Previously viewed as two different entities, we’ve seen an increase in blogging tactics being used to support traditional public relations efforts. In addition to serving as a method for sharing company news, customer success or product/service updates, company blogs can be home to thought leadership content from C-suite executives looking to amplify an industry perspective.
It’s this thought leadership content — insightful content that addresses questions on the minds of the people or companies a company does or seeks to do business with — media outlets are hungry for. National media like Fortune, Inc., Entrepreneur, and Forbes (just to name a few…) have shifted to a contributor network strategy, which opens the doors for non-staff writers to contribute content to the publication in the form of op-eds, contributor posts, expert insights and more — a.k.a thought leadership.
In tandem with the recent increase in contributor-based media opportunities, we’ve seen a rise in companies seeking partners like BLASTmedia that can assist with the development, creation and amplification of thought leadership content that can live far outside of a company blog, increasing brand awareness and credibility
Below are three ways to maximize your company’s blog content for PR efforts.
Don’t shy away from controversial topics
Thought leadership content at its core is insights-driven with actionable takeaways that a reader can use in their own professional setting, but it doesn’t stop there. Thought leaders can also use their experience and industry perspective to take a stance on current events that tend to generate a range of opinions. If using this approach, it’s important for the content (and, the thought leader) to take a strong stance on the topic that may support, or debunk already existing opinions. With a strong opinion, that individual will be viewed as an authoritative voice on industry subject matter — this can then be amplified through a range of PR tactics, or live on a company blog.
If you’re looking for some inspiration on what a strong opinion from a company thought leader looks like, give these examples a read.
- Apple CEO Tim Cook shares why pro-discrimination ‘religious freedom’ laws are dangerous on the Washington Post.
- Founder and CEO of Project Lever shares why edtech won’t accelerate at the rate of healthtech on the TechCrunch Crunch Network.
- While not a traditional company thought leader, Jennifer Aniston recently shared her thoughts on the objectification of woman and double standards in tabloids on the Huffington Post’s contributor network.
Include multimedia in your content
Research has shown that content containing relevant imagery generates 94 percent more views than content without. We as an agency have seen a continuous growth in media contacts requesting supporting imagery, video, infographics, slideshows and more to accompany thought leadership content for a number of reasons. One being it makes their jobs simpler — with newsroom budgets shrinking, so are editorial staffs. More and more we’ve seen journalists seeking out material that will support their role, and assist in the development of articles and supporting multimedia that their readers can easily engage with.
By offering supporting multimedia — whether in the form of a video, or statistic-filled infographic — along with a piece of thought leadership content, companies can effectively build strong relationships with target journalists seeking out useable content, and develop thought leaders with a range of content in their area of expertise. Multimedia that is originally housed on a company blog can certainly be used for supporting material with thought leadership content, but multimedia that is not overtly company-branded will resonate best.
Write with a target outlet’s readers in mind
One small, but important, detail we always recommend for maximizing blog content is to develop said content with a reader in mind. This may sound second-nature to some, but it’s easy to develop a piece of blog content for the sake of meeting a quota for the month, without little thought as to who exactly that piece of blog content is aimed at.
If there are plans to use the content as thought leadership content outside of a company blog, we recommend envisioning the average reader of the outlet you plan to offer the thought leadership content to. For example, if writing a piece of content for Entrepreneur, keep in mind the average reader of that publication: those seeking advice on how to start, run and grow a successful business. So, an article on how to effectively survive slower months is more likely to resonate with the reader rather than a piece on retail predictions for the next year.
By keeping the target reader in mind while developing content, you are not only writing for an audience who is most likely to engage with said content, but you are also working to the needs of a specific media outlet likely receiving upwards of 1,000 pitches with other thought leadership content each day.
Are you interested in learning how BLASTmedia can assist in the development and amplification of blog content that supports PR efforts? Get in touch with our own Lindsey Groepper for more information!