You may remember, our last blog post highlighted 5 advantages to writing a company blog. Did we convince you that a company blog is the right move for you? Yes? Great! We get it though, finding time to write a blog can be a bit of a challenge!
After all, there are barely enough hours in the day for running your business, right? How are you supposed to find time to regularly write articles too? This is where outsourcing your articles could prove to be the winning solution.
Is outsourcing common?
In a word, yes. It is reported that 62% of companies outsource their content marketing. Whether that is their social media, videos or blog articles.
In fact, small and medium sized businesses are used to outsourcing parts of their business everyday functions, such as accounting and payroll. So, why not add blog writing to the list?
So, should you outsource your blog writing?
As with anything, there isn’t a simple yes or no answer. You need to work out what would work best for you and your company.
It’s sensible to weigh up all your options before you decide to outsource. Consider whether you have any one in your team who could turn their hand to the articles. Maybe you have clients who could write guest posts to help with regular content?
Let’s weigh up the pros and cons of outsourcing your article writing.
- Regular content. You are guaranteed to get fresh content, regularly and quickly. Remember, outsourced content is better than no content!
- Free up your time. Getting articles written for your company website can quickly fall to the bottom of your to-do list (guilty as charged!) With outsourced articles, you can focus on other things.
- Strong writing skills as standard. You may not be a confident writer. Your skills may lie more in building walls or fixing computers. In which case, it probably makes more sense to outsource to someone who has the skills. They can take your ideas and develop them into a solid and engaging article.
- Fresh ideas. The task of coming up with engaging topics every month can be a task in itself. Those you outsource to can help come up with fresh ideas when you get stuck.
- Expertise in search engine optimisation. One of the top reasons for writing a blog is to help improve the ranking of your website through SEO. Outsourcing the writing to an expert who knows about this discipline could pay dividends.
- It can take time to find ‘the one’. You shouldn’t just choose the first person or company who comes along. Find a writer who suits your company style. This is a process that can take time but is well worth it in the long run.
- Lack in industry know-how. Some articles will require specific industry knowledge. Especially if you are trying to position yourself as an expert in your field. A good content creator should be able to tackle these with some research, but you may find you need to have a bit more input.
- Are you your brand? If you are the face of your company your blog may benefit more from you writing it. Your audience are then having a conversation with you rather than someone who sounds like you. Especially if you have customers or clients who regularly comment and engage with your posts. However, if you’ve found “the one”, they should be able to represent your tone and views and take responsibility for raising the flag when you need to jump in.
- Could prevent you from jumping on industry news. Being relevant is a massive bonus when it comes to company blogs. You want to be quick to react when important things happen in your industry. If you only outsource your articles you may not have the capacity to quickly react and prove your authority on the subject. Again, having the right relationship in place will help you manage this process.
Top tips if you’re going to outsource.
There is a chance you will have had an email pop into your inbox at one point or another from a freelance blogger offering up their services.
Getting offers to write blogs for £15 a go sounds like a pretty good deal. But, if it seems too good to be true, chances are, it is.
Sure, you will get fresh content regularly. Plus, it won’t take a massive chunk out of your marketing budget. But it might not add any real value to your business either.
As with anything, there is going to be a correlation between the price you are willing to pay and the quality of the content you receive.
If you have chosen to outsource your articles then here are a few tips to ensure you get quality content.
Make sure you see examples of articles written by the freelance blogger.
You want to try and see a few examples from a range of topics and businesses. After all, you are choosing someone to represent you and your business. You don’t want to end up having articles riddled with grammatical errors and terrible structure!
Ask them about their experience with search engine optimisation.
Lots of people bill themselves as bloggers but actually have very little experience or understanding of how to write for the web. It’s an important distinction if you want to get the best returns from your investment.
Figure out who they will be writing as.
Are they going to be writing as themselves? Or as a ghost writer? Ideally you would want to have them writing as your company. Make sure this is clear when talking to freelancers.
Make sure you have a content calendar ready.
To ensure the posts you are receiving are relevant and timely, have a content calendar in place. You don’t have to think about the entire year at a time. Depending on the regularity you would like to post, a few months at a time should do just fine.
Give your writer something to work with.
Blog writing for business is quite a personal thing. Take the time to explain to your new writer your businesses’ tone of voice and who the articles should be aimed at. Customers? Other industry professionals? Outline exactly what you want to get from your articles too. It all has an impact on the effectiveness of your final article.
The better the relationship you build with your writer, the easier it is for them to ‘get you’.
It is sensible to expect that you may need to polish any articles you receive. At this point you can inject more of your business personality if required.
You get as much out of outsourcing as you put in. The more information you can give on a topic the better. If you are able to let your writer know the subject, your preferred angle and even a few comments about the topic you will probably be getting back a much better article than if you just popped across an idea at the last minute.
If it doesn’t work out. No problem. Freelance bloggers or content companies are often hired on short-term basis. You can always go back to what you were doing before.
If you are planning on embarking on a blogging journey, do your best to stick at it.
Find a writing style that works best for you and your readers. Talk as if you are having a conversation with them. You want your blog to reflect the personality of your business and be engaging for current and potential customers.
Want to test the theory? Writing blogs is just one of the things we’re really good at, even if we do say so ourselves! Feel free to get in touch if you’d like to discuss us writing for you.