I feel like I tell this tip all the time. Yet every time I say it people are still amazed and act like they have never heard it before. So, I’ll just keep saying it.
This is the fastest way to write a blog post. Ready?
Record – Transcribe – Edit
1) Record yourself, or another subject matter expert, talking about an interesting topic.
2) Get a transcription of the recording from a service such as Rev.com.
3) Edit the information from the transcription into a blog post.
All the time I hear people talking freely about subjects they are comfortable with and I tell them, “that would make a great blog post.” The reply is, “Yeah, I’ll get to that sometime.” In other words, “that will never happen.” It is very difficult, even for someone who likes to write, to sit down in front of a blank computer screen and write a blog post.
With this method, you already have the core information. All you have to do is polish it up.
I have done this dozens, maybe hundreds, of times. Here are a few suggestions to make it even easier:
· I often tell the experts at my company that they can just record themselves speaking on a topic and send it to me, but usually this just doesn’t get done. So, I actually set up a phone call and “interview” them.
· You can record a phone call using GoToMeeting or Zoom then save as a file and upload to Rev.com. On a regular call just turn on the speaker phone and let it record in the Rev app. Or you can make it even easier and use TapeACall (for iPhone or Android) which integrates with Rev.
· Choose a topic(s) in advance. Let the expert just talk, stream of consciousness, whatever comes to their mind. You will edit later. The more information you can get the better. Sometimes the best information comes at the end of the call when they say, “oh yeah, I forgot to say….”
I used to use another transcription service that charged per word and extra for multiple speakers. Sometimes I got shocked with a huge bill. But Rev.com charges a $1 flat fee per minute based on the length of the recording, so it is a predictable cost. And I like that they ask you to submit the correct spelling of any unusual words or acronyms used in the call – such as VAR, ISV, Navision, etc. because otherwise the guesses they come up can be quite humorous.
· First go through the document and remove all the ‘word whiskers’ (like Um, Ah, Ya Know) and make sure everything is in complete sentences. To save time, you can pay someone else from a site like Fiverr.com to do this for you.
· The next step is to polish the information into a blog post. Choose the content you want to use and move it around into a cohesive sequence. Add headings, bullet points, etc. to make it more readable. And most important of all, add a great title. A title must be interesting enough to grab a reader’s attention, while making the topic clear enough that you get the right reader to read the post. You can also hire a writer from Upwork.com, Fiverr.com or Textbroker.com for this final polishing step as it does require someone with writing skills.
Is it really that easy?
I use this method ALL the time.
I can interview a Dynamics ERP consultant for just 10 minutes and get enough for a blog post on one topic. If I do a one hour call with my boss I can often get enough content for at least 4 posts. Usually it takes me about 1 hour per post for editing and polishing.
Here are a few more examples:
My cousin recently asked me to write a few blog posts for her to promote her new business. I didn’t know enough about what she does to come up with the content myself, so we brainstormed topics and selected two that she could easily explain. She sent me a six-minute recording that she made in the car on her way to work one day. I had it transcribed and was able to polish that into two blog articles that she posted on LinkedIn.
I was on a call the other day with several marketing experts, sharing ideas. One marketer spoke to us for a few minutes, unplanned and off-the-cuff, about the importance of marketers tracking their campaign results to prove their value. I immediately thought it would make a great blog post. I suggested that she should post it as an article on her LinkedIn profile to help others and “build her brand.” Adding “write blog post” to her to-do list was unlikely. Taking two minutes to record her thoughts and adding “polish up blog post” as a task is much more likely get done.
This tip makes writing blog posts so much easier. I hope everyone tries it; but if you forget, I’ll just tell you again.
By Anya Ciecierski, Collaboration Works Marketing
Follow Me on Twitter: @AnyaCWMktg