Contributing to the Idea Grove blog shouldn't be intimidating. This quick guide should hopefully make it less so.
If you’ve been asked to write an Idea Grove blog—and it’s really a matter of when, not if—there are a few things you should keep in mind.
- The focus of our blog has always been to concentrate on the whys and not the hows. More clearly, we want to look toward the things we do and explain why they are important. We don’t want to focus specifically on the how they are done.
Now, with that said, we can get into some of the more technical aspect of how we do things if that’s something the post needs, but that shouldn’t be our focus.
- We like to keep our posts between 750 and 1,250 words. If your idea won’t produce a post that long then it probably needs to be rethought. It’s not that it’s a bad idea, but it may be too narrow and we need to broaden it some. I’m always available to help with this kind of thing, but often just talking it through with someone else can help you identify ways to give any idea more depth.
- The blog is just a platform for content. Most often it’s written content, but it doesn’t have to be. Think of the best way to tell your story and then tell it that way. Is it a collection of social posts that we can link together to form a narrative? Is it video? Is it a series of memes? Some kind of infographic or interactive? Whatever is the best way to make your point, make it that way.
Even if you are going to go with written content, you can vary the format there. Our posts highlighting influencers in each of our disciplines are a good example. Same for the Slack chats.
That said …
- If you’re just stuck on how to tell your story, here’s what I like to do.
- Relevant personal anecdote
- Transition to marketing topic
- A list of three to five scannable takeaways
This post is a good example of that format if you’re inclined to follow it.
- Numbers. If you have them, use them. If you don’t have them, find them if you can. They aren’t going to be available for every project, but, when it makes sense, let’s use data.
Fun info about our audience and how to apply it to your blog post
- Our buyer is an experienced marketer. According to our recently completed buyer persona project, our buyers have more than a dozen years of experience. They aren’t looking for Marketing 101 content or Intro to PR pieces. They are looking for things they don’t know about or haven’t thought of. They need help with the newer aspects of marketing. So, things like digital tactics and social media. They also need to be challenged to reconsider some of those standard things that they should already be doing but aren’t and ways they can make those standard things they are doing more effective.
- They are focused mostly on growth, so that needs to be our lens for EVERYTHING. When you are producing anything for the blog, growth has to be the focus. We should make it a point to highlight how whatever it is we are talking about can affect their growth. Highlight it. Circle it. Underline it. Make a bunch of arrows pointing to it. That’s how important this piece is. If growth is their ultimate goal then we need to be telling them how what we do can help with that.
- Their team is small, so they need help with execution. That means when they look at our site—including our blog, maybe especially our blog—that’s what they are looking for. They want to know that we understand how to execute. So, while we don’t want to create content that is a checklist of steps for doing something, we need to make sure it’s understood that we know how to execute on the things we talk about. We can do that with posts that point to results and reference case studies.
- But they also realize that the world of marketing is changing, and they need someone who can help them keep up. So, not only are the looking to see if we can do the things we claim we can, they want to know that we are continuing to keep up with what’s new today and what’s going to be new tomorrow. So, if you’ve recently gone through a training or sat through a webinar that felt particularly useful and forward-thinking, let’s talk. There could be something there for the blog.