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Linking to and blogging about competitors’ blogs is smart

January 14, 2007

While bloggers in other industries blog about what their competitors are blogging about and link to their competitor’s posts, lawyers are scared to death to do so.

I hear it all the time – “We’ll never link to a possible competitor’s blog posts. It would just never be permitted in our firm.” The paranoia is so rampant some lawyers will not even link to a lawyer across the country doing the same sort of work. And these guys and gals think see themselves as thinking with a clear mind. Fact is it’s nuts.

Imagine a legal conference or seminar where lawyers never referred to what another said. Imagine a legal article not referencing previous writings by other lawyers. We’d get no where in the discourse of law. And lawyers that refused to enter into such discourse on the law would never establish themselves as reliable and trusted authorities in their niche area of the law.

Blogs are the same darn thing – discourse on the law. It’s this discourse that further enhances your reputation as an expert and grows your business. Not commenting about what other lawyers in your area of the law are blogging about is shooting yourself in the foot.

Look at this post from Jamie Spencer, a criminal defense lawyer in Austin. He discusses at length blog posts from Bill Mange and Ken Gibson, both Austin criminal defense lawyers.

Thinks it hurts Jamie to do so. Heck no. It makes him appear as more of an authority on criminal law issues for those in Austin – prospective clients, referring lawyers, and the media. Jamie has generated significant interest from all three audiences from his blogging.

Plus rule one on marketing your blog is linking to other blogs. The more you send people away to more valuable resources, the more valuable you become to your target audience. And blogging about other bloggers is only going to get you cited by them at some point, only increasing your traffic.

Will lawyers stop being anal and liberally link to competitor’s blog posts? No, but those who do so will grow their practices more.

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