Professional services firms are big fans of blogs.
In 2021, blogs accounted for over 40% of the records in our database of the thought leadership published by the world’s leading consulting firms. For some firms, blogs, articles, and more snackable content such as videos have almost completely replaced the production of more traditional, long-form content.
But while marketing and research teams have fought long and hard to keep a fairly tight hold on the publication of more substantial long-form material, blog production often appears to be a bit of a free-for-all. And that lack of control has consequences: Recent browsing experiences have led us to the unhappy conclusion that the quality of blogs varies wildly from firm to firm, and even within firms.
Given the volume of blogs being published, it’s clearly harder for the teams responsible for thought leadership to control everything that’s published, but setting some ground rules and standards could help push quality upwards.
Here are a few of our recommendations:
- Make it personal. Blogs work best when they avoid corporate speak, and instead take a chatty tone. If you can weave in an anecdote or two to forge a more personal link with readers, all the better.
- Be clear what it’s about. Clever titles are all very well, but you owe it your readers to tell them upfront what they are going to get out of their time investment.
- Link your blog to a current issue. Blogs resonate with readers when they are topical, and relevant.
- Make it easy to follow up on related content. There’s no need to be too heavy-handed about this, but linking to other content on the same topic or by the same author will encourage browsing and engagement with other material.
- Where you can, provide some evidence. Blogs can be great if they put forward a clear point of view, but they are even more powerful what that point of view can be backed up with external data points.