Great blog content is a brilliant way of growing your profile and attracting the right type of clients. However, when I speak to lawyers, accountants and consultants, I often hear that they are scrabbling around for content, and simply don’t have the time to write anyway.
“I’m worried that we don’t have the time to maintain or contribute to a blog properly.”
Let me reassure you: it’s not that difficult, if you just train yourself to a few good habits.
Why bother with blogging?
I asked Jon, my business partner, for his thoughts on why every client-facing lawyer, accountant, and consultant should blog. His top reasons were:
- Show your expertise by helping potential clients.
- Develop relationships with clients and potential clients as they get to know more about you and the way you think.
- Increased visits to your website, helping your Google ranking.
- Give prospects a reason to purchase from you.
Given those 4 reasons (and Jon has plenty more!) the question is surely: “Why on earth aren’t you blogging?”
Time saving tips for great blog content
Of course, producing a couple of hundred words: expert, original, and thought-provoking, on a regular basis is daunting. I find that there are times when I can write easily, and times when I can’t. There are some things that help me write more quickly and others that make it worse. Starting from a blank screen is one of the hardest obstacles, so my tips start with that.
Have a back-up of blog content
- Use stimuli: After each client call, write down one potential blog content idea which that client would find useful. It doesn’t need to be clients that are your stimuli, it could be the media, a news item, a conference, conversation with your colleagues or contacts . . . inspiration can strike in the strangest places! When you think of things during the day, jot down a couple of sentences about them. That way when it’s writing time you simply need to expand the notes.
- Have a list of subjects: Planning the things you want to blog about can help you spot trends and think of ideas much more quickly.
- Have a blog bank: Before publishing any articles, build up a bank of posts and aim to keep them topped up, rather than trying to type just before a deadline.
Don’t make writing a chore
- Know when you’re more creative: I’m far better at writing content in the school holidays when I am off with the kids. In fact, most of my content is written 3-6 months in advance.
- Editing is easier than writing: Jot down 2-3 key points as headings or bullets can be a great way to craft your main message. It is much easier to fill in the sections than start from scratch.
Keep your blog content short
Google likes articles to be at least 300 words, so aim for around 500 for blog content. That’s not very much – you might be surprised! Keep your blog posts short and simple, and save the longer, technical stuff for white papers or guides. One of the things I see holding many professionals back from writing good blog content is trying to write War and Peace in every blog post.
There are advantages to writing on one small specific subject than writing a comprehensive paper on several things covering the entire spectrum.
- People like to read shorter posts – everyone is busy.
- You can get 4 or more posts from one subject area, and link them together.
- Just 500 words should help you cut out the jargon and waffle – everyone’s a winner.
To find out more about why blogging is so important for business development, read on.
You can also download a free e-book: Blogging Made Easy.