In recent weeks, much has been said about the future of legal blogging. In early September, Bob Ambrogi kicked off the discussion by proclaiming that legal blogging is far from dead. Scott Greenfield then chimed in, noting that although legal blogging isn’t dead, there are few quality legal blogs out there. Eric Lipman at Legal Blog Watch then continued the conversation, asking its readers if legal blogging was a dead or dying species.
As far as I’m concerned, legal blogging is not dead, but it’s definitely changing. The change is occurring in large part due to the increasing use of social media platforms as a means of networking and communication.
In the “old days,” starting a legal blog was an easy way for attorneys to showcase their legal expertise while quickly optimizing a law firm’s online presence.
Blogs also were one of the best ways to meet and interact with other lawyers on a national scale. Professional networking was a breeze. There weren’t many lawyers who blogged, and those who did blog quickly became familiar with one another. Likewise, it wasn’t particularly difficult to establish a name as a legal blogger since there just wasn’t that much competition.
Things are different today, however. There are hundreds upon hundreds of law blogs and new ones are being created all the time. Competition for SEO and readers’ eyes is fierce. New law bloggers have a much more difficult time breaking into the market and being heard.
And, because of the proliferation of law blogs, choosing a niche is far more difficult. Chances are, a number of other lawyers already are blogging on the very topic that you’d like to write about. For that reason, differentiating yourself from the pack can be tough— especially when, like many lawyers, you would prefer to simply offer an update on changes in the law or summarize new cases, rather than offer your opinion on a divisive topic.
The good news is, legal blogging is not dead; it’s simply changing. So don’t let this post dissuade you from blogging. Just make sure that you enter the bLAWgosphere with your eyes wide open—and use social media in tandem with your blog. Social media is a great way to connect with other lawyers and disseminate your blog’s content.
Legal blogging, while different than it once was, is alive and well. So go on–join the conversation!