Start Time: 11:45 a.m.
You want to blog – you know it will help build your name recognition for yourself and your law firm, but it seems writer’s block takes over each time you think about writing a blog post. Properly promoted, blog posts will help establish your knowledge and credibility with people you want to refer business to you or hire you. Let’s simplify the process for you.
Know What you Want to be Known For
As you look at your practice, think about areas you would like to become known for. Maybe it’s a sub-set of what you already do. These areas should provide the overarching framework for your blogging efforts. Ask yourself: “what do I want clients to say about me when they refer me?” What knowledge do I have that most people in my profession only have limited knowledge about?
Identify your Topic
Think about something you recently discussed with or researched for a client. If one person has questions, it’s likely a lot more do. Remember the purpose of your blog is to educate and inform, not to tell someone how to do something on their own. While you’re at it, think of a few blog topics you know like the back of your hand and jot them down.
Pick an Audience
Before you start writing a blog, you have to know who your audience is. Are you writing this for the general public, for other lawyers, for a particular trade group? Pretend that you have an opportunity to speak to a big group of people who could hire or refer you. What do they have in common? Know who you are writing for before putting fingers to keyboard
The Basic Blog Post
A blog post should be 400 – 600 words and be chock full of information and ideas. Here’s the basic format for your post:
- Introduction – Describe the topic. What is it and why is it important for your audience to know about?
- Thesis Sentence – I know you remember writing term papers in college. In one sentence, describe what you are going to educate your readers on. Think about “The top three things…” your audience needs to know about the blog topic.
- Supporting Paragraph #1 – Use the opening paragraph to address the first point
- Supporting Paragraph #2 – You guessed it – discuss your second point
- Supporting Paragraph #3 – Yup – – your third point
- Conclusion – so what does all of this mean and why should your audience care? Mostly cover what they can do to take action
Blog Writing Tips for lawyers
Make sure you speak directly to your audience in first person. If you reference other information, add a direct link to that page or website.
Repurpose your Content
If you deliver a presentation, create a blog or two about the content. If you write a longer article, shorten it into a blog post.
What does a Good Post Look Like?
Take a minute to visit two very well done blogs. The first is written by attorney Steve Baird and his IP team at Winthrop and Weinstein, and is called The Duets Blog. The second is written by a plaintiff’s employment firm in Minneapolis, Schaefer Halleen.
Promote your Post
Make sure your blog is added to your firm’s website. Create social media posts and link to your blog via your Facebook or LinkedIn profiles. If your firm sends out e-communications, make sure your blog is featured. You can also post your blog on LinkedIn.
Honestly, you are an EXPERT at what you do. It should be a fairly easy task for you to use the outline above and start producing blogs – one per week is very realistic. Set a goal for yourself and put your blog creation on your calendar just like you would any other appointment. If you want more information on this topic, I wrote about this topic for Attorney at Law Magazine.