So, you wanna start a corporate blog
Cool…but why? I love blogging. I love to write and share my thoughts…but not everyone does. Let’s be completely honest: writing and keeping any blog relevant and ripe with fresh postings is a lot work. Finding the time and, more importantly, the ideas to write about is often a challenge for anyone—even a seasoned writer.
If you want to start a corporate blog, you have to ask yourself a couple of hard questions before you get started.
1) What is your motivation for wanting a corporate blog? Please don’t say ‘everyone else is doing it!’ That’s not reason enough. There are thousands—millions—of corporate or organizational blogs out there. Most of them started off strong then faltered as people became busy or disinterested. It’s the truth. If you start a blog for your organization, it needs to be tightly connected to the business goals of your organization. If building your brand is a necessary piece to achieving your objectives, then think about a blog. If you want to do it because your competition is doing it and think you can pay a college student $50 a post and get results, you’re not ready.
2) Do you have people and a plan? Blogging is like a marathon. A lot of people start strong—posting weekly with fresh, interesting content…then after three months they start posting sporadically, maybe every so often, with no real plan behind the posts. After about six to eight months, it’s a ghost town. No new content. And it happens, not because people don’t want to, but the core business takes priority and that means sometimes things fall to the wayside. That’s why you need people who are willing and able to write and a plan to get your content in advance. Truthfully, you should be at least six posts ahead of schedule. Lots of work at the start, but well worth it when things are absolutely crazy and you can just post. Of course, no schedule is ever etched in stone, so things can change, but if you have your posts in advance, it takes the pressure off.
3) Are you willing to be yourself? Who is authoring your posts? Is it the CEO or is it an unknown person? Either is fine, it just means how you approach your writing would be different. Blog postings aren’t simply about rehashing what’s on your corporate site. It’s about getting into the why of what your organization does. It’s about moving past just stating facts and figures and giving readers a look into the background of why you do what you do. Readers want to know who you are. They are interested in how you—or your organization—makes the decisions that impact them. Give them the insight. Let them get to know you in a fresh way.
If you answered ‘yes’ to all three questions, you may be ready for a blog! Next steps: create your plan, find the people and start writing.