Blogging can be a frustrating experience for attorneys. When we write, we already know what we’re going to say because we’ve said it a thousand times before. I mean, honestly, we write pleadings (which we’ve templatized), or we write motions (which we’ve templatized), or we write responses to pleadings or motions (which we plagiarize from previous responses). There is almost nothing new under the sun when it comes to legal practitioner writing.

And then we try to blog, and it all goes to hell. Suddenly, those same attorneys who can churn out twenty-page pleadings in thirty minutes can’t write a sentence. Why does this happen? In large part because you have to be creative to come up with blog post ideas. So, how does the templatizing lawyer overcome his blogger’s block?

There are undoubtedly a thousand useful suggestions. I’ll focus on one I find quite helpful.

Let me start by talking about Google. The holy grail of legal marketing is being on the first page of Google for an important search. So, if you’re a divorce attorney in Utah, you want to be the first one to pop up when someone searches “Utah divorce.” Utah divorce is a keyword search, and a short keyword search since it’s only two words. These short keyword searches are gold, and they cost gold if you want to rank high.

Longer search phrases (think “how much does it cost to file for divorce in Utah”) are called “long-tail keywords.” These searches are obviously more specific than shorter searches, but they are much easier and cheaper to rank high on. And while they might not bring in as much as traffic as shorter keyword searches (because they are searched less often), if you rank high on many of them, you’ll get a lot of traffic without paying as much in advertising costs.

So, all this brings me to my suggestion: find a number of long-tail searches and use those as inspiration for blog posts. (Be sure you incorporate the actual long-tail keywords in your blog post at some point, so your blog post will come up when someone types that long-tail search.)

And how does one find long-tail searches? Well, you Google the short keyword searches, then go to the bottom of the page where you will find searches related to that short keyword search. For example, when you Google “Utah divorce,” the following are some related long-tail searches: Utah divorce records, Utah divorce laws, Utah divorce lawyer, Utah divorce rates. This is just one example. Whatever the related searches might be, use them to inspire a blog post, or two, or three.

And remember: blog posts don’t have to be long. 300-500 words work just fine. Happy blogging.

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