Creating a blog to promote your law practice can be cheap in terms of money— you can start a free blog on sites like WordPress—but expensive in terms of your time and effort. Before starting a blog, be sure you have organizational support and time to maintain it. And then review these tips to make it a success.
- Start a focused blog and stick with your focus. Think about your audience and tailor the information you present to its interests. It’s best to choose a niche in which you have expertise and in which there’s little competition. If there ‘s already too much out there, then make your niche within the niche.
- Add new material frequently. You need to blog at least once a week, more if possible. But focus on maintaining quality, even if quantity takes a hit.
- Keep it short and relevant. Make sure the content of each blog post is relevant to the focus you’ve set. Keep posts relatively short so they’re more likely to be read in our busy world.
- Make it easy to read. Readers aren’t looking for a treatise in your blog post, just some helpful content in an easily-accessible format. Using lumbered lists or bullet points makes the material easy to understand and read. Also, break up text with quotes and examples. Always write in short paragraphs, tight language, and without legalese.
- Bring in other community developments/news. In addition to creating original material, you can be a source of relevant news for your audience. Add value to that news by commenting on it and explaining its impact.
- Bring your readers into your blog. Find ways to bring readers into your blog through, e.g., guest blog articles, interviews, and profiles.
- Make it visual. Use photos to make your blog more inviting. There are many public domain photos you can use for free to accompany your articles. You can also include photos of activities in the legal community and people winning awards or accomplishing goals. And consider occasionally imbedding video into your blog articles.
- Start a conversation. Using a blog to build your profile and grow your practice is a two-way street: you need to get your readers to engage with you. To encourage reader comments, ask a question in a blog article or request their input.
- Review and respond to comments. Once you’ve got reader engagement, be sure to always respond to comments. Set the preferences (at least initially) so that you review and approve comments, not that they publish automatically. This will help eliminate spam comments. Your response need not always be substantive; you may simply thank them for a compliment or for raising an important issue/concern. It’s important to let your readers know that there’s a real person out there reading their comments.
- Integrate your blog into the rest of your website. Make sure that your blog and website link to each other and work together to reinforce your online presence.
For more on advertising on the Internet and other online business issues, check out CEB’s Internet Law and Practice in California. Also check out CEB’s program The Ethics of Social Media to make sure you’re complying with the ethics rules when using a blog or other social media platform.
Other CEBblog™ posts you may find useful:
- Blog, But Blog Ethically
- How the New Rules of Conduct Affect Your Social Media Use
- 8 Things You Can Do to Take Your Law Career to the Next Level
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