How to Write for the Non-Legal Mind
You can be the most brilliant attorney in the world but if no one understands what you have to say, then what’s the point?
The law is complex, and many attorneys struggle mightily with developing legal-based content that speaks to their target market because of this complexity. But if you are not able to make your blog posts or other content accessible to your audience, you are failing at legal marketing.
Here are some tips on how to simplify complex legal subjects and increase comprehension among your readers:
Explain the obvious. What is often obvious to you as a practicing attorney is rarely obvious to your reader. Take a step back and examine your writing from the prospective of a novice or ask a non-attorney friend to do it for you.
Use analogies. Using well-known analogies to explain intricate concepts is a good path to simplifying complex subject matter.
Be specific. Take the time to explain the specifics of a case or a concept to promote understanding. Review your writing for vagueness, and eliminate it wherever you find it. Never assume that your reader shares the same background or level of legal knowledge that you do unless you are writing for other attorneys.
Use stories. Illustrate your posts and newsletter articles with stories (leaving out the names to protect privacy, of course). Everybody loves a good story because it places them immediately in the subject’s shoes. Your aim is to evoke an emotional response, which encourages engagement between you and your audience.
Jettison the jargon. Ask someone who fits your target audience profile to review your writing to ensure it is accessible. Doing this can help you eliminate words that may be commonplace to you, but are confusing to the layman. If you must use a legal term, be sure you explain it.