By now you’ve probably heard how important having a blog is for your business. People buy from people they know, like, and trust. A blog is the perfect way to help people get to know you. But it also serves as a resource for people who are looking for your expertise.
To write a congenial, informative, and entertaining piece of at least 300 words takes time and (possibly) research. While you want your blog to showcase your expertise you also don’t want it to sound like an egotistical diatribe. Citing other credible sources will help back up your argument or assertion, while it also drives additional traffic to your site. This type of in-depth writing takes time and who has that? Use these hacks to get the most done in the least amount of time.
Use What Others SayThis is not a license to plagiarize. You should never use someone else’s words without giving them credit and you should never copy someone else’s blog post in its entirety (even if you give them credit) and slap it on your site without their knowledge. If you want to reference their content, do so with a link or a quote.
Now that the disclaimer is out of the way, there is nothing wrong with elaborating on someone’s post, showing a different side/argument, or going more in depth with the information they presented. You can introduce the piece, provide a link to its inspiration, and then give your take.
This type of post saves time because you didn’t have to think of the content, you’re using someone else’s idea for the basis of yours. (Hollywood does this all the time with spin-offs of popular shows or prequels and sequels to movies). Plus, when you link to others, they are notified and may take a look at your blog. That’s one more set of eyes, which is always a good thing.
Incorporate an Event or Popular Culture ReferenceOne of the easiest ways to get someone’s attention is through channeling a popular show or event. It’s a great way to incorporate something you like personally with your business. It shows a human side and gets people excited about your content. Popular topics from the past include things like “How to run your marketing department like Don Draper” or “What the Walking Dead taught me about teamwork.”
Create a Theme People Can Look Forward ToA popular hack in content idea generation is creating a weekly or monthly theme. This could be a product spotlight every Monday or a question from the “mail bag” every Tuesday. It doesn’t have to be stuffy and doesn’t even have to be relevant to what you sell. If it’s interesting to your audience and personable it can become something you’re known for such as a weekly book review or a weekly Top 10.
Don’t put off writing a blog because you don’t like to write or don’t think you have the time. Some of the most interesting blogs are the ones where people incorporate parts of their lives in their storytelling and those kinds of posts are easy to write because they flow from your experiences and passions.
Commit to a consistent schedule, one you can keep up with, and look for content that inspires you. Keep a folder or electronic file of ideas so you always have topics. And remember you’re not writing for your English teacher. You’re writing to connect. You want to share of yourself so that people will know, like and trust you. This style of writing should be in the way you speak, easy and not forced.
Go ahead. You can even start a sentence with a conjunction.
Christina R. Green teaches small businesses, chambers and associations how to connect through content. Her articles have appeared in the Midwest Society of Association Executives’ Magazine, NTEN.org, AssociationTech, and Socialfish. She is a regular blogger at Frankjkenny.com and the Event Manager’s Blog. She’s a bookish writer on a quest to bring great storytelling to organizations everywhere.