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  • Writer's picturePaul Richardson

Why You Should Blog Like It’s 1997

Watching the news can make you feel like the world is ending, which can make you want to binge-watch your way into a cocoon of nostalgia for seemingly more innocent times, but that is not why you should blog like it’s 1997. Last summer, Dianna Gunn of Themeisle published a post on the history of blogging, presumably purely for antiquarian purposes, but a successful content marketer reading the post cannot help but notice that, while fads come and go, the original principles of blogging are worth keeping. The key to writing a successful blog is not to follow the latest trends, but rather to communicate with readers, other websites, and search engines.

Anatomy of a Classic Blog

The 1990s websites now considered to be the original blogs were called “personal pages” or “online journals.” (The term “weblog” and its more concise cousin “blog” debuted in 1997 and 1999, respectively.) Their authors used them to post monthly, weekly, or daily news updates about their personal and professional lives and share their opinions with friends they knew from their offline lives, as well as to a new social circle of online readers, many of whom would contact the authors by email or by commenting on the blog, often going on to form lasting friendships. The original blogs were not commercial; in fact, Heather Armstrong famously got fired as a punishment for writing about her job on her blog. Despite that, in the days before Google and before SEO, blogs were a form of recreation instead of a marketing tool, there are several important ways in which today’s law firm blogs ought to aspire to the ideals of the proto-blogs on the 1990s.

· Their authors treated them like year-round Christmas letter, outlining before writing and proofreading before publishing, with the idea that readers would read them all the way through.

· They linked to pages that the authors genuinely wanted their audiences to read.

· While the purpose of the blogs was to express the authors’ individual views, old school blogs were not a venue for humblebragging or self-promotion. Their authors showed their knowledge by writing about the subjects on which they were professional or amateur experts.

The More Things Change, the More They Stay the Same

Today, 85 percent of B2C (business to customer) businesses have blogs. Besides the fact that businesses have now entered the blogging arena, the most important differences between the early days of blogging and today have more to do with form instead of content. It is now easy for any website to incorporate graphics and video, and mobile devices make up an enormous part of web traffic, but this does not affect the written text of your blog. Despite all the changes in SEO, search engines today still prioritize idiomatically written, informative content and meaningful links. The other bells and whistle that have become part of user experience are just decoration; the purpose of your blog is to show your expertise.

Hire Legal Content Writers

Now that blogs have gone professional, you can hire professional bloggers to write your blog content. You can count on Law Blog Writers to compose blog posts for your law firm’s website that will be as timeless as the classic old school blogs.


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