How to Blog like a Journalist for PR Success
Blogging has come a long way since it first appeared on the scene in the late 1990s. Blogs, or Web Logs, were originally used as online diaries; a platform for people to share their personal thoughts, feelings and opinions with the world. Fast forward to 2017, and blogging has evolved into a powerful PR tool for businesses.
A well written blog can increase visibility of your business, drive traffic to your website and establish you as an authority in your industry. In short, a business blog is potential PR gold. I say ‘potential’ as there are millions of business blogs out there. If yours isn’t eye-catching, informative and engaging, it’ll get lost in the ether.
So, how can you make sure your blog gets the attention it deserves? In short, you need to think and write like a journalist. Journalists are in the business of getting noticed. If their stories don’t make a splash, they’ve failed. So, they’re focused on delivering information that readers want to read. Here are four techniques from the world of journalism that you can use to make your blog posts get the attention they deserve:
Look for the news
Journalists are always looking for the scoop, or the most newsworthy angle on a story. You should do the same with your blogs. Readers will be most interested in something new or different. You don’t have to be radical in each blog post, but your posts should tie in with your customer’s interests. What’s happening in the news right now? What’s happening in your industry? What are people talking about? Write about it.
Pick up the phone
Journalists are always on the phone, interviewing sources and building relationships, so they get the news first. This tactic is worth its weight in gold, as a conversation is so much more personal than an email. And even a quick chat on the phone can get you a killer quote or unreported titbit of information.
Bonus tip: If you do get an industry scoop, ask if you can have an exclusive on the information you’re given. This means your source won’t tell anyone else about it until after you publish it, and your blog will be the only place readers can go to get the news.
Dig into data
Bloggers love to write off the top of their heads, but this results in vague generalisations about a topic. Journalists never do that. They nail down every fact and tell readers where they found it.
You should do this too. It will give your blog instant legitimacy. Find relevant research that sheds light on your topic. Industry associations, market-research firms, trade publications, and government agencies are all great places to find independent data.
Once you get your hands on the data, see what fresh conclusions you can draw from it.
Circle back around
When journalists hit on an interesting topic that gets a strong response, they make a note to revisit it.
This is a good tactic for your blog. Make a note to review that blog post you wrote about your big conference, merger, or interview with that rising star in your industry. Then write a follow-up post about what’s happened. Did predictions made at that conference come true? Was the merger successful? Did the star hit the big time?
Follow-up posts are always popular as they reference something readers are already familiar with. Too few bloggers take the time to do follow-up stories. But readers always appreciate an update on an interesting story.
Think like a reporter
These strategies will help you deliver useful information in a way that makes readers trust you and the industry take notice of you. Thanks to the interviews, research, and data gathering you’ve done, you’ll come off as a blogger who knows what they’re talking about.