Five Ways a Blog Directly Benefits Your Law Practice
Blogging! Who has time? And who reads that stuff, anyway?
Finding reasons not to blog is easier than spending money on vacation. How do you justify putting your billable time there when you get enough new clients through word of mouth, anyway?
Well, word of mouth is now called “social media.” And chances are your client base is relying more and more heavily on what they read about you online versus what they hear about you down at the local Chamber of Commerce. Your website, online reviews, social media profiles, and yes, your blog, all contribute to the success of your firm by showing potential clients and referral partners who you are and how well you know the law.
Provides effective, inexpensive marketing
The ABA 2014 Legal Technology Survey Report brings this point home by reporting that 24% of all law firms report blogging and 39% say they obtained client this way. That’s almost two out of five law firms getting a lead from their blogging activities. Blogs are easy to set up, should be low-cost to maintain, and require about an hour of your time to write. From a strictly “marketing dollars” point of view, that’s a better return on investment than most advertising activities.
You got into law because you are passionate about helping people or organizations get justice, fair treatment, a better life… you know your reasons. From the many lawyers I’ve worked with I also know you can write, and have some opinions about the area of law you practice. You have all the crucial ingredients to create a blog that attracts your ideal client to your firm. The passion and expertise you convey in your blog posts show clients, colleagues, and referrals what it will be like to work with you. Give them a powerful first impression of you through your blog, and attract people who admire the way you think and present yourself.
Builds trust and authority
When people are looking for an attorney, they are looking for someone to help them solve a big problem. Demonstrate the many ways you are the attorney they need through a blog that addresses common questions asked about your practice area and explains common legal issues. Not only will the blog show your command of the law, but it can also help build a sense of trust-worthiness and authority with potential clients before you even meet.
Helps your website rank higher
Time for some tech talk. Unless you’re one of the lucky few to achieve a #1 position on Google for your practice area’s most coveted keyword, you could use some help reaching a higher position on the search results page. That is precisely what blogging can do for you.
The raison d'être of every search engine is to provide the searcher with the most relevant content around a specific word or phrase. The more relevant content your website contains around that searched-on phrase (let’s say, “bankruptcy process in Virginia”), the better your chances of having your website served up in the results. Your blog post explaining, in layman’s terms, the bankruptcy process in Virginia could be just what Google (and a potential client) is looking for.
For those of you competing for clients against larger firms with bigger pockets, blogging gives you the opportunity for a fair fight. Your voice online carries just as much weight as the voice of the attorney at Rich & Richer Big Law Firm. Conversely, if you find yourself one attorney in a sea of hundreds at your firm, create your niche and stand out from your associates through your blogging. Not only will blogging level the playing field, but it will increase your thought leadership within your practice area, regardless of the size of your firm or your current position within one.
Bonus sixth way a blog will benefit your law practice: networking. Who doesn’t want to do business with someone who has proven she knows her stuff, or someone who has clear passion for the law he practices? In-house counsel looking for an expert, business referrals, out-of-state attorneys, speaking gigs, book deals… a blog can facilitate the networking required to expand your business into countless areas.
Have questions about how to get started with blogging? Comment below and I can address them, you guessed it, in future blog posts.