Since you’ve been put in charge of marketing for your company, the blog on the website is now part of your job. You have some great ideas for blog posts, but you need cooperation from co-workers who can provide the information for the posts.
The problem: Everyone is busy doing their jobs. How will you get information from subject matter experts? You need to think like a journalist.
Do your research.
Learn what you can about the topic in question. Read information your company has written about it. See what people are saying on social media, other media or Reddit about the topic. This will help you understand the topic and create good questions to ask.
Write questions for your expert in advance.
It may be easier for your co-worker to think about the questions a few days before you interview him or her. Or it may be necessary for the person to answer via email because of travel limitations, a different time zone or a busy schedule. Bonus: When someone emails answers to your questions, it’s simple to copy and paste their exact words into the blog as a quote.
Talk to other people who will brag about the person who is too modest to brag about himself.
I once had to write a story about a school district employee being promoted to superintendent. He was so modest, he didn’t want to say much about himself. I needed more than that for a story, so I started talking to his co-workers who knew him and could talk about his accomplishments. This approach can be helpful if you’re writing about a co-worker who received a promotion or award but is too modest to talk about it.
Sometimes, you might need to wait to talk to someone when it’s more convenient for them. I once waited to talk to an official after he examined a body that had been found in Lake Erie. When he came up from the beach, we did an interview and I got my questions answered. Even if you have set up a time to talk, your co-worker may have to take care of something more urgent first. Bring your laptop or something else you can work on in case your interviewee keeps you waiting.
Ghostwrite and get approval.
This tip comes from the content marketing side when we needed to get information from a busy doctor. Instead of doing the interview he didn’t have time to do, we did research and wrote a blog post for him to review, edit and approve. You can do the same for a busy executive at your company if an interview isn’t possible.
I hope these tips will be helpful to you when you’re working on your company blog or company newsletter. I’ve used all of these methods. They worked for me and they can work for you, too.