Why it’s taken us six months to write our first blog post
So here’s the big confession… It has taken us six months to write our first blog post. Now you’re probably wondering “what kind of creative agency can’t even write a blog?” In our defence, we’ve discovered we’re not the only ones. Our clients have difficulty creating their own content and on this occasion, so did we. Want to know why?
Firstly, we spent far too much time planning. Looking back, our plans are about as valuable as the virtual paper they’re written on. It turns out that over planning led to a serious lack of execution. We spent more time deciding how many blogs we were going to do per week, on what topics and philosophical angles to include, and who would write them, than actually putting pen to paper. And we thought that coming up with the ideas was the hard part. The fact that this was actually the easy bit, should have given us a clue as to where the real hurdles were.
As a busy agency, devoted to our clients work, we thought it would make sense to protect our internal resource and outsource the writing of the blog posts. We briefed a team of pen poised writers on concepts for the posts, we explained the Huddle point of view, talked about who we are and what we stand for and left our voice in their very capable hands. What came back were well written blog posts that completely missed the point and often contradicted our core beliefs, and sounded like everything else that everyone else was writing. We believe in adding genuine value, not just making a noise – there’s far too much of that already. It’s what we deliver to our clients and it’s what we stand for. It’s the Huddle tone of voice, and no matter how incredibly talented the other writers are, they aren’t Huddlers – we needed to speak for ourselves.
Once we established that we were going to have to write our own blog posts (how hard can it really be?) the next hurdle was finding a Huddler who was prepared to step up and put pen to paper. The pressure was on and suddenly everyone was very busy doing other very important things. Good writers don’t think about writing well. They think about suspense, emotional impact and about the story that they are trying to tell. They’re expert and leaving the editor at the door while they get their creative thoughts down on paper. All we needed to do was find something we wanted to say…and put a little Huddle heart and soul into it.
The general consensus seems to be that to write a decent blog, you just need to be transparent and authentic. This may not always be the best way to win friends and influence people, but it will maintain credibility and integrity - qualities that we truly value. Because once we’d got to this stage we were genuinely worried about what people would think of us and our blog, especially our clients and future clients. But in this world full of vanilla opinions and political correctness, we just didn’t want to follow the crowd.
And that was when we realised the aim of the blog. The aim is not to sell Huddle and how creative and innovative we are... our work speaks for itself. It’s not even to drive traffic to our website in the hope of generating leads (although that would be nice). The aim is to share our hands-on experiences to help others learn, to educate people on the way the design industry works and demystify processes in order to help people make better decisions, get better results and be in control of their design projects.
So here it is, our list of what we’ve learned about blogging. Feel free to give us a shout if we missed anything, we’re new at this and we’re still learning too…
- Write about what you know, what you care about
- Don’t over plan! When things happen organically themes will naturally appear (like a list of tips on how to write a blog post!)
- Ideas are easy but writing is hard, so put the real time into the latter
- Keep it short and reader friendly - don’t alienate people with technical language!
- Be authentic and transparent because this is where you’ll find originality
- Have fun and don’t take yourself too seriously, because life and design are not that serious (and neither are we!)
Keep an eye out for Huddle's blogs - we'll be pulling together our thoughts from the design and innovation worlds to educate, inspire and amuse, with a little injection of the Huddle personality along the way.