in their preferred language. This creates an opportunity to foster international connections and promote cross-cultural communication, which is particularly important for lawyers with an international practice.
96% of executives use LinkedIn as their preferred content source, and 53% of in-house counsel find it valuable as a content distribution platform.
When asked where the top places to find relevant, high-quality content was, executives overwhelmingly chose LinkedIn, compared to Twitter at 29%, Facebook at 27%, and others.
Since LinkedIn has established itself as a platform for professionals, users consider the content shared by others to be accurate and reliable. Sharing original and curated content is an opportunity for lawyers to position themselves as thought leaders. However, consistently sharing valuable information is the key for lawyers, as 59% of C-suite officers and 31% of in-house counsel access LinkedIn at least weekly.
LinkedIn makes up more than 50% of all social traffic to B2B websites & blogs.
Collectively, LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter drive 90% of social traffic to B2B sites & blogs, with more than half of that traffic coming straight from LinkedIn. While Facebook and Twitter may have more monthly active users, LinkedIn has many features specifically tailored for business-to-business (B2B) professionals. These features include the ability to join groups and discussions, share articles and updates, and message other professionals directly, making it the platform of choice for decision-makers within organizations. This creates an opportunity for lawyers to include links and share content of interest that will drive LinkedIn users to a law firm’s website.
LinkedIn is a media-recognized PR tool for lawyers.
There are many tools that can be used for everyday public relations for Lawyers. LinkedIn is one of them.
According to Devin Banerjee, a senior member of the editorial team at LinkedIn, “LinkedIn has become a publishing platform, one of the largest [business-to-business] publishers in the world. We’re seeing that trend continue and even accelerate.” In 2021, LinkedIn saw public content on LinkedIn grow about 29% year over year.”
Banerjee said, “It is important to think about your audiences on LinkedIn.”
You can listen to a podcast with Banerjee at On Record PR: Leveraging LinkedIn to Develop Business, Attract Top Talent, and Become a Thought Leader
“I’m a millennial, so social media has always been there for me,” said Lizzy McLellan, the former business of law editor at ALM Global, LLC. “I do think it says something when we’re learning about someone, or we’re hoping to interview them for a story, or maybe we’re writing about their lateral. I’ll look at their LinkedIn page and try to get an idea of what they’ve done before. I want to see other law firms or businesses they’ve worked for and see what some of their accomplishments are. That’s not to take the place of asking questions and having a great conversation with them, but it’s helpful.”
There’s a module at the top right of your LinkedIn home feed called LinkedIn News. At any given time, there are ten to fifteen trending news items that LinkedIn editors curate. Topics are identified based on trends that the editors see, such as what people are searching for on LinkedIn and what people are talking about on LinkedIn. This is an excellent tool to use to identify topics of interest to the media and when you have the expertise to be a resource, reach out and introduce yourself.
80% of social media driven B2B leads come from LinkedIn.
LinkedIn’s advanced targeting options make it an effective platform for B2B lead generation. Businesses can target their content, ads, and other marketing materials to specific industries, job titles, and geographic locations, which can increase the chances of the content being seen engaged with by the right audience. And, 63% of C-suites say LinkedIn targeting is effective. This creates an opportunity for lawyers to share content in a focused-way to reach specific target audiences.
LinkedIn profiles with photos get 21 times more views and 36 times more messages.
The decision of whether to include a photo is not much of a decision at all. Profiles with photos receive significantly more views and messages than picture-less profiles because they are more visually appealing and make it easier for users to connect with and remember one another. Profiles with pictures are more likely to appear in LinkedIn’s search results, as the platform’s algorithm prioritizes accounts that are complete and updated with images. Including a headshot on your LinkedIn can make you appear more personal and relatable, as it allows users to see the face of the person behind the profile. This helps build trust and makes it easier for users to connect, as they can see whom they are communicating with.
Long-form content gets 72% more backlinks than short-form content.
Long-form content generates the most shares on LinkedIn because it provides a more in-depth look at a specific topic, giving readers more information and value than shorter content. Long-form content is typically defined as pieces that are more than 1,200 words in length. For lawyers, this means an opportunity to share their knowledge and insights on a particular topic, which can help establish them as thought leaders in their industry. This helps lawyers build their personal brand and gain visibility within their networks.
“How-to” & “list” posts receive 3 – 5x more engagement than standard posts.
“How-to” and “list” posts perform the best on LinkedIn because they provide practical, actionable information that is easy to understand and apply. These posts are written in a structured format that is easy to follow and understand. They provide clear, step-by-step instructions or a list of tips and tricks that readers can use to improve their work or solve a specific problem.
Additionally, “how-to” and “list” posts are easy to scan and read, which makes them more attractive to LinkedIn users. They have a clear structure and use headings, bullet points, and numbered lists to break up the text, making it easy for readers to find the information they need quickly. For lawyers, this is an opportunity to repurpose content, such as a CLEs, blog posts, and client alerts, in an efficient way.
Overall, LinkedIn provides a valuable platform for lawyers to build relationships, showcase experience, develop relationships with the media and gain valuable insights into their industry and potential clients. By leveraging the platform’s features and tools, lawyers can enhance their professional reputation, grow their network, and secure new business opportunities.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Jennifer Simpson Carr is the Vice President of Strategic Development for Furia Rubel Communications. She leads relationship management with prospective, new and existing clients. Jennifer is a recognized source for legal industry trends and has been named a Lawdragon Global 100 Leading Consultants and Strategists to the Legal Profession and a top 50 Twitter account that attorneys should follow. She can be reached at Jennifer@furiarubel.com.
Gina Rubel, Esq., is the CEO and General Counsel for Furia Rubel Communications. Corporate and law firm leaders call on Gina for high-stakes public relations, crisis planning, and incident response support including high-profile litigation media relations. One of the most widely acknowledged experts on legal marketing and law firm public relations, she has been named a PR News Top Woman Awards Industry Innovator honoree. Gina is a Fellow with the College of Law Practice Management and the American Bar Foundation, and is listed among the Lawdragon Global 100 Leading Consultants and Strategists to the Legal Profession. She published the 2nd Edition of her book, Everyday Public Relations for Lawyers, in 2019. She can be reached at Gina@furiarubel.com.