Get tips on how to come up with and develop the idea for your company's blog.
- [Instructor] Many companies have thought about blogging but don't know where to begin. Others may have tried it and let their blog fade away and now wanna give it another shot. Regardless of where you stand, a business blog needs a big idea that you can sustain over time. Ask yourself: what's the purpose of your blog? That is, what do you want it to accomplish for your business? To find out, talk to your employees to see what they think. You could conduct a survey or focus groups or have a series of short and focused brainstorm meetings.
However, when you plan your brainstorm, be sure to involve more than just your marketing and communications teams. Include: customer service, sales, finance, operations, IT, really any department with stories to tell. One way to prepare for your brainstorm is to create a brief outline of what you're looking for and then send it to people in advance. You should also include an agenda and keep the meeting to around 30 or 40 minutes so it stays on track.
Avoid the typical brainstorm format with lots of people sitting around a big table shouting ideas, not really listening, and pasting a whole bunch of Post-It notes on the wall. Sure, that type of meeting gives you some creative thinking but it's often unfocused and the extroverts overshadow the quieter folks whose ideas are unheard or unsaid. A better way is to provide an atmosphere where everyone is encouraged to contribute. Here's how: start your meeting with a quick overview of why you're there and the ground rules.
Break people into teams of four. Teams should have reps from various departments to encourage a diversity of thought. One person on each team becomes the facilitator who acts like an orchestra conductor, asking questions, and making sure everyone has a turn to talk. After a few minutes, you'll notice the group gravitates to one idea and it's the facilitator's job to help them build and refine it. At the 15 or 20 minute mark, when the idea's taking shape, the facilitator recaps the idea and then draws a T on a large piece of paper.
The facilitator then writes the title of your group's idea at the top of the T. On the left side, they write down the top three bullets describing what it is. And on the right they draw a quick visual doodle of the idea. Then each group takes a few minutes to present their idea to the rest of the team. Of course, someone has to make the final decision. But this brainstorm format gives you a quick and easy way to develop a range of creative ideas.
People feel a connection to the process and it's a great way to build interest for your blog.
- What blogging means today
- Defining goals for your blog
- Designing your blog
- Setting up your workflow and approvals process
- Establishing editorial guidelines
- Writing and optimizing your posts
- Adjusting your multimedia content mix
- Finding guest bloggers
- Promoting your blog on social media