Content marketing takes time and effort, but staying top of mind with your target audiences is a key goal to marketing and business development – and providing value-added content is one way in which you can do this while branding yourself as a subject-matter expert in your area of the law.

Here are 12 tips to make your content marketing efforts successful and worthwhile. Keep in mind that they may take time to show real ROI, but I have seen thought leadership content lead to new business over and over. Remember that great content invites followers and potential leads/referrals and clients – that is how you achieve content marketing success.

  1. Strong headlines are key. They capture the attention of your readers and make them want to read more.
  2. That being said, while strong headline will draw in the reader, you also must deliver on what you promised. That means your body copy should get to the point right away, be written in client-centric language and address their pain points. Use short paragraphs and headers to let the reader know what to expect throughout the article as they often skim articles and are reading them on their mobile devices, especially right now during COVID-19.
  3. Make sure your mailing lists have clean data, or else your blog posts and client alerts won’t actually reach anyone. Spend the time to reconcile bounceback emails after each email. Remember the importance of email as the most direct way to reach your target audience.
  4. Good is often good enough – don’t spend forever perfecting a piece of content. Time is often of the essence to get a piece published.
  5. Look to see what your competitors are writing about and do it better than them. I recommend following 5-10 of your competitor firms and track what they write about. Follow their blogs and their LinkedIn accounts (but note that they can see that you are following them now).
  6. Recycle your greatest hits. So many firms take the time to create great content but they only post it once to social media – this is a huge mistake. No one is following your feed closely enough to notice if you reuse your content. Also, LinkedIn’s algorithm isn’t perfect and there’s no chance that everyone in your network will see every post you create or that your company shares. What users of LinkedIn see also depends on their news feed settings and if they have it set to view top news or most recent news and to top it off, LinkedIn users will often only see the posts of individuals with whom they interact often. So change up the headline, wording and imagery  of a post and voila – you have a new piece of content.
  7. Study your analytics to get a better sense of what content is resonating with your target audiences and what’s not. Make sure you share this info with authors as it inspires and educated them.
  8. Only focus on the social platforms where your clients and prospects are – don’t feel like you need to post content to all social channels. You should only dedicate your time and efforts to those platforms they are using – with LinkedIn being the most important one.
  9. I’m a firm believer that you should post nothing to social media without an image. Why? Because social media posts with images gain more views and engagement, period. Anyone can incorporate visuals into their social media strategy, you just need to be creative and resourceful. You can easily reuse and repurpose images that you already have, and resize them using tools right on your smartphone. In addition, there are many photo and online design tools that enable you to create images for free or at a low cost.
  10. Pursue opportunities to have your content published in third-party trade journals, websites and publications focused on your target industry. By doing this your target audience will grow to know, like and trust you as well.
  11. Utilize content syndicators like JD Supra. Many law firms (and their lawyers) invest considerable time writing great content, but are disappointed by the results. Either their thought leadership efforts don’t lead to new business, or they fail to garner media attention or the attention of clients/prospects. This isn’t necessarily because the content is poorly written. Often it is simply because not enough of the right people, your target readers, have the chance to see the work. Fact is, we operate in a competitive and saturated market and simply getting someone to open your email and read your content is very difficult. So, what can you do to stand out from your peers? Bring in the special forces like JD Supra to take your content efforts to the next level. In simple terms, JD Supra helps its clients leverage thought leadership to effectively create new business, media attention and networking opportunities.
  12. Consider utilizing new media and new mediums to engage with audiences such as video and podcasts, which can capture the attention of new followers and lead to new business.

Happy content creating.