Habr is the largest Russian-speaking community of IT specialists. Hundreds of thousands of users come to the site every day, hundreds of IT companies conduct their corporate blogs on the site. It is important to remember that this project is a self-regulating community, which means that the success of the corporate blogging campaign will largely depend on the ability to submit information and interact with the audience.
And before you start to do something, it's important to draw a line between the personal account and the corporate blog:
The project consists of thematic sections - Hubs — a sort of shelves for users to split all the content. Everyone who registers on the site can optionally subscribe only to hubs he interested in and read the content only from them - thus, each hub has an audience.
Each post should be tied to some hubs, otherwise it will be left without attention. Placing information in the wrong hub is also fraught with unpleasant consequences. So study the hubs to understand which one suits you best for blogging. Also see examples of poata in each of the hubs (especially the best hub posts) on which you will write - to be aware of what format the materials are written and how the users of the site react to them.
Probably one of your competitors is already blogging on our project. Even if he already "picked all the cherries", do not get upset - you can do better. But still spend time studying the activity of your competitor, namely:
Many publications have mistakes - look for weak spots in the posts of competitors, draw conclusions and try to understand how to do better and not make the same mistakes. Analyzing this information can help a lot. For example, if you do not know what to write about, just look at what posts of your competitors were evaluated especially well - most likely, if you offer a better material on the same topic after a while, it will also be positively received by the audience. And vice versa: if some topics are unclaimed by users, you can remove them from your content plan.
Depending on the subscription plan, the company receives from 10 to 20 invitations, which can be used to invite an employee of your company to the website. Before you start a blog, think about who you'll invite and which of them will perform what task. Involve the most active and technically savvy users to work with the blog (most likely, they have already been registered on the site for a long time). In this case, they will be able not only to write good publications, but also to respond promptly to questions asked, including technical ones. After all, if a press secretary who posted the press release tryes to answer them, it may not work out very well.
One of the mistakes is when the blog is maintained by one account, with the same name as the company name. Users will be less willing to raise karma such an account, and when they'll ask questions, they will not know who exactly is responding to them. And any error can be fatal for an account.
The best option: an account with the company name is used to place "general news (for example, "Habr launches a startup support program") and responses to comments on behalf of the company, and all other accounts belong to real employees (in whose profiles the position and contact information are indicated) so that they can participate in the discussions and users understand who they are dealing with. Using different accounts allows you to "pump" karma to several employees at once, so that each of them can write something, vote (including comments and publications of colleagues), etc.
If you are attracting someone from the site to conduct a corporate blog, discuss all the details with him in advance. If you need help managing your corporate blog, please contact us.
Decide for yourself what goal you want to achieve by blogging on the project. Raise awareness of the company and products? Just share the experience of solving certain tasks? Find specialists in the company? To cheer up self-esteem and lead the rating of companies? Understanding the answer to this question will help you build the right blogging strategy
Do not make the mistake that will remain with you forever. Consider the format and text of the first publication in your blog. This start, largely determines the further attitude to your posts and to your company.
"Hello, Habr! So we decided to start a corporate blog - we are some company, from somewhere, we have N people in the state, some website, and we create some products. Subscribe to be in the course of all our news "- this is the most correct way to spoil everything without having had time to start. Although no, worse can only be the presence of a phrase like "Write in the comments, what would you like to read in our blog ". Such errors are sometimes forgiven to large companies with a good reputation and known products, in all other cases you will encounter a flurry of downvotes (both publications and the author's karma).
Show the audience that you know where you came to, and tell what information you will share with users. The best option is to tell something useful and interesting (for example, about the implementation of your new product) right after a short greeting (in 1-2 sentences). The first publication as a litmus test - it immediately shows the attitude of users about your company and their interest in your products - if you show yourself well, then further treatment of the company will be appropriate.
It will be easier with subsequent posts, but you still should not relax. Show users that you have come to share useful information, and at first, work only for reputation. If users understand that you have come trivially to advertise and drive traffic to your site, then nothing good will come of it and it will be more difficult to recover later. Technical publications with an inconspicuous reference to your site/product will bring much more benefits than the same links, but surrounded by uninteresting text.
Even if there is a content plan and you have a large experience on the subject, sooner or later a creative crisis can occur: where to start, where to find ideas, how to build work with materials inside the blog, to remain interesting and fulfill all the goals.
In most cases, the main source of topics for publications is your internal and external market analyst. This can be an analysis of the product, the interests of the audience, competitors. You can also see the publications in the relevant hubs, see the gaps, materials of interest and generate your own text based on this analysis.
If there is absolutely no ideas, everything is exhausted and thought out, then you can browse:
This does not mean that you need to copy all the content (moreover, it is not recommended!) - only selective ideas and insights are needed.
Before you write a post, it is worth doing the preparatory work. Collect all the materials, highlight the main thing in them, make a plan for future post. If necessary, consult with colleagues and collect information from them.
In general, the publication consists of four parts: the title, the introduction, the main part and the conclusion.
Since the publication is not displayed completely in the reader's feed, the beginning (headline, cover picture and brief text) should be flawless and thoughtful. We conducted a survey of more than 3,000 users, according to which the headline (88.3%), the text before the cut (75.3%) and the cover picture (28.2%) affect the fact of viewing the post most of all..
Header. The header is an extremely important element. It should be catchy, answering the topic and preserving the riddle. Here are several time-tested options:
Directly under the heading is the cover picture or PTAA (picture to attract attention). It highlights your publication in the feed, does not letting it get lost during the scrolling, it is being broadcasted in social networks and sometimes serves as an excellent bait for reading all the material.
Where to get pictures from?
Picture should not be:
Introduction — an introductory part, the main mission of which is to attract the attention of the audience and stimulate the readings to continue. Most often it is combined with PTAA and takes place exactly before cut. The introduction should indicate (but not reveal!) the topic and leave room for intrigue. Sometimes it can be implemented as a trigger-type statement of the type "But first things first", "How did we cope with this?" etc. It is better to avoid the hackneyed phrases "Welcome under the cut", "Read more under the cut". By the way, do not forget that you can change the text on the button before the cut and, instead of "Read more", it can be "Let's go", "Let's roll", "How did it happen?" etc.
Main part — is designed to reveal the essence of the problem in one or more blocks, separated by subheadings. Structured material is perceived easier, so you need to take care of the organization of the text, splitting it into sections and paragraphs. If the post is large and well-structured at the same time, you can make a table of contents at its beginning. In the main part, you can use charts and pictures, lists, numbered lists. All these elements provide a switching of attention and preservation of interest throughout the text. What will be written in the main part, depends heavily on the topic and the customer's task, but sometimes next things help a lot:
However, using the above tricks, we should not forget about the main thing - a topic that needs to be revealed in detail and fully. If the subject allows, you can insert a case associated with the use of this technology/service/software/hardware.
Conclusion. James Bond has always knew that the last phrase is remembered best. Therefore, the conclusion should carry in itself a few conclusions, a little advertising (if this path is chosen) and end with a bright proposal, but not a slogan. The main thing is that the publication should not be tattered or seem unfinished.
P.S. Optional element. It should have a small phrase, a reservation, a link with a mention of some technology or a person. If the text from the post-scriptum can be transferred to the conclusion, it is better not to produce excess essences.
UPD (update, addition). Be sure to follow the comments to the publication - if they have an important addition, you can insert it into the publication, where to mention the author of the update will be a good tone .
Poll. In the hubraeditor interface, it is possible to create polls with a single or multiple answers. Voting will be visible to all who read the material.
At the time of writing, the author should think like a company employee. First of all, it means that the author should not express his opinion radically or show the attitude to the product/service/company. In a corporate blog, it's better not to directly point onto competitors (unless this is provided by the logic of publication or is agreed with the competitor itself), do not make comparisons with them. As a rule, the author already knows something about the company (as an employee or as an executor of an order for an article) and should pay attention to the style of texts on the site: if the company adheres to a strict style, then the style of publication should be science-popular, if the company is young and provocative software developnemt agency, then the text can include relevant jokes and figures of speech. But in any case, it is worthwhile to avoid enemies of good post:
The task of a post in a corporate blog is to inform, attract the attention of the audience, get new subscribers, conversiob to the site, etc. However, you must avoid frankly advertising style and text overflowing with links. It is better to build a publication on the principle: 75-85% of the usefulness / 15-25% of advertising. This can be done in three main ways.
Here everything is as simple as possible and does not differ from the rules of thousands of redactions around the world.
How to beautifully and competently design the post, is written in a separate document.
Rarely when a steep publication turns out to be written in one breath - usually it uses third-party services, the most convenient of which is Google Docs. In addition to working with colleagues, it gives one more secret advantage: you can shorten the markup time to several minutes. It is enough to copy the text together with the pictures and paste it to the habraconverter. It converts the text from the document into a non-ideal, but already adapted habramarkup.
What you need to remember to work with the converter was successful?
After you wrote and published the post, it's life is just beginning.
Each comment is a separate conversation, behind it there are different and real people. Below in the table there is an approximate classification of comments and variants of reaction to them:
|Tone of comment||Example||Recommendations|
|Sharply positive||Thanks for posting! Was looking for such material for a long time!||Moderate thank (not just "thank you"), reveal the topic. Yes, you are right, there are not enough materials, we collected all the expertise. We hope the material is useful to you.|
|Sharply negative||Publication is garbage and marketing bullshit. Obvious evidence - and not a single real case. This is not Habr.||Either ignore, or ask for clarification of the position. We had a goal to tell about ... This is a topic of great interest for our customers, which arouses lively interest. You probably have more information on the issue, please share with the community.|
|Positive||An interesting publication. We, in our work, preferred to use Firebird, instead of MySQL so it was more convenient, and it is easier to port data.||You can not thank, but may continue the conversation on the context. We also looked at Firebird, but we had problems with scaling and sharding. But it was in the old version, it is necessary to see what has changed.|
|Negative||Very superficially - where information about access rights, backups, configuration files settings? Your publication is about nothing.||If everything above is in the post, you can politely suggest reading the material more carefully. Hint at the development of the topic or ask a counter question on the topic, which immediately disarms the imaginary expert and will start a dialogue with the real one.|
|Neutral||I would add that to select a database, you need to make your benchmarks, and not rely solely on benchmarks of database vendors.||To develop the conversation, to thank for the additions, initiate a discussion.|
|Personal negative||Only now it's impossible to sign up to your system, and the design is horrible.||Ignore or moderately answer on the essence of questions - in the style of technical support.|
|Trolling||Looks like you've bribed some officials to get this order. How much have you payed?||Ignore or take away from the topic by asking a counter question. Never enter into political, religious, racial disputes.|
|Competition||And I liked the program GorGazSoft, user-friendly interface, is deployed in the cloud with a couple of clicks.||This is not prohibited, if not impudent - either ignore, or indicate that the market is highly competitive, but it is you who give ... (and list the most wow-benefits again).|
We all live for the first time and make mistakes, choose the wrong ways. But, as they say, smart learn from other people's mistakes, stupid ones - on their own. So remember:
There were companies that wrote 3-4 publications a day. The key word is "were", as the quality of publications grew into a number and users noticed this - they had no choice but to include a "protective mechanism" in the form of downvoting publications of the company. Practice shows that only really big companies, with a huge number of departments, information guides and authors can write that often - Google, Microsoft, Yandex, Mail.Ru and others. If your company does not belong to such giants, try not to do more than one publication per day. The optimal pace is 2-3 publications a week. At the same time, very rare publications (one per month) - not a mistake, but the blog in this case will be used less efficiently.
Blogging on the Habr should not be done by a receptionist - this should be done by a person who understands what Habr is. And also the differences in the publishing a post on Habr from its publishing, for example, on "LJ". Throwing blog on one employee is also wrong way - most likely, he just can not write for a long time oftenly, interestingly and at a good technical level. The best option is team work, when each employee is responsible for a specific topic or type of the post.
All technical details of each publication should be written by a competent (in the publication subject) employee of the company, who, if necessary, will be able to answer questions from users. In this case, not every "technician" can write fully finished material - the finalization of the material to the final state is better be delegated to the content manager, correcting errors - corrector, and preparing illustrations - for example, the designer. If your company has a need for such assistance, let us know.
...then, most likely, you will be told about it in the first comment, and the focus of further discussions may shift to where you did not plan. Or they will insult you and downvote your post - anything can happen. Therefore, the advice is simple: pay attention to how to do it, and how - not. Do not be shy before posting to show your publication to colleagues in order to get criticism - maybe they will offer useful edits (add/fix/remove).
Sometimes collective work has side effects, which can also negatively affect the final result. For example, someone from the staff writes material and leaves in the note like "check this information with John", "do not forget to hang up an advertising link here," "decipher the abbreviation for the dumb" or "there will be an incredible beauty screenshot". And then, the person, who places material on the site, simply copies without looking at all the text and inserts it into the form of writing the publication. Just one such phrase can spoil the whole publication or even the attitude to the company as a whole. Therefore, when preparing a publication, there is a well-known proverb: seven times measure - one cut.
Also known as Picture to Attract Attention. If the publication does not have such a picture, then in the site's feed (and in social networks) it will be a small inconspicuous record that everyone will accidentally miss.
Approach the choice of a picture in the advertising part of the publication as responsibly as possible: it should not be very large (to fit on one screen together with the title and introductory text) and on the topic of publication. Excellent are all sorts of memes, but inept and/or inappropriate usage (too frequent also) can play a cruel joke.
Use only high-quality images - if there are JPEG-pictures of awful quality or screenshots on which you can not see anything, then you will be definitely noticed about it.
The audience of our projects is far from stupid and often knows how to read between the lines. Therefore, it is better not to fool and veil the advertising message of the publication, and openly write about your intentions - it will be more honest and effective. In everything, you need to know the measure - frankly advertising publications from time to time nobody will like. The same goes for the links in the text: if you insert ten links instead of one, but clicks from this will not increase.
Many people like Habr for the fact that the project has hundreds of IT companies, with which users can communicate directly. If readers ask questions in the comments, they are waiting for them to respond to company representatives. Try to avoid answers in the spirit of "We passed your question to a specialist, he will respond soon" and negative answers to users. If there is a starting conflict with the user, then try to resolve the problem not publicly, in private messages with the user.
Most important. Even if you took into account all the advices (described above) and placed the publication in prime time, but it does not bear a useful semantic load, you should not wait for a miracle: there will be no tens of thousands of views, no giant ratings, no hundreds of comments.
But the opposite is true: even if you made some mistakes, but you have incredibly useful and "explosive" material, even on Christmas's Eve you will be read, commented, added to favorites and reposted in social networks.
You will find it useful to learn about the operation of the main mechanisms: types of accounts, invitations, karma, rating, voting and other.
All this is written in detail in help section.
It is located in the administration panel of your corporate blog - it has answers to many questions that are not in the "general" reference section.
Sometimes for a beautiful design users forgive some mistakes - if they see that the publication is framed with a soul, they will willingly vote for the rating of the publication and the author's karma, will be more loyal in the comments. And in general, to read beautifully designed material is much more pleasant than a sheet of text. Recommendations for the design of publications are written in separate section.
For all the time on our projects there was not a single company that would regret that it had launched a corporate blog; some of them wrote about their success stories - it is not so difficult to find these publications. But there were those who led the blog incorrectly and/or ineffectively, because of what the impressions of the projects were negative. And following the above tips will help you avoid many troubles, improve the quality of publications and increase the efficiency of posting on our projects.
For assistance in managing the corporate blog or for any questions about our projects, you can always contact our managers at email@example.com.
We wish you success in work on publications!