We started our blog five years ago to not only give a face to our brand and showcase some of the exceptional talent we have, but to provide useful, thought provoking content for our teams, clients and potential customers to read.
Our operations team are the ones with that expert knowledge but having to write about it can often bring about nothing short of a cold sweat. If writing doesn’t come naturally to you it can feel like a hard task but we all have the ability to uncover those pearls of wisdom, share best practice and raise those questions that really make others think.
November is National Blog Posting month – there really is a national occasion for everything these days – so here are the top tips I’ve shared with my team to help them get started when I say those dreaded words to them:
- Who is your audience? Who are you trying to appeal to? Are you addressing a commonly raised question you’ve heard from your colleagues or your customers, or is it a hot topic that would interest industry experts? Once you’ve identified that you can target your content to them
- You have your idea but what about it will be of interest to your chosen audience? Your colleagues might like a ‘how-to’ style that shares best practice and gives them ideas, while your customers might prefer a thought provoking piece that gets them thinking about how they could improve the way they do things
- Once you’ve established these points, write down the key messages you want to get across and prioritise them in order of importance
- Your heading should be descriptive, telling the reader what they’re going to read about. This will also get you better traction when people are searching using particular key words
- Your opening paragraph is what’s going to draw the reader in and hopefully keep them reading, so make it good – what about your idea would hook you? What’s the key message?
- Keep the blog short, between 200-500 words and use simple English, avoiding jargon that people might not understand
- Make your final paragraph as good as your first. Whether it’s a call to action or a reiteration of that key message, make sure you don’t end too abruptly.
If it’s an interesting topic to you, there will always be someone else who wants to read about it. Keep it topical, keep it simple and give it a go. We’ve all got a blog in us.
Julia Orr is head of communications at Mitie Client Services.