A new year brings lots of new ideas, tools and trends to get “up to speed” on. Everyone runs out of time to get proficient on new tools or programs, so we rely on others for help. Blogs help provide easily digestible nuggets of information to help inform and teach, like Jackie’s Pinterest post last week. Is your organization teaching through blog posts? Are you new to blogging? Did you let blogging go by the wayside during the holidays? Take a little time today and work out an unfailable blog strategy and inspiration for 2012.
First write down how often you want to post; daily, weekly, monthly? This schedule helps determine a writing schedule. Then look at the calendar, are there industry events/tradeshows which may provide content? Schedule which posts and topics you can do. Are there gaps? Those might best be filled in with employees, customers, industry leaders who can write on the posts you need filled. You don’t need to do it all; utilize company resources to offer a 360° view of your organization to blog readers.
Contact identifiable stakeholders, maybe the shipping department manager can write a post on how to package your product for shipping. The Director of Nurses can write about the reduction in trauma cases in the ER and the education initiatives that are underway within the department. Make it easy for them. Suggest a topic. Recycle ideas. Ask them to write about something that is part of their job and something they already care about. Never make a guest contributor research and edit new ideas/concepts. That’s unfair. Save the research intensive posts for someone who has that as part of their job. Give a word count and a clear deadline. When the project is vague, the writer will be less likely to commit to or complete content.
Determine the process for submission. Make sure your blog post contributor knows their deadline at least 2 weeks in advance. Writing or editing a post for the night before publication almost always ends in errors. As editor, give yourself enough time to review and edit the post from a guest blogger to ensure it conveys your corporate message appropriately.
Structure – How should blog posts look? How many words, images, bullets, sub headings, etc. Who optimizes the post for keywords and SEO?
Tone – What is the tone and goal of the blog? Give a quick sentence or two to help writers understand.
Links – Can they link out to any site? Who checks the links to make sure they work?
Thank your contributors when they write a blog post. Tell the president who your best contributors are inside of the company. Compliment your vendors/partners and customers who contribute. Also feel free to contact HR and let the appropriate person know the employee went outside of a job description to help marketing, it is great for personnel files and LinkedIn profiles.
PS. The Secret to Good Blogs
Good bloggers may come from unlikely places. Good posts don’t always come from the marketing department.
A good marketer looks at internal resources as part of the marketing team to help propel sales.
Does this approach to blogging planning help you determine your next steps? Work your plan and give it time and start analyzing results. Simply start.