Cheryl Niemeier is Director of Library Services at Bose McKinney & Evans LLP
Apparently, I am blazing a new trail as seemingly the first and only law librarian who is officially blogging on their firm’s blog page! “That’s huge!” said Greg Lambert of 3 Geeks and a Law Blog when he congratulated me on this new responsibility. The news also prompted Steve Lastres to ask me to write this guest blogger post describing the value proposition of law librarians blogging.
As I view it, my blogging on the firm’s blog pages has a three-pronged value proposition each serving a different purpose.
It provides the marketing department with fresh, and highly relevant content that generates a large number of new visitors to our Website.
The initial post on my firm’s Bose News Law Blog promoting my Res Gestae article generated a very large number of views – more views in fact than any other posts on any of our blog posts to date. Subsequent posts of mine have also generated many views, which in turn have led to additional visits to our other blog articles and the firm’s Website pages. Clearly, there is value in non-attorney posts on a law firm’s page; it expands the reach of the firm’s web site to a wider audience. Visitor’s to our site share our content via their own blogs, Twitter, or LinkedIn pages, further expanding our reach and enhancing the Firm’s marketing efforts.
It enhances the exchange of knowledge by helping us all stay current via sharing of ideas, tips, and experiences.
Blogging via the firm’s blog helps improve the flow of knowledge within and outside of the organization. Additionally, the mere act of writing causes us to learn new things as we do the research to write the blog posts.
It raises the visibility of law librarians in their firms and sharpens the library’s role as a provider of knowledge and information.
Furthermore, it advances the value of librarians in the larger legal profession, as Steve Lastres puts it “by transforming us into value-adding knowledge professionals.”
Of course, becoming a successful blogger does not happen overnight. In my case, it all began a number of years ago when I used a blog platform to publish the library’s internal newsletter, and eventually made that same newsletter blog available to the public. Guest blogging soon followed expanding my footprint. Involvement in both legal and law library professional associations and strategic use of LinkedIn and Twitter continued to help me build an audience of followers. From there, contributing articles to law library trade publications and speaking at law library conferences further advanced my visibility. More importantly, however, my offer to write for and speak at legal industry gatherings was ultimately the feather in the cap that helped me reach beyond the law library population and speak to the very end users who utilize our professional information seeking services – attorneys.