As an attorney, chances are you have a profile on LinkedIn (if you don’t, you should). After all, whether you run a legal practice or you’re a part of a larger firm, the LinkedIn platform is a fantastic place to connect with potential clients and colleagues.
Recently, we published a blog series all about optimizing your LinkedIn profile for success. One of the most critical steps of using LinkedIn to connect is creating a summary that effectively explains who you are, what you do and why.
This is especially important when it comes to standing out in the crowded legal industry. You must use all of your available online real estate to tell your story and share your strengths with those who need you the most.
3 Simple Steps to Writing an Effective LinkedIn Summary for Lawyers
The summary section, now shown as “About” on your profile, is found under your profile photo and name. This section gives your audience an overview of you, your work and more.
Don’t treat your LinkedIn summary like a resumé. Instead, tell your story.
The first thing you should know is this: Your LinkedIn summary shouldn’t be a rehashed resumé or list of your representative cases. It should tell a compelling story to be effective.
1. State Your "Why"
Take a moment to consider this question: Why did you become an attorney in the first place?
- Are you passionate about human rights?
- Simply want to be the person who supports families going through traumatic experiences?
- Want to help business owners protect their services and products?
Your “why” is the driving force behind your career. So showcase it front-and-center in your summary. It’s also the one thing your potential clients will often connect to quickly.
2. Thoroughly Define Your Niche
Who do you serve?
There are many niches in the legal industry. And, depending on your practice, you may focus singularly on a narrow area of the law or you may work across niches. Regardless, you must think of your LinkedIn profile as a marketing tool used to attract those who need you the most.
If you understand your target audience, define the niche they fit in and then speak to that specific niche inside your summary. For example, if your goal is to work specifically with individuals who wish to pursue a collaborative divorce, say so.
3. Explain the "How"
Potential clients will want to see a snapshot of what it will look like to receive your legal services. Use your LinkedIn summary to explain how you do what you do. For example, you can explain your process or what clients can expect from you and your firm.
As you explain how your services work, don’t forget to include those things that set you apart from other attorneys in your niche. This can include anything from flexible payment options to specific licenses or certifications you hold.
Worried you won’t have enough room to say everything you need to say? Rest easy—LinkedIn allows up to 2,000 characters of writing in this space!
LinkedIn Summary for Lawyers: Tips for Success
The three steps above are truly all it takes to create a great first draft. Now, it’s time to polish your LinkedIn summary with these copywriting tips:
- Write in first-person: Use “I”, “me” and “my” in your summary when speaking about yourself. It’s the best way to be as personable as possible. And when you speak to your audience, use “you” to truly connect with them.
- Showcase your personality: At the end of the day, you’re human and so are your clients. Drop the legalese and the technical speak. Instead, talk as if you’re advising a close friend or family member. And, if you feel like sharing a favorite quote, story or quip to explain who you are, do so.
- Keep legal ethics top of mind: LinkedIn is a social media platform used for networking. In short, it’s a marketing platform. Take care to write in a way that enables you to follow your state’s ethical standards. For example, don’t make false or misleading claims and avoid using terms like “expert” unless your certifications and state specifically allow you to use them.
Putting It All Together: Attorney Value Statement Mad Libs
The easiest way to get a jumpstart on your summary is to start with your value statement. This combines who you are, what you do and how you do it in an easy-to-digest way. It just might give you some clarity about where to start.
Here’s a template you can use to develop your own:
I’m [Name], a/an [Adjective] attorney serving clients in [Niche]. As an attorney, I [What You Do] to help my clients [Outcome].
With this statement complete, fill in the rest of the details you feel are important using the tips and insights above. Your finished product should be a summary that truly sounds like you and connects with your ideal clients.
Need Help Writing the Perfect LinkedIn Summary?
Here at CCS, we’ve seen firsthand how a LinkedIn summary can help you connect with potential clients and grow your firm. If you’re stuck or just need a second set of eyes, we’re here to help. Reach out to us today!