To blog or not to blog

To blog or not to blog

I didn’t have time to write a blog post last week mainly because I was busy helping clients set up their blogs. Like Mickey Rourke, the corporate blog seems to be making a comeback this year. But not for the reasons we used to use- so our CEO sounded smart, or to  place brilliant thoughts on our industry and life in general into the infinite archives of the Web. These days consider this – if your website is “home” on the Internet then your blog is the front porch.

REASONS WE LOVE BLOGS 1) They improve search optimization. There is no more frequent place that search engines visit than blogs (I think). My own blog shows up in search within 24 hours. There are no changes to a website that will cause that.  I hear from folks like Kim Jones  many companies are building their entire websites within WordPress and other CMS tools just for that reason.

2)The blog builds credibility on line. If you want to seem knowledgeable about a topic, write about it. If you want your company to seem knowledgeable, write in your blog about it. 

3)People find you. I’ve had calls from reporters that saw a particular blog post and needed an “expert” comment. I don’t know if B2B companies or other services firms are going to sell business based on a blog but I know it helps reinforce that these guys know what they’re doing.

Here are a few key things to remember. I’m sure you’ve seen these before but these are the tips I give my clients about blogging and the ones I think are most important:

  • Put your blog WITHIN your site so the address is for example. Don’t use forward slash blog.
  • Update 2-3 times a week with short (200 word) posts. Add a longer one once in a while.
  • Use photos and videos as often as you can.
  • Don’t insist on reviewing and approving content – you’ll never get anything posted. Give up control and review the guidelines instead.
  • Hire more than one blogger to help you write – perhaps a “problogger” as well as an industry expert. That way if a blogger flakes out (and they will) you won’t be stranded.
  • Interview people from your firm and post the Q&A online.
  • Invite influencers to write guest posts on a frequent basis.
  • Make sure you’re blogging about news events in your industry.
  • Use a blogroll, tags, and trackbacks liberally
  • Use popular blogging software or a CMS. DO NOT use your programmers little tool he/she coded up at home.

Once set up, a blog should be something that an admin can manage. And it’s probably one of the most powerful tools you can use to build credibility and search results FAST.

Many thanks to Yann Roper at Extanz for all he’s taught me about the power of blogs and social media. If you are looking for the experts, go not further than Extanz.