As you may know, a LinkedIn page is essentially an online resume, and it makes connecting with work colleagues, former colleagues, clients, and anyone else really easy.
However, with the connectivity of LinkedIn comes specific dangers for attorneys. Here are three things you should consider when incorporating LinkedIn into your legal marketing strategy:
Know that everything you write may go viral. When you publicize things on LinkedIn, like your work experience or general competence, you should assume that everyone in the world can read it. In addition, you should be aware that your information on LinkedIn is not necessarily available to only those who actively seek you out. Instead, when you make changes to your profile or post an article, the social media site will automatically notify all your connections of your updates.
Don't expect a lot of privacy. LinkedIn has settings that allow members to see who has visited their profile and when. So if you use LinkedIn to vet potential clients, opposing parties, or anyone else, you should be aware that that person will likely know that you've been looking.
Realize the differences between LinkedIn and your resume. You should not confuse the two, nor should you simply post your resume on LinkedIn. With a physical resume, only the people you want to read it will read it -- so if you exaggerate or make yourself seem more important, only a potential employer or a targeted audience will see it. However, if you make these same exaggerations on LinkedIn, be aware that a former supervisor or a client can see these and potentially call you out.
LinkedIn is a fantastic networking tool for attorneys. But like with all social media sites, there are dangers to LinkedIn that you should be aware about.