Epilepsy Research Institute – Research Blog strategy

The Epilepsy Research Institute (formerly Epilepsy Research UK) are the UK’s leading epilepsy charity dedicated to funding and enabling research to help everyone live a seizure-free life.

The charity has had a Research Blog for a long time, which they used to discuss different issues relating to epilepsy, and showcase some of the research they fund.

In 2022, the charity completed the UK Epilepsy Priority Setting Partnership, working with people affected by epilepsy to set the direction for research. The team felt there was a great opportunity to match the ambition of the charity with engaging content – and ultimately become recognised as the leader in epilepsy research. Part of this ambition meant looking again at the Research Blog and how it was operating, and I offered to help facilitate this.

To do this, I delivered a blog strategy workshop which brought together staff from across the charity to review the aims and direction of the Research Blog. During this process, the group came to the conclusion that the blog needed to shift its focus towards the wider epilepsy community as an audience, rather than just speaking to supporters of the charity. To do this, we came up with new formats and new approaches, including content inspired by the themes coming out of the Priority Setting Partnership, and ‘Hot topics’ which would be relevant and timely for people affected.

After the workshop itself, I presented back a draft blog strategy, which summarised the discussions we had, and invited feedback. The strategy included: the fundamentals of Why, What, How, When, and Where; a ‘mission statement’ articulating the promise for the audience; and an exploration of the reader journey and metrics which they could use to measure success.

Feedback about the blog strategy process was positive overall. Respondents to a survey said it was a useful process to go through, and the draft strategy was a helpful starting point for their own discussions internally.