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Training Tips

Don't bite off more legal knowledge than your blog reader can chew

There is no question that each one of you knows more about your practice area than you could fit into a hundred, or even a thousand, blog posts. If you had the time, you could likely sit down right now and write a treatise on some aspect of your practice off the top of your head.

Your readers, like your clients, rely upon this encyclopedic warehouse of information. While they rely upon your depth of knowledge, they may not actually be that interested in the technical aspects of the law if they are not easily digestible.

Small Change in "Write Entry" Interface

Starting today, you may notice a small change in the write entry interface. Based on feedback from Blog Services clients, we have removed the "keywords" field that used to appear below "tags" at the bottom of the content entry area.

This field was a standard feature of Movable Type but was not useful in our framework and tended to cause confusion.

Please be assured that this change in no way impacts the search optimization of your blog. The intent is simply to streamline the interface by removing a redundant feature.

If you have questions about this or any other aspect of your FindLaw Blog Service subscription, please contact your account manager. If you have more general questions or a topic you would like us to address in a future training article, please submit your feedback through the contact form at the lower left of this page.

Thank you once again for choosing FindLaw for your blogging needs.

The Seasonal Blog Post

When you are thinking about topics to write about on your blog, take a look at your calendar or even just look out the window. Often, you will be able to come up with a timely and relevant topic just by considering the month and season of the year. By applying a little creativity, you could likely come up with an idea for a post relevant to most legal practice areas related to any month or season.

Consider Seasonal Activities Related to Your Practice

For example, when summer is approaching, a personal injury attorney might write a quick post on the hazards that can be found at public pools or while boating, or address what families should keep in mind when taking a road trip to a vacation destination. On the flip side, a winter post might discuss the hazards of winter driving and provide some safe winter driving tips.

Make room for uplifting and inspiring (even funny) stories

People often look to attorneys for help when something in their lives has gone terribly wrong. If your practice includes personal injury or divorce, for example, you may be helping clients through one of the worst situations they will ever endure.

While the reality of your practice may dictate that your blog covers some difficult topics, readers may find an approach that is always serious or somber to be less than completely engaging.

Q: How can you engage your readers? A: Write a Q&A Post

By Casey Hall, Esq., FindLaw Blog Writer

You probably know at least a dozen questions most of your clients have on their minds when they come to you for help. These are the questions you are prepared to answer even before they are asked. These are also the questions that can easily be turned into very effective "question and answer" blog posts.

A question and answer post is exactly what it sounds like: you pose a commonly-asked question, then provide a general but well-considered answer. What could be simpler?

Tags: What are they and how do they work?

Tags are a useful way to classify blog posts by topic. Generally more specific than categories, tags are complementary - they are frequently-mentioned subtopics within the broader categories.

For example, on your Personal Injury blog, say you write a post for the Car Accident category. The post details a number of causes of car accidents, including distracted driving, speeding and DUI. You also mention that serious injuries can happen when seat belts and air bags do not function as they should.

When creating tags for this post, what should you use?

Well, start by asking yourself a few questions:

  • What subtopics of Car Accidents have I written about, or will I be writing about, frequently?
  • Which of these subtopics will be interesting to readers?
  • Am I creating tags for blog readers, or for the search engines?

Let's address these questions in reverse order.

Writing for Engagement 101: The List Post

Previous articles and posts have discussed powerful ideas and practices aimed at helping you create the type of engaging content that will drive your blog's success. Now it's time to take a closer look at organizing information in a specific way that will deliver real value to your readers:

The list post.

Engagement and Conversion-Oriented Language

Your goal is to engage and convert as many readers as possible to actual clients, so one of the best approaches is an aggressive "call to action" or solicitation message in every post. Right?

Wrong.

Writing for Engagement 101: The Basics

In a previous article, we told you that "engagement is at the heart of social media." But what is engagement and how is it measured?

Moderating Reader Comments: Building a Community, One Post at a Time

A Training Article for FindLaw Clients by Michael Owen Hill, Team Lead - Social Media

Comments are a fundamental aspect of blogs. In essence, the ability of the reader to comment (and of the blogger to respond) is one of the primary factors that distinguish social content, like blogs, from more static content, like websites. Furthermore, readers who submit comments expect those comments to be published - and they expect the blogger to respond.

For this blogger training article, your Blog Services Team at FindLaw will be addressing the importance of moderating reader comments on your blog. If we've been clear, after you read this article you'll come to believe as we do - that engaging with your readers is an investment in the success of your blog, and therefore an investment in your practice.