Spoiler alert: Yes, Law firms should take the nozzle off and liberate their lawyers and other professionals to publish long-form posts and full-text articles on LinkedIn Pulse.
We all know that LinkedIn is the largest professional network on the web, useful for making contacts and developing relationships that could impact your career, company, and brand. But beyond collecting endorsements and piling up connections, consider using the Pulse platform to publish long-form content. Here’s a breakdown of how lawyers at your firm can effectively use the platform.
But first, here’s what happens when you publish a long-form post on LinkedIn:
- Your original content becomes part of your professional profile. It is displayed on the Posts section of your LinkedIn profile.
- It’s shared with your connections and followers.
- Members not in your network can now follow you from your long-form post to receive updates when you publish next.
- Your long-form post is searchable both on and off of LinkedIn.
Whether it’s blogging, putting out a newsletter, or preparing for a presentation–anything that involves writing that’s not related to a case–a top excuse is “I don’t have the time.” But if, like most, you’re already blogging, writing articles, presenting, or contributing to a piece of content, that excuse is a non-starter. Simply copy and paste select pieces into the LinkedIn Pulse platform, perform minor edits as detailed below, and hit the “publish” button. As time permits, throw in an occasional original piece.
Concerns about duplicate content
This topic–what happens when search engines index a page and find identical content on different pages or websites–can occupy SEO experts for hours with little definitive consensus. The concern, frankly, is overblown. If duplicate content is on your site (for example, a separate post, landing page, and listing, for a webinar, all with identical copy), you can add noindex tags to the pages you don’t want search engine bots to include in their index. Of course, you can’t ask LinkedIn to do that. Instead, spend about 10 minutes doing some minor edits to the piece, including crafting a new title.
LinkedIn preserves links contained in the article when you copy and paste it into Pulse. Same with headlines, bold/italics, bullet points and other formatting. Add a 700 x 400 pixel image. And, at the end, add a version of: “This post was originally published on the Legal Productivity blog” and link to the original post.
It’s about exposure not traffic
You’ll get some traffic back to your site when readers click on links within the post or want to see more of your work. But not the kind of traffic that will affect your Alexa ranking. But this exercise is not about increasing traffic, it’s about providing value and getting exposure in a professional setting. Law firms will need to unleash their associates, partners, and other legal professionals, and allow them to post articles and presentations they authored to their LinkedIn accounts. This increases exposure to colleagues, clients, and in-house counsel locally and across the globe – all with referral and revenue generating potential.
Opportunities to speak and write
Like blogging, you’ll be recognized as knowledgable, or even an expert, on the topics you write about on the platform. Your posts appear in the LinkedIn stream of updates and get shared to other people’s streams. And, as your network and exposure grows, more people view your profile to find out more about the author, and you’ll receive invitations to write and speak. I’ve gotten inquiries after only a couple of posts and have heard similar stories from others.
See how your posts are doing: how many views, likes, comments, and shares – from the past week to the past year. See the industries, job titles, and location of your readers, and the profiles of those who respond to your posts. This insight allows you to evaluate whether you’re reaching the right audience and which posts are resonating with your network.
As you start publishing on the platform, resist the urge to post too frequently or to transfer older, no-longer-relevant posts and articles: readers will tune you out. Once a week or every other week is enough to provide value to your network and gain exposure and opportunities for you and your firm.