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How easy is it to start a blog?

By Kim Harrison,

Consultant, Author and Principal of www.cuttingedgepr.com

Since Diana Huff started her own MarCom Writer Blog in May, she has learnt a lot about the blog community or blogosphere. In the past three months of blogging, she has realized that maintaining a blog - while definitely worth the effort (and fun, too!) - isn't as easy as it looks.

Blogs take time! Almost all blogging experts say the actual writing is the hardest part about keeping a blog. Blogs need fresh content - constantly. Developing that content - and making it pithy and relevant - is not something you can do in your "spare" time.

Blogs forge connections. Having a blog means Diana now reads a dozen other blogs and sometimes commenting on what she reads. Due to these comments, people find her blog and comment on what she writes. This means she is forming personal connections with people (and their companies) she wouldn't have known otherwise. As a marketing communication consultant, this means she is reaching more potential clients.

Blogs require linking. If you want a successful blog (one that people read and post comments to), you have to link, link, link to other blogs, Websites, research reports, news items, and the like. Otherwise, you'll remain a lone voice in the wilderness. When you link to other people, they in turn will link back to you, which helps increase your exposure in the blogosphere. (All this linking means you'll spend considerable time finding information of interest to which you can link.)

Blogs increase ‘transparency.’ Blogs let people see, upfront and in person, your company, its values, and how it responds to complaints and negative feedback.
This transparency is good and bad: Google's Matt Cutts, for example, makes Webmasters and SEO experts happy by answering their Google related questions; Dell Computers, on the other hand, is dealing with comments written by very unhappy customers on its new One2One blog.

Blogs require marketing - Like newsletters and websites, you build blog readership via marketing and PR. Depending on your blog, your company, and how much effort you put in, it can take 3-12 months (or more) to build readership and links back to your blog. 

Overall, Diana believes the advantages of having a blog, if you have the time and resources to maintain it, outweigh the disadvantages.

More about blogging in forthcoming issues of Cutting Edge PR e-News.

 

About the Author

Kim Harrison is a recognized authority in the public relations field. His website, www.cuttingedgepr.com, provides a wealth of informative articles and resources on public relations techniques and management

 

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