Lawyers Should Blog About Famous Or Relatable Cases

by Nov 11, 2015

Yesterday, I announced a new series we’re offering on blog post ideas for attorneys. Maybe you’re just starting a blog, you’re short on inspiration, or you’ve been writing pieces that aren’t attracting the kind of attention you’d like them to. No matter which situation you’re in, this series will help you get out of your writing rut and have you posting interesting, innovative content for your audience to read.

Today’s Idea: Pop Torts

As you may have guessed from the above headline, today’s example is for lawyers who want to market their personal injury and tort practice. Your personal injury website will always benefit from additional content when that content is relevant to your readers. If you don’t practice tort law, we’ll be using other areas of practice as examples in the days and weeks to come. However, the idea here can be easily translated and adapted to other practice areas.

One good way to engage your readership is by providing content that’s relatable.

People are interested in content that does or could potentially affect them. Whether it’s writing about a universal experience or just referencing a popular news story, offering up content that serves as a junction between your practice and issues that are, or could be, relevant to your audience can improve how immersed readers become in the content that you write. Furthermore, when you train your audience to expect regular content from you, it will bring them back to your site on a regular basis.

Today’s idea is this: Pop Torts.

(No, not Pop Tarts, the beloved breakfast toaster pastry, though Kellogg has faced lawsuits from time to time over that particular product…)

If you’re a personal injury lawyer and have a blog, here’s something to try.

Blog about a famous or relatable tort that’s relevant to your practice area. You can discuss the significant aspects of the case in brief, as well as the ruling and how that ruling can affect future cases. You may want to even start your blog post by creating a hypothetical situation that your readers could find themselves in, or by telling the story of the case’s fact-pattern in your own words. Readers love stories. In a sea a legal jargon that your readers may not understand, the story makes your post enticing to readers, and may even smooth over the more boring elements. You can then explain the law, decision or other relevant information, and apply these things to the hypothetical situation. The objective is to give your readers an example of how a famous ruling could be used in a corresponding scenario.

For example, let’s pretend that your firm handles disability or injury law. You might be interested in writing about a well-known case such as Liebeck v. McDonald’s Restaurants (“The Hot Coffee Lawsuit”). The facts are interesting, and it’s a well-known case, even if the name of the plaintiff is not. Everybody knows about the “Hot Coffee Case,” and everybody has an opinion about McDonald’s.

Blogging about a notable or significant case can help broaden your readers’ understanding of how decisions are made by courts, how the law is applied, as well as demonstrating your understanding of the law to your audience. It can also spark discussion. A case like Liebeck is a controversy and debate magnet, and the more of it you create on your blog, the better it will typically do.

Side notes

Remember: You’re intimately familiar with legal terms. However, you should assume your audience isn’t. Try to avoid using “legalese” where you can, but if you must use a legal term, be sure that you define it clearly for your audience in a way that anyone can understand. Your readers will have a hard time understanding the importance of the rest of your blog post if they’re hung up on definitions. When you read over your work, ask yourself: could an eighth-grader read my blog and clearly understand what I’m writing about? If not, consider simplifying your language. You may find it useful to copy and paste your blog into a website that does Flesch-Kincaid analysis. This test is designed to assess what grade level your writing falls into.

Looking For Another Blog Idea?

Check back in with us daily as we add more tips and ideas to this series. Do you have an idea that you think would make a great legal blog post? Share it with us by emailing [email protected] and it could be featured in this blog series.

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