Are You Getting the Most Bang for Your Blog?
If you’re reading this article, chances are you have a blog on your attorney website. If you’re still on the fence about starting a blog, we’ll quickly review the benefits to having one and what you’re potentially missing out on if you don’t.
Content marketing, specifically blogging, is an essential and highly-effective online marketing strategy. Blogging, or creating relevant content for your website visitors, is a simple, long-term strategy with many benefits, including:
- Driving targeted traffic to your website from the search engines
- Substantially increasing your website traffic and page views
- Presenting yourself as an authority in your field and encouraging potential clients to hire you
- Connecting with your audience and prospective clients
- Blogging, also referred to as inbound or organic marketing, costs 62% less per lead than traditional, outbound marketing (Source: HubSpot)
Without a blog on your website, your chances of getting served up in the search engine results diminishes drastically. In short, you risk—and almost ensure—being missed by prospective clients searching for an attorney like you in their area.
The Components of a Highly Effective Blog
All blogging is not created equal. In order for a blog to benefit your business and generate leads, it must be tailored not only to your prospective client/website visitor but also to the search engines themselves. These two goals might seem conflicting, but as you’ll read below, they are not.
Write for your ideal client and the search engines.
First and foremost, you must write for your ideal client. Doing so increases your chances of hitting on important keywords prospective site visitors will type into Google when searching for an attorney.
Keywords refer to the relevant terms search engine users type into Google or another search engine to find what they’re looking for. If you’re a bankruptcy attorney, for instance, writing a highly effective blog for your audience might mean using the keyword “bankruptcy” more than using the term “chapter 13.”
Another component of writing for your audience and increasing favor with the search engines is to write clearly, concisely and professionally. While your blog should have a conversational tone and speak directly to your audience, it must be professional in the sense that it’s authoritative.
Many lawyers understandably outsource blog writing to save time and ensure consistency. The problem arises when a blog is awkwardly written or authored by someone not fluent in English. A similar issue can occur when a blog is one or two steps from gibberish because it is written solely for the search engines and loaded with oddly placed, repetitive keywords.
You cannot let your blogs undermine your brand, your voice or your authority in the process of optimizing your site for search engines. That would be counterproductive. A blog written by (or ghostwritten for) an attorney has to be technically correct. It requires some expertise in the writing and cannot be subcontracted to a blog mill. It demands much greater quality and sophistication.
10x blog success by publishing frequently and consistently
How many times per month should you publish a blog? As many as you can. Blogs have a cumulative effect. A weekly blog is ideal because it will seed the search engines quickly. However, if you can only blog once per month, the effect will be similar, it will just take longer to achieve.
In an ideal world, you should publish your blog as frequently as possible at the outset and then slow down to no fewer than two per month. The initial push provides a substantial inventory to seed the search engines, cover the areas you want to cover, capture relevant keywords and properly demonstrate your brand authority and posting consistency.
Promotion is essential
Above we outlined the minimum requirements of blogging. Many attorneys stop there and in doing so, they severely impede the benefits of blogging. The following steps, many of which are free or extremely cost effective, boost your blog success and maximize your potential to generate traffic to your website.
To multiply your blog’s exposure, post a link to your blog on all of your social media accounts. This transforms your content from a passive marketing strategy that lives solely on your website to an active promotional tool.
There are benefits to both passive and active marketing. On your website, a blog is a long-term strategy for success. You have to wait for your content to be picked up by the search engines, specifically Google. Once they notice your new content, the benefits compound over time. Promoting on social media allows you to get in front of an engaged audience quickly and helps to establish your authority in your field. Of course, how much more and how much quicker will depend on the reach of your social media, which is a subject for another blog, but you more than likely will get some exposure and some sharing of the links to your blog even if you have a minimal presence.
This two-pronged approach results in a massive augmentation of your potential reach and exposure. When people share the links to your blog you naturally get more exposure. But when Google, who knows all, sees that others are sharing links to your blog they give your blog more credibility and therefore more traffic. In addition to generating more traffic from your ideal clients, other lawyers and law-related websites may link to your blog, generating a quantum leap in exposure, credibility and traffic.
If your social media following isn’t where you want it yet, you can use your blog to expand your reach, increase your site’s exposure and enhance your SEO. Facebook is the key to getting that kind of multifaceted exposure. If you have a Facebook page for your practice, and you should, even if it doesn’t have many followers, you can utilize Facebook advertising. For a very reasonable cost, you have the ability to target particular demographics and promote your post to them. For as little as a few dollars a day, you can reach thousands of people with your paid ad, many of whom will go to your website to see your blog.