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LinkedIn tops 200 million members : One simple way lawyers can use it

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Per Mashable’s Todd Wasserman (@ToddWasserman), LinkedIn passed 200 million members today with about two people joining every second.

LinkedIn’s rate of growth is faster than the company even expected. In its last earnings call on November 1 LinkedIn had 187 million members and expected growth of 10 to 15 million members per quarter. Now we see an increase of 15 million in only 60 days.

LinkedIn is indeed a smaller network than Facebook (1 billion), Twitter (500 million), and Google+ (500 million). However, it is without question the leading network for business professionals, including lawyers. LinkedIn is also the social network where business people feel most comfortable.

So how are you using LinkedIn as a lawyer? If you’re like most lawyers, you’ll say “I use LinkedIn, I have a profile, and I occasionally connect with others.”

That’s not enough. How about trying one simple thing that will begin to make LinkedIn work for you.

Engage those you are connected with you. Two steps in doing so.

One. Share news, information, and commentary you read with your connections. You do this by sharing the link as well as your quick comment on why you are sharing. It’s done at the top of your LinkedIn home page.

Two, comment on or like the news, information, and commentary others in your network (your connections) are sharing. Everyone likes some comment love or an atta-girl or atta-boy that a like represents.

Engaging like this is akin to bumping into a business associate or client at the grocery store. You chat idly for a minute and then pass on. However one of you may say let’s get together I’ve been to give you a call over this or that. Maybe it prompts an email a couple days later saying your chance encounter got them to thinking about talking to you on something.

It’s wonderful to grow a network of business professionals on LinkedIn, but you meed to mine those connections for the gold that’s there.

Networking through the Internet via LinkedIn need not be anything more than sharing what you see and engaging others on what they are seeing. Not bad.

Image courtesy of Flickr by theanthonyryan.