Amy, who specializes in working with law firms and who I have learned a great deal from over the years, highlights four benefits.
- Reputation enhancement. Blogs are a very effective way for professionals to raise their visibility and position themselves as accessible, helpful experts on a specific topic or niche practice. By writing about and commenting on and linking to other useful information in an area of expertise, a lawyer can help to demonstrate his/her knowledge around that subject and maybe even become a ‘thought leader.’
- Syndication of content. Blogs have an advantage over typical web sites in that blogs have a built-in syndication feed. Each time you publish a blog post, a news feed is sent out automatically that alerts the search engines, news aggregator sites, and newsreaders used by reporters, fellow bloggers, and innovative professionals. Blogs also often allow for readers to subscribe to updates by email. (A traditional web site waits for the search engines to come to it.)
- Search engine performance. With frequent posts your blog becomes attractive to search engines — not necessarily for its frequency, but for the collection of relevant information you’ve amassed around related keywords.
- Viral marketing. Blogs become extremely effective when they provide ‘information of value’ in the form of original material and commentary. If you can write something extremely relevant and informative, you will gain the benefit of viral marketing — where other web sites and bloggers will comment on and link to your blog post, as well as share it on Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook and the like.
Amy’s a professional too. She knows that a lot of lawyers and legal marketing professionals use law blogs merely as a tool to gain favorable treatment on he search engines.
…[T]his is also what leads to a lot of the junk blogs out there. For instance, a lot of personal injury attorneys are notoriously bad bloggers that methodically regurgitate verdict and settlement reports from news sources in order to create a blog post that uses lots of keywords around, say, motorcycle accidents, or cerebral palsy. Then, as a last paragraph, they add on a statement about if you need a motorcycle accident attorney, contact us. That type of blogging is not flattering for the profession and some of it borders on plagiarism.