If your firm’s blog is a repository of helpful content, it can effectively attract a large number of prospective clients.
Each new blog post is n opportunity for you to be found online by your best prospects. Here are 5 simple steps and suggestions to improve your legal blog:
- Write to a specific target audience and provide answers to their legal challenges.
- Write consistently. It is important to creating regular readership.
- Posts should average 350 to 450 words and be pleasantly scannable to the eye. Break up long paragraphs, use bullets and numbered list when possible. Highlight key words and thoughts.
- Write in the inverted pyramid style, leading with your conclusion. People read differently online than they do for print. They tend to scan much more.
- Identify and consistently use keywords in your post title. You want to be able to dominate these words in a Google search.
- Let your reading fuel your writing.
- Write one original post to every four to five resource posts. You’ll never be considered a thought leader without original content, but you won’t generate much traffic if all of your content is just your original thoughts. Your blog should provide balance of both.
- Carefully think through your blog’s heading. A “heading” is a stand-alone phrase that describes your blog’s content. Create a blog descriptor statement for the header that lets readers and search engines know the purpose and intent of the content.
- Be sure you own your domain. A person that still has “Wordpress or Blogspot” in their domain won’t be able to change blogging platforms without losing traffic.
- Be sure your site is indexed with Google. If your pages are not indexed, then Google is not crawling them.
- Build quality inbound links. There are lots of online business directories where you can just submit your URL, law firm name and a description of your practice. There are also many social media sites where you can simply build links to your site.
- Make sure your content can be easily shared on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, as well as social bookmarking sites such as Digg, dell.icio.us and StumbleUpon with share buttons.
- Jump start traffic by repurposing your blog’s content through an email newsletter that is sent every two weeks. This is an easy way thing to do. Since you already have the content and can create an email template that is reused, it will take literally minutes to prepare the newsletter and send it.
- Build a sizable, targeted Twitter following using TweetAdder and repurpose your blog content to your Twitter account using a program such as SocialOomph.
- Write guest posts for other blogs and invite others to guest post on your blog.
- Comment on other blog posts and online articles, sites such as American Bar Association, Legal Marketing Reader, etc. Select sites that are frequented by your target audience.
- Write content for search-ability.
- Conduct your own primary research by writing case studies and other useful information.
- Be proactive in securing speaking opportunities by creating a speakers page for your blog. List the topics and titles that you can speak to and provide links to your past speaking engagements through YouTube, and post photos through your Flickr Photostream.
- Pull blog content together and expand SEO opportunities by creating Slideshare Presentations, Whitepapers, etc.
- All of this activity isn’t worth the time investment if it doesn’t turn visitors into leads.
- Place your RSS Subscription Feed button above the fold, near the top of you blog’s homepage. Visitors who subscribe will automatically receive updates every time you publish a new post either through an RSS Reader or through their email Inbox. I would suggest setting up an RSS feed through Feedburner.
- Also place a subscription for your email newsletter within your blog’s sidebar to create Opt-Ins from site visitors.
- If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it. Fortunately you can measure nearly everything online and continually hone your program.
- Review your blog site’s analytics daily to see what posts are generating the most traffic, what search terms are being used, where traffic is coming from, who is linking to you, links readers clicked on, page views, etc.
- Utilize your email newsletter analytics to improve open and click-through rates. Test the day of the week your email newsletter is sent, time-of-day and subject line copy.
- Use this suite of tools to analyze your legal marketing efforts: Blog.Grader.com, TwitterGrader, Website Grader, Facebook.Grader.com, PressReleaseGrader.com and LinkedIn Grader.
By following these steps, your blog will be up and running in no time. And you’ll see results from it too.