Skip to content

October 17, 2014

4

Law Firm Blogging Returns to Its Roots

by WSBA

plantputer

Data is showing that blog posts aren’t ranking as well as they used to — in this post, Jabez LaBret shares some tips on what you can do to benefit your blog’s organic ranking.

The landscape of law firm digital marketing is constantly changing; with Google algorithm updates, evolving search engine optimization (SEO) techniques, more algorithm updates, increases in local online competitiveness, the Get Noticed Get Found (GNGF) team (including me, its Chief Information Officer) is constantly adapting our strategy to help clients get found via organic search.

After carefully keeping an eye on our analytics and the industry trends, a recent trend has forced us to make one of our most drastic strategy changes to date — data is showing that blog posts just aren’t ranking as well as they used to. In fact, it is now extremely rare for a blog post to be one of the top five most visited pages on a law firm’s site.

The downfall of Google Authorship is one reason blogging is no longer a critical SEO tool. While author rank is still one of over 200 factors that search algorithms look at when determining rankings, the average law firm blog does not have enough weight to substantially move the SEO needle.

Although blogging for SEO purposes may not be an efficient practice, there are other pieces of content that can benefit organic ranking, such as locally optimized practice area pages, that may be more worthy of your strategic writing time. But do not leave your blog completely in the dust—its value goes beyond the search engines.

Blogging now has a chance to return to its roots and the purpose for which it was originally intended: sharing ideas and information. These are a few topics we encourage our clients to write about:

Discuss events in your local community. This is an easy tactic to build rapport while establishing your local roots in the surrounding community. Topics should range from non-profit galas to 5K races.

Comment on the effects of a national case. When a case does break into the national spotlight, write a blog post that provides insights into the case or impacts it may have on your specific practice area(s).

Profile a staff member in your office. Your staff member will love being highlighted on the website and your prospects will appreciate getting to know your firm a little better. People like to know with whom they are working, and this kind of post can provide a fun side to you and your staff beyond the bio pages.

Inform people of a new law. Laws are changing regularly and this provides you an opportunity to inform your current clients and prospects. If the changes in a law include major implications for your practice area(s), consider writing multiple pieces over time to address the various facets or nuances of the changes.

Try to keep your post between 1,000 and 1,500 words. Though the impact on SEO from blogging has diminished, we are still noticing that longer pieces tend to outperform short 400-word posts. If you are still new to blogging and building an online presence, it is important that you maximize every opportunity. Blogging is a great way to convert more clients and build a stronger online presence.

4 Comments Post a comment
  1. Oct 18 2014

    Attorneys must still tread carefully, in their zeal to demonstrate their legal knowledge online, that they don’t cross the line into giving legal advice to people whom they don’t have, or want, an attorney-client relationship with. It only takes one person alleging that they relied on “advice” posted online to their detriment to create some thorny issues for the blogging attorney.

    Reply
    • Oct 21 2014

      Hi CJM, I agree and speak on that very topic regularly during ethics CLE programs. Try to be more journalistic in your approach and you will find it easier to avoid misleading someone into thinking that your information is advice. This does not mean you can’t have an opinion or personality. Instead it is important to share relevant information to your target audience that is based on known facts and information. You should also have a disclaimer on your website (we recommend the footer) that appears on every page of content. Just to be safe check with your state bar if you need guidance on your specific disclaimer requirements.

      Thanks for commenting.
      Jabez

      Reply

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Mission Possible: Post-Launch Debrief | NWSidebar
  2. Blogging Returns to Its Roots | Law Firm Digital Marketing

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Note: HTML is allowed. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to comments