It’s a bit hard to believe it, but I’ve been blogging here at Zen for 10 years. A LOT has changed in the legal industry in ten years, and yet, in many ways, a lot is still the same. If you’d have asked me a decade ago if I still planned to be blogging and sharing my thoughts on the industry in 2019, I’m not sure that I would have said yes. But I’m honored to be a part of this community that allows me to grow, innovate, brainstorm ideas, and develop my own role. And it’s only fitting that ten years into blogging (14 years into my role with the ILN) sees me transitioning into my next exciting challenge – as our Executive Director retires at the end of this year, I’ll be taking over his position, and having the opportunity to share more with you some of the unique opportunities that come along with leading a global organization in the changing legal profession. 
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I am absolutely gobsmacked that we’ve made it to nine years of blogging here at Zen. It’s been an adventure! I never imagined when I first began writing in this little corner of the internet how much joy blogging would bring me, but it’s allowed me to connect with people all over the world, and have some brilliant and interesting conversations with some wonderfully smart and thoughtful people.

In nine years of blogging, we’ve seen:

  • Almost 1,110 posts
  • More than 58,000 page views (WOW!)
  • Visitors from almost 200 countries and six of the seven continents

I’m looking forward to connecting with even more of you in the future, and continuing to deepen the conversations that we’ve had here on Zen.

So what has 9 years in legal blogging taught me? I wanted to share with you 9 lessons about the legal industry that I’ve picked up over the last 13+ years.
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sofiya-levchenko-165628I am a couple of days late with this, due to travel, but nonetheless, happy 8th blogiversary to Zen & the Art of Legal Networking! It’s a bit hard to believe that 8 years ago I wrote my first post (Is the Billable Hour on its Way Out? – spoiler alert, it’s still dragging on), and the last eight years have been quite the roller coaster ride, teaching me an endless number of things about networking, writing, discipline, social media, and so much more.

Some fun stats for you – eight years has brought us:

  • 993 posts (WOW – we’re getting treacherously close to 1,000 blog posts!)
  • 19 topics covered (about seven or eight of those on a very regular basis)
  • Almost 36,500 page views and over 20,000 users
  • Our top audience is from the US, but we also see regular readers from Canada, the UK, India, Australia, Brazil, the Netherlands, Germany, and the Philippines!
  • My all time most popular post, by a landslide, remains last year’s “Instagram: How Lawyers Can Use it & Get Noticed
  • Most of our readers come either from organic searches or directly, but for those that come from social media sites, you’re coming most often from LinkedIn, followed by Twitter

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photo-1451653500993-04a9a6368221Although it’s officially tomorrow, I thought I’d use today to mark Zen & the Art of Legal Networking’s SEVENTH “blogiversary.” It’s hard to believe that it’s been seven years since I started blogging, and even more, that I’m still enjoying it. Here’s a roundup of the anniversary posts that I’ve done:

The 7th anniversary gift is typically copper or wool, and a fun fact for those of you who may not know me well is that I am a very fast crocheter. It’s a skill I learned from my grandmother at a young age, and one I’ve kept up through the years, often making gifts for family and friends. A GREAT way to take advantage of a love of crocheting is by donating your time (and wool!) to some excellent causes, which is something I do on a yearly basis. Two things I do are crocheting scarves for our troops (although it’s often warm during the day where they’re deployed to, the dramatic temperature drops at night, and in the winter, mean it can get a bit cold, so they do actually need scarves) and crocheting hats for cancer patients undergoing chemo who have lost their hair.  Here are the links for those who’d like to use their own knitting or crochet skills to do the same, or who’d like to make a monetary gift to support these awesome causes!

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Today marks six years since Zen & The Art of Legal Networking made its debut in the legal blogging world. In some ways, it feels like it’s been longer than that, while in others, the time has just flown! 

I’ve only ever marked this "blogiversary" three other times – on the second, fourth and fifth anniversaries, when I shared a sort of "state of the blog," things I had learned, and tips for blogging. Blogiversaries, like anniversaries, should be a time of reflection, so today has got me thinking about what I’ve learned in the past year, specifically six things I can share with you from Zen. 

Before I jump into that, however, I’ll tell you another thing I learned today – the traditional gift for a sixth anniversary is candy! For those who know me personally, you’ll know that I have a terrible sweet tooth, so it’s a rather appropriate gift for me. Last year, for the 5th anniversary, I donated trees in honor of wood, and this year, I purchased some candy from my niece’s school fundraising efforts to help her meet her goal!

Lesson One: Blogging is NOT Dead

I’ve heard whispers in a few corners recently that blogging is dead; that no one is really doing it anymore or at least not in the same way that they used to. But I beg to differ. I still see it as a hugely valuable component of any content marketing strategy, and one of the best ways to own your content and engage with readers. 

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