Blog “Cheats” for Busy People
The business benefits of a blog are numerous—for starters, it helps build a voice for your brand, it positions your company as an industry expert, and it’s good for SEO. But when you’re busy, a blog starts to feel like an awful lot of work and it can be difficult to even know where to begin. Here are some tricks that might make the prospect of blogging less daunting:
Use blog topic generators
If you have a general idea of what you want to write about but need help choosing a direction in which to take it, try a blog topic generator. They’re far from perfect, but when you’re at a loss for inspiration they can be quite handy. Hubspot’s lets you enter up to three words, and then generates five topics to get you started. we entered “blogging” and the algorithm spit out titles ranging from “5 Tools Everyone in The Blogging Industry Should Be Using” to “How to Solve the Biggest Problems with Blogging.” A little formulaic and generic perhaps, but as good a start as any.
If you’re looking for something a little more sensational, check out Content Row’s Linkbait Title Generator. Entering “blogging” there returned a whole laundry list of clickbait-y titles like “8 Unbelievable Things You Never Knew About Blogging,” “Why You Should Give Up Sex and Devote Your Life to Blogging” and even “7 Things Lady Gaga Has in Common with Blogging” (use caution when employing this type of title—as we noted in this post, they have their drawbacks).
Enlist guest bloggers
Do you have vendors, clients, mentors or associates who are experts on industry topics your audience might find interesting? Consider asking them to write a post or two for you, or even just provide a quote. They might be happy to have the added exposure being featured on your site would give them, and if they’re well-respected in their field it could give your blog a bit of extra credibility as well. If they say no, ask for their permission to republish a piece of their content (giving them full credit for it, of course).
Put your interns to work
If you find yourself struggling to come up with tasks for your interns to do, ask if they’d be interested in working on your blog. If you’re not willing to completely hand over the keys, they can at least help generate topics, do some research and create a rough draft. That just leaves you with the editing.
Make a list
Writing a list and calling it a blog post may feel a bit like a cop-out, but it isn’t—as long as what you lack in quantity is made up for in quality. “Listicles” are a great way to pack a lot of information into an easily consumable form. They distill and organize the complex and overwhelming, while giving the reader an opportunity to dive deeper (if they want). For example, our post about business leadership books included descriptions of five titles, along with links to sites where readers could buy, download or read reviews for each.
Outsource your blog
If you agree that a blog is necessary for your business but truly don’t think you have the time to invest in writing it yourself, another option is to pay somebody else to do it. Whether it’s a freelancer, your marketing agency or a company that specializes in generating blog content, be sure you pick somebody who understands your business. The only thing worse than no company blog is a blog that misrepresents what your company does.
One final note: Whether you blog a couple times a week, once a week or once a month, consistency is key. There are downloadable content calendars that can help you keep track of topics and due dates, but a simple spreadsheet will work as well. Set a schedule, then stick to it.