As a marketer, I’ve realized that inspiring B2B firms to start blogging (and keep blogging) can be tough. First, there are the questions. “What is a blog?” “Why should we do this?” “Where do we find ideas for blog posts?” Then, there are the quips. “We don’t have the time.” “No one else in our industry blogs.” Do any of these sound like your business? You’re not alone in feeling hesitant towards blogging, but if you can overcome the initial hurdles, I assure that B2B blogging success lays ahead. This was the case for one of our clients that recently launched a blog and has stayed committed to consistent blogging. The result? A significant improvement in their Web traffic! Our client’s recent blogging success got me thinking. While we provided the tools to guide them towards success (education, training, structure, etc.), there were also several internal factors at play that helped make their blogging endeavors a success.
You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.
This popular saying holds true for blogging. Marketers can provide the tools and training needed for successful blogging, but if your firm lacks the internal manpower and/or enthusiasm to carry out those blogging plans, your attempts may be futile. Here are what I consider to be the “internal essentials” for successful blogging that I have discovered from my own experiences with clients. These are the traits that firms need to ensure blogging success long after their marketing partner hands over the plans.
- A Detailed Editorial Calendar. A detailed editorial calendar and a planned approach to blogging are imperative before getting a blog going. Your marketing partner or provider can often assist you by gathering suggested topics and putting them into an organized calendar with topics for each post, along with assigned dates and authors and calls to action for each post. It is important, though, to have a person within your firm review and approve this information, as they may have better insight as to what is manageable for your firm and what is likely to be accomplished. For example, are there specific deadlines that will impact a person’s (or firm’s) ability to complete a post? Is there a time-sensitive topic that needs to be blogged about ASAP? These are all things that are most successfully managed internally from my experience.
- A Blogging Champion. This is possibly the most important component of blogging success, aside from the actual content, of course! Having one person on your staff who will champion the blogging efforts and logistics is crucial for your firm’s blogging success. Ideally, this person will be responsible for executing the plan described above. They should coordinate the editorial calendar, ensuring that assigned bloggers are on target to complete their posts as scheduled. Ultimately, their goal is to ensure that the blogging machine runs smoothly and has enough solid content to keep it going. The blogging champion should also support the team by proofreading posts, providing feedback to bloggers, and sharing blog posts on social media to increase visibility.
- Passion and Enthusiasm. While having a blogging champion is an important element of blogging success, that person cannot be expected to carry the weight of the entire team. That is why it’s essential that both blogging staff and upper management have enthusiasm for blogging. The entire team should be excited not just about the process, but also about the results it can create for the business. Without buy-in from upper level management and the individuals writing the blog posts, it can be hard to make a blog take flight. The more that a firm’s enthusiasm and passion for their blog grows, the more they will see their blog following grow!
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