A few weeks ago, a client of ours asked his account strategist how he could motivate employees to write for the company blog. That blew my mind.
On one hand, I understand that people lead busy lives and few truly enjoy writing, but if an employee were offered a chance to stand out, why would he run for the hills?
That’s when I realized we needed to start explaining the benefits of staff-contributed content. Your employees are busy, stressed, and they probably don’t know why you would pick them to write on behalf of the company. Explaining how writing can benefit them (as well as the company) can help motivate them to contribute.
Here are four ways to sell your employees on writing content:
When contributing content, it’s OK to be selfish. I’m thrilled when employees get excited about writing for our blog because they’re not only providing value for the company, but they’re also building their own online portfolios. In fact, our CEO’s most successful article on LinkedIn discussed why every leader should write.
It’s important that employees view this as an opportunity rather than just another task on their to-do list. Lucky for me, no matter who I ask to write a blog post at Influence & Co., they either say they’d love to or they’re busy this week but would be happy to get it done at a later time. (But we’re all in love with content, so I’d say we’re biased.)
I can’t tell you how fulfilling it was when my first post went live on our blog. I probably read it 20 times after it was published because seeing my words and the shares it received gave me the best sense of accomplishment.
Writing about a topic you’re passionate about is fun, rewarding, and not too difficult if you have the time. If your employees aren’t the best writers or simply don’t have the bandwidth to write a full article, consider freelancing or hiring a content firm to reap the full benefits of contributed content.
Encouraging employees from every department to contribute extracts unique insights that your one writer or marketer doesn’t have. Former jobs, past experiences, lifestyles, and every other aspect of someone’s life give him a unique perspective, and that’s what makes content great.
When rallying team participation, changing the phrasing from “writing an article” to “connecting with our target audience” can be powerful. Obviously, the time each employee spends interacting with clients varies, but if your team members are passionate about what they do and whom they serve, they should view content as another way to connect with their audience and engage potential and current clients.
I wholeheartedly believe in our company and what we do, so writing about the various stages of content development, social media trends, and tips to optimize your online presence excites me.
Take advantage of your employees’ passion for your company and the work they do. Motivate them to contribute to the company blog or external publications, and position this task as an opportunity for personal growth as well as company growth. By simply shifting the mindset to viewing writing as an opportunity rather than a chore, you can inspire your employees to write.