The planning and execution of a corporate blog is a highly ambitious project that is not to be taken lightly. Without the right strategy, expertise and know-how, a blog will probably fail to meet its objectives over time. It takes quite some time, energy and financial resources to launch a blog platform and keep it going. How can you make sure that this investment contributes to business goals?
A professional corporate blog is often the hub for a wider content marketing campaign. A successful launch of such a platform requires a high degree of an organisation and planning. Without a defined strategy, setting up a blog will be led simply by following one’s gut feeling and chances are high that the blog will not have a positive effect on the company’s objectives. This can be due to several reasons: a poor definition of the target audience, inadequate technique, inappropriate topics, unsuitable or poor content.
It all starts with research and planning
The easiest and fastest way to turn a blog into a failure is by diving straight in and waiting to see what happens. A company needs to consider why exactly it wants to take this step and what business goals it should support. Other questions that need to be answered during the content strategy phase include:
- Who is our target audience?
- What are our key messages and narratives?
- What do we want content to accomplish (e.g. change perceptions, entertain or inform)?
All these important topics point the way ahead and prevent the corporate blog from being a shot in the dark. Obviously, there are many more considerations that need to be clarified in advance before bringing a corporate blog to life: which employees are going to be involved as authors and editors? Is it necessary to plan a kick-off workshop with all those involved? Do employees need to be trained and educated? What is the frequency of output the team will aim for? How should posts be promoted?
Processes, routines, and responsibilities
When bringing the corporate blog to life after finalising the planning and research phase, it is most important to stabilise the processes and develop a routine. Contributors and editors should function as an editorial team. Coordination and planning are key to ensuring a continuous flow of content. What should not be underestimated is the fundamental importance of team communication in the form of regular conference calls or meetings.
Without proper coordination, you will run the risk that either nothing will be published for prolonged periods of time, or content of varying quality and relevance is posted out of sheer necessity. Adhering to schedules is an important pillar of success; the same goes for professional editorial and quality control based on predefined topics, proofreading and editing.
Some organisations, however, don’t have the necessary qualified and experienced communications professionals to watch over the planning and editorial quality. For those, working with external consultants to define a content strategy, create and manage a content calendar and to nurture the process during the first crucial months is advisable. An experienced content strategist, planner and editor can help to not only bring a corporate blog to life, but also to turn it into a business success in the long run. This takes time – and obviously, sufficient budget.