By Princess Jones
Business blogging can be your direct line to your customers and partners. It can affect the search engine rankings of your company’s website. It can be a tool to teach your community. It can also be just another thing on your to-do list that never quite gets done. When I talk to clients about business blogging, their biggest complaint is that they just don’t have enough time to get it done. That’s an understandable problem. After all, your priority is running your business, not writing about it. So how do you get great blog content without writing it yourself? These blogging shortcuts will help.
1. Hire Someone
The easiest way to get content for your website, without making it for yourself, is to hire someone to do it for you. Depending on your budget and resources, you can go with a freelancer or a content company. You can order content in batches and post at your own pace.
Be sure to hire someone with a voice that matches your company’s style. Also, it’s important to know whether you will come up with the blogging topics or if they will do that on their own. And don’t forget to ask whether they will provide photos with their posts or if that’s something you’ll need to do.
2. Share the Job with Your Staff
Company blogging doesn’t just have to be the responsibility of the owner. When you share it with your staff, you can offset content creation costs in a big way. Whether you require blogging as a part of the job description or you offer perks like free meals or work-from-home days, consider instituting a blogging policy for your workers. As for editing, you can do that yourself or hire an outside editor to vet the pots before they go up.
Content that comes from people who work directly with your brand can be so much more authentic than something created from an outside source. Let’s say you own a doughnut shop and you would like to have a new post up every week. You write something once a month and the other three come from staff members. One of your shift managers can write about the recent fundraiser your business hosted in your shop. If one of your workers came up with a new flavor, they could write about what inspired them. And when you hire on a new employee, have them answer a few fun questions and put that on the blog, too.
3. Inspire Your Customers to Do It
What’s better than a rave review on Yelp, Amazon, or Google? A well written blog testimonial from a customer. If your product is good enough to inspire your current customers to write about it, that’s saying a lot to potential customers. However, it’s a lot harder to get customers to write blog post for you. Here are some options:
- Post (good) emails or messages that come in from customers
- Create a hashtag for your product and encourage customers to post photos of their products using it. Then create roundups of them into posts.
- Hold a contest and post entries. To use the doughnut shop example from above, you could ask your customers to describe the taste of their favorite flavor of doughnut and post a roundup of the best ones. The winner gets a coupon for a free dozen.
4. Avoid Writing Altogether
Let’s say you don’t have the resources to outsource your blog posts. You can still save yourself some time by video blogging instead. This is especially helpful for small business owners who aren’t natural writers or don’t count grammar as one of their top skills. Video engagement can actually be even higher than for standard blog posts.
Camera shy? Podcasting is also an option when you’re more of a talker than a writer. Instead of writing down your thoughts, you can just speak them into a microphone and then upload them to your blog. Keep in mind that podcasting is still niche content so you may have less engagement with it.