8/13/10

Law.Com: Tim Corcoran Writes About Law Firm Blogs as Marketing Tools

There's an article at Law.com today which is worth your time: it's entitled "Marketing Your Law Practice With a Blog," and it's written by Timothy B. Corcoran, the man responsible for the site's Marketing the Law Firm newsletter as well as Corcoran's Business of Law blog. Two things to take away from today's read:

1. The Importance of a Savvy Ghostwriter for Law Firm Blogs.

Corcoran discusses content and the need for blog posts to give a glimpse into the blogger's personality and character. He doesn't dismiss ghostwriting, but he suggests that ghostwriting doesn't provide this vital component.

I think he's partially right: most don't.  Ghostwritten blog posts need to be written by writers who understand the lawyer's (or law firm's) worldview and can write from that perspective.  To me, this means not only does the ghostwriter need to understand both (1) the law and (2) the practice of law but the ghostwriter needs to take the time to get to know (3) their client, the attorney that's hired them to write those posts.

For example, I've written posts for an attorney who is an active and outspoken Libertarian. I'm not a Libertarian, but I understand his political outlook; we've discussed the approach he wants to take with his blog posts; and he's very happy with the aggressive stance his posts have taken on a variety of legal issues.  It's a compliment when your client tells you that "this is exactly what I'd write if I could figure out how to do this [blog]."

2. Return on Investment On Law Firm Social Media Can't Be Measured By Number of Widgets Sold

Corcoran also writes on the vital issue of financial investment. How to measure the return on a law firm's blogging dollars is a big concern to many -- and there are lots and lots of articles out there giving mathematical formulas and MadMen ratios to explain how a dollar spent in this month should return this many client revenue dollars by X month.

I think Corcoran provides needed guidance on Law Firm Social Media ROI. Law firms have never sold products, they've sold services. Professional services. The attempts to fit law firm social media techniques into standardized products' marketing formulas is simply trying to wedge square pegs into round holes. Doesn't work.

So, how to insure you're not throwing good money after bad? Read what Mr. Corcoran has to say, for one thing.
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