FAQs: Can Lawyers Use AI-Generated Content for Marketing?

Right now, it’s nearly impossible to have a discussion about digital marketing without mentioning ChatGPT or AI generally. The technology is undoubtedly amazing; it’s capable of answering questions, creating a business plan, and even writing essays. One of the most obvious potential use cases for the newest generation of AI tools is content creation – but is it a good idea to use it? Let’s dig in and see what the issues are….

Can I Post AI-Generated Content on My Website?

Yes, you can. That said , the last thing you should do is post AI-generated content on your legal site without significant oversight and review. On February 8, 2023, Google clarified its position on AI-generated content. In short, it said that using AI-generated content is not against its guidelines. Like other forms of content, it will rank well if it is helpful for people searching for information. Additionally, if you use AI to create content in an attempt to “game” SEO, your site will likely be penalized.

Should I Use AI Content?

As the old adage goes, just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should. If your site deals with topics that can affect your money or your life (YMYL, in Google’s parlance), it will scrutinize your site’s content more closely. Specifically, it will look closely for signals that demonstrate experience, expertise, authority, and trustworthiness (E-E-A-T).

YMYL sites include sites that relate to topics like medicine, finance, and law. As a result, it’s critical for lawyers to ensure that the content on their site is accurate, helpful, and in compliance with the rules of professional conduct. If you are using AI to generate content, it’s imperative that you (or someone with the necessary expertise) review every word of it before you post it on your website. At that point, it becomes a legitimate question as to whether using AI to create long-form legal content is truly more efficient than human writing.

If you need 100-word product descriptions for kitchen appliances, you’re likely fine to use AI to generate them and post them with a cursory review. If you are creating long-form content on complicated legal topics, you probably want to have more human involvement and oversight in content creation.

How Can AI Help in the Content Creation Process?

That said, there are certainly ways in which AI tools can help content creators make the process more efficient. Some of the ways that you can use AI to help in content creation ethically and without creating more work include:

  • Blog topic ideation
  • Client persona identification
  • Keyword research
  • Content outlining
  • Basic legal research
  • Getting over writer’s block

Is AI-Content Well-Written?

Whether you think AI-generated content is well-written depends on what you believe makes content “good.” To many people, it’s just too generic and “clean” to qualify as good content. The reality is that law firms and other professional service providers have a brand identity that they want their content to reflect, and content generated by artificial intelligence lacks the personality that achieves that goal.

Is AI-Content Bar-Compliant?

There is no guarantee that the content created by AI will be compliant with the rules of your state bar. It may make statements that inadvertently guarantee a favorable outcome, it may suggest that you are a “specialist” or an “expert,” and it may even provide incorrect information. Furthermore, it’s possible that some state bars may hold the position that using AI-generated content without oversight is, per se, a violation of the rules of professional conduct. 

In Conclusion…

If you are a law firm or a digital marketing agency that works with law firms, AI can certainly help you in your efforts. That said, you should be certain that there is a significant amount of expert oversight in the process. Using AI to mass-produce content and posting without review can land you in hot water with Google and even your state bar.

Expand Your Site’s Reach by Exploring Your Content Options

Your law firm’s website plays an important role in terms of marketing and reaching your target audience – and your content matters. Generating relevant and compelling content is the name of the game, but if you find yourself at a loss when it comes to choosing inspiring topics that resonate with your widest potential audience, you are not alone. Many firms find themselves recycling the same, tired titles time and time again, but you can do better, and we have some helpful hints to get you started. 

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What Is Content Readability and Who Defines It?

Most of us think something is readable if we enjoy it. We want a piece to have a beginning, middle, and end, preferably in that order. If it’s fictional, we want it to be about people we care about or like. Sometimes, it’s a book you just happen to come across or a title or a cover that drew you in, and you couldn’t leave till you finished the story. Sometimes, it’s something so powerful that you simply can’t let it go. However, these qualities aren’t the only kinds of readability.

When it comes to getting your law firm website to rank, content readability is an important factor. Search engines analyze readability and reward it. In other words, they rank (and put at the top of the SERPs) the articles that have the features the engine thinks will make a reader stick to the end. Aside from all the other things the contributed to readability, being current and up-to-date is one of the most important factors. Keeping your firm’s website current and up-to-date with content that people want to read will go a long way to keeping you high on that first results page.

Do We Know It When We See It?

One of the ways a search engine defines readability is by determining how long a reader stays in place before sliding on to the next result. It doesn’t just matter how many people click on your page; it matters how long they stay after they get there. There are ways to encourage them to stick around, such as with video and audio content and eye-catching graphics. Paying attention to these things takes more time than simply reading – or not reading – whatever copy you’ve offered. Still, words are usually far less expensive than sound, pictures, and graphics, so it is very much worth your time to offer the best and most readable content you can provide.

Key Readability Factors

Factors that Google will focus on when deciding the readability of your page include:

Sentence Length & Variety

You want short sentences but with some variation in their length and style. Avoid unnecessary or overly formal words. Additionally, it’s better not to crowd your text with words like “actually” and “usually,” which give you no value for the space. Avoid using too many adjectives and consider breaking up long, complicated sentences.

Structure & Style

Again, short sentences are vital. Each sentence should have a subject and a verb – preferably in that order. Make sure to include graphics and video here as well. They are supporting tools and hold your visitors. Avoid fussy fonts.

Paragraph Length and Formatting

Use short paragraphs made up of short sentences. Readable paragraphs are usually 5 or 6 lines long. Use a title and subtitles. Bullet points are your best friends, and you should always try to include at least one. Don’t forget to include keywords. You’ll want to put them in subtitles as well as in your paragraphs and try to repeat them without sounding like you’re just adding keywords.

Make It Work for You

All of these factors and more can make your website attractive and engaging to readers. You can contact us to help you provide the most readable copy for your website. We will even provide a free sample, marketing written expressly for you to help you decide how best to move forward with your legal content.

Content Marketing Considerations for Law Firms

ipad-605440_1920Content marketing is the prhttp://www.lexiconlegalcontent.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=782&action=editocess of creating custom content and sharing it with your potential clients in order to drive favorable consumer action. For a basic example, consider a blog post informing people of the serious consequences associated with a DUI arrest – by creating and distributing this custom content throughout the internet, you hopefully will reach people in this situation who are seeking legal representation.

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