The art of snackable storytelling
When managing a blog, you often come across challenges for creating engaging content that is appealing for your readers. But you also need to engage the people who are contributing to it.
I currently support the management of a client’s blog in Spain – Vodafone’s Smartblog. It is about mobile apps and it is disaggregated from the corporate image of the company. In this case, my first advice is that you search for people who are crazy about telling the world what they can do with their devices, but they don’t necessarily have to be journalists or professional bloggers. Find your brand advocates!
Having a blog written by different contributors outside of your organization entails some challenges. One of the most important ones is that you have to give consistency to your blog, but also let them develop their own personality through their posts. How they write is who they are, and readers often enjoy certain posts just because of the person who writes them. If you need to edit content, you should only change the things that are incorrect in terms of grammar or content, but do not try to change the way they write, because you will lose the personality of your blog.
Having external contributors writing for your blog has another important challenge regarding their commitment to upload content on a regular basis. For some of them, the ego boost of just seeing their name on a site is enough, but if you really want their commitment you need to give them economical or other kind of incentives.
You can also encourage them by rewarding them with an extra compensation if their posts are on the top five of the most read one month, or if they have invested extra work on writing it (recording a video, etc…). Control what they write about but give them freedom to also choose their own topics.
And last but not least, if you have a closed group of contributors, it is a good idea to create some sort of group atmosphere. Set a group objective for the blog (increase number of visits, for example) or create a mail group for sharing ideas, ranking of posts and pending tasks, and maybe create some good competitiveness to encourage them to write.
These are basic tips and useful to take into account when you start a project of this kind. But the most important thing to remember is: have fun yourself and make your contributors have fun with what they do – the rest will flow on its own!
photocredit: Flickr user lumaxart.