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Business Development

Ripped from the Headlines: Using Current Events in Your Blogging Strategy

By Laura Ernde

When you’re looking for fresh ideas to write about on your law firm’s blog, don’t overlook the one source that never stops giving 24/7: the news. Whether it’s a broad movement, a regional issue or a specific development that’s relevant to your clients, consider using current events in your blogging strategy.

Properly executed, these timely pieces can position you as an authority in your practice area and draw more potential clients to your website. As an added bonus, you might even generate some good PR.

Let’s take the #MeToo Movement as an example. An employment lawyer probably has plenty to say about how this powerful movement is changing the legal landscape of the workplace. Are people bringing more sexual harassment lawsuits? Has it improved the success rate of such filings? Are more cases settling or going to trial?

Even if your specialty is far removed from the topic, you could still tie into the larger issue. For example, has your firm taken a leadership role in preventing sexual harassment within its ranks? Have you or your firm taken steps to help advance women in the workplace? It could make for good blog posts.

Blogging Guidelines

Here are some guidelines for using current events in your blogging strategy.

Plan a series of posts. A single one-off post does not a blogging strategy make. To bring potential clients to your website, you’ll want to have a series of posts that are well thought out and on point. According to the founder of Express Writers, the No. 1 success factor when it comes to blogging is consistency.

Ideally, your post should add to the conversation. But if you’re trying to reach people who are searching for a particular news topic, it’s fine to summarize the latest news with links to the original sources. Los Angeles firm Kabateck Brown Kellner does a good job of this.

Remember your audience. Think about the readership you want for your post and tailor it to them. What questions might they have about the topic? What insights can your blog post give them?

Show, don’t tell. Perhaps the goal of your post is to show that you care deeply about a particular topic — preventing sexual harassment, for example. Providing lip service is not enough: You need to provide at least one concrete example of how you’ve taken action to combat the problem. If you don’t have an example, why not use this opportunity to implement a creative solution? Then you’ll have the perfect opportunity to write about your success.

Be topical, but not tone deaf. Use caution when blogging about current events involving serious harm. The last thing you want to do is come across as insensitive. For some examples, see this recent post by Attorney at Work contributor Theda C. Snyder.

Your tone should be less formal than your legal writing, but more formal than something you’d write for your friends and family. You don’t have to resort to clickbait headlines to get attention. But keep in mind that your reader has a short attention span. Chris Graham offers advice on how to write for the web in “Write Like People Read.”

Current Events FTW

Done right, using current events in your blogging strategy can also boost your PR. Let’s say a reporter is looking for someone to interview about the #MeToo movement or another news topic you’ve blogged about. A reporter who sees your post might consider calling you as a source. This earned media can increase your blog’s value exponentially.

No matter what kind of law you practice, consider blogging about current events. Not only will it make you stand out in your field as an expert, but it will also draw potential clients to your website and show them the value of your services.

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Laura Ernde Laura Ernde

Laura Ernde is a San Francisco-based communications consultant. Informed by her background as a legal journalist and State Bar communications director, she helps lawyers and law firms create compelling content to engage with clients and potential clients. She serves on the programming committee of the Legal Marketing Association’s Bay Area Chapter. Connect with her on LinkedIn.

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