Starting and 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. You need to read other blogs and sometimes comment on what you read. Due to these comments, people can find your own blog and comment on what you write. This means you are forming personal connections with people (and their companies) you wouldn’t have known otherwise.
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, depending on how many adverse comments people make about your organization.
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, the advantages of having a blog, if you have the time and resources to maintain it, outweigh the disadvantages.
Remember that much blog advice relates to small/medium businesses seeking to earn revenue from their blog, as opposed to the corporate business environment in which typical PR pros operate.
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