I was intrigued by the headline of David Allen Green’s (aka Jack of Kent) latest piece for Solicitors Journal – “Why some lawyers should blog and why some should not”. It’s a subject very close to our hearts here at Black Letter Communications, where we spend quite a great deal of time persuading lawyers to blog.
I don’t agree with everything he writes in this blog but, on one point we do agree, and that is on blogging for blogging’s sake. It’s a bit like when my mom told my 10-year-old self, that if I don’t have anything nice to say, say nothing. The same applies here, except the message is if you don’t have anything useful to say, say nothing.
The worst kind of blogging is the kind that merely tells you what has already happened. Blogs that are nothing more than a regurgitation of the news miss the point of blogging altogether.
Blogging gives lawyers the opportunity to show how much they know in a highly accessible way to a lay audience. Unfortunately, this isn’t how the law is taught or practised and so it’s totally understandable why so many lawyers find this challenging.
Lawyers looking for inspiration would be well-advised to look at Adam Wagner’s human rights blog, the legal costs blog by Simon Gibbs and Lucy Reed’s Pink Tape blog. All manage to combine legal updates with opinion and make a great read.
Help is also at hand for time-poor, knowledge-rich lawyers in the form of Passle. A marketing platform that allows busy professionals to blog by combining borrowed content with their own opinion.
I can fully appreciate that not all lawyers will want to blog but as well as increasing profile, it is a very effective business development tool.
The one bad reason to blog is to do it just for the sake of it. The internet is a critical and impatient place, and it abhors the phoney just as nature abhors a vacuum. Blogs which are mere pedestrian accounts of the law in the abstract that anyone could copy and paste from the same resources are of no interest to anyone, including the author. You will also need to do more than just posting the latest press release or lecture: such publications can be stilted and dull to read online, and that is because they were not written to be read on the internet. And the 'let's have a blog - now what do we blog about?' attitude is the wrong approach.