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– Actual quote from a law firm senior partner.

I heard this recently, and I hear variations of it all the time.

Lawyers struggle with social media; they’re always asking me about it, how it works, and whether lawyers need it.

The bulk of the recent queries seem to involve LinkedIn.

There’s a lot of conversation in the market about this, but not a lot of real information. People who don’t understand it proclaim that they don’t need it. 

The 65-year-old senior partner who hates it is certain that 35-year-old Associate GCs won’t use it either. 

When Social Media was gaining steam, many new marketing consultants were proclaiming that everyone needed a LinkedIn profile. Many suggested to the in-house marketers that it was easier to just hire them to set up the lawyers’ profiles for them, instead of teaching everyone how to do it themselves.

Unfortunately, this yielded the predictable result – a lot of empty profiles with no information. Some may argue that it’s better to have an empty profile than no profile at all. This might be a subject of legitimate debate, but I think that in a 21st-century economy, you can’t completely ignore technology.

And if you’re going to ignore it, I think it’s better to look like you’re (1) too busy to need it than rather than (2) too ineffectual to use it correctly.

Yes, it’s a significant time commitment to do it well, and at this moment, most general lawyers shouldn’t rely on it to develop business – although some should (more on that some other time).

But here’s something everyone should do.

Go to In the box, search for your name. See what shows up. Act like a prospect who is looking for more info about you. Click on your name. What shows up? Are you proud of the results? (Searching “ross fishman” shows 10 results and only four include a photo, see below.)

Click on your link.

Does your profile showcase you as a high-quality professional? 

Or do you have an empty shell with “1 connection.” That is, “1 [sad, pathetic] connection.” That’s the free one you get for doing basically nothing. To me that says, “The marketing department set this up for me and I immediately lost the password.”

LinkedIn ONE Connection


Prospects who have been given your name are likely to go two places to learn more about your before deciding whether to contact you: your (1) website biography and (2) LinkedIn profile. Since hot prospects will be visiting those sites late in the hiring process, it’s a pretty good idea to tell your most unique and compelling story.

Filling out a basic profile is something you can do over lunch. Include your photo and contact information. You want to make it easy for prospects to find you, so help them.

Send some invitations to increase the number of your connections. Join a couple groups, click on the Members tab, see who you know, then invite them too. It’s an easy way to find lots of people you know who are already on LinkedIn. You need to show at least 500 connections for professional credibility.

Get a “personal URL” rather than the gibberish you’re assigned automatically by LinkedIn. (Find a short explainer video to learn how; it’s easy.)

All in all, it’s not that hard to do a solid job with the fundamentals; ask your marketing department for help.

If you don’t have a marketing department, or don’t want to ask them, call me directly and I’ll walk you through it – it’d be my way of saying “thanks for reading the blog.”


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