Outsourcing stuff you don’t have the time or talent for is a brilliant idea, but just bringing on an agency or a freelancer or three to turn out your blog content won’t be enough. Even if they are the most capable, experienced folks you can find, if you aren’t helping them help you, the results will certainly suffer. So, in case you were wondering, here are a few pointers on how you can help a freelancer or agency help you with your blog content:
Spill the beans
You don’t want to dish confidential information to just anyone, but a blogger who is speaking for you or your company needs to truly understand how your business works. Give them details about your customer personas, traffic demographics, marketing goals, and other information that could influence how they write and who they’re talking to.
Holy cow! I can’t tell you how many times we’ve missed deadlines due to a client’s radio silence. For blogging success, you should put deadlines in place for a regular, consistent posting profile in line with your goals and best practices; this means you have to meet these too, not just the blogger! If you receive questions to answer or drafts to review, respond in a timely manner. Otherwise you’ll disrupt your publication schedule or get a post that isn’t quite as honest or effective as it should be. And even if your blogger gets the post out on time and on point, they’ll still be pretty darn annoyed at you.
Tell your blogger what you like and don’t like—both in others' posts and the content they are creating for you. This gives them good guidance as to what to do for the future.
Don’t get sticky fingers
Asking a freelancer or agency to swipe someone else’s content puts everyone in a stinky situation. Copying content, borrowing images, or co-opting ideas are all essentially stealing, and putting pressure on content providers to do this isn’t cool. Not only could you (and your outsourced talent!) end up dealing with a lawsuit for playing fast and loose with intellectual property and copyright laws, but the lack of ethics won’t leave your blogger feeling good.
Have high standards
You should have standards set for any content you produce for your business or brand, and this includes for your blog. You should have style and brand guidelines that should be adhered to for the sake of consistency and professionalism. Make sure that you have these in place (or create them ASAP), and share them with your blogger.
Listen to them
If you hired a professional, listen to them when they offer their professional opinion. They are probably just looking out for you and are giving you advice to enhance your success. Not everything is an upsell.
Don’t leave them hanging
All too often, folks are hired to do blogging and then get no support. The blog cannot be a success in most instances unless other stuff happens. Posts need to be promoted, at minimum, on your social channels and maybe via email. It doesn’t matter how rad these posts are; if you don’t do anything to let others know they are out there, they will just fade away.
Spiffy up your site
If your blog or overall website isn’t in good condition, your blogger’s posts won’t have the best chance for success. You should have a modern-looking, responsive site that is on-brand and user-friendly, and it should be set up with an eye toward SEO and being prime for sharing. Of course, that’s just the start. A seven-year-old site or a completely uncustomized WordPress theme just won’t be a good foundation for blogging brilliance.
Does this all sound doable? Contact us if you'd want us to see what you need to work on for blogging success.