How did the top attorney blogs get to the top? Taking a close look at the most popular lawyer blogs rated by BlogRank (based on various traffic indicators), they tend to be…
- Focused on a niche that lines up with the law practice–like the Green Building Law Update from Stuart Kaplow, an environmental attorney in Baltimore—not general ramblings about law and life.
- Written in a personal voice by attorneys, not like press releases in the corporate voice of the law firm.
- Not directly promotional. They show, not tell, the expertise of the lawyers.
Let’s get down to cases with these post ideas found on the top legal blogs:
1. Give business advice, not just legal advice
The China Law Blog by the Harris Moure firm in Seattle built its following with tips for American businesses that want to break into the China market, like this post on how to put together a proposal to a Chinese company.
2. Give preventive legal advice for common disputes
Solo practitioner Christopher A. Hill (blog: Construction Law Musings – Richmond, VA) explains in The Anatomy of a Construction Dispute how to prepare for the inevitable conflicts that come up on big construction projects.
3. Be a news source (with attitude or not)
Washington, DC, personal injury attorney John Mesirow, finds legal news from all over, mostly cases involving the funny or outrageous, for his Legal Juice blog, with categories like Strange Court Filings and Weird Laws. Many law firms choose a more straight-ahead approach, like Toronto attorney Garry J. Wise’s daily list of news links. And a staple of law blogging is to report and explain a significant court ruling.
4. Answer frequently asked questions
Jeff Nowak of employment law firm Franczek Radelet, Chicago, took on a common question about the Family and Medical Leave Act in a post for FMLA Insights blog: “Can an employer request that an employee submit a doctor’s note for each of their intermittent FMLA absences?” He says the post received 12,000 visits in 2014.
5. Give advice to other attorneys
Some of the most successful blogs build the attorney’s professional network or referral business by giving tips on law practice marketing or management, like MyShingle.com by Washington, DC, solo practitioner Carolyn Elefant.
6. Provide evergreen reference material
Posts you publish once that get steady traffic over time are valuable properties on the internet. Connecticut Employment Law Blog author Daniel Schwartz of Shipman & Goodwin in Hartford, CT, says one of his most popular post types just explains the latest IRS mileage reimbursement rate.
7. Do an interview or invite a guest blogger
Some blogs invite outside counsel, so to speak, as a writer or interview subject. Healthcare attorney David Harlow posted a recording and transcript of his talk with a Medicare expert on his HealthBlawg.