More and more law firms are jumping on the blogging bus for business development and marketing purposes. There are firm-wide blogs, individual lawyer blogs and everything in between. What sets the exceptional blogs apart from mediocre ones is the style, format and consistency of posts. It’s extremely important to create an editorial calendar and designate who is responsible for what prior to hitting publish for the first time. Here are some tips on how to create a highly efficient content creation and distribution team within your law firm.
Invest time in creating clear blogging guidelines
The last thing you want to do is head over to Mr. Smiley’s desk and say I need a blog about the latest and greatest in criminal law tomorrow by 9:00 am. Instead, create a document that describes what a blog post is i.e the format, the number of words, subject, requirements, etc. Have a list of other blogs available in the same practice area that he or she can look at for inspiration. Depending on your firm, this time may not be billable and you need to make it look as attractive as possible. Try and not create too many rules or red tape. Let the writer have an opinion. If there are specific topics you’d like to stay away from, mention them in the document.
Have someone else do the proofreading
Does your law firm have someone that loves to write and/or proofread? You can’t say no as I know it’s not true. There was a super smart litigation paralegal I used to work with and she was incredible at looking over blog posts. Although it wasn’t in her job description, she read over all the posts and made sure everything was up to par (and enjoyed it too – I miss her). You can also have someone read it over for content correctness depending on who’s writing the post.
Decide who is going to load and schedule the content into the blog
This person needs to be highly technical and able to navigate all of the various blogging platforms including Blogger and WordPress. Depending on your strategy, this person should also know Search Engine Optimization basics to optimize your content in the best possible way. Think about social sharing as well. Will this person be sharing your content via Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn? Make sure they know the ins and outs of when is the best time of day to publish. It’s also a good idea for this person to moderate the blog and let the authors know if a comment arrives on their piece. It’s ideal if they respond with 24 hours. (Very important).
[Related: How to Kill Engagement on Your Legal Blog]
Create back-ups for each position above
People get sick, quit and pass away. Have a plan in place for when somebody doesn’t show up to work. Make sure passwords for all accounts are in one safe place that is accessible to everyone in the content creation and distribution team.
As a legal marketer or lawyer, I’m sure you’re very excited to start your own blog. It’s a very rewarding experience, especially after you get the hang of it and become known in your practice area. The above suggestions will help you stay consistent in your writing endeavors. I look forward to hearing how it goes and welcome any further suggestions you may have.