In my first post of the year I made reference to blogging by Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson as depicted on the BBC Television series.
For ease of reference I will repeat what I blogged in that post:-
“… on Sherlock – A Scandal in Belgravia (BBC One) it was revealed that Sherlock Holmes gets most of his clients from Dr. Watson’s blog.
Do people actually read your blog?
Where do you think our clients come from?
I have a website.
In which you enumerate 240 different types of tobacco… no one is reading your website.
I looked at the question of Do Clients search [online] for a Lawyer? in May. I maintain, from experience, that they do. Others disagree. Sherlock Holmes did not disagree with Dr. Watson on this one, other than to point out the exact number of different types of tobacco enumerated on his website (243 not 240)! Indeed Sherlock has now deleted his post on Analysis of Tobacco Ash. Whilst Dr. Watson’s blog goes from strength to strength …”
Paul Hajek also considered this in Sherlock Holmes and The Pressing Case for Blogging: Elementary. Paul says:-
Don’t be boring: if you produce turgid and bombastic blogs you are unlikely to engage your potential market.
I would agree with Paul but I have also been thinking about other lessons for lawyers who blog that can be taken from Holmes and Watson.
The main point on blogging from ‘A Scandal in Belgravia’ was that it was Dr Watson’s Blog and not Sherlock Holmes’ Blog that brought in the clients. They were not interested in 243 different types of tobacco but were interested in how Sherlock Holmes solved cases as described in language they could understand by Dr Watson.
Sherlock Holmes’ blog is perhaps of the boring, turgid and bombastic type highlighted by Paul Hajek, whereas Dr Watson’s blog contains great content which is of interest to potential clients.
Some law blogs are definitely written by lawyers for lawyers. Indeed this blog is. That is intentional on my part given the subject matter of this blog. Other law blogs on specific areas of the law may like to gain a readership from potential clients but find their readership to be on the whole other lawyers. This will probably be due to the technical way in which the posts are written. They are like Sherlock’s tobacco blog which is only really of interest to other tobacco aficionados.
Do lawyers who want to attract clients to their blogs need to think more like Dr Watson and less like Sherlock Holmes? Do they need a Dr Watson to assist them? I am certainly not suggesting they hire a ghost writer, but perhaps there is someone within their law firm who can write for a client audience better than they can. What do you think?