Blogging, for lawyers, can seem like a daunting task. If you’re new to blogging, or you’ve been at it for a while but still seem to struggle, we’ve put together five strategies to plan a stellar blog post for your legal blog in ten minutes or less.
1) Create an Idea File
Our first blogging tip for lawyers is to get in the habit of writing down blog post ideas when they come to you. Then, create a place to keep all those notes so that you have everything in one place. You can create a Word doc or an Excel sheet, use a journal, or even a file on your phone. Whatever is easy for you. We use a Google doc and a Trello board. Consistency is the key to making any strategy work, so be sure to write down the following points for each idea that comes to you:
- Topic idea
- Possible title or subject line
- How did the idea come to you? What did you see or hear?
- Possible stories that might go well with the topic
- Copy/Paste any links to your source of inspiration including urls, or embed codes from social media
2) Use a Timer
Setting a timer is an effective way of blocking time to complete tasks. The built-in timer on your phone will work perfectly. Now, the pressure of a deadline will motivate you to tune out the distractions and focus. You’ll be able to get things done in a shorter amount of time.
- Set a timer for four minutes and brainstorm as many headlines as you can for a single topic.
- Set the time for six minutes and make an outline for the blog post content for each of your headlines. Be sure to include content ideas, image ideas, key messages you want to communicate, story ideas, the problems it solves, and why it’s important to your customers.
- If you find yourself stuck, move on and come back to it later.
3) Speak Your Writing
If blog writing isn’t a skill that comes naturally, it’s not the end of the world. You can create consistent and high-quality content without writing. All you need to do is talk.
- Use an app on your phone to record yourself talking through one of your topics or headlines.
- Transcribe your spoken word to text. (have an associate or assistant do it?)
- Edit the text into an outline or final post.
4) Start With an Image
Some of us are visual people. If you’re the type who is more inspired by imagery, then start there. Go back to your timer, set it for four minutes, open up your go-to stock photo website, or Google Images and search for images on your topic. For each image that sparks an idea, save it. Stop when the timer goes off then reset for six minutes and go back and work Strategy One.
5) Skip the Computer, Grab a Pen
Sometimes, creativity seems to come out faster and better with a pen or pencil. Maybe it’s the lack of distractions from not being in front of your computer. If it works for you, go for it. Push the keyboard away and grab a note pad. Set the timer for ten minutes and write your topic at the top of the page. Then use Strategy Two to write down everything you can think of. Even if you feel done, push yourself to write for the full ten minutes.
When you’re ready to turn an idea into content, half the work is finished. With practice it becomes habit and it gets easier and easier to create great content. There you have it, 5 strategies to get you blogging like a pro in no time. You might also want to check out our Tips For Writing Simply.