Most of the time I see two different themes for legal blogs which are either news-based or informative. News based is typically content around what’s happening in the attorney’s practice area or industry in general. Informational blogs typically contain advice on matters specific to the attorney’s practice area. For business blogging, there really isn’t a right or wrong thing to write about as long as the content resonates well with your target market.
When I get questions about blogging it’s often about content and the theme it should follow. What should I blog about? How do I come up with these ideas? What is the point? Indeed these are tough questions to answer.
Just like any publication that has a purpose of attracting readers, you should write for your audience. For most law firms (and businesses in general) blogging is meant to draw people into a website, generate brand awareness and (eventually) increase revenue. So you must write content that will attract people who will make that happen for you.
Another important element of starting a blog for your practice is thinking about why you want to do it. You should have a clear goal in mind for your blogging activities from the outset. That can change depending on where it takes you but without a clear objective, you won’t be successful.
Your goals should be very specific. For example a very vague goal might be to increase revenue for your practice. That is the over-arching objective however you have to focus in on how you are going to do that specifically with blogging. A better example might be that your goal is to write one blog post per week for the next six weeks and get at least ‘x’ people to fill out a lead form that you have on a page linked to the bottom of every post you have.
A good way to learn about and visualize your target market is to create buyer personas. If you are unfamiliar with these, Hubspot has some great posts on what they are as well as how to develop one.
By developing these personas, you can start to understand the intent of people searching for content that you can offer. You can also better understand your market and in doing so, write content that they want.
A good way that you can find out what content people may be searching for is by using Google’s Keyword Planner. The planner is a part of AdWords and is used by advertisers to find good keywords for their campaigns but it is also used frequently by SEOs and people just looking for information on search terms.
In the planner you can see local and global search volume for any keyword or keyword phrase that has data associated with it. The planner can also help you optimize blog posts for a specific target keyword phrase. You can use the AdGroup suggestion tab in the planner to show you which keyword phrases work well on the same page together.
Blogging is one of those online marketing activities that business people have heard others talk about but maybe don’t fully understand. If you try to over-complicate it, you won’t be as successful as you could have been. All you have to do is come up with content on a consistent basis that your audience wants to read. Finding out who your audience is can often be the hardest part of that process.