By Kevin O'Keefe

Strategic Consulting for Legal Bloggers

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It was sixteen years ago, following my introduction to the Legal Marketing Association in San Francisco as the “national leader on blogs for lawyers,” that I realized there could be an opportunity to start a “law blog company.”

At the conclusion of my talk, law firm leaders came up and asked, “Can you help me and my firm.” I was thinking, “Help you do what? Set up a blog on Typepad by paying a $4.95 a month subscription as I was?”

But I bit my tongue, realizing practicing lawyers were not going to do anything, especially something as high profile as blogging without knowing what they were doing, without knowing they were acting in a professional fashion and without knowing the ROI for their time.

It was clear that lawyers needed strategic consulting, more than anything else, to begin blogging and for their blogging to succeed as a business development tool.

So “Strategic Consulting,” became the first of seven steps in LexBlog’s “Professional Turnkey Blog Solution.”

LexBlog’s reworking the delivery of this strategic consulting, I have been asked by my team to identify one, what our strategic consulting covers and two, what information we should request of our lawyers and firms before our consultation.

I’m being asked because I am going to do these consultations. I enjoy helping lawyers and firms achieve blogging success.

Knowing what it takes to blog effectively and strategically as a legal blogger, I can help formulate both goals and a plan for a achieving these goals.

An outline (rough one) for strategic consulting on legal blogging includes the below.

What are the goals for the blog?

  • Grow revenue?
  • Update existing clients?
  • New method of publishing intellectual capital that is already being published?
  • Looking to grow into new area of the law or vertical for the lawyer/firm?
  • Who is the audience?

Agree on goals?

  • Building a name/reputation for the lawyers/firm?
  • Building relationships for the lawyers/firm?
  • Local, state, national or international name/reputation?
  • How will we measure these goals?
  • If a bump in revenue, how much, and by when?

The blog’s focus.

  • Too general?
  • Good niche?
  • Focus represent a strong opportunity?
  • An area not otherwise covered?
  • Have advantages of a further niche been explored?
  • Will the blog’s focus help the law/firm realize its goals?

Passion for blogging in this area.

  • Is there passion for this area, this niche?
  • Principal blogger(s) have this passion?
  • Can we live without this passion?

Blogging experience

  • Blogged before?
  • Who?
  • Focus?
  • Success in growing in business?

Branding

  • Title (not nearly as important as the above items)
  • Url
  • Publisher
  • Design (notice design, though needing to be professional and to complement style guides and color palettes is not at the top of the last)

This represents my first crack at what needs to covered in a strategic blogging consultation. There will additions and medications.

Information we should be gathering before the consultation includes the blow.

  • Principal contributors to the blog? Need not include everyone that may be listed at some point. Looking the driving forces behind the blog.
    • Names
    • LinkedIn and law firm profile page links
  • Focus of the blog?
    • Area of the law?
    • Vertical/industry?
    • Geographic area?
  • Goal of the blog?
    • Grow business?
    • Update existing clients?
    • Other?
  • How will you measure if the goal has been achieved?
    • Build a name/reputation? If so, how and when will success be measured?
    • Grow revenue? By whom? If so, by what sum/percent? By when?
  • Current reputation in this niche?
  • Are the lawyers/firm already publishing on this subject? If so, where?
    • Other firm publication?
    • Email newsletters?
    • Third party publications?
  • Possible title and url for blog.
  • General design preferences (Design discussion will be separate).

Again, these are my thoughts on the questions we need to ask lawyers and firms before hand to make such a strategic consultation a productive one. All subject to revision.

Kevin O'Keefe
About the Author

Trial lawyer turned legal tech entrepreneur, I am the founder and CEO of LexBlog, a legal blog community of over 30,000 blog publishers, worldwide. LexBlog’s publishing platform is used on a subscription basis by over 18,000 legal professionals, including the largest law firm in each India, China and the United States.

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