There are some who say that if you can’t write it yourself, you shouldn’t have a blog. I have and continue to disagree with that line of thought. That’s like saying, if you can't figure out QuickBooks you shouldn’t review your financial statements. In fact, there are several scenarios that should compel you to call in a pro:
1. You’re not a good writer. Good writers love to write, but if you’re not in that group, there are plenty of people out there for you to hire or partner with in creating great content for your law firm. Yes, we do this for our attorney clients. There are also some great freelancers or maybe someone at your firm has this hidden talent. Find it, invest in it, and reap the benefits.
2. You don’t have the time. You went to law school to practice law, right? Creating content for blogs, social media and websites takes consistent effort and the investment of someone’s time, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be your time. You must ask yourself if this is the highest and best use of your time.
3. You need expertise you don’t have. If you’re not up to speed on the latest SEO practices for maximizing online content, you need to either educate yourself or find a good writer with this expertise. Maybe you can write blogs, but you need help with your e-newsletter or free reports – this calls for a specialist with a particular skill set for creating content that will entice prospects.
4. You can’t see the forest through the trees. Most attorneys are great at writing…for their clients. Yet when you are called upon to market yourself, promote your achievements, highlight your results, or educate potential clients, you may be too close to the subject and lose sight of the end goal—which is lead generation and thought leadership. I personally struggle with this one and that’s why I usually work with one of our senior copywriters when putting out a press release or redoing our website copy.
5. It’s too important. If you’re convinced of the importance of having the best possible messaging going out to your prospects and clients, and building your online reputation, leaving the development of that content to chance is a sure way to screw up. Bad copy can kill your credibility.
Whether you do it in-house or hire one of our professional copywriters, remember that you are always in charge of your messaging. Your writer should be your marketing partner, understanding your firm and your target market as well as the legal ethical standards you are held to, and maintain your high standards. Even if you are not doing the actual work, the final responsibility for your legal marketing rests with you.
10 Ways to Get More Eyes on Your Blog
Getting a sustainable source of traffic for your blog is another challenge, and takes a concerted effort over time to build an audience.
Market research tells us that there are some very effective tactics you can use on your website and blog — as well as in your e-newsletter — to get more subscribers for your blog. Here are 10 of them:
Home Page Opt-in Form. Place at least one opt-in form on your home page in a prominent location that asks readers to sign up. This could be for your monthly newsletter.
Great Offer. Make a compelling offer of a free report or e-book that visitors to your blog can download by providing you with their email address.
Blog Opt-In Form. Place another opt-in form at the end of each blog post and in the sidebar. We have found this to be a major tool in obtaining more leads.
Dedicated Landing Page. Have a landing page on your site that is dedicated solely to collecting new blog subscribers. This content for this page will be your offer of a free e-book or report and will include a “Subscribe Now” box for your e-newsletter.
Call-to-Action. Have a crystal-clear call-to-action that gently nudges visitors to sign up. This could be to sign up for a free consultation or to connect with you on LinkedIn or like your Facebook page.
Fewer fields. The most successful opt-in forms are those with the fewest fields. Use no more than three or four— first name, last name, phone number, and email.
About Page Opt-In Form. The “About” page is one of the most visited pages, so having an opt-in form on this page can convert some of those visitors to subscribers.
Popups and Sliders. Having a popup or slide-in form can increase sign-ups significantly.
Testing. Test headlines and calls-to-action to see which words or phrases resonate with your target audience.
Social Media. Pitch your blog and e-newsletter to followers on your social media pages.
Some of these will perform better for you than others, so keep testing and tweaking until you strike the right balance that interests your prospects enough to sign up.
Done correctly, your law firm blog can be an engaging online platform that allows you to educate potential prospects, stay connected with clients, show referral sources what you can do, and position yourself as a credible expert to the media.
Bottom line: blogging can be great for increasing your bottom line!For more information on creating your law firm blog, contact us or The Rainmaker Institute.