How to get all three using your law firm blog
A law firm blog is one of the best ways for attorneys to generate leads, demonstrate leadership and gain leverage online by improving your search engine results.
There is no doubt that blogging helps your firm get to the top of Google for targeted search results. This is because Google and other search engines love fresh content and a blog is the best way to pump out that fresh content to search engines.
In addition, social media research by HubSpot shows that companies with blogs generate 67% more leads than companies that do not have a blog!
One of the best ways to capture leads is through educational marketing and your blog plays a singular role in this regard. Blogging allows you to initiate the conversation with prospects that are having the exact kind of problems your law firm solves. Once you establish your expertise and gain their trust by providing relevant content, they are much more likely to take the next step to engaging you, usually by visiting your website or landing page that you are using in your blogs to direct your traffic.
Some more key benefits of blogging for attorneys include:
• A blog provides fresh material that can be posted on social media sites including LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
• Sharing blog posts “socially” will increase your visibility, drive inbound links to your firm’s website, increase traffic to your website, and lead to improved SEO results, meaning your law firm’s website will rank better in search engine results.
• A blog establishes you as an industry thought leader and expert in your field, as well as builds awareness about your practice and your firm, increasing client engagement and generating potential business leads.
• The more frequently you blog, the more online assets you build and the more credibility and visibility you gain.
Blogs hold a unique position in the online media landscape because they have become an accepted source of information. When used properly, a blog becomes a clear, consistent voice for your practice. It entices prospects, referral sources, colleagues, clients and thought leaders to engage you in dialogue. It keeps you top of mind. It builds visibility among your target clients. Ultimately, it earns you more of the kind of client you most desire.
Your law firm blog is your forum to connect with the community at large and to make it clear that you are an expert in your field. But to make a blog the highly effective marketing medium you need it to be, you need:
• An up-to-date blog that you write articles for at least 3-5 times per week and that includes clear calls-to-action with relevant offers to aid you in capturing email addresses;
• A topic list designed to engage your target audience;
• A content calendar with specifics for each post — title, keywords, calls to action, etc.; and
• A list of social media sites to promote your blog — LinkedIn and Facebook should be at the top of this list.
When you have all these things in place, you will be well on your way to having a blog that can easily anchor many of your law firm marketing efforts.
The Hard Part of Blogging: Finding the Time
According to HubSpot’s State of Inbound Marketing 2015 Report, the time it takes to write a typical 500-word blog post is 1-2 hours. While this may sound like a lot of time, it isn’t. The first ten or twenty blogs you write will come fairly easy. It's after you've been writing about your practice for two or three months every day that you will start having to do a lot more brainstorming and researching. Trust me, I know.
HubSpot interviewed 4,000 marketers around the world for their 2015 report. In North America, a majority of the respondents (38%) spend 1-2 hours writing a post. Approximately 29% said they spend 2-3 hours per post, 29% spend over four hours and only 8% said they spend less than an hour per post.
This data doesn’t necessarily mean that any particular amount of time is the “right” amount to spend writing a blog post. It just points out what is typical for a 500-word post, which is generally the optimal length to achieve your goals of why you blog — to demonstrate thought leadership, drive traffic to your website and nurture relationships online that will hopefully become prospects for your legal services.
To get the most out of your law firm blog, you should be posting to it nearly every day. We update our blog, www.TheRainmakerBlog.com, seven days per day and have for years. There may be some attorneys who have 7-14 hours per week to dedicate to writing for their blogs. I just don’t know that many of them.
Read Part 2 of Leads, Leadership, and Leverage in the May 2016 Affinity Consulting Group email newsletter.