My post: The Case for Shorter Blog Posts received a lot of attention. I rarely receive comments, but for this post two readers commented. I rarely receive emails, but I received several including one arguing that I over generalized. Several twitter followers tweeted with one suggesting that he used to believe shorter blog posts made sense, but now he was not sure.

I went back and read a blog my friend Kevin O’Keefe posted five years ago: Short blog posts best for your law blog? Kevin concluded:

Bottom line, do what you believe is working. In the case of law blogs, depending on your audience, detailed legal analysis requiring a little length, may be needed.

Good thought, but go further and ask yourself why you believe what you are doing is working.

I did some further research and found a Copyblogger blog titled: Do Long Blog Posts Scare Away Readers? In the post the writer suggests:

A long post isn’t wrong. A short post isn’t wrong. In fact, the length of a post has nothing to do with how good or bad it is.

Here’s what matters:

  1. Writing something that’s interesting
  2. Taking out everything that’s not interesting

I would have added to each point: …to your targeted reader

Then I read a Copyblogger blog that was posted the next day, titled: How to Write With a Knife. I thought the writer made a really main point:

Write for yourself, edit for your readers

As you may know, I wrote a monthly column for Roads & Bridges magazine for 25 years. Every month my column was one page, two columns and never more than 675 words. Each month I wrote for myself and then spent time editing to get the column down to 675 words so it would fit on that one single page. I have no way of judging, but I strongly believe my construction contractor readers did not want to read more than one page.

So, the first task is to determine who your readers are. You are my readers. I believe you do not have much time to read my blog. I believe you enjoy a story, but you want something practical that you can use in your practice and/or share with colleagues and discuss. I try to give you short sentences, short paragraphs and short blog posts with at least one idea you can implement. No one has ever told me they prefer that I provide more detail.

Suppose your readers are in-house lawyer and businessmen and women. How much time do you believe they want to spend reading your blog? Have any of your readers ask for more detail? If they want more, you can give it to them with a link in the shorter blog to a more detailed analysis.