Insights from the Tactical to the Strategic
There are many benefits for employees when they become content creators, but how do we go about creating an environment in which our in-house efforts are successful? Here are some great ways to motivate your employees to become key content contributors.
Although almost everyone has something of value to share through blogging, compelling all your staff to write doesn't lead to great results.
When people have a hard time producing content they think of it as a chore, procrastinate and ultimately create content that is unsuitable for publishing. Instead, be sure you take the time to have discussions with your team to figure out who can–and who wants to–produce content.
Talk to potential contributors one-on-one to explain the importance of content marketing, your goals, the type of content you're looking for, and how they can play an important role. Then just ask them to see if they're interested in helping. With this approach, you’ll find people who are willing to be involved, and people that are more likely to produce valuable content.
Once you have your employees on board to create content, give them as many ways to do contribute as possible.
Here are some different options for content contribution:
By allowing employees to choose from one of these five methods, you’re much more likely to get full participation because you’ve overcome any potential excuses that may have gotten in the way of progress.
Yes, creating content for the company blog and content marketing efforts may start off as a “program” to most employees, but eventually it will become part of culture–especially if everyone is actively engaged and made aware of the victories that come from all the content that has been produced.
I’ve learned that if there are definite steps to take that people tend to feel more comfortable doing something new. Developing a standard production process gives them something they can check their progress against. Also, be sure they understand this simple formula for how to write a blogpost just in case it’s their first time blogging.
Here’s an example of an easy-to-follow process:
Before you start assigning content topics it's important to define and share your goals with the people contributing the content. What’s the overall strategy? Is your main goal to gain leads by drawing people to the website? Are you more interested in getting email subscribers? Whatever your goals are, you need to develop a clear strategy and a set of tactics to reach them.
Also, make sure you understand how to measure your goals. Be sure to get your analytics person up-to-date and let them suggest some key performance indicators to make sure your company stays on track.
Ask these questions to figure out your strategy:
Once each post goes live you need to inform the author on its progress. Let them know simple stats like how many times their article was read, or how many comments or social shares it received. Showing people the results of their labor is a must; even if the post didn't get as many eyeballs as hoped for, it will motivate them to improve in future efforts.
Now, if you’ve tried all of the above and your team is still having a hard time getting on board, you may have to give them a little push with an incentive. The price of an ipad, camera or airline ticket is well worth the cost when you're able to land more high quality leads through your content marketing efforts.
If budget is tight, get creative. Maybe you could offer a day off to the person who gets the most hits on their article, or have a company party once your team has created its first month of blog content. You could even do something as simple as a small bonus at the end of the month to entice your employees to contribute.
Even though incentives can get people excited to make their first contribution, it’s usually the long-term value of being content contributors that keep employees engaged.
Instead of treating the content development process like a chore, postition it as an opportunity for both personal and company growth. By simply shifting the mindset to view writing as an opportunity, rather than a chore, you can inspire your employees to produce something they can be proud of.