Today’s guest post comes from Summer West, who spent two weeks working as a Rep Cap high school intern earlier this month. Summer is a rising junior at Baton Rouge Magnet High School in Louisiana where she enjoys studying Web design and won an award for top student in her Web Design 1 class.
Quality content is an essential element of a successful marketing strategy these days. Sharing it on a regular basis boosts your website’s SEO and helps build connections with customers and prospects.
To create quality content on a regular basis, your team needs to work together, but that’s not always as easy as it sounds. If you feel your team needs a little push, you’re not alone. Many companies have trouble getting their employees excited about creating content and making the time to get it done. Employees make excuses because they don’t enjoy creating content or they don’t find it particularly important.
I’ve talked to some marketing professionals and compiled four tips that are sure to get your team churning out content in no time.
Set Aside Time for Creating Content
The biggest excuse that employees give for not creating content is they don’t have time. To eliminate this excuse, set a time that’s specifically dedicated to creating content. “Fridays are perfect for brainstorming, idea generation, blogging, vlogging and social media engagement,” says Davenport PR President and CEO Debra Davenport. “Designate a window of time (two to four hours) every Friday specifically for this purpose.”
Make It a Contest
Who doesn’t like a little competition? Offer a prize to the employee who makes the most successful post. “At every team meeting we have, we reward the person who has had the most popular blog post in the last two weeks with a prize (a stuffed animal we call ‘Odie’), who sits on their desk for the next two weeks,” says Jennifer Gehrt, co-founder of Communiqué PR and co-author of “Strategic Public Relations: 10 Principles to Harness the Power of PR.” “This creates a little friendly competition to write about topics that will generate more traction, and for staff to publicize their own content.”
If you don’t think your team members will be motivated by a stuffed animal, make the rewards more desirable, such as a gift card or small bonus.
Make it Interesting
Obviously employees are more motivated if they’re given projects that they’re interested in. Nobody wants to be stuck doing work they find boring. “If they’re not interested in it, give it to someone else,” suggests Christian Newman, executive producer at nMarket, a small business marketing company.
“Giving the project to someone who has little-to-no interest in it is the quickest way to get mediocre results. There’s got to be something in it for the employee — fun, personal development, rewards, recognition.” says Newman. “If the project doesn’t satisfy those desires for one person, move on.”
Use a Mix of Media
Some people may not get excited about writing a blog post. “A very common problem in the B2B industry is a lot of people are frozen by their fear of writing or being wrong to the masses,” says Joseph Manna, developer partner program manager at Infusionsoft, a small business sales and marketing company.
“I’ve found that a good way of overcoming this challenge is to change the media type,” says Manna. “For instance, in lieu of a blog post, consider shooting a quick video. Or, if you find that someone isn’t comfortable with blogging, keep it simple and offer to do a Q&A over email and edit it into a blog post.”
Davenport also thinks using different types of media is a good idea because it can help accommodate different personalities in the office. “Don’t require introverts to be on camera and don’t limit extroverts to writing blogs. You could be torturing your people without even knowing it.” She suggests asking your employees what type of media they prefer and then letting them do their own thing. “If employees feel comfortable with the mediums they’re creating for, they’ll be much more likely to stay engaged.”