As a law firm owner or legal marketing expert, you know that there is no shortage of platforms that you can get reviews on. And the latest one to get on the bandwagon of review generation is LinkedIn. But wait, it’s not what you think; it has a twist. In this week’s conversation, we explore how it differentiates from the rest and take a closer look at the potential it can have.

In other news, Instagram introduces Limits. We discuss why it can bring balance to a platform that has alienated law firms and their communities due to its uncontrolled hostile activity. Is Limits something you should activate on your account, and what to expect for it to do?

And moving away from social media, we discuss Amazon’s new update to their A to Z guarantee and why the retail seller giant is taking a “proactive” approach towards solving personal injury claims from products bought on their platforms.

Resources mentioned in our episode:

Send us your questions at ask@incamerapodcast.com

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Transcript

Liel: [00:00:00] One in three Americans has an Amazon membership. Amazon also has 50 percent of the e-commerce market share, and every year it grows more. I’m Lisa Levy, co-founder of Nanato Media and author of Beyond the Español How Lawyers Win the Hispanic Market. And this is In Camera Podcast, where we are carefully reading Amazon’s A to Z injury claims policy.

[00:00:51] Welcome In Camera Podcast, Private Legal Marketing Conversations Grace. Welcome back. How are you today?

Grace: [00:00:55] Good. How are you, Liel?

Liel: [00:00:57] I’m glad, Grace, that we were able to make it happen for a moment there. I thought I was not going to be able to get you for these conversations this week. You’ve been very busy, haven’t you

Grace: [00:01:05] Yes. A stack full of stuff to do. You know how it is when you come back from vacation.

Liel: [00:01:10] That’s that’s right. Absolutely. It never ends Grace. So you’ve been doing some recruiting, some interviewing. And so I’m excited to hear that today. You seem to have had a day of just great candidates and in very, very productive. In terms of your hiring efforts. Sounds like it, right?

Grace: [00:01:29] Very lucky today. Yes. I had great conversations with really, really nice and, you know, very skilled people. I was very lucky today.

Liel: [00:01:38] Yeah, I agree. I totally hear you. And so I’m really happy for you. So I, I would like us to talk today about a few things that are news and updates that I think are very applicable for law firms. And the first one I have Grace here is about LinkedIn. So here is the thing with LinkedIn, Greece very recently, and this is, I believe last month, that LinkedIn added a new feature that allows outside of your business page, which has been already around for a while, that you can add your services on your business page by the users have also been able to add the type of services that they provide to their profile. Right. And so the idea here is to be able to explain easier or raise awareness with your connections about the type of services, the type of work that you do, which I think it’s great right now. Here is the part that is new and that was released this week. And I’m really excited to hear what you think about it, is that now LinkedIn allows users to rate you on those services that you provide you as an individual. But of course. And so that’s interesting because now we’re opening up here a new chapter, which is basically LinkedIn reviews. And so these reviews are left to the individual, which is interesting. That’s already kind of like very different in the way that it happens in other social platforms like Facebook or like in Google My Business, that the reviews are being left to the business. But here is the real game-changer for LinkedIn, is that not anyone can leave your reviews. It’s only people that you invite, connections that you invite to leave your reviews. And it’s not just as many as you want. You will also get 20 credits a month to request for these reviews. So, Grace, I want to stop there because I think there is a lot to digest here. I want to start hearing. What are your thoughts about it, starting from listing your services to your profile on LinkedIn? What are your thoughts on that?

Grace: [00:03:52] So, you know, it sounds like to me that LinkedIn is kind of trying to move towards that Google my business concept. Right. And that’s kind of what it feels like a little bit, at least in terms of the way the services are listed and things like that. But not so much the invite only thing I kind of like that personally, because it can go a little haywire sometimes when people post reviews and things like that when they never really even interacted with you. So it’s kind of cool, but I could see it kind of being the other side of it where it’s not enough at once or not enough ways to get reviews, you know, with a credit idea or credit allocation idea. So I don’t know. What do you think about that whole credit?

Liel: [00:04:37] So I’m actually quite happy that you’re getting cold to this topic because it is something that takes a little bit of time to digest. And initially, that was also where my mind when the first moment that I read it is, oh, OK. So now, you know, like you have your Google my business reviews. Now you also have your LinkedIn reviews, but not quite. Why? Because your Google my business reviews are for your business, the whole business. Right. Whereas your LinkedIn reviews are for an individual. And so this can be very advantageous because what happens here is that now team members. Right. Can get reviewed. It’s a little bit more granular. You’re not just getting one review for the entire organization, individuals are getting reviewed. Right. You’re actually giving a review on a person. And I actually think that’s a very good differentiator between what the other platforms are doing that are specifically leaving the review to the actual business. Now, we all know that LinkedIn, I think for a very, very long time, if not always had the skill. Endorsement like there were, you could list out which skills were you good at and then people could come in and buy? Yes, legitimately, this person is good at this is good at that and that. But the reality is that that was never something that actually kind of like took off. Right. People would be connexions close connections and wouldn’t necessarily go there and put endorsements. Now, LinkedIn has always also had the recommendations, right? So when people can go and leave, kind of like a brief, almost kind of like an open recommendation letter for about you, about your skills, about how the experience been working with you. And so that, I think has been more used that I think is more sought after by LinkedIn users.

Liel: [00:06:40] They may potentially be trying to generate some of those. But now the reviews, I think, is just creating a process here to just make it more easier to set up a system where LinkedIn users can actually request for other people from, like other connections to to share their comments and their thoughts about the services or the partnership that they have established together. Now, let’s move into the you are the only way that people can act. So basically these are by invitation only. And so here’s where I’m starting to have a little bit of a conflict. First of all, great from the standpoint that it basically eliminate from the get-go the issue of illegitimate reviews, which is one problem that doesn’t stop to exist, particularly in Google my business. And that is extremely frustrating. And even though we’ve recently discussed that there has been new steps put up in place for businesses to be able to dispute what could potentially be reviews that are in violation of Google’s my business review policy, this is pretty much as the other extreme. These can almost read like review gating, right. Because you’re only asking people that you want them to leave a review or review for in the way that other people may see it is like, well, you know, these reviews are biased because they are intentionally asked potentially to people who have actually received your services and that you feel or you think that there are satisfied. Why would you ask for a review for to an unsatisfied like send an invite to a client that has negative experience with your firm?

Grace: [00:08:36] I think you’re right. You know, in terms of particularly with the invite only, I at first my first gut reaction is how am I going to grow my reviews if I only get 20 credits? But my like almost the same exact time, the same feeling of hate. But at least that way I get to pick and choose who I want to send these reviews to, who are my best clients. So they’re of course going to give me fantastic reviews. I like it. Yeah, I do see what you’re saying about that. And I do feel like it both on the person sending the invites for the reviews and then the people receiving them. It reduces kind of the the friction that you might have in reviews in general. I like I’ve always liked the skills endorsement section of LinkedIn because I do feel like it’s you know, it’s always been very business oriented, like what are my skills as a person that will draw you to me to buy from me as an individual? Because when you do selling, it’s really personal selling. Right? I’m not buying from a company. I’m really buying from a person. So I kind of like this. I like the idea of LinkedIn, you know, trying to show services on the individual’s page rather than necessarily a company’s page.

Liel: [00:09:49] Yeah, I that’s I really think that’s that’s the game-changing part for me. Right. Shifting the review to the rather than being sitting on an entire organization, pushing it more to the individual. Now one thing I don’t know yet, Grace, and probably we can research this a little bit more and by next week we’ll have some more updates, how the review is going to work. Is it just the written reviews or actually recommended not recommend that sort of thing, like in Facebook are they’re actually going to be start reviews? How are these going to display on the users? Right. I think I mean, you know, putting a star rating right next to a user name. Right? Maybe. Again, I don’t know. I mean, obviously, if the reviews are great and the star rating is terrific, it actually it’s wonderfully body if it’s not so good. So, you know, it’s kind of like you’re grading someone on a very personal level, not very because it’s not a business. There is that fine thin line, and so my gut tells me that it may not it’s going to be more kind of like a recommended, not recommended rather than an actual star rating. But I honestly don’t know. What are your thoughts?

Grace: [00:11:07] I say we send each other invitations and see what it looks like.

Liel: [00:11:11] Yeah. So, OK, so let’s backtrack a little bit there. So how do you actually get to display services and then how do you actually get to invite your connections to leave your reviews? Well, first of all, you need to list your services under your profile, right. So if you already have your services on your business page, that doesn’t count. You need to add them on your under your own profile. And you do that obviously by just logging into LinkedIn, going to your settings. And there is a function there that allows you to add those. Not once they’ve been added, then you can actually send to up to 20 connections a month request for them to give you a review on it. So, again, this is interesting. I think it’s definitely, you know, continues to position LinkedIn as a platform that tries to reimagine were another a little bit what other social media platforms are doing. Sometimes it does it with great success. Sometimes it just kind of like lacks. And I think this one’s going to be interesting to see where it goes. I, I brought it up Grace because I think LinkedIn is gaining popularity and it’s becoming a more useful platform for law firms as a whole, those who are doing B2B or B2C. And definitely, you know, I think although there are no shortages of platforms from where to gather reviews, I can definitely see some sort of potential here in which LinkedIn can become a top contender for law firms to prioritize and generate reviews from, I think, some law firms more than others. But I definitely think that it can be a very meaningful and powerful way of attracting new business, particularly if you are currently networking and finding new clients on this platform. So this is definitely something we’re going to be monitoring and seeing how it evolves and transitions and what impact is having. So great. Let’s move on while other news and updates do we have.

Grace: [00:13:23] So this for me is kind of I don’t know if I think it’s one of the coolest things, but I kind of do. And that’s Instagram. They introduced this new limit and the limit is basically comments and direct messages from accounts that don’t follow you. Why did this come about? So in the year or twenty twenty, there was an outpouring of very horrible comments. Right. Racist and abusive and things that just shouldn’t have happened. And so Instagram said, no, that’s not going to happen and it’s not going to continue, especially not on our platform. So they introduced this just what was it yesterday? I’m looking at the date on here.

Liel: [00:14:04] It was. It’s it’s. Yeah.

Grace: [00:14:08] This barely. That’s pretty crazy. Very recent. And, you know, I think I don’t know if you’ve run into this yet, but we did a small boosted post on a cool sculpting campaign. And one of the images we used was the hard-fought image of somebody with hard fat on the stomach area. And our ad got rejected because and the answer and the exact phrase was because showing body parts of this nature could make people feel bad about themselves. Mm hmm. So I think that Instagram is owned by Facebook. So I think that as part of the abuse and harassment and bullying that they’re trying to combat, this is definitely a part of that. And rolling out these types of limiting messages to people that I’ve only followed you for a long time rather than people that are all of a sudden never followed you. And they’re starting to comment on all these terrible things on your page, on your Instagram, and post things. That’s what they’re trying to do. They’re trying to make sure that they limit that type of interaction. And it’s easy to turn on. It’s just a little toggle that says limit in your Instagram account. And it’s very simple for this to be done. And generally speaking, you know, because you went viral, let’s say, or, you know, it’s mostly done for those who were in the public eye to be able to limit these types of comments. But that’s basically it. And, you know, I mean, there’s some lawyers that, you know, they’re out in the news and they may want to make comments that so people that they follow them.

Liel: [00:15:50] Well, yeah, and just regular brands, right? I mean, you go in with the best intentions in the world, you create your content, your share. Right. And there’s a lot of hate, unfortunately, on these platforms. And to be quite honest, it shouldn’t be a thing of either you completely shut down comments or you allowed comments and taking also the hateful ones. And that Turn-off comment was already a function that has been enabled before by Instagram. And I think it has helped a lot with, you know, solving the situation. But it doesn’t have to be that black and white right there i also a gray, and this is the grey is like, well, just let people who actually follow you, who actually have a genuine interest in your page in your business that are, as you said, legitimate followers, be able to comment and engage with you because just giving access to anyone doesn’t help anyone. Right. It doesn’t make the platform better. It doesn’t add to your community for who you created the post. And so I think these finding the middle point on social media is a good way of starting to make it a safer environment, both for businesses and for users. And I certainly think that law firms, without a doubt, have been subject to a lot of abuse coming from these platforms. But at the same time, these platforms have enabled them to reach and connect with away, broader audience that they’ve never had a chance to. So the price to pay has been high.

Liel: [00:17:41] Right. And so I think this is going to balance that a little bit. Now, what’s going to happen when it comes down to paid advertising on these platforms? Obviously, now you are pushing yourself to be seen. Right. And especially if you’re running an engagement campaign, then, you know, you are actually paying the platform to give you exposure beyond that, over your organic reach. But you need to remember that when you are running these campaigns, you have access of not showing up comments that are harmful, that are not of any value to you. You can actually delete those. Of course, you need to be very alert of what’s happening. You need to be monitoring and paying attention and not just forget that you have campaigns and ignore them because you definitely want to make sure that you are checking what engagement it’s getting right now. I think you and I’m going to play a little bit devil’s advocate on this one, because it’s kind of like same thing with the LinkedIn reviews thing, right? I mean, is it healthy for you to be just surrounding your brand around your, you know. Yes. Crew, that they’re just cheering you up and telling you everything you want to hear and then, you know, ignoring everything else that’s happening? I think that’s obviously not ideal. But I also think that that’s not what Instagram is going for here. I think what they’re saying is that if someone from your inner circle if someone from your community that’s been a follower of your fine doesn’t have something or do not agree or they have a comment that doesn’t necessarily complimentary of what you’re posting, it will still go on.

Liel: [00:19:38] Right. But at least it’s coming from someone who is genuine user, not a bot, not someone that is there just to spam you. So I like this move and I think we’re going to be seeing more of this coming forward. I think one platform that certainly needs more regulations is going to be will my business. I mean, I know we are talking about social media platforms here and Google my business is more so of a directory, but there still needs to be more control as to who is the user, what counts as a user and what kind of filters they can be put out there to ensure that harmful reviews are not heating your business. But I think I just jumped from one to another. Now, Grace, I have yeah. Like social media to Google my business. But Grace, let’s now talk about one other thing here that came up that I just saw it and I thought it was very, very interesting. Right, because you know us, particularly these last year. A lot of the shopping has gone online and a lot of the shopping that is being done online has gone to Amazon. Right. And I know, Grace, you still remember the days when actually slip and falls in Wal-Mart was a whole practice area of its own. Right. Like there people would be targeting these types of cases and we’d now more and more and more people actually buying through Amazon.

Liel: [00:21:16] Those types of cases are obviously going to happen with. Well, I think it’s safe saying this frequency there are still going to be there, but they’re not probably going to be as abundant as they once were. And what I think it’s very interesting, Grace, is Amazon’s approach towards trying to take initiative towards controlling or potential injury claims, personal injury claims that can result from a product that I was purchased through the brand. Right. And so here’s what Amazon is doing. Amazon is saying, OK, if you’ve had a personal injury situation case because you’ve used or you bought something in Amazon and the seller because not everything sold in Amazon is actually sold by Amazon, there are other sellers, but Amazon is the middleman. Right. And so Amazon, what he’s saying is like whether the seller or not are willing to own it. We will. Right. And we’re willing to compensate you for up to one thousand dollars to make sure that the situation is taken care of before it escalates. Right. So Amazon is already saying, wait a minute, we are going to take ownership, we’re going to put out the fire and we’re going to give you up to one thousand dollars, disregarding what the seller wants to do, but also disregarding what we are going to do to the seller. Right. This is to the user for the benefit of the user. Now, what’s really interesting here, Grace, is that apparently, judges in Pennsylvania said, well, Amazon, you know what, like it’s still your responsibility.

Liel: [00:22:57] You’re not stepping up and taking up the responsibility from the seller and kind of like showing extra goodwill because the product was bought on your platform and so therefore you’re still responsible for it. So it’s not like you are being extra generous with your approach. Yes, I’ll give you one thousand dollars and you leave me alone because we take care. We took care of it even though we didn’t have to because it was not our product, per se. And I think this is interesting. The reason why I’m bringing it up is because I think, you know, could this be a new category of personal injury claims that we were going to start seeing? Is there a potential here? Right. Did you actually buy your product from Amazon in X? Right. And again, what I mean, to what degree are these personal injury claims? What qualifiers are going to be subject to? But the bottom line is like could this become a practice area? Right. Have you bought a product from Amazon and gotten injured, then don’t talk to Amazon, don’t accept don’t settle for their fees. Call us. I mean, Grace, I know lawyers have gone hot after Lyft and Uber, right, like they want those cases. Could Amazon be next? Grace, how has this been something that or are these cases extremely rare that not worth paying attention? I don’t know.

Grace: [00:24:30] I don’t know. I think you’re right. I think this could be another Wal-Mart situation because, I mean, they’re saying we’ll cover you for claims under a thousand dollars, as Amazon will be your product liability or your liability insurer because it says property damage or personal injury. So that opens it up to, you know, OK, I got harmed by something I bought on Amazon, even though Amazon didn’t sell it to me. It’s from a third-party seller, but not hold it to me on Amazon. Amazon is going to cover me up to a thousand bucks. But, you know, you plug something in and you got burnt from that. The personal injury in the case stuff. When you go to a doctor to just like let’s say you go to the emergency room because it burned you, you know, and you need to go to the emergency room, that’s going to be more than a thousand dollars. So I do think that you’re right.

Liel: [00:25:20] And if any of Amazon is offering, it is an admission of liability. Right. OK, I think this goes a little bit beyond both in my jurisdiction. That’s not our area, not lawyers talk about. Yes, when I was a liability, these are not but it just really took me to a place where I started to think, look, I mean, personal injury cases by product bought Amazon. So that was an interesting realization. So, Grace. It’s time for our takeaways, we’re going through a few things, some of them that we can learn from, some of them that are just for us to stay alert on what our, you know, three things this week, recommendations, things that we can do.

Grace: [00:26:02] First and foremost. Take a look at that new LinkedIn feature. Yeah, go ahead and add services to your personal profile. And like Liel and I are probably going to go do actually not probably. We’re going to we’re both going to our own profiles, add services and then send each other invitations because.

Liel: [00:26:20] Yeah, so here would be one of my recommendations. Right. I still think, you know, if you get to ask for reviews right now, my recommendation is just to ask for Google my reasons, the most important one. Now, if you still have very, very close clients and that you’re also connecting with them in LinkedIn, ask them for a secondary review on LinkedIn. Right. I still don’t know whether LinkedIn is worth sacrificing review on Google my business. And the reality is that not everyone is going to be willing to just go and leave you separate from reviews and every single platform. So I would say, you know, it’s worth exploring and ask really context that will be totally fine with doing it for you if those succeed. Because to be quite honest, every time it seems harder to find people that are willing to write multiple reviews. So that’s one. Right. And I think another good takeaway here could be, you know, look at your privacy capabilities nowadays, both on Facebook and Instagram. See whether it’s a thing that you can benefit from. I think it is a function that can certainly remove. A lot of the hate and frustration that exists and that it causes and it may not necessarily be something for you, right? Maybe, you know, you’re it’s not impacting you and that is not something that you necessarily feel you need to act upon. But it’s good to have that function. Grace, one final takeaway.

Grace: [00:27:55] So, yeah, because to me, those were two, I thought we would give them really two very good ones and take a look at the Amazon stuff. I mean, as far as an actual lawyer, I would if I was a lawyer, I would go look and just take a look. I mean, it could be another practice area for you or not. But it does. I mean, even if you purchase on Amazon, if you’re taking a look, because if anything happens, I mean, I would just take a look at their new guarantee and see what it covers. I think that’s just a good idea. Just like anything we talk about on here. Take a look at those features. Take a look at the new and hand check it out.

Liel: [00:28:32] So we try to be creative here, right? Grace, think a little bit outside of the box, go to places that others haven’t yet been. And I think that’s really the message is like it’s very easy to want to jump into something when there is already huge level of awareness and demand levels have grown. But the reality is that when that happens, it’s going to be way more difficult to gain the relevance that you hope you have. So positioning yourself early on as the law firm for something is going to be way more advantageous for you in the long run in trying to do it after everybody is at it. So we’re not saying that Amazon is or not a great opportunity to explore, but at the end of the day is just an example of what do we mean when we say keep an open mind and always find ways to diversify? Grace, thank you so much for this great conversation. And we will be back next week with another one. So have a great rest of your day and stay safe.

Grace: [00:29:39] You too Liel.

Liel: [00:29:43] If you like our show, make sure you subscribe, tell your co-workers, leave us a review and send us your questions to ask@incamerapodcast.com We’ll see you next week. All right.

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