Blogging for business is a core element of every marketing plan. Yet many of the businesses we meet find writing content hard. It’s easy enough to set up a blog and start with one article, but then it becomes tough to keep going. There are three common problems which get in the way:
- Other priorities
- Unclear branding
- Time management – routine
Blogging as a priority
Firstly, it’s hard to manage your priorities; it comes down to how highly you value blogging and how it fits with the rest of your marketing. If you’re comparing it against client delivery work, we all know which has to be done first. However, if you’re publishing a regular newsletter, it’s important to have new articles ready every week for your readers to land on and learn from. Email combined with blogging becomes an essential foundation block for staying in touch with your prospects – and these give you greater opportunity for communicating your expertise, while also being less risky than social media because you don’t own those platforms.
Reflecting your brand
Secondly, your blogging may be affected by how much work you’ve put into your brand. If your values are clear, it becomes easier to plan themes and develop content based on the brand character you’re creating. However, you may still be affected by the very common fears: how to avoid feeling like you’re sharing sub-standard content or copy-cat content because there’s so much already out there. If you’re seeing similar content go out from your industry or your competitors, think about how to make it your own version – then it won’t feel like your seven-hundred word article pales into insignificance. Instead, your brand personality can shine through.
Blogging as a consistent routine
Thirdly, your challenges with blogging may be more down to struggles with your routine. We’ve done it here too: you set out wanting to publish a weekly article, then suddenly, three or four weeks slip by and you end up dropping back to monthly blogging. Worse, you feel the need to re-invigorate the blog by starting again – and this cycle of starting and re-starting can be exhausting for a small team. Especially when you’re relying on the people in the team to come up with ideas and write articles alongside their day job.
To overcome these issues, we’ve got three tried and tested approaches for you to keep the inspiration flowing and deliver regular blog articles:
Apply teamwork for blog and content ideas
Get several team mates into a room once a month – but beware to set it up to gain the most from these meetings. They might feel too busy to fit in a two-to three-hour meeting to discuss marketing. So you’ll need a facilitator to keep the session lively and creative. Then create an action plan so you know who is tackling each article. Everyone sharing the load means you’ll get different styles of writing, so it may be worth having a single editor to check them and produce the final blogs.
Create a central role for a copywriting enthusiast
Input from clients is key, so another solution is to give the blog writing to someone who is already in touch with clients regularly in their job. You may need to reduce their other workload so they can spend enough hours working on the blogs. This may work well for a customer service team member, an office manager or executive assistant who is keen to do more writing. They may need some basic training, however, there are courses available with the DMA, the CIPR or information on Google, LinkedIn, Hubspot and the Digital Marketer website.
Outsource your blogging and copywriting
Hiring a part-time marketing person or outsourcing the blogs to a copywriting agency gets you a dedicated resource for your articles. To create effective content for you, they’ll still need support from your customer-facing teams. Their role will include brainstorming the ideas, gathering the detailed information for the content and then developing technically correct blogs and social media content. It’s important that you introduce them to the team and ensure people are willing to help them out.
No matter which option you choose to re-inspire your blogging, one secret to success is being connected to what your existing clients think, feel and ask when they’re using your services. Blog ideas become plentiful when you have a greater understanding of what they need from you and what conversations they’re having with your teams. What do you think? Have you already answered the top ten most-asked questions in your blogs?