Almost all of our clients contribute columns and guest articles to various news outlets. It’s a great way to build up your thought leadership platform while also filling content need for online news outlets. Many of our clients find value in contributing to banner business publications like Forbes, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Fortune and Inc. But for the last couple years Inc. has not taken one-off guest posts, but only contributors who post at least once a week.
Writing once a week may be intimidating to a lot of folks since it does require a bit more planning. One of our clients James Sudakow has been contributing columns to Inc for over a year now — at one point he was writing two columns a week!
We spoke with James about a few of his tips and tricks to keeping up with a weekly column, as well as the benefits he’s seen to contributing to Inc on a weekly basis for over a year.
What are some of your tips and tricks for keeping up with a weekly column?
Write ahead. I batch write whenever I can. The ramp up to starting the column is slow — I knew I had the column for about a month before I actually got the login so I had time to plan ahead. Now, I try to write at least four columns ahead.
How do you come up with new things to write about?
I’m a consultant and the topics I write about are directly taken from what I work with my clients on. I try to always keep an eye out for things to write about. Also, now that I have been writing for Inc for over a year I get pitched stories to write about based on things I have written on in the past, which helps too!
What are the benefits you’ve seen from contributing weekly to Inc?
My Inc. columns have become a huge part of my content marketing. Inc. tweets my columns out to their followers, and combined with posting other relevant Twitter content consistently has grown my Twitter account an an average of 25 active followers a month since I started contributing — overall a 718 percent increase. I’ve had nearly a quarter million impressions (how many people click on a tweet you’re a part of), 180K profile visits, and thousands of engagements that allow me to grow my audience at a consistent rate.
When Inc. shares my piece on Twitter, I usually get anywhere from 30-50 retweets from it and as many as 300 — also with a lot of likes and responses. When Inc. shares my piece on Facebook, I’ll see anywhere from 100-500 shares, with hundreds of comments and likes.
Contributing to a column weekly has directly affected the publicity opportunities I receive. This year I did a Sirius XM radio interview after a producer read one of my columns and then had me on-air to discuss the topic further.
I continually receive great feedback from major influencers. I’ve had everyone from Obama White House members to thought leaders from all spaces and journalists from Forbes Magazine and The Huffington Post retweet my pieces.