Guide for Lawyers: How to Succeed on LinkedIn | Legal

LinkedIn is the social network of choice for the legal industry. Law firms and lawyers use the platform to publicize their services, exchange knowledge and chat with colleagues in the profession. The interest aroused by the portal, which has more than 10 million users in Spain, contrasts with the difficulty of some lawyers to launch clear messages and achieve relevance in the network. There is no magic formula for success on LinkedIn. But there are some basic guidelines that it is advisable to follow. Experts in professional communication, consulted by this means, review these keys.

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First of all, it is important to take care of your profile image. This will be the professional’s letter of introduction and the first opportunity to establish contact with the client.

Far from being something random, Lidia Zommer, managing partner of the consulting firm Mirada 360, emphasizes that photography “must be professional.” They are not worth shortcuts, such as “use the wedding photography where you look handsome.”

It is important to measure the angle of the camera, the type of shot or the lighting. “Everything communicates,” says Alfonso Everlet, partner of Legal Difference. To take care of all the details, “there are offices that have a protocol for corporate photos to transfer greater unity in them and greater professionalism”.

Conveying sympathy and closeness is better than reflecting excessive seriousness or sobriety. “Looking at the camera and smiling is an excellent starting point to connect with the client”, apunta Lidia Zommer.

One of the classic poses for presenting on LinkedIn is to fold your arms and look seriously at the camera. Although traditionally it has been associated with power and rigor, in Everlet’s opinion, today it rather conveys “rejection”. “The objective is to generate closeness, but with professionalism”, highlights the expert. For this reason, he recommends “avoiding very high chins, because they convey arrogance”; or “very passive postures, like very reclined on a sofa.”

The background of the image also communicates, he adds, so that “the typical photo of the volumes of jurisprudence in the meeting room conveys that we are not dealing with a modern firm, for example.”

The profile picture can be a video, recalls Lidia Zommer. It is a recent LinkedIn utility and some lawyers are already using it to introduce themselves. In his opinion, “it is an excellent occasion to highlight your value proposition focused on customer needs and welcome the profile.”

Content of interest

Regarding publications, Francesc Domínguez, consultant and author of the book The lawyer’s personal brand, warns that many lawyers and firms do not take off in this network for being self-righteous. The abuse of messages based on the “me” and the “us” many times away from the objective, points out the advisor, which is none other than “presenting benefits and opportunities to the potential client.”

Don’t just connect with acquaintances. The more professionals know the profile, the better, explains Domínguez. In this way, “opportunities to establish bonds of trust with potential clients and capture issues are not missed.”

In general, the most sought-after profiles are those who share knowledge. Daniel Herrero Vicente, author of the book Marketing for lawyers and CEO of the consulting firm DHV Consulting, draws two distinct phases to publish on LinkedIn. First of all, it recommends identifying the “fishing ground for new customers” and analyzing their needs.

Once the target audience has been established, it is advisable to define a “pedagogical communication campaign”, which consists of sharing news, articles, laws or platforms on topics of interest and thus “demonstrating the knowledge of the office on a matter”.

”An effective action is to appoint various lawyers from the firm, each one specialist in a specific area, so that on a recurring basis comment on a news item. Thus, the brand of the law firm will gradually penetrate the imagination of potential clients, by becoming a source of professional and rigorous information ”, Herrero proposes.

If you are communicating as a team, it is vital to always keep your communication policy in mind. branding from the desktop. Experts agree on the importance of communicating online with the image that you want to convey of the firm.

In this sense, Herrero considers it essential that all messages “have the same tone and style.” It is also relevant to give visibility to the brand whenever possible. “Every public appearance we make must be impregnated with our image, represent us as professionals ”, recalls the communication specialist.

Come to the point

Contrary to many clichés, being a lawyer is not at odds with writing simply. For Lidia Zommer, although “we must never lose legal rigor”, it is important “to write translating from ‘lawyer’ to human”. ”The user cannot bear to read long sentences, elaborate sentences or with derivatives. You have to see white, where short sentences and closed concepts dominate. The idea is that the value to be obtained is greater than the time to be invested ”, he emphasizes.

Regarding the dilemma between closeness or seriousness, Alfonso Everlet recalls that “business is done between people”, so it is not unreasonable to use a casual tone if it fits with the audience we are addressing. “If you are addressing a private citizen, perhaps the bombastic tone, full of Latin words, is not ideal,” he highlights.

For his part, Daniel Herrero adds that everything depends on the style of the office. “It is not very logical that our networks are casual if our logo, decoration and communications are of a formal nature. You have to adapt the tone and style to your personality ”, he highlights.

Emojis yes or no. Lidia Zommer defends that “they are part of the language”, so “it is not a bad thing to use them as long as it is consistent with the communication style of the person”, she highlights. Alfonso Everlet does not see it badly either in certain cases: “Large firms use them to claim an image of modernity.” Again, “it all depends on the use and the recipient.”

Lastly, it is important monitor results and change what doesn’t work. Daniel Herrero highlights the importance of creating “a results measurement system that helps to know the success of the communication campaign, analyze errors, correct them and start over”.

The most followed

Do not despair if a campaign does not work. In fact, the offices that succeed in networks are, in general, those that bill the most. The prestige of the firm is an undoubted helping factor.

In Spain, Garrigues (117 thousand followers) and Cuatrecasas (113) top the list of the most followed law firms on LinkedIn. Further away are Uría (58), Gómez Acebo-Pombo (36.7), Pérez-Llorca (27.9), Écija (22.6), Roca (21.9), Deloitte Legal (21), CMS ( 16.3) and Ramón y Cajal (14.4).

Some recommendations

Investigation. Experts recommend analyzing the competition to know the points where the professional stands out. “To compete, it is essential to know how we are different”, highlights Alfonso Everleet, partner of Legal Difference. Daniel Herrero, CEO of DHV Consulting, adds that there are many free “research and survey” tools that can help you understand the habits and characteristics of your target audience.

Headline. In the process of creating the profile, it is better not to stay in the position and in the name of the company. “You have to think about how a potential client would look for us”, highlights Lidia Zommer, partner of Mirada 360. Specialization (in intellectual property, labor …), professional position (partner, partner, founder…) and the mission (who you work for and what do you contribute).

Abstract. It is the section of the LinkedIn profile where the professional explains what he offers his clients. It is a text of about 300 words where professional milestones are highlighted in the first person. “This is where services are sold. Not in private messages, which is spam“warns Zommer.

Avoid debates. Touching on political issues can tie the brand to a specific ideological stance. Something that is rarely desirable. The lawyers of a firm represent the company, so it may be convenient for “the firm to have a defined communication policy”, highlights Francesc Domínguez, legal marketing and personal brand consultant.

Slogan. It may be interesting to use a slogan that summarizes our company policy. If this option is chosen, in Dominguez’s opinion, the slogan “should summarize the differential added value of the firm from the client’s point of view”, rather than focus on the company’s prestige or its own achievements.

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