LinkedIn is becoming much more like Facebook – and that’s a good thing for lawyers looking to build relationships and a reputation.

Facebook has always been a place to share professional and personal items, stay abreast of news and information and to engage each other through likes and comments as well as messages through Facebook Messenger.

The Facebook algorithms work overtime to put in front of you the posts and people you want to see. This results in networking on steroids both on Facebook and offline with just the audience you want to be hanging out with, professionally and personally.

LinkedIn has been more a close to the vest, stodgy, business connection/Rolodex world.

When people shared items on LinkedIn, especially lawyers and law firms, it wasn’t really sharing, it was pushing content at people that they were not seeing otherwise. An eyeballs kind of thing. Enough so that content syndication companies automatically “syndicated” legal content through LinkedIn for law firms that couldn’t keep up with doing so on their own.

This is changing in a couple ways. First I am seeing more social sharing of news and events on LinkedIn. Some real passion and excitement behind legal professionals sharing pictures from conferences and events.

Such posts are drawing a lot of comments  and likes. Any regular social media user knows the secret to relationships is those comments and likes – the getting to know, the bonding, and the ensuing engagement online and offline.

Heck, a photo of a group of us out to dinner in Boston shared on LinkedIn by Niki Black of MyCase, has drawn over a hundred likes and comments. Again, it’s not the love people are after but any ensuing engagment that my flow from such activity.

I am also seeing legal professionals share news and information in a real and authentic way in their LinkedIn status update. 

Blog posts of their own with a personalized introduction, posts of others, information and news. As in the first case, comments, likes and shares are following at a good clip.

No question that LinkedIn’s social algorithms are improving. Having the right stuff from the right people land in front of us at the right time is no accident. Neither is the feeling we get to engage in this community discussion.

LinkedIn’s social algorithms are no where near as good as Facebook’s, but the fact they are driving participation and engagement is great to see. 

Know that you get what you put into social media, especially when it comes to making the social algorithms work for you. 

Liberally sharing details on your personal and professional background in the biographical interfaces on social media sites and regularly connecting, sharing, liking and commenting lets the machines know more about you, what you’d like to see and who you’d like to meet and engage with. A much more rewarding experience that will keep you using the social medium.

Bottom line, about eight in ten people of all ages and demographics use social media to engage each other. Seeing the socializing aspect of social media grow on LinkedIn is good news for all legal professionals – especially for those who fear other social media for professional growth and interaction.

  • I agree, Kevin. More people are finally using LinkedIn as a “social” network, vs. just a broadcast network. If we don’t have interaction, we don’t develop relationships. We might build a brand but that’s not a relationship.

    LinkedIn is making several changes to encourage this, and it is working. Watching a bit of improvement on the Groups side (with a promise of more to come), the reintroduction of Events this week, the evolution of video, and more will continue to make time spent on LinkedIn more fruitful and productive.