There are consultants, professionals, pundits, naysayers, experts and commentators out there that tell you to hire a writer leaving you to get on with the important stuff.
Throw some budget at a writer, give them a few ideas, perhaps share blogs you like and those of your competitors and the magic will happen.
It is however someone else’s voice.
YOUR AUDIENCE WANTS YOU
Would you rather your customers hear you and your valued opinion verbatim, or through a filter?
Yes, large scale organisations are at times terrified of the latter, but don’t take me out of context – I’m not suggesting you just ad-lib direct to print here – I’m suggesting you underpin the value of the written piece by being the foundation at its core.
No matter how well you prepare your hired writer their prose and slant will never be on your level. Sure they may write better than you, after all that English Language PhD adorns their study wall – but there’s more to writing than putting. Your full stops in the right place.
Not that I’m undermining a degree in the languages. In fact we have a few great writers on our team, but they are never tasked with writing my copy for me.
Thing is, writing your own content is important and no matter your skillset should be part of your business strategy.
IF YOU’RE UNSURE – PROOF IT
Writing your own copy doesn’t stop you getting someone who is perhaps stronger in the art of grammar to proof and vet the material you’re putting out.
In fact we should all get someone else to read and validate our writing, even professional writers aren’t arrogant enough to think done-is-perfect. Click to publish.
You will have an employee, a team member, friend or even counterpart who will gladly glance over your work and highlight any quibbles that you may not be aware of.
Failing that there are proof-readers galore on websites such as “People Per Hour“, who will happily take your small change, in exchange for their time to read over your document.
I’d still suggest the value here is not in the legibility, the substance is worth ten-fold a misplaced apostrophe!
Just avoid exclamation marks…
Hold your horses Ed, I hear you saying, “your agency does this stuff”!
True enough; part of our offering is research, development and promotion of content – we do the full Content Marketing shebang.
So I was lying?
Well – not a big fat ugly go straight to jail, do-not-pass-go, jail term at least. Perhaps a little white number that I’m going to explain away.
You are, and need to believe that you’re a great author for your content. You know what makes your business tick and I’m assuming you’ve got a good handle on what your customers’ want.
Yes we can do that too – but we’d need to ask you and your staff questions, conduct research and perhaps even interview your customers. And yes, if you’re looking to do a bigger content piece, more than a straightforward blog, then we come in to our own. We’re a great agency to add a little zing, panache, style and the amplification your story deserves.
Sorry, I briefly stepped on the elevator there.
We’re talking about blogging here.
THE BLOGGING TIPS TO LIVE BY
If blogging really is that critical and you should be writing, what are some solid ground rules to write by?
Be consistent – set yourself a schedule and stick to it, your readers will appreciate you for it.
If you can write once a day then fantastic but once a week is more realistic for most of us. Don’t leave your blogging to chance or a whim. If you’re looking to build an audience and traffic over time, consistency is the key. Once a month will rarely suffice.
Publishing is just the start – you need to promote your articles.
In fact writing and research is no more than 20% of the workload, 80% of your time should be spent promoting and marketing your latest blog.
Social Media is your friend here, if you struggle to gain traction with your own following then a little budget at native ads can be a quick route to exposure.
Furthermore a solid outreach strategy will help you build relationships with like-minded bloggers and professionals, helping amplify your work further.
Build an audience of emails – worry less about organic traffic.
If you’re writing is worth reading, as it should be, then people will want to keep abreast of your latest piece.
A newsletter might not be the most on-trend hoip n’ sexy marketing tool, but newsletters are powerful tools nonetheless.
Building your audience via email collection means a targeted list of eyes to read, digest and enjoy your work. Your newsletter represents a captive audience who aren’t shaken by the latest Google update or your lack of advertising budget.
Extra salt/sugar/drizzle – add value with a free download and really boost those email subscriber rates.
Compliment your blog with free additional, supporting material that adds additional value and gives your readers further reason to subscribe.
AUTHENTICITY CONQUERS ALL
Writing blogs should always be founded in authenticity and genuine, first-hand experience of the subject matter at hand.
You can hire bloggers and writers to do that if you’re too busy, but making writing part of your business agenda is far more rewarding to your customers and in the long term, to you too.
That sounds like a win-win to me.
Give it a try, heck if you want an eye cast over your musings tweet me and I’ll take a look, I love reading interesting articles!
PS: WRITER’S BLOCK?
“Hold on Ed” I hear you cry, but where to start?
I’m still here and I wrote this adventurous list of 266 blog post ideas, not to be confused with a bucket list for you to peruse, steal and run with.