Recently, a client asked me whether his company should be blogging? I asked him what was he trying to accomplish by having a blog and he said he did not know. He said that it seemed like every other company was doing it, so he thought maybe his company should, too. I told him that if his only reason was everyone else was doing it, then the answer was easy – no, don’t start a blog. Does that mean I do not think blogging is useful or beneficial? Of course, not. I am a big fan of blogging, as I have a personal blog and you are reading my company’s blog right now. However, if you are a business or a person planning to start blogging, I think it is important to understand why. What do you plan to accomplish with your blog?
Oddly, my personal blog started by accident and with no strategy, so I will admit I did not practice what I am about to preach. However, I did learn from it. I created my blog as a way to share Halloween pictures after a Halloween party I hosted in October 2007. Almost two years and 2,250 posts later (yes, I know that is an average of 3 posts per day. Like I said, I am a big fan of blogging) it is still alive and kicking. So why do I blog and what am I trying to accomplish with my blog? For me, it is where I think, plan and reflect. It is a place where I can express myself without censorship. It is a way for me to share with the world what I find interesting. It even allows me a forum to vent from time to time. In many ways, it is my little corner of the world. Some of my posts are very generic and just recap a day, so at times it is my journal. Other posts are quite personal and almost like therapy. Sometimes I find the best way to release something, is to put it out there in writing.
I doubt you are going to start a blog for your business as a way to post Halloween photos or as a place for your own personal therapy, right? Correct. Although, I do love Halloween and would love to see any great costumes you have done in the past. No? Okay. That does not mean your business does not need a blog. So why should a company have a blog? I can think of several reasons:
Reason #1 – blogs are an ideal way to communicate with your customers.
Unlike a Web site or a contact us form, a blog allows comments and gives your customers a way to participate in a conversation with you. They can offer suggestions, feedback and even ideas to help your company grow. It also allows your customers and even postential customers, to see what other customers are saying. I know what you are already thinking. That means my blog may become a place where someone could say bad things about my company. Yes! But, wouldn’t you rather get feedback, even bad feedback and deal with it to become a better company than pretend it does not exist? As I see it, a negative comment on your company blog may be an opportunity to change an unhappy customer to a happy, loyal customer. We all want happy, loyal customers.
Reason #2 – it is instant content in the blogosphere about your company.
It is a great place to (more…)