Create a LinkedIn Company Page

You may be on LinkedIn, but is your firm? Separate from your personal LinkedIn profile, a LinkedIn company page lets you showcase your firm as a whole, publish news, and highlight your services as a brand. Firms of any size can benefit, but there is criteria in creating one:

  • You must have a personal LinkedIn profile set up with your true first and last name.
  • Your profile is at least 7 days old.
  • Your profile strength must be listed as Intermediate or All Star.
  • You must have several connections on your profile.
  • You’re a current company employee and your position is listed in the Experience section on your profile.
  • You have a company email address (e.g. john@companyname.com) added and confirmed on your LinkedIn account.
  • Your company’s email domain is unique to the company.

 

If you fit this criteria, create your LinkedIn company page today at https://www.linkedin.com/company/add/show

Control Your LinkedIn Profile

If you have avoided creating a LinkedIn profile because you are in a practice (prosecutor, judge, advocacy, healthcare, etc.) that requires more personal privacy, or for you are hesitant to use social media, the good news is that with a little know-how you can have a LinkedIn profile for professional development and networking and keep it as open or closed as you want to.  If you already have a LinkedIn profile make sure you know what you are sharing, with whom and that you have some control over the settings with these tips below.

LinkedIn has organized the settings for your account, privacy and communications into a new and easier to use portal. To get there mouse over your avatar (your picture) in the upper right corner of LinkedIn on a browser (or the gear icon in your profile in the mobile app).  Click on “Manage” next to “Privacy and Settings” that appears in the drop down menu.

One thing to keep in mind as you adjust your settings – there are two levels of exposure to your LinkedIn profile – public (anyone can see) and connections (must be connected with you on LinkedIn and logged into their to see).

Public Exposure

Unless restricted, your full LinkedIn profile is available to search engines such as Google and Bing, as well as those searching LinkedIn. You can change what information is available to those who you are not connected with by going into Privacy and Settings – Manage – Privacy – Edit Your Public Profile. On the right hand side you can choose to make your profile visible to no one, or make certain portions visible by toggling the boxes on and off.  To maintain a high level of privacy, but still be found by friends and colleagues, choose “headline” and perhaps “summary” which provides your name, your location (Chicago, Greater Chicago Area) and your industry (law, etc.) and the summary you wrote.

Keep in mind, any time you add new information such as publications and organizations go back and make sure this information is left off your public profile.

Want to see what your profile looks like to the public? In LinkedIn through a browser go to Profile – Edit Profile and in the box with your name and picture click the blue button that says “View Profile As”.  On the resulting page look at the top and toggle to see how your page looks to connections versus the public.

You Looking At Me?

In LinkedIn if you look at another person’s profile they will be alerted and aware that you have done so. If you are researching a judge or juror, looking up opposing counsel or your client you may not want them to know you are looking at their LinkedIn profile. You can choose to look at people’s profiles in “private mode” which will show them that an “anonymous LinkedIn member” viewed their profile. The downside is that by choosing to be anonymous you do not get to see who is looking at your profile. To do this go to your privacy settings and click “Profile Viewing Options” and choose which mode you want to be in. You can toggle this setting on and off as desired.

 

Check Your Connections

LinkedIn is all about connections. You are connected to individual people, companies, organizations, groups, schools and other networks. This is why LinkedIn is such a powerful tool. However, you may not want to share information about who you are connected to, as well a list of other profiles people view when they look at yours.

In your privacy settings scroll to “who can see your connections” and then choose “only you” from the drop down list and no one else will see who you are connected with on LinkedIn.  Scroll a little further to “viewers of this profile also viewed” and toggle the switch to “no” so that people do not see a list of people in your profile.

Also, if you do not want people to send your connection requests just because they have your email or phone number in their contacts scroll down in Privacy to “Data privacy and advertising” and choose “Nobody” in the drop down options for “Suggesting you as a connection based on your email address” and “Suggesting you as a connection based on your phone number”.

TMI (Too Much Information)

You can control how much or how little information you put into your LinkedIn profile, and you can update your profile at any time. However, LinkedIn will share any updates you make with your connections. To be able to update your profile without notifications being sent out go into your settings and under “Privacy” toggle to “no” in “Sharing profile edits”.  Continue to scroll to the Data Privacy and advertising section to toggle off sharing data with third parties.

Finally, if you are newer to LinkedIn or not as active you can turn off “How You Rank”, which compares you to your connections and colleague in terms of profile views.

In Case of Emergency

While you can control the information LinkedIn shares about you and with whom, you still need to apply best security practices.  Use a unique, strong password and change it occasionally (password managers like LastPass and Dashlane make that a lot easier). Also, turn on two factor authentication. You will need to enter your cell phone number and then when you log in you will also need a 6 digit code sent to your cell phone number, in addition to your password, to log in. You can choose to trust certain devices, like your smartphone and laptop, so you don’t have to add the code every time you login. What two factor authentication does is it keeps a third party who may know your email address and guess your password from logging into your account, since they don’t (hopefully) have your phone as well. To turn on two factor authentication go to settings, then to privacy then security and activate two-step verification.

Conclusion

Locking down your LinkedIn profile will help keep your privacy intact. Choose who you connect with carefully, as there is no granular permission for connections and they can see everything that you publish or add to your profile. As long as you know who you are linking with LinkedIn can be a great extension of networking in person, and often now people “meet” in cyberspace before they meet in person. So, tweak those settings and enjoy one of the biggest business communities in the world!

To learn more about LinkedIn you can set up a consultation with the LPMT team, watch a How To… video at www.chicagobar.org/howto or sign up for a hands on class.

This article originally appeared in the October 2016 issue of the CBA Record.

Where to Find Free-to-Use Images on the Web — FOR FREE!

Images can be a powerful tool in your online marketing, but how do you get them? You can take your own of course, but the web has a few resources on where you can find images that are not only have free licenses for commercial use, but are also completely free as well.

First up is www.morguefile.com. Named after an old newspaper-industry term for where they store print templates, Morguefile is a great resource for finding free images. Search Morguefile’s image database by typing in the keyword (for this example we will use “Traffic Light”).

Morgue FIle

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All of the images that appear will be free in terms of cost, but also in terms of license. You can even modify them and use them for commercial purposes.

Though the search feature is not a good as MorgueFile’s, www.unsplash.com is filled with beautiful, high resolution images. Explore Unsplash’s database either through search or by browsing their collections.

unsplash

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Like MorgueFile, it’s free in every sense.

The New York Public Library has released a treasure trove of free-to-use images. It features prints, photographs, maps, manuscripts, and even streaming video. This year, NYPL enhanced access to all public domain items in the Digital Collection. Visit http://publicdomain.nypl.org/ to search.

NYPL

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Privacy Controls in Facebook

Do you know who you’re sharing with on Facebook? The audience selector tool is available for you when you post status updates, photos and more. Click the tool and select which audiences you want to share with. By default, Facebook allows you to select making your post entirely public, available to “only friends,” or set to “only me.”

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You can further customize who you share with by selecting “More Options.” An expanded menu will appear that allows you to select Smart Lists, which are automatically generated based on profile information. I have indicated on Facebook I live in Chicago, IL, so I see “Chicago, Illinois Area” as a Smart List option. When selected, this means my post will only be shared with people who live in Chicagoland.

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To get even more specific, you can select “Custom,” which will bring up a new, “Custom Privacy” window that allows you to restrict the post from certain people.

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You can select to share with certain people or lists by name, but you can also restrict who can see the post. Type in the names of the people you do not want to see the post in the “Don’t share with” field and select them from the list. The post will be shared with all of your friends except for whom you named.

Facebook’s audience selector tool remembers whom you shared with the last time you posted something and uses the same audience when you share again until you change it. If you choose a custom setting, such as Friends Except for (insert person here) for a post, your next post will also be set to that custom setting unless you change the audience when you post.

You can change the privacy of your posts retroactively, meaning that after you’ve shared a post, you have the option to change who can see it. If you want to change the audience of a post after you’ve shared it, click the audience selector and select a new audience.

Hiding Posts and Unfollowing Friends on Facebook

Do you have a Facebook friend who, at certain times of the year, posts too much about sports, politics or religion and you don’t want to see them in your News Feed, but you don’t want to unfriend them? Facebook has come up with a way for you to silence these contacts, but remain friends with them. This means you can still visit their profile and post on their wall if you wish, but their updates won’t appear in your News Feed. There are two ways to do this: “Hide Posts” or “Unfollow” the person.

You can do both on the News Feed itself. When you see a post on your News Feed that you would rather not, click the “V” in the top right corner:

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You will see a few options. I can “Hide post,” meaning that this particular post will disappear from my feed, and Facebook will use its enigmatic algorithm to determine how to show me less content similar to this in the future. My friend, Justen will still appear in my feed. But if Justen has offended me, and I don’t want to hear anything he has to say on Facebook anymore, I can click “Unfollow Justen.” This means his posts will no longer appear in my News Feed. He and I will remain friends, and I can take any action as his friend. I can still see his posts if I go directly to his profile.

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If this post violates Facebook’s standards, you can click “Report post.” Facebook will then review the post and potentially review it. The friend in question will not know you reported them.

Another way to unfollow someone is to go to their profile page directly and click the Following tab:

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From here you will have the option to click “Unfollow.”

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Now your News Feed will be filled with news you actually want to see!

Review or Not To Review?

Does your firm have a Facebook page? If so, you should know what page type you selected when you set it up. Different features are available on your firm’s Facebook page depending on what category you select, and each has their own advantages. To find out what type you have, sign into your page, click on About, and then click Page Info on the left. Under category, it likely says either “Local Businesses” or “Companies & Organizations.”

Click to enlarge image

Selecting “Local Business” as your page type allows you to have a map and contact information displayed. It also allows you to enter your practice areas as subcategories and displays them prominently over your cover photo. These features are not available if you choose “Companies & Organizations”. The “Local Business” option also creates a Ratings and Reviews section, meaning that anyone can leave a review or give you star ratings. You may want to have this feature if you’re practicing consumer law since good reviews on Facebook mean more clients. If you’d rather not let clients be able to leave reviews, switch the category to Companies & Organizations.

You can change your page type category as often as you’d like. To do so go to your page and click the “About” section. Mouse over next to “Category” so the blue “Edit” pencil appears.

 

Click “Edit” and then change your category from the dropdown menu. In this example my page is currently a Local Business, and I want to change it to a Company & Organization.

Page Categories

 

When you’re finished, click “Save Changes” and your new page features will take effect.

How to unshorten and shorten links

unshortmeYou might be familiar with shortened links from social media or email. They’re handy for keeping things tidy and within a character limit, but you can’t see what you’re clicking on. What if the link is malicious or just a waste of time? Turn that short link into a long link with unshort.me and see where you’re going. Copy and paste the short URL into the text box, and the site will expand it for you. A Chrome extension is available, allowing you to right-click and unshorten any short link you see on the web.

Conversely, you may want to shorten links, either to make a character limit or clean up an email. For instance, the URL or link for the 2012 Law Practice Management & Tech Tips for Lawyers program is http://www.chicagobar.org/source/Meetings/cMeetingFunctionDetail.cfm?section=Calendar&product_major=C8215W&functionstartdisplayrow=1. Instead, to get to the same webpage you can shorten the link with Bit.ly to: http://bit.ly/1EaKaU7.  The first link is long, can’t really be read to someone, it breaks onto a new line, and is cumbersome. Bit.ly neatens it up.

bitly

There are many URL shorteners available for free on the web, such as ow.ly, goo.gl, and the originator of this technology, tinyurl.com, but Bit.ly has some really useful features. It has browser plugins for all major browsers so it is always available in one click.  You can also add notes to the link, create link bundles (see: http://bitly.com/bundles/catherinereach/3), create private links, share via email in one click, and also track whether people have clicked on the link. Finally, you can customize the link so the above Bit.ly link (http://bit.ly/1EaKaU7) can be: http://bit.ly/2015techtips.

Check it out and get your free account at http://bitly.com

Maximize Your LinkedIn Profile in 2 Steps

LPMT Tip of the Month (January)

Got a LinkedIn profile? Maximize your efforts by doing two things.

1.) Go into Accounts & Settings – Privacy & Settings and click “Manage”.

privacysettings

 

 

 

 

 

 

Under “Helpful Links” click “Edit Your Public Profile”.

editpublicprofile

On the page that appears in the right column click on the pencil icon under “Your public profile URL”.

customurledit

 

 

 

 
Now, change the link to your personal profile from a generic link to one you choose.

typeinyourname

 

 

 

 

 

2.) Add your new public profile URL to your email signature block.

signatureblock

 

 

 

 

 

Voila, you’ll be connecting with more people in no time.

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