The easy way to get colleagues to contribute to your website

This may not be applicable to every reader, but an idea which I recently gave to one of our clients might just be something you could put into action yourself. The marketing manager of a process industry company said to me that she had got agreement to start a blog section on her company website, to give the site a more active feel, and to try to humanise the organisation. However, she was going to have to do the whole thing herself, as none of her technical colleagues were going to have time to contribute material. In addition, she felt that company news wouldn’t excite prospects, and anything frivolous wouldn’t go down well with senior management.

So what do other companies write about in this situation?, she asked.

My suggestion was this: to conduct a series of “interviews” with her technical colleagues. They might not be willing to write stuff, but few would turn down the opportunity to just chat about the problems facing customers, the things which users do right and wrong, and the misunderstandings which prospects might have about the company’s products. In my experience, a 45-minute chat can easily produce half a dozen blog articles or more. If you record it, you can even email the file away for transcription for just a few pounds.

What’s more, the technical people who don’t have time to write the articles will always find time to edit and correct them if they’re to be seen as the voice behind the piece.

Presented as largely transcribed articles, the results should be very readable, and come with the added benefit of introducing individuals at the company as experts in their field. This is a superb way of humanising the company and positioning it as an authority at the same time. One final tip though: don’t expect people to wade through a blog on your site. Ensure that you link to related blog articles from within the body copy of any relevant product pages.

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