Why You Shouldn’t Blog About Bankruptcy (And What To Do Instead)

bankruptcy blog ideas

I felt like I was wasting my time blogging about my knowledge of bankruptcy.

Each day I’d slog to the computer, cup of coffee in hand, and do my best to bang out 400-600 words on some bankruptcy-related topic. Confident that I was using my time effectively for my business-building efforts, I would use every trick in the book to create an article that would get a lot of traffic.

Pictures? Check.

Social sharing buttons? Yup.

Zippy headlines and crafty subheads? Got ‘em.

I built my social profiles, promoted my articles online in as many places as was possible, and was content that I was doing my best possible work.

My analytics package showed decent daily traffic. Still, the new clients didn’t beat a path to my door.

I was convinced that my time could be better spent looking a cat pictures on Facebook.

Rather than give up, I got curious.

I began to dig around into my web traffic and came to the conclusion that my visitors weren’t looking to file for bankruptcy. Either they had already filed a case, were preparing to do so on their own, or were lawyers looking for help in understanding the law.

After all, who else would sit down at their computer and do a search for, “timing of reaffirmation agreements in chapter 7 proceedings?” Most of my clients didn’t know the term unless they had been educated by my office or had done a significant amount of research on their own before stepping through my doors.

How could I be sure that this was the case? Simple: I had set up my analytics to show me the paths that people took to get to the place where they could contact me or set up an appointment. The people who got in touch didn’t come from organic (in other words, unpaid) web traffic to my bankruptcy articles.

The people who got in contact were those who were searching for information that interested them.

Articles about how to pay off high interest credit card debts did well. So did one article in particular that discussed how I cut my cable television bill to save money.

In fact, none of the bankruptcy-related articles drove people to contact me. They were useful for my existing clients as a reference and to guide the search engines in ranking my site. But beyond fulfilling those goals, my bankruptcy articles were useless.

Once I realized that the reason people were contacting me had everything to do with finding help for their problems, I started focusing on that rather than the technical aspects of bankruptcy.

Know what? My web traffic grew an astonishing 319%.

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 5.59.37 PM

Beyond that, my clients started telling me how useful my writing was to them. They were able to try to solve their real problems – lack of money and too much debt – before coming to the realization that I was the right lawyer to help them end their bill problems.

Mind you, success didn’t come overnight. Nor did it come solely as a result of writing a few pieces about money-saving tips. But when I began to intersperse my bankruptcy posts with information that spoke to the potential client’s problems, the tide turned on my website.

So when you’re wondering what to write about, stop before you churn out yet another article about the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Set yourself apart from the others by writing for your potential clients and their true needs.

In Matters Of Online Marketing, You Need To Be The Expert

alchemyWe want to write a check and be done with it. For more of us, that’s not in the cards.

You’re a solo attorney, or maybe you’re in a small firm of 2-5 lawyers. You juggle your responsibilities as well as can be expected, but there are only so many hours in a day.

Of course, business needs to come in the door so you can keep your practice afloat. You put up a website, maybe a blog, and commit to creating great content.

Part of your job is now creating that content and getting it into the hands of those who are most likely to need your help. This is your target audience, and unless you reach out to them there’s no sense in existing online at all. [Read more…]

Why Nobody Likes Your Blog (And How To Fix It)

law firm boring blog wastelandYou’re a bankruptcy lawyer and decide to start up a blog. You get a designer, learn WordPress, and launch your site.

Each day you publish a new article to your blog, complete with a photo and a zippy headline. You write like a pro (or hire someone else who does the job for you – I don’t like it, but I’m not Polyanna about the world) and hone each article with masterful SEO techniques.

At the end of 60 days you check your stats and realize this blogging thing hasn’t moved the needle whatsoever.

Same at 90 days.

What gives?

[Read more…]

Follow This Simple Tip To Get More Clients From Your Website

selfish clientsYour website visitors are self-centered and selfish.

Potential clients aren’t initially coming to your website to see how great a lawyer you are or to see what solutions you have to offer for their legal troubles.

Fact is, the couldn’t care less about you. They care only about themselves.

Their needs. Their wants. Their world view.

Nothing wrong with that. The sooner you learn to live within those confines, you’ll be better able to help them with their problems.

Here’s what I mean. [Read more…]

When Thinking About Search, Think Bigger

online findability optionsIn the beginning there was Lycos and AltaVista. Then came Yahoo and Google. You can see them all in the rear-view mirror.

Lots of us are conditioned to finding information by going to the ubiquitous Google search box and typing to our heart’s content. When we hear online marketing professionals talk, it’s in terms of search engine optimization. The information they sling is largely the same as it was a few years ago – get more links, create more content, look to user experience in creating a more profitable site.

And to a large extent, they’re right. But there’s a critical piece of the story that’s missing. [Read more…]