You’re a busy CEO wearing many hats and with not enough hours in the day. As the founder of a small business startup, you know that writing your own thought-leadership blog will bring fresh content, a leadership perspective, greater transparency and more customers to your door.
But, as with most decisions you make, you have to decide whether to write your own blog or to outsource it. Writing it yourself requires massive amounts of time – time that you can better spend working on your core talents to move the business forward. Outsourcing your blog to a ghost writer may result in loss of authenticity – how would your customers feel when they find out you don’t write your own blog?
Hang on though; corporate blogging is not an either-or dilemma. There’s a way to have your cake and eat it too. You can write your own blog yet not have to spend hours or days on it. In fact you can spend as little as 5 minutes a week on your blog and still remain authentic.
First you find a content team or a professional corporate blogger who understands your industry and company. Ask to see samples of blogs written for your industry. Analyze the writing style to see which sample closely matches your own writing style.
Second, decide on content themes, frequency, goals, objectives and blog direction. For a thought-leadership blog, your typical goals would be to build industry knowledge and be a leading thinker in your business. Any good content marketing agency will be able to guide you on frequency and content themes for your blog based on your company, its products/services, your customer’s expectations and your industry. A stellar agency will even build your editorial calendar for you so you always know which topics to tackle next.
Once you know your content theme for each week, you simply speak into a voice recorder and talk as though you are dictating your blog post. (Hint: Use your smartphone’s built in voice recorder or use a dictation app.) You can pause and re-do as many times as you want. You’ll find yourself getting better with practice. Clarity comes from doing – and the more you record your thoughts, the clearer they will become. Within a few days you should be able to summarize the content of your blog post within 5 minutes worth of audio.
Next you send your MP3 recording to your outsourced content team. They will then transcribe your audio and add the bells and whistles to your skeletal blog post. A great content team will write your post optimized for the web. They will typically write your post in small, easy to read paragraphs, add hyperlinks to URLs or resources you mention, ensure your keywords appear naturally, add relevant image(s), add sub-headings if appropriate and write a click-worthy headline.
Then they will save your post to your WordPress blog as a draft where, if you like, you can preview, edit or publish the blog post.
Some bloggers will also offer to promote your blog post for you but this usually entails an added cost. You may also want to decide who will be answering comments on your blog post.
Bonus Tip: Once you’ve built up a database of blog posts, your content team should be able to re-purpose those posts and get more mileage from them. For example, they could put together an e-book compiled from your posts on a particular topic. Or maybe they could turn one of your posts into an infographic if you believe your readers like visual data. Or perhaps they could help you put together a slide deck and upload it to SlideShare for even more visibility across channels.
Extra Bonus Tip: If you have some more spare time, you can even record more than one blog post at a time. Or if you have multiple inter-connected ideas, your corporate blogger should be able to fashion two or more blog posts from your audio, thus saving you even more time.
For an example of a recorded corporate blog in action, check out the blog of CEO Bill Marriott.
Now you don’t have to slave over blog content creation for hours or days. You can simply dictate your blog post while on the treadmill, taking a walk, in between meetings, etc without ever having to worry about authenticity, time management or relationship building. Recording your blog posts frees up your time so that, as an entrepreneur, you can focus on doing what you do best!